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If you often work on your car at home, a good quality set of car ramps are an invaluable addition to your arsenal of tools. As well as providing adequate clearance to get underneath your vehicle and perform essential maintenance, they also offer a much safer way of working on your vehicle when compared to using a standard jack only assembly.
In this review and buying guide, we take a look at the best car ramps to buy, assess the differences between them and explain everything that you need to know.
1. Sealey 3 Tonne Car Ramps
- Each ramp has a weight limit rating of 1.5 tonne, 3 tonne limit when using both ramps simultaneously
- Manufactured from durable Polypropylene – extremely strong and durable
- Manufactured a brand that you can trust, excellent range of products
- Dimensions of (L x W x H): 900 x 300 x 215mm
- Maximum tyre width of 260mm
- 1 year manufacturer guarantee
- Suitable for professional or DIY environments
2. Autostyle Synthetic Car Ramps
- 5 tonne overall weight limit, 2.5 tonne per ramp
- Suitable for caravans / mobile homes
- Anti skid surface construction
- Each ramp weighs roughly 5kg
- Dimensions 91x30x17cm
3. SwitZer Metal Vehicle Car Ramp Lift With 2 Ton Hydraulic Jack
- 2 ramps with integreated hydraulic jack
- Lifting capacity of 2000kg
- Suitable for use with tyres up to 245mm wide
- Made with heavy duty steel
- Height adjustable from 270mm to 375mm
- Size of the ramp: 1140 x 320 x 310mm (L x W x H)
- Gross weight – 22kg
- Suitable for use in professional garages or at home
4. Cartrend Ramp Kit, Extra Wide
- Extra wide and robust design
- 2000kg weight rating when used as a pair
- Recommended tyre width of 225mm
- Length: 97 cm; width: 34.4 cm; height: 26.5 cm; weight: approx. 17.7 kg
- Made from heavy duty steel
5. Rhyas Heavy Duty Car Ramps
- Designed to be used in professional garages or at home
- Constructed from heavy duty steel
- 2 tonne capacity
- 10 crossbeams for added strength and stability
- Dimensions Length: 840mm (33″) Total height: 270mm (10 1/2″)
- Weight: 5.3KG each
- Width of tyre track: 210mm
What Are The Benefits Of Car Ramps?
Flexibility – Car ramps enable you to carry out a range of different jobs on your vehicle which would previously require a visit to a near garage. Not only is this expensive but it’s also inconvenient as you’ll be without your car for a period of time whilst the garage perform the work. A set of car ramps enable you to tackle the job at home ensuring you’re back on the road as quickly as possible. Some jobs aren’t possible without raising the vehicle from the ground, an oil change for example. This is where a good set of car ramps give you the flexibility to carry out the task yourself.
Ease of Use – Car ramps couldn’t be any simpler to use, whilst a few precautions are neccessary, they are pretty much child’s play to use. They are much easier to use than the alternative of a jack and axle stand. With a jack, you’ll need to locate the exact jacking point of your particular vehicle and lift the car from this specific part of the vehicle. Once in the air, you’ll need to place an axle stand underneath the car, again in a specific location. Failure to place the jack and or axle stand in the wrong place can be an extremely dangerous and costly mistake. When using car ramps, there’s none of these concerns. Simply drive your car onto the ramps and secure using the handbrake when in position, simple and straight forward.
Save Money – Tackling vehicle maintenance and repairs yourself can save thousands on repair bills. In order to carry out specific repairs / maintenance, you’ll need to gain access to the underneath of the vehicle in order to carry out the repair. This is where a set of car ramps can be invaluable and save you lots of money in the long run. Again, let’s use the example of a simple oil change. A professional garage will charge you a few hours labour plus the cost of the materials. With a set of car ramps, you’ll be able to tackle the job yourself and save yourself a hefty bill too.
Safer Than a Car Jack – Car ramps are much safer than a car jack. All vehicles are supplied with a manufacturer’s jack when the vehicle is brand new, generally a small scissor jack. These jacks are only designed to be used in an emergency situation, i.e to change a wheel at the roadside. You should never ever get underneath a vehicle when it’s being supported a jack only, doing this can be fatal as the car can easily fall off the jack and crush you. Car ramps are a much safer alternative and provide a safe environment for repair and maintenance works to be carried out.
What To Consider When Buying Car Ramps
So you’re looking to upgrade your arsenal of tools with a set of the best car ramps, what should you consider before making your purchase?
Weight Limit – Before making your purchase, you’ll need to ensure that the ramps are able to take the weight of your particular vehicle. For example, if you own a large SUV or truck, you’ll need some pretty heavy duty car ramps, a 2 tonne set won’t be sufficient. Conversely, if your car is a small and lightweight hatchback or similar, a 2 tonne set of car ramps will be fine. Ensure you play close attention to the ratings of the ramps as quite often the weight rating will be quoted individually rather than the pair of ramps together as a set. For example, if a singular ramp can support 1.5 tonne weight on it’s own, then the combined weight limit of 2 ramps would be 3 tonne when using them as a set.
Design and Suitability – The design and suitability of car ramps is an important consideration. If your car is particularly low to the ground with minimal ground clearance underneath the front bumper, you’ll need to purchase a set of ramps that are low profile. Low profile car ramps have been designed to specifically work with low riding vehicles and enable the vehicle to be raised without causing damage to the bodywork.
Ramp Height – All car ramps vary in the height that they’ll raise a vehicle up to. Be sure to check this and ensure that they’ll give you sufficient clearance to carry out your work. Some ramps will only elevate a vehicle off the ground a very small amount, these particular ramps may not be suitable if you’re planning on replacing an exhaust system, replacing parts underneath the vehicle etc.
Ramp Width – As with ramp height, another important consideration is the width of the ramps. Again, all ramps will vary in the maximum tyre width that they can support. Some cars have extremly wide tyres, some have extremely thin tyres. Be sure to check the width of your tyres and cross reference this with the maximum support tyre width of the car ramp.
Construction and Material – Car ramps vary in their construction and materials used. Some car ramps are made from extremely hard and durable plastic. Generally speaking, these types of ramps are designed to work with fairly lightweight vehicles. Other car ramps are often made from heavy duty steel and are designed for use with extremely heavy vehicles such as SUV’s.
Car Ramp FAQ’s
Q. Are car ramps safe to use?
A. Yes, car ramps are perfectly safe for use. It’s extremely important however to ensure that all precautions are taken and ensure than the vehicle is safe at all times. You must always make sure the wheels are completely centered on the ramps, the vehicle is sat on the ramps in the correct position and finally ensure that the handbrake is properly applied when the vehicle is positioned properly.
Q. How do I know the weight of my vehicle?
A. This information is readily available in a range of places such as your vehicle manual / information booklets, or, a simple Google search will reveal the weight of the car.
Q. Do I need to add any additional weight on when purchasing car ramps?
A. To be on the safe side, we advise adding around 150-200kg on to the weight of the car. This allows for fuel, any items in the boot / trunk and the weight of the driver when driving the car on and off the ramps.
Q. How should I store the car ramps when not in use?
A. Most car ramps are designed so that they can be stacked together meaning that they can easily be stored in a garage etc. We would advise trying to store the ramps indoors to stop them from getting wet. If you’ve purchased a metal pair of ramps you’ll definitely want to avoid storing them outside and them getting wet for prolonged periods of time, they’ll eventually rust the metal. This isn’t too much of a concern with plastic ramps but we would always advise storing them indoors if possible.
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