Simplify Your Harbor Freight Jack Stand Recall Claim

Recalls Simplify Your Harbor Freight Jack Stand Recall Claim

Harbor Freight Jack Stand Recall

Whenever a car is in need of repairs, you're likely to find a . These tools can be very important to help maintain vehicle safety over time, but they can also cause havoc if they are not used correctly or in disrepair themselves. The risk factor with these devices became more apparent after Harbor Freight was forced to recall their products on two separate occasions. Dealing with a recall of this scale is alien to most people, so this article will explain why this recall was needed and how DoNotPay can help make the process easier than ever. 

How Are Jack Stands Supposed to Work?

Before discussing the reasons and meaning behind this recall, it's important to  to operate and how the equipment is tested before being approved for public use.

Jack Stands come in two designs: pin-locked and ratcheted. Pin-locking stands to feature a tubular lifting post that slides into a separate tube and a series of holes that locks the post in place and supports the car itself. Ratcheting stands use a rotating "toothed post" that automatically slides under the next piece when the post is lifted. Lowering the post is done via a release lever.

Since 2015, jack stands have been rated in pairs. The standards are set by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), although they may be listed as ASME PALD (Portable Automotive Lifting Devices) and ANSI PASE (Portable Automotive Service Equipment). It's also important to note that neither organization does the testing themselves, and each manufacturer is not required to test each set of stands they sell. The test for these stands begins with grading their ability to hold up to 200% of their rated capacity for ten minutes. Once the load is removed, the stands can't have a permanent height reduction by more than an eighth of an inch.

The type of jack stands needed for certain vehicles changes depending on the weight. You can figure out your minimum weight rating by dividing the vehicle's weight by two, but here's a

simple guide to help you if you don't have that information:

  1. 2-ton (4,000-pound) jack stands for small, light vehicles
  2. 3-ton (6,000-pound) jack stands for medium to large vehicles or a medium SUV
  3. 5 or 6-ton (10,000 or 12,000-pound) jack stands for trucks or large SUV

What Caused the Harbor Freight Recall?

In May 2020, Harbor Freight was forced to recall over 454,000 units made from June 13, 2013, to November 22, 2019. The problematic units were the three-ton, and six-ton heavy duty steel jack stands with SKU numbers 56371, 61196, and 61197. If you're unsure if you have this jack stand, you can find the number of three-ton units on the top label and on the base in the yellow section of the label on the six-ton stands. Harbor Freight also has a helpful visual guide in the PDF announcing the recall.

Due to outdated tooling in their factories at the time, the pawls on these jack stands could potentially disengage from the extension lifting post and collapse after a shift in weight. Obviously, this could result in serious injuries or death if precautions weren't eventually taken. Embarrassingly for the company, Harbor Freight had to recall another set of stands just a few months later.  A welding defect was found in three-ton stands with SKU number 56373 after the initial recall investigation ended.

Owners of these stands could bring them to a Harbor Freight Tools store to exchange them for a gift card equal to the retail price of the faulty jack stands. Stands that weren't sold were swiftly removed from company inventory.

Tips to Avoid Jack Stand Accidents

It should be clear by now that jack stands are serious pieces of equipment and require attention to detail to ensure proper use. According to an annual report from the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration, more than 4,822 people were injured by collapsing stands, with over 96% of those individuals needing to visit the emergency room. The NHTSA broke down the injuries into these categories:

  • 40% – Contusions
  • 18% – Lacerations
  • 15% – Fractures
  • 13% – Other Injuries
  • 10% – Strains or Sprains
  • 5% – Amputations

Avoiding the emergency room is always the best option, so here are some words of advice to stay healthy while working on your vehicle:

Check the condition of the jack stands regularlyBefore lifting the vehicle up in the first place, make sure that the stand is stable and in good shape to be used. If any piece of the equipment is damaged or worn down, get it replaced before engaging in any repairs.
Only use it on a flat, hard surfaceThe best place to lift a vehicle from is a hard and level surface like your traditional garage floor. A soft surface could cause the jack stand to shift and drop the vehicle. If you can't ensure a flat surface, find the flattest place you can lift from.
Use chocks before liftingChocks are wedge-like devices that stop vehicles from rolling. Place two of them behind the wheels at the end; you are not lifting up. Strong blocks of wood or bricks can also be used for this purpose.
Locate your lift and jack standpointsThe right sport of lifting your vehicle varies depending on the type of vehicle, so look in the owner's manual to see where the best lifting spots reside. When placing a lift stand, it's best to set it at a lower setting, with both stands at the same height on both sides. Never raise the vehicle higher than is required to increase safety. If the jack points are damaged, or you can't find them, consult your dealer or ask a mechanic for help.

Make sure the jack stands are secure and vertical

Once you're ready to place the jack stands, ensure that they are vertical and not on top of any debris and that it won't hit anything coming down. Place the jack stands as close to the height of the support point as possible.

Have an escape plan and backup nearby

Always consider the worst-case scenario of a malfunctioning jack stand. Adding a third stand or a tire under the vehicle is a good way to lower the risk of accidents. It's also smart to have another person on standby or help out or keep a phone close so you can get help if something terrible happens.

As the vehicle settles, make sure the jack stands remain vertical and make good contact with the jack points. Check to make sure that the vehicle doesn't come down on an angle, and you may have to move the jack stands again to ensure proper alignment. Before getting under the car, double-check the vehicle's stability one last time.

If you're still wary of getting under the car, find a professional who can take care of the job for you.

Deal With Recalls Easier by Using DoNotPay

The news of a recall can be a frustrating and underserved part of the customer experience. Thankfully, DoNotPay's recall product simplifies the process of replacing broken hardware. Here is how our technology can help you make a claim:

  1. Tell us about your purchase, including the product name, brand, store you purchased the item from, price, and date of purchase. If you purchased the item online, enter your transaction details and payment method as well.


  2. Tell us how you found out about the recall.


  3. Choose whether you want a refund, repair, or replacement.


  4. Upload photographic evidence of your purchase and the product if you still have it.


  5. Choose whether you have the capacity to return the item or not.


After that, DoNotPay will send your request to the company on your behalf while you go about the rest of your day. Of course, you could do it all yourself, but that takes much more time. DoNotPay can also deal with recalls from other companies such as:

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