Hydraulic Jack Fluid

westslope

First Fill-Up (of many)
I own a Performance Tool 3 1/2 ton low profile jack. Works very well.

After a half dozen years, i want to change the jack's hydraulic jack fluid. So I picked up a bottle of ISO AW32 anti-wear hydraulic jack oil at our local Crappy Tire before I consulted the manual.

The Performance Tool jack manual calls to "...use only hydraulic fluid with a rating of SAE 20 for refills." The manual also calls for the fluid to be re-filled every three (3) years....

Question: Can I safely use the ISO AW32 oil in the jack or should I hold out for SAE 20, and if so, where can I find it?

Here is a: SAE-to-ISO Oil Conversion Chart

According to the chart, it appears that I should be looking for a SAE 20W/AW68 hydraulic oil. Any help here would be appreciated.
 

jsexton

Wheeling
Supporting Member
Location
Lewis Center, OH
I'm not an expert, and I'm not saying you should, but I personally would use it and not think twice about it. It should be quite a bit better in cold weather too.

People use automatic transmission fluid in hydraulic jacks all the time too.
 

TheCrabby1

Lockers Installed
Supporting Member
Location
Burtonsville, Md
Some of the Commercial fishermen will add brake fluid to the hydraulic fluid when they develop a slight drip around a hydraulic piston or orbital motor seal . Something in the brake fluid tend's to make the o-ring/seal swell up slightly. There's my 2 cent's ; As for the jack I'd use what they call for.
 

TerryD

Total Tease
Supporting Member
Location
Covington, Va
You'll need to use heavier fluid than the AW32. The thinner oil will most likely leak worse since the seals are designed for the heavier fluid.

Also it may be a lubrication concern for the pump. Those pumps make a lot of pressure which can create a good bit of heat, even in the short amount of time they actually operate during a lift.
 

General_Tarfun

Need Bigger Tires
Supporting Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
I own a Performance Tool 3 1/2 ton low profile jack. Works very well.

After a half dozen years, i want to change the jack's hydraulic jack fluid. So I picked up a bottle of ISO AW32 anti-wear hydraulic jack oil at our local Crappy Tire before I consulted the manual.

The Performance Tool jack manual calls to "...use only hydraulic fluid with a rating of SAE 20 for refills." The manual also calls for the fluid to be re-filled every three (3) years....

Question: Can I safely use the ISO AW32 oil in the jack or should I hold out for SAE 20, and if so, where can I find it?

Here is a: SAE-to-ISO Oil Conversion Chart

According to the chart, it appears that I should be looking for a SAE 20W/AW68 hydraulic oil. Any help here would be appreciated.
It held the fluid for that long? The piece of junk I bought at walmart leaks continually. You definitely get what you pay for.
 

westslope

First Fill-Up (of many)
Thank you for all the comments. I have been "up north" for a bit, with no or shoddy connections to the web.

I looked at the US harborfreight.com site and immediately found STA-LUBE 15 Oz Hydraulic And Jack Oil explicitly described as "SAE grade 20 weight". In-store only.

I am inclined to agree with TheCrabby1 and TerryD. I will keep looking. In the meantime, a few Canadian on-line sources do not mention the SAE grade weight. Annoying....

G_T: The Performance Tool jack performs well, without any mishaps to date. It has proven quite stable. Mind you, I get the truck on 6-tonne jack stands as quickly as possible.
 
Last edited:

westslope

First Fill-Up (of many)
Follow up.

In early October, a fellow named Tyler from Great West Equipment in Kamloops gave me at no charge ~4 litres of AW46 hydraulic jack fluid which is close to the SAE 20W that the 3.5 tonne jack manual calls for. Thanks man! Works like a charm.

I also received some help by email from the Wilmar Corporation to bleed the jack. Distilled:

1. Remove the cover/tool tray. This is done to facilitate removing the filler valve or rubber plug.

2. Open the release valve a minimum of 2 turns. In this case, turn the handle counter clockwise twice.

3. Pump the handle 10 to 20 times to purge air.

4. Open the fill plug by removing it. Then put it back into place.

In addition, one could lower the jack to its lowest position, turn the handle clockwise to close the valve as if one is going to pump it up. Then put a foot on the front wheels and manually pull the jack up. Then go back and turn the release valve (handle) so the jack lowers back down. "This helps to suck all the fluid thru the valves. Then do the bleeding again. Should be good to go after that."

Some of you may view Performance Tools equipment as cheap, generic crap but so far I am impressed with the performance and the customer support.

.... back to trying to fix heavily corroded ground straps off the exhaust pipe....
 
Top