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Old 07-19-2011, 06:56 AM   #1
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Did something dumb...bent the electric jack!

Okay, in my defense, we were sitting along I-695 in Baltimore with a flat tire, so it was already a stressful situation. I'd put the jack down because I needed to get clearance to get the spare tire out of the holder under the front of the trailer. Then I pulled the trailer up on blocks, forgetting the jack was still down. Stupid, I know.

I'm guessing I bent the tube or damaged something internally - it raises up, but not all the way like it used to before it grinds to a halt and trips the electrical breaker. It went up far enough to not be a hazard for the rest of the drive home (the hitch itself it actually several inches lower than the jack's new highest point). Is that repairable? Or am I looking at replacing the entire jack?

At full extension, the tube appeared to be straight. But I didn't check it closely.
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Old 07-19-2011, 07:20 AM   #2
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Don't beat yourself up too much. Most Airstream owners have done it at least once. If it is beyond straightening, a replacement can be had.

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Old 07-19-2011, 08:23 AM   #3
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Put it back up on blocks, extend the jack to the length it was when you started this, then back it off the blocks - should bend it back

I'm sorry, it is ALREADY one of those days and I just couldn't help myself - I'm going to hell when I die!

I'd have it checked - the damage may be such that it isn't safe to rest the trailer weight on it regardless of how it extends or retracts.
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Old 07-19-2011, 09:07 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pienjim View Post
Don't beat yourself up too much. Most Airstream owners have done it at least once. If it is beyond straightening, a replacement can be had.
A replacement jack? Or a replacement leg?

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Originally Posted by Steve & Susan View Post
Put it back up on blocks, extend the jack to the length it was when you started this, then back it off the blocks - should bend it back
That idea crossed my mind, too.

Quote:
I'd have it checked - the damage may be such that it isn't safe to rest the trailer weight on it regardless of how it extends or retracts.
I think it's probably okay - it was lifting the trailer up at home just fine, then we were bouncing around inside unloading it. I figure, if I have to pull it apart I can check it then.
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Old 07-19-2011, 09:18 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve & Susan View Post
Put it back up on blocks, extend the jack to the length it was when you started this, then back it off the blocks - should bend it back

.
I have done that with hand crank jacks.. An electric is basically the same with out the crank.. Nothing is lost by trying it.

Didn't back it off blocks, just put it down and backed up.. Doesn't take much to bend the post slightly
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Old 07-19-2011, 03:38 PM   #6
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Hmm...shouldn't be too hard to set up a microswitch that would flash your lights or something if you fired up the tow vehicle while hitched to the trailer while the jack was down.
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Old 07-19-2011, 04:26 PM   #7
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Before you start ‘fixing it,’ I suggest you first study the operation manual for that model jack. If the Owner’s Instructional brochure didn’t come with the trailer you should be able to find one on the Internet. The second thing to do is call the company’s technical service department. If it is a Barker jack, like one of their H&H Super Power Jacks- -their telephone number is 1-800-537-9940. I called them and had excellent service.

After your fix & reassembly, it most likely needs to be re-synced, i.e., the powerhead must be synchronized with the jackpost. Instructions are on-line. Failure to do that might strip the fiber gear assembly.
Good luck.
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Old 07-29-2011, 02:17 PM   #8
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I tried a couple things to get the pole straight, but couldn't get it and I'm probably just going to make it worse if I keep going. So I ordered a new pole today (along with a hand crank - one didn't come with the trailer, and I know sooner or later, if I didn't have one, I'd need it!). I think it was $180 or so, but for a $400+ jack it seemed worth it.

The jack is from this company, and they were GREAT - I just called them, told them that I couldn't find a model number but it looked exactly like their Super Jack (he responded, "Yes, that's probably it."). He either knew the part number off the top of his head or looked it up VERY quickly. Very quick and painless phone call.
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Old 08-12-2011, 01:41 PM   #9
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So, I finally got the new jack installed today. We received it a week or so ago but this is the first I've had a chance to paint and install it. Works great! And doing this had the side effect of cleaning up some rust on the tongue - the base of the jack (where it mounts to the tongue) was somewhat rusty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gringo View Post
Hmm...shouldn't be too hard to set up a microswitch that would flash your lights or something if you fired up the tow vehicle while hitched to the trailer while the jack was down.
I'm thinking about this. It seems like it would have to be mounted on the post and closed when the jack is down. Issue: it should only warn you when it's hooked to the vehicle...the obvious solution would be to wire it to, say, the running lights (I have them on whenever I'm towing) but messing with that circuit has the risk that you could cause more problems than you solve.

A cheaper option would be for me to just be a bit more careful!
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