Exhaust Jacks have been around for a while now; those big air pillows that once attached to the exhaust inflate to lift your trucks out of trouble.
Now the very fact that many of us are driving 4x4s from the last decade and older probably screams that we don’t eagerly take to new things, but these new kids on the block have a lot going for them. Lets face it with all the lift kits, off-road tyres, roll cages, roof racks and light bars to mention a few our motors aren’t the lightest or most well balanced things to lift. But we do like wedging them into some pretty awkward places and there’s always the dreaded flat whilst we’re out playing. The Exhaust Jacks can lift up to 2 tonne with 10psi, are light to carry, easy to pull out your kit bag and have the added bonus of being easier to place under the truck as well as lifting the truck with no huffing and puffing required from us. An Exhaust Jack has a large surface area in contact with the ground as well as the truck making a safer and sturdier lift. This also means that difficult terrain like sand or mud is no longer a problem sucking down your tradition lift gear and tricky rocks don’t have to be removed for a well-positioned jack base.
The principles are the same, Check the handbrake is on and chock the wheels that will stay in contact with the ground to prevent the vehicle moving, if the truck is on an incline then attach a winch or strap to a secure object.
Attach the pipe of the Exhaust Jack to your exhaust or a fellow adventures if you can’t get to yours, and ensuring you’re out of gear turn the engine on to inflate by gently pushing on the accelerator from outside the vehicle if it’s attached to your exhaust. This will allow for an inspection of the pillow to ensure there’s no splits or abrasions from previous use. Once happy deflate the pillow enough to slide safely under the truck preferably onto a mat to avoid any unnecessary damage from rough ground.
Lift points will be the same as with a tradition jack, chassis side of any flat wheels. Just check underneath the vehicle to ensure once the weight of truck is resting on its pillow that it won’t be crushing any vital pipes or rods.
Now everything is in place and ready to lift, again ensuring you’re out of gear, gentle apply a little pressure to the accelerator from outside the vehicle to inflate the Exhaust Jack slowly for a controlled lift, try not to be over enthusiastic with the accelerator or you’ll just blow the exhaust bung out. Keep checking the lift is going to plan and once happy turn of the ignition.
The one-way valve in the hose will maintain the air pressure of the bag but if you intend working beneath or even stretching under the truck it best to support the truck under the raised corners to hold the weight securely.
If using the Exhaust Jack to raise stuck and embedded wheels from mud, snow or sand, then once the jack has lifted the wheel pack any solid materials under the tyre and immediately in front to gain traction when the jack is removed.
When it comes time to deflate the Exhaust Jack again little effort is required, just squeeze or twist the valve to slowly release the air from the air bag for a controlled descent.
Wipe the pillow free of any debris before folding away and when you get home give it a wash, dry and inspection again so it’s packed away safely for the next time.
If you’re out on an expedition we’re guessing that airbag is going to double up as one comfy seat too.