Anyone who has owned a motorcycle or dirt bike will tell you the benefits of cruising down an open highway with nothing between you and the ground but a few hundred pounds of metal and rubber. The sense of freedom, individuality, and overall way of life that go with owning a motorcycle are just a few of the reasons most riders prefer to cruise on two wheels instead of four.
Besides the fun and exciting lifestyle benefits that motorcycle riders enjoy, the ease of maintenance is another major factor in purchasing a bike. If you’re comfortable and experienced enough to do your own maintenance and upkeep, motorcycles are much easier (and more fun) to work on than cars. While there is rampant debate about which type of bike is the most fun to ride, there is no debate that they all require that you have one must-have tool in your garage to work on your ride. No matter whether you ride a sport bike, a chopper, or a motocross bike, every rider will agree that you must have a motorcycle jack.
This buyer’s guide is all about helping you find the perfect jack for your motorcycle. We’ll discuss what a motorcycle jack is, what it does, why they are important, general safety, and what to consider when purchasing one of your own. There are quite a few factors to consider, but by the time you finish reading this guide you will have the knowledge and confidence you need to make an informed purchasing decision.
Motorcycle Jack Comparison
If you are just looking for a quick motorcycle jack recommendation and don’t want to spend the time to read the entire article, we have compiled a quick reference table just for you. This table contains our top picks in addition to relative pricing and ranking. If you want a more detailed look at motorcycle jacks, skip the table and read on!
Black Widow Motorcycle Scissor Jack
Pit Posse Dirt Bike/Motorcycle Scissor Lift
Powerzone 380047 1700lb Hydraulic Motorcycle/ATV Jack
OTC 1545 Motorcycle Lift
Torin T64017 1500lb Motorcycle Jack
What is a motorcycle jack?
Simply put, a motorcycle jack is a tool used to lift a motorbike from its resting height to an elevated position. These tools use either compressed air, hydraulics, or a combination of the two. There are different types of jacks and lifts that are designed to handle specific weight ranges, types of motorcycles, and specific repairs. Some are easily moveable with attached wheels and others are fixed in place. Most typically, they consist of a wheeled base, a flat platform that travels upward and downward, and a hydraulic system that is usually actuated using a hand powered lever.
Why use a motorcycle lift or jack?
Lifts/jacks are used to service, maintain and store every type of motorcycle. By raising the height of a motorcycle it is much easier to work on and maintain. On lifts that have wheels you can easily jack up a bike and move it around for easy garage storage.
So why would you want to service your own bike? The answer is simple. Whether you are just beginning to ride or a seasoned veteran, you stand to save a lot of money by doing your own work.
Motorcycle Jack Safety
It is important to use proper safety when operating a motorcycle lift. When we say important, we mean life and death important. There is serious potential for injury if you aren’t attentive to the details. Always use common sense, and also make sure you always:
• Know what your bike weighs and select a jack that is rated for the load
• Do not overload the jack/lift
• Raise a motorcycle, dirt bike, etc. using the proper lifting point(s)
• Keep feet and hands away from pinch points
• Use safety locks (if equipped)
• Know your surroundings
• Check to make sure your bike is stable when sitting on top of the jack before doing work
What to consider when purchasing a motorcycle jack
There are several considerations one must make when purchasing a motorcycle jack.
• How much does my motorbike weigh?
• Will this jack handle the weight?
• Is there proper clearance to get this stand underneath your bike?
• Do I want a movable jack or a fixed jack?
• How much does the jack weigh and do you need portability?
• What materials is it made out of?
• How long do I plan to keep this jack?
• How often will I use this?
• Will I need to store this?
Another note is that motorcycle jacks are not brand specific to certain bikes nor are they style specific, so you can typically use the same jack on different makes and types of bikes. A good motorcycle jack will work for your Yamaha, Suzuki, Harley, BMW, and Honda without having to source a different jack! Similarly you can use the same jack on your chopper, dirt bike, and sport bike without having to worry.
Once you’ve figured out which type and weight capacity of lift you will need, it’s time to start shopping! To help get you started, here are our reviews of three of the top motorcycle lifts on the market:
Torin 1500-lb Motorcycle/ATV Jack
Torin is known for making quality automotive tools designed to withstand a lifetime of use and abuse. Professional mechanics and do-it-yourselfers rave about this particular jack for many reasons including the great features, quality of build and design, and the overall value.
Compared to similar products on the market, Torin’s tools are more highly rated and less expensive than some of their American-made competitors. Like most manufacturers, Torin’s tools are made in China, but if you can get over this fact we can assure you that the overall quality remains up to their customers’ high standards. In our opinion, Torin’s 1500-lb motorcycle jack is a great product and worthy of reviewing.
First off, this jack has a list of great features that we really like and wanted to review. Able to lift up to 1500 pounds, this Torin is capable of jacking anything up from a Harley Davidson to a minibike to an ATV. Weighing in at around 74 pounds, this lift is easy enough to transport and store. The swivel casters (two of which lock for added stability) give you easy portability for rolling heavier motorcycles around on your garage floor when they are up in the air.
The jack itself features six locking lift positions so you can adjust the height of your motorcycle or ATV to the optimal location for quick and easy maintenance. The actual lifting range extends from 5.25-inches to 16.625-inches which enables plenty of space to get under your bike with lots of room to change out a chain, oil filter, spark plugs, etc.
With the included bottle jack and pulling bar, this tool is incredibly smooth and easy to operate when you go to raise, lower, or relocate your bike. The lifting action itself feels as light as a feather even with beastly bike (we’re looking at you Honda Gold Wing) sitting on top of it. The added bonus of having rubber pads lining the lift ensures that your beautiful motorcycle frame will be protected against scratches and damage when you lift it up.
Overall, the build quality of the Torin lifting jack is more than adequate for its intended use. If you’re using it to lift your motorcycle, you won’t have any problems with it. If you overload it beyond its intended weight limit, like any product it could potentially be rendered useless (or dangerous for that matter) if you blow a seal or break a weld. This has nothing to do with the quality of this product but rather addresses a common complaint of “weak” weld joints due to overloading the jack. We repeat, don’t overload this jack (duh). The heavy duty rear caster brackets are reinforced by steel triangles welded underneath enabling strong support over the wheels. Lastly, the Torin 1500 is easy to assemble right out of the box.
In our opinion, we think that you would be hard-pressed to find a lift/jack of similar quality to this Torin for the same price. Inexpensive and yet chocked full of fantastic features, this tool is perfect for working on a variety of motorcycles and ATV’s. This lift is easy to use, easy to assemble, and smooth as butter to operate under a heavy load. We think it is one of the best motorcycle jacks for the money for those of us that like to maintain our own toys and save some money while doing it. These can be found in stores, but you can usually save a few bucks buying online, such as here.
In addition, Torin has wonderful customer service so if you ever need a spare part or replacement, you can rest assured you will be taken care of.
Powerzone 1700-lb Hydraulic Motorcycle Lift/Jack
When you have a heavy bike to maintain, you’re going to need a lift strong and sturdy enough to handle some serious weight. That’s why we recommend the Powerzone 1700-lb hydraulic motorcycle lift. As one of the most trusted names in automotive tools, Powerzone delivers high quality parts built to last forever.
It is important to choose a lift that will not only work for your specific type of bike, but that will also fit your budget and needs. Many Powerzone customers give this particular jack a 5-star rating based on its rated capacity, design quality, and ease of use. In our opinion, this is one hell of a tool and that’s why we have decided to include it in our list.
With a rated capacity of 1700-pounds, this Powerzone lift is a brute that provides the ultimate support for both do-it-yourself garage mechanics and professionals alike. It can safely handle heavy bikes (think Yamaha V-Star 1100 or Harley FXDWG).
The lifting range of this jack is from 4-1/2” to 14-1/2” which is sure to give you plenty of room to get under your bike to get your maintenance done. Changing that worn rear tire or doing brake work is easy within this height range.
Another feature that we really like is the foot-activated hydraulic pump that allows for hands-free lifting. This makes it very easy to position and stabilize your bike while you use the lift allowing for precise (and safe!) operation. The included multi-positional safety lock gives you added security when working on your motorcycle. Last but not least of the safety features are the rubber pads on top of the saddle that provide a slip-free surface and keep your frame from getting scratched.
When it comes to making a decision to purchase a tool, the quality of construction should be a top factor in selecting which brand to buy. In our opinion, the Powerzone brand is top notch in both quality of design and materials. This particular lift is made of heavy duty steel with a quality finish and clean welding.
Another sure sign of high quality on this jack can be felt when rolling around on the heavy duty casters. Don’t expect any plastic pieces of junk to be found on this Powerzone lift. Instead, they’ve supplied smooth-rolling steel casters capable of rolling a full load effortlessly around your garage floor. We think it’s a nice touch.
Assembly of the Powerzone lift is extremely easy and includes all the hardware you’ll need to put it together right out of the box. For someone who works on their motorcycle, there should be no trouble getting this jack assembled. Once assembled, you can really feel the sturdiness of this unit. We wouldn’t hesitate to drop a bike on it, jack it up, and then get to work without any worry!
In our opinion, this is a great product from a company that’s been making high quality tools for a long time. There are few competitors on the market that can even come close to the success this lift has experienced among its many satisfied customers. With an entire host of helpful features that make this lift incredibly easy to use and maintain, you can be sure to get the most bang for your buck by purchasing a Powerzone tool. We find that it’s similarly priced at most places online, but Amazon often has a free shipping deal going which typically saves a few bucks.
If you’re looking for a solid blend of quality, features, and a price that’s relatively easy on the wallet, look no further than the Powerzone 1700-pound lift. Strong enough to handle big heavy bikes yet collapsible to 4-1/2”, this is a fantastic tool at an affordable price.
Black Widow Motorcycle Scissor Jack
Our third and final review for this buyer’s guide features the Black Widow scissor jack. This particular jack is made by Rage Powersports, a leader in automotive and motorcycle equipment and accessories. As a high-quality manufacturer of lifts, car jacks, car ramps, jack stands, covers, and many others, Rage’s products are highly rated in terms of quality, variety, and durability.
Based on our pleasant experience with this product (and those of numerous other satisfied customers), we deemed this lift worthy of our list. From its glossy black appearance to its one-year manufacturer’s warranty, we believe this is one of the best lifts around. If you have never owned one of Rage’s tools, we highly recommend checking this jack out.
The Black Widow’s easy-to-use scissoring center lift has a maximum capacity of 1,100 pounds, which makes maintenance on most bikes a breeze. One feature that we really like about this product is that it easily raises and lowers with a 7/8” socket wrench (not included). It goes up and down almost effortlessly allowing smooth operation and precise placement.
One notable difference between this jack and the previous ones we reviewed is the much larger centered rubber pad. This is a great feature if you have a bike that has a non-standard frame width that is either too wide or too closely spaced for some jacks. With this scissor lift, you can easily center nearly any motorcycle frame over the protective rubber support pad.
The Black Widow’s simple and efficient construction makes this lift easy to use and maintain. You just have to keep a little grease on the lifting screw and you’ll never need to worry about touchy hydraulic systems that can wear out over time. Weighing less than thirty pounds, this scissor jack is easy to collapse and transport as well.
This is a classic and simple design made with durable steel components and as such, it is very sturdy and safe to use when fully loaded. With a one-year manufacturer’s warranty, you are covered if you experience any problems with this product (which we really like). From a small 250cc dirt bike to a large cruiser, this jack can handle whatever you throw at it!
Many retailers sell this product online and based on reviews from some of the major websites, this is definitely one of the best and most highly rated motorcycle lifts available. You can find it at some brick and mortar stores, but the best deals are usually had at online retailers such as Amazon. If you’re looking for a high quality lift that will last as long as you have your bike, try the Black Widow.
For the price, you will be surprised at how great this jack actually is. Instead of throwing $300-plus at other scissor lifts with essentially the same features, we recommend you purchase the Black Widow and save yourself some money. Not only will you get a great tool with a fantastic warranty, you’ll also keep your wallet fat and happy.
Fabricated out of durable steel components and a non-slip rubber pad, this lift requires little to no maintenance and folds up to a tiny 3.5” tall profile. When it comes to finding the perfect lift for your bike, look no further than this one. Built as a stationary lift, you have the option of purchasing Rage Powersports’ additional dolly to make this the ultimate movable chopper maintenance machine!
After going through this buyer’s guide, you should have a better understanding of what a motorcycle lift/jack is, why you need one, proper safety protocols, what you should consider when purchasing one, and what some of the different types of jacks are. Whether you’re looking for a small and simple lift to change an oil filter on your dirt bike or a large and movable jacking platform to hold your custom chopper steady while you tighten up a chain, a lift is an essential tool to getting the job done right the first time, every time. It’s also important to remember that while we have chosen our favorites, there are many great motorcycle lifts out there. If one on our list didn’t capture your interest, feel free to check out some of the other offerings on the market by clicking here.