How to pick the perfect hydraulic trolley jack

Purchasing a trolley jack is not something you do every day. So whether you’ve seen a good deal recently or simply require an upgrade for your garage, this guide walks you through the main points to consider so you can choose the perfect hydraulic trolley jack for your needs.

What is a hydraulic trolley jack?

Used for lifting vehicles and workshop machinery and equipment easily and safely so that the underside of the vehicle can be accessed, hydraulic trolley jacks are mounted on wheels so they can be moved into position easily. They can also be used to slightly lift up vehicles to enable a quick tire change when needed.

Trolley jacks are fitted with a hydraulic lifting arm to lift vehicles off the ground and can be powered using a one-piece pumping handle or a Rocket Lift. This works by compressing oil in a pump cylinder which raises a vertical piston and in turn, lifts the arm and the vehicle.

How will it be used

Different trolley jacks have been specifically designed for certain vehicles and lifting requirements. Most trolley jacks are rated to a certain weight and so it’s important for your safety that you choose a jack that is fit for your purpose.

Ground clearance

High lift trolley jacks are ideal for use with SUVs, cars, light commercial vehicles and any other vehicle which requires high ground clearance. They are also suitable for loading body shop chassis jigs.

Low profile trolley jacks are ideal for use with sports or custom cars as they have a low clearance height. They usually feature a heavy-duty chassis complete with strengthening flanges, a robust one-piece hydraulic unit and pump-through action to prevent handle locking.

Lifting capacity (weight)

Choosing a trolley jack with a low lifting capacity to save money and then overloading it with weight can be very dangerous. Not only could you break your jack, costing you more, but you will put the safety of those around you and the vehicle at risk.

That’s why it’s important to consider the maximum amount of weight you will be lifting (adding on a little extra for good measure) to minimise the risk of damage to goods as well as ensure your own safety.

Lifting capacity (height)

This may not seem as important but having a lifting height that enables you to access the underneath of the car easily and safely, specifically where multiple people are using the equipment, should be taken into account.

Common elevation ranges available are 100mm to 500mm, with higher lifting jacks available for more specialised uses.

Other considerations


Sometimes it is the smaller details such as the wheels of a trolley jack that make the biggest difference in day to day use. Choosing the right wheel material for your workplace floor is important. Choosing a trolley jack with polyurethane wheels, a type of protective rubber provides you with silent and smooth manoeuvrability and protects the workshop floor under extreme weight.

Mobile usage

Trolley jacks made of aluminium provide a lighter alternative to standard models. This makes them a better option if you frequently require your trolley jack to be moved from one location to another.


A good quality trolley jack that is purchased from a trusted supplier will more than likely come with a warranty. This gives you peace of mind knowing that your new piece of equipment will last a long time, and if it breaks, it will be fixed.

Author Bio: First Mats started life as safety matting specialists, but have since expanded to become a complete industrial and commercial supplies company. The focus of First Mats is to provide safety-focused products that improve the wellbeing of staff through quality approved products, backed up by extensive knowledge.

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