Can A Hydraulic Jack (an Old One) Be Overfilled? - Building & Construction - DIY Chatroom Home Improvement Forum
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Old 08-16-2009, 02:14 PM   #1
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can a hydraulic jack (an old one) be overfilled?


our deck is sagging a bit and needs to be shored up, so I bought an old hydraulic jack at a garage sale.
question: Is it possible for one of these old jacks to be OVERFILLED with hydraulic fluid?

I ask because I cannot get the piston on this one to drop more than half way into the canister. I've oiled it in the event rust was making it sticky, but when I release the screw valve, I can drop it 50% and then when I push hard on it,I can feel it drop another half inch but then spring back up when I release my hand. it feels loose but as if it were hitting a spring.

any tips?

Peter
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Old 08-16-2009, 05:53 PM   #2
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"Can a hydraulic jack be overfilled?" YES. BUT- with these bottle type jacks, in my experience, if it is overfilled and you retract the ram, the little rubber plug (see it on the left side) will just pop out spraying fluid all over everything. I've always been taught that the proper fluid level is when the fluid runs out of that hole with the jack standing up and the ram completely down. The plug is to keep the fluid in and the dirt out. Try taking the plug out, unscrew the release valve about half-way out, and by hand, raise and lower the ram a few times slowly. If you get the ram to bottom out, close the release valve, replace the plug, and try the jack. IF it works raise it as far as it will go, then slowly allow it to lower with some weight on it, such as hand pressure. IF it bottoms out again, remove the rubber plug, tilt the jack to that side slightly to check the fluid level. If it needs some add a little at the time repeating this procedure and hopefully you will have a good "garage sale" jack. Good Luck, David
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Old 08-16-2009, 07:17 PM   #3
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Done!


David.
thanks for sharing your experience (and the correct terms for these various bits).
I tilted the jack slightly, pulled the plug, (over a tin dish), loosened the release valve, drained a bit of fluid while pushing the ram down, replaced the plug and Presto! I have a full 6 inches of play in the ram now, instead of the 3 I was working with before.

Thanks again.

Peter
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