You should ensure that any axle stands you plant to buy meet the required safety recommendations and are manufactured to a high standard.
It's prudent to buy the best quality stands you can afford - an inferior product could result in damage to your vehicle and also potentially pose a risk to your safety.
By using top quality car axle stands you can feel confident that if your jack were to fail during use you will be protected from injured while working under your vehicle.
First you should ensure that the stands are a good quality build and manufactured by a reputable company. Check the general appearance of the stands to ensure there are no rough edges and the quality of the welds is sound. If you choose to buy used stands, you should check for any signs of rusting and wear.
Make sure that the stands you are thinking of buying have padded stabilising feet on the base. If they do not they could prove to be a liability on some surfaces, and even prone to slipping.
You should give some consideration to the support mechanism of axle stands: There are two main types of support used - ratchets and pegs. A ratchet mechanism is regarded by many people better and safer option, since it allows precise control on the elevation of the raise. Some cheap safety pin or peg-based stands can be more awkward to use. If you do opt for peg or pin stands, make sure the pegs fit securely and have safety catches.
It is important to buy safe and reliable stands from a reputable store and avoid the temptation to purchase cheap inferior quality stands. Leading UK retailers who sell axle stands include Argos, Screwfix, Machine Mart, Halfords, Rapid Online, UK Tool Centre, Autosessive and B&Q. They are also available to buy at eBay, Gumtree and shopping giant Amazon.
It's also worth buying a set of wheel chocks when working under a car, van or any other vehicle. These are very cheap and provide that extra stability needed to prevent any risk of movement when an area of your vehicle is raised off the ground.
Vehicles can’t go against the force of gravity so the sloped design of chocks ensures your wheels will stay in place while work is carried out.
Installing a chock on each side of the wheel is great way to increase safety and give you peace of mind. The slope of the chock should curve around with the wheel almost perfectly. Push or kick the each chock into place until it is nice and snug, and then proceed to working on your vehicle safely.
Once you have finished working on your vehicle, simply remove the chocks in the opposite direction from which you fitted them. Some models of chock have a pull handle to enable you to remove it with ease.
Chocks are normally made of heavy-duty plastic or rubber and cost around £10 a pair. Check out our range of vehicle axle stands and wheel chocks.