Whether you work as a full time mechanic, or you simply enjoy the experience of working on your project car, an engine stand is one of the most important and versatile tools in your workshop.
Rather than try to work on your engine while it’s in-place, an engine stand allows you the ability to conveniently access your engine from any angle, allowing you to rotate it as you need to in a simple and safe manner.
What Is An Engine Stand?
An engine stand is a simple device that allows you to get to the hard to reach parts of your engine with little effort.
Built from strong, durable material, an engine stand supports the entire weight of your engine as you work, and allows the rotation of the engine when you need to work on the underside.
Designed to make your engine rebuild easier, engine stands contain many convenient features that allow you to work smoothly and quickly.
Most engine stands feature an adjustable frame, allowing you to set the most optimized height for the engine size that you’re working on.
The head assembly fits securely into the engine and features the ability to rotate a full 360 degrees, so that you can access any part of the engine at any time.
The frame typically features wheels that allow for easy transport of your engine, so that you can quickly and safely move your engine from one part of your workshop to another.
10 Best Engine Stand Reviews
#1. Performance Tool ½ Ton Capacity Engine Stand
When it comes to your mechanical work, safety and strength is your top concern. For jobs that require heavy duty lifting, you need to be confident that your engine stand can protect you while you work. The Performance Tool engine stand allows for lifting of up to half a ton, so that you can get even the biggest jobs done.
Heavy Duty Construction
Your primary consideration when buying an engine stand is the strength. The construction of the Performance Tool engine stand is high, with heavy duty steel and strong and durable assembly. With a carrying capacity of half a ton, you will be supporting your engine block safely and securely.
Adjustable Lifting Arms
Every engine block is different, so your engine stand needs to be able to fit your specific requirements at all times. The Performance Tool engine stand features six adjustable lifting arms that can fit any sized engine block, with a rotatable head that can allow for any angle. This makes your job safer and easier.
Single Leg Design
When you’re lifting such heavy engines, a simplistic design can reduce the potential for error. The Performance Tool engine stand is built with a single leg, allowing for easy positioning and ease of use. Not only that, but the wheels offer 360 degree rotation, allowing movement in every direction.
- Extremely stable and sturdy design suitable for small and medium sized engine blocks
- Swivel arms enable flexible usage
- Adjustable head assembly that locks in six positions for flexible use
- Heavy duty construction using tubular steel
- Easy positioning thanks to the 360 degree swivel casters
- Not recommended for heavier engine blocks
- The assembly instructions are not very clear
#2. Jegs Performance Products Engine Stand
When you want to make a smart choice when deciding on your new engine stand without breaking your budget, never settle for lower quality. The Jegs performance products engine stand is not only an easy and convenient aide when it comes to working on your engine, but this extremely budget friendly model doesn’t cut corners in terms of construction.
Steel Tube Construction
Designed to withstand extreme pressures, the steel tube construction of the Jegs engine stand will give you confidence while you work. Supporting up to 1000 lbs of weight and durable no matter what level of use it gets, allowing you to work smoothly and comfortably for all of your projects.
There’s nothing worse than buying a new engine stand that is a nightmare to put together. The Jegs performance products engine stand features an innovative design that requires minimal assembly, requiring only minutes of your time before you’re ready for use.
With complete swivel casters and sturdy arm, the Jegs engine stand allows you complete assurance for your toughest jobs. The rotating head allows you to get to your engine from any angle, and the locking mechanism allows you to work without worrying about movement.
- Tubular steel design that performs well under high pressure
- Easy to move around thanks to the swivel wheels
- Only takes about fifteen minutes to assemble
- Rotating head allows for better ease of access
- Trusted brand with many years of experience
- There can be some movement even when the head is locked
- Some of the drill holes may not be aligned properly
#3. Torin Big Red Steel Rotating Engine Stand
When you have a heavier engine, your regular engine stand just won’t cut it. The Torin big red steel engine stand is the superior choice for times when you need a bigger lifting capacity. With the sturdy, no-tip design with the fully adjustable arms, there’s no job you can’t handle.
Built For Strength
Your larger engines require extra capacity when mounting. The Torin big red engine stand is built with a strong steel body with a durable crossbar so that it can withstand up to 1,500 lbs. This means that you can work on larger projects without specialist equipment.
When Safety Is Your Top Concern
Working with heavier engines means that you are exposed to a higher risk when something unexpected happens. The Torin big red engine stand is build with a no-tip design that allows you to work with the highest level of safety.
Foldable For Easy Storage
When you’re short on space, you need solutions that will keep out of your way when you’re not using them. The Torin big red steel engine stand features a fully foldable frame, so you can store it when you’re working on something else.
- Super strong design that can withstand the weight of bigger engines
- Fully rotating head that offers you flexibility
- Adjustable arms that allow you to get that perfect height
- Innovative design that prevents tipping
- Completely foldable for better storage
- The front crossbar may be wider than what you’re used to
- Users have reported that the welding may not be straight
#4. Harbor Freight Tools Automotive Engine Stand
Working on your engine requires superb strength and attention to detail at all times. The Harbor Freight Tools Automotive engine stand is designed for heavy use, allowing you to support and stabilize your standard size engine safely and securely.
Rather than use complex, complicated tools in your workshop, a simple approach to your work will allow you to focus on productivity. The Harbor Freight Tools Automotive engine stand is built with a sturdy, streamline design, allowing for easy, versatile use.
Designed For Stability
While many engine stands feature 360 degree swivel ability in all four wheels, you may find that these designs move around too much while you’re working. The Harbor Freight Tools Automotive engine stand combats this by allowing this freedom within two wheels only, with limited directionality in the other two wheels, allowing you to increase your stability while you work.
Made With Heavy Duty Steel
When you work with such heavy engines, your main concern is strength. The Harbor Freight Tools Automotive engine stand is constructed from heavy gauge steel which can withstand up to 1000 lbs of weight, reducing the risk of breakage and falls.
- Superb strength throughout the whole frame
- Two fixed-direction wheels that increase stability
- Streamlined design that helps you to focus on your work
- Fully lockable rotating head that allows you flexibility in your work angle
- Innovative “I” shaped design that helps to stabilize the engine
- Assembly can be time consuming
- Only two wheels feature 360 degree swiveling
#5. Jacko Rotating Engine Stand with Tool Tray
Spending a lot of time in your workshop means that you’re always on the lookout for the most useful tools. The Jacko engine stand comes equipped with features designed to make your life easier while you’re hard at work.
Convenient Tool Tray
Keeping your tools and bolts in one place while you’re working on your engine can be tough, and you may see your productivity levels decreasing if you’re constantly trying to find the parts you need. The Jacko engine stand features a convenient tool tray, allowing you to keep your bits and pieces in reach for when you need them.
Self Locking Mechanism
Working on a heavy engine comes with risks, and ensuring that your engine stays secure while you work is essential for your safety. The Jacko engine stand features a rotating head with a self locking mechanism that will keep your engine in place as you work.
Easy Grip Handles
Your freedom of movement is important, so having an engine stand that is simple and easy to use will help you to maximize your productivity. The Jacko engine stand features easy grip handles so that you can effortlessly rotate your engine as you work.
- Fully rotatable head that automatically locks in place
- Tray to hold your tools while you work for added convenience
- Fully adjustable arms to allow you to work on any sized engine
- Effortless rotation with easy grip handles
- Made from highly durable steel that gives extra strength
- The provided bolts for the arms may be too short
- Frame is not foldable so you must store it while assembled
#6. Heavy duty 2,000 lbs Foldable Engine Stand
When your passion is in the bigger models, having an engine stand that you can be confident in is a must. This heavy duty engine stand allows you to work on monster engines with the same ease and convenience you’d expect from a smaller engine.
Supports A Heavier Engine
Taking the next step in your mechanic game means working on bigger engines than you’re used to. The heavy duty engine stand supports a whopping 2,000 lbs engine, giving you the reassurance that you’ll be safe no matter how large your project.
Keeping your workshop free from clutter is important in maintaining the flow and usability of your workspace. When you’ve finished with your engine, you need a convenient way to store your engine stand, so you can move onto other parts of the project. This engine stand features a fully foldable design that will stay out of the way while not in use.
Fully Adjustable Frame
When you want to work on a variety of projects, any old engine stand just won’t cut it. This heavy duty engine stand features a full range of adjustability, allowing you to size it to whatever sized engine you are working on.
- Control your engine angle using the 20” sliding handle
- Fully adjustable frame that can be sized to engines of any proportion
- Can support up to 2,000 lbs of engine weight
- Completely foldable so that you can store it with ease
- Built from heavy duty steel that resists bends and breakages
- May require extra time with assembly
- May seem slightly too large for a smaller sized engine
#7. Sunex Foldable Engine Stand
Versatility in the workshop means that you can get things done with ease, streamlining the processes that can otherwise take you a long time. The Sunex engine stand is designed to make your engine fixes and rebuilds easier, allowing you to work effortlessly and efficiently.
Worm Drive Gearbox
Some engine stands can be difficult to turn, depending on the weight of your engine. The Sunex engine stand features a 63:1 worm drive gearbox that allows you to rotate your large engines quickly and easily.
Ball-Bearing Mounted Casters
Moving your heavy engines around a lot can lead to serious wear and tear on the wheels of your engine stand. The Sunex engine stand is designed with ball-bearing mounted casters with a full 360 degree range of movement. This means that they’ll withstand the weight of the engine without wearing out the casters.
Not only does the Sunex engine stand feature an adjustable frame, but the fingers that are responsible for holding the engine are fully able to be adjusted to suit any sized engine. This allows you to get the strongest grip on your engine, increasing your safety while you work.
- Compatible with any style engine
- Features auto-locking capability that ensures your safety
- Foldable frame allows for easy storage
- Worm drive gearbox makes positioning the largest engines simple
- Adjustable fingers allow you to get a great fit
- More expensive than other engine stands
- Folding can be difficult without removing a bolt
#8. Performance Tool 1,250 lbs Capacity Engine Stand
As one of the biggest names in engine lifting, it’s no surprise that we see Performance Tool back on this list. The 1,250 lbs capacity engine stand is a highly versatile and convenient way to support your engine as you work on it.
Wide Frame For Stability
Working on heavy engines means that you need a high level of support. This Performance Tool engine stand is built with a wider frame that gives a higher level of stability than other engine stands, giving you peace of mind as you’re working on your engine.
Convenient Tool Tray
Keeping your parts within reach is the best way to improve your productivity. The Performance Tool engine stand features a tool tray that keeps everything you need by your side, ready for when you need it most.
Heavy Gauge Construction
Constructed with heavy gauge tubular steel, the Performance Tool engine stand has a 1,250 lbs capacity that allows for usage with most domestic and foreign engine types. This means you can work with confidence as you tackle the biggest engines.
- Heavy duty design that allows for 1,250 lbs engine capacity
- Wide frame design with four swivel wheels for added stability
- Parts tray allows you to store tools conveniently within reach
- Adjustable mounting head that allows you to work in any position
- Automatic locking mechanism that allows for six fixed positions
- Assembly instructions are difficult to follow
- When unloaded, the frame may feel less stable
#9. K&L Supply Metric Engine Stand
As a professional mechanic, you require an engine stand that can work for you. The K&L Supply engine stand is a versatile and functional engine stand that is designed to integrate into high traffic workshops.
There’s nothing that inspires confidence in your customers more than a professional looking workshop. The K&L Supply engine stand features a polished steel finish which exudes the strength and workmanship that the brand is known for.
Working on the heaviest engines means that you need that added support. The K&L Supply engine stand features dual arms, allowing for support from both sides of the engine. With fully adjustable capability, you can work on any engine no matter the angle.
No matter what kind of engine you’re repairing or rebuilding, the K&L Supply engine stand can take on any challenge. From four and six cylinders, to twins and in-line systems, it’s as easy as setting the position and locking the frame into place.
- Compatible with any style of engine
- Adjustable height and weight capacity to suit any project
- Dual arm frame for extra support for heavier engines
- Polished steel finish that looks great in any workshop
- Can assist with a wide range of workshop activities
- Frame does not feature wheels so must be used in place
- More cumbersome to use than other engine stand models
#10. OTC 1,000 lbs Capacity Engine Stand
Paying more for your hardware often means a more superior construction, and that’s exactly what you get with the OTC engine stand. With a heavy yet stable frame and high attention to detail for each of the pieces, you’ll enjoy a long-lasting and functional engine stand.
Turn Heavy Engines Easily
The OTC engine stand features a three foot turning bar, allowing you to effortlessly turn your engines the full 360 degrees, no matter how heavy they are. Not only does this make working more comfortable for you, but it also helps you tackle bigger challenges with ease.
Comfortable Rubber Handles
Working with your hands means that you endure the stresses and strains of your busy workday. The OTC engine stand makes this easier on you as it is fitted with comfortable non-slip rubber handles, making it easier to and safer to use.
Heavy Duty Build
Supporting heavier engines can be tough with cheap engine stands. Rather than risk twisting and buckling, the OTC engine stand is built using 1/4-inch steel that is optimized for engines up to 1,000 lbs and will withstand your toughest jobs.
- Locking rear wheels that allow you to keep your engine in place
- Fully rotatable head assembly that can lock in eight positions
- Adjustable arms that can fit any standard engine type
- Disassembles with the removal of one bolt so that you can pack it away quickly
- Built with heavy duty tubular steel for added strength
- One of the most expensive engine stands on this list
- Some of the welding may not be as good to look at as the rest of the stand
How To Use An Engine Stand
There is a process involved in using an engine stand safely, requiring the ultimate care and attention to detail from the user. Here, we present you with a step by step guide on how to use an engine stand.
Clear The Area
Make sure that your engine and surrounding area is clear from debris, including tools, parts and other items.
Disconnect The Engine
Before removing the engine from your car, be sure to disconnect everything, including wiring, motor mounts and the exhaust. Once the engine is completely disconnected you can then attach it to your engine hoist.
Lift The Engine
Before attaching your engine to your stand, you must first lift it out of your car. Attach it to your hoist, being sure to follow all instructions carefully so that you can work in safety. Slowly lower your engine until it is on the ground.
Remove The Transmission
In order to attach the engine stand, you must first remove the transmission. Unbolt the cover, then remove the bolts that attach the torque converter, flywheel then the bell housing to remove the transmission.
Adjust The Engine Stand
Adjust the four arms of the engine stand so that they match the diameter of your engine block. Be sure that the bolts that you will use to connect your engine to the stand are long enough to fit through both the mount and at least one inch into the engine block.
Connect The Stand To The Engine
Using your hoist, lift the engine from the floor so that the mounting point is in line with the head assembly of the engine stand. Remove the mounting head, then run the bolts through the mount on the stand and into the place where the transmission was mounted. Be sure to center the head onto the flywheel and tighten the bolts.
Lower The Engine And Remove The Hoist
Lower the engine so that it is in line with the arm of the stand. Bolt the mounting place back to the stand, then slowly lower the engine further, checking that the stand is holding the weight as you go. Once you are satisfied that the engine will hold, remove the hoist.
Important Safety Information
Staying safe when using an engine stand is one of the most important considerations of your work day, as you are dealing with very heavy engines.
The risk of an engine slipping and falling is vastly increased when you’re not using the equipment properly. Here, we take you through the important safety information when using an engine stand.
Always Work With The Weight Capacity Of The Stand
While this may seem like a very obvious instruction, working within the weight capacity of your engine stand is the best way to stay safe while you work.
Engine stands are all rated to handle various weights, and if you use a stand that can’t handle your heavy engine, you may end up causing injury to yourself or damage to your engine. Always check the weight rating on the stand against the weight of your engine before use.
Inspect The Stand For Damage Before Use
If you use your engine stand every day, you may find that the stand begins to wear down over time. No matter how often you use it, you must check your engine stand for damage before you mount the engine. Inspect all bolts while the stand is unloaded, and ensure that the operation works correctly before mounting your engine.
Clear Obstructions From Your Work Area
Before you begin work, it’s important that you clear any obstruction from your work area. If you start to lift and mount your engine without realizing that something is blocking the space that you’ll be using, you may find your engine getting caught or stuck. If you are prevented from mounting the engine properly because of an obstruction, you risk dropping and damaging your engine.
Use The Stand On Solid Ground
If you work in a finished workshop then you’ll likely have a smooth concrete floor. However, hobbyists who work in barns or gravel driveways will find that their engine stands are not fully stable and supported. It’s essential that you only use your engine stand on a finished surface, so that you increase the stability and reduce the risk of the stand tipping over.
Tips And Tricks For Using An Engine Stand
Efficient use of your engine stand is essential in maintaining a high level of productivity. Here, we present you with tips and tricks for using an engine stand.
Mating The Engine And Stand
The most difficult part of using an engine stand is mating the engine to the stand. The most logical way to do this is to level the engine so that it is in line with the stand while it’s still on the floor, but this is actually the wrong way to go about it. Rather, remove the head assembly from the stand and connect it to the engine before you lift it. It is much easier to position connect the stand while the engine is in the air.
Use The Correct Bolts For Your Engine
Achieving the perfect connection between the stand and the engine is the most essential part of the process, and an inefficient coupling can lead to all sorts of safety concerns. The key to getting a great fit is to ensure that you use the appropriate bolts that suit your engine. Make sure you have a selection on hand if you work on many different engine types, so that you will always have the right connection.
Lubricate Your Rotating Head
What makes your engine stand so useful is the ability to rotate your engine so that you can reach all parts of it. Unfortunately, due to the design of many stands, this ability may reduce over time. You can keep your engine stand easily movable by lubricating both the rotating head as well as the inner tube so that you reduce the friction and keep everything slick.
What To Look For When Choosing An Engine Stand
Before choosing an engine stand, there are several important factors to consider. Here, we take you through what to look for when choosing an engine stand.
Your engine stands weight capacity requirements will differ depending on what kind of engines you primarily work on. While 1,000 lbs capacity engine stands will suffice for most standard model engines, you may find that a larger capacity can help you work on those project cars you’ve been thinking about. Make sure you know the weight of your engine before you fix it to the stand to prevent injuries.
Keeping your engine stable while you work on it is essential. With more movement, you’ll find that you are more at risk of making mistakes, that could end up being costly. When choosing an engine stand, you should focus on the features that will give you more stability, so that you can be confident and comfortable while you work.
Engine stands make your work so much easier in many ways, but one of the most desired functions is the ability to move your engine from one place to another. This is achieved through the wheels that are mounted onto the bottom of the frame. Not all engine stands have this feature, so if this is important to you, then finding a stand that has wheels is a must.
Engine stands come in a range of styles and prices, but one key feature you should look for if you want to maximize your usability is a hand crank. This feature will allow you to easily rotate your engine no matter how heavy it is, by dispersing the pressure required to make the turn. If you feel like you need the extra help in rotating your engine, choose a stand that has a hand crank.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What weight capacity does an engine stand have?
A: Most engine stands fit within a defined weight range. The most common stands will support 1,000 lbs, while others will allow you to mount engines up to 1,5000 or 2,000 lbs.
Q: Do engine stands hold motorcycle engines?
A: Not all engine stands will work with a motorcycle engine, due to the confirmation of the mounting apparatus. For more flexibility, choose an engine stand that features adjustable arms.
Q: Do you need a hoist to use an engine stand?
A: Engines are extremely heavy, and trying to mount them to an engine stand without a hoist can lead to disaster. Always use a proper hoist to lift your engine into place.
Q: What size bolts do I need for an engine stand?
A: While engine stands come in many configurations and capacities, one thing is common between them: they require bolts that are 3/8-16 inches in diameter.
Q: What is the best way to get the engine onto the stand?
A: Always bolt the mounting place to the engine before sliding it back onto the stand. This helps you to keep things extra stable while the engine is unsecured.
Which engine stand is right for you? Our favorite is the OTC engine stand, thanks to it’s super strong design and attention to detail.
Not only does it allow for comfortable use, but it looks great in the workshop, too. While more expensive than some of the other stands on this list, you’ll enjoy years of solid use from this stand.
Incorporating an engine stand into your workshop allows you to conveniently work on your projects, small or large.
Choosing the right engine stand for your particular engine can be a difficult process, but with a good eye for detail and attention to specifications, you can remove and support your engine with your safety in mind.
By using our guide, you can find the best engine stand for your project.
David has been working with tool for last 7 years. This resource from his work experience with tools. In his personal life, he is the father of one child.