The Garage Tools

Initial Impressions: Harbor Freight’s Badland Off-road Jack Is a Helluva Useful Tool For My Can-Am

Goes up. Then goes up some more. 

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You’re out in the wilderness when the unfortunate happens. You screwed up your tire, need to make a fast brake repair, or just need to do simple routine maintenance to your lifted and/or long-travel suspension-equipped vehicle. Simple floor jacks don’t work. They just don’t go high enough. And high-lift tower jacks sometimes don’t quite grab enough meaty steel to ensure your continued health and survival. 

I, in fact, have this issue with my Can-Am X3 project. It’s a bear to work on as my Duralast jack I picked up from Autozone ages ago doesn’t get the wheels even off the ground unless I get…creative. And it absolutely doesn’t work on anything but my garage floor. So no backcountry fixes are even possible.

Harbor Freight thinks it has the answer with this Badland off-road jack. And after using it a handful of times, I’m inclined to agree. 

3-Tons of Lifting Prowess

I will say, this jack is overkill for my Can-Am, though I’ve also used it for my Honda Ridgeline. With a 3-ton rating, it has 2 tons of extra lift thanks to the X3’s sub-ton curb weight. As such, it lifts the whole rig pretty dang quickly and without much force. 

Setup is easy, as you just throw the heavy-duty rubber wheels on, attach the lever arm, and connect the jack extension to the main pad using a provided Allen wrench. In total, it can lift a vehicle up a whopping 29+ inches from the ground. That’s perfect for the Can-Am’s 20-inches of travel. And while its parts are both steel and aluminum, it doesn’t weigh all that much compared to other jacks of similar size, coming in at just 70 pounds. There’s even a handy-dandy carrying handle for those muscly enough to just lug it around. 

The wheels themselves are solid, too, ensuring pretty easy working even in my driveway’s very loose gravel. So how does it actually work? Awesome

A High-Lift Jack For Everyone

I’ve had to do a few things to the Can-Am lately, along with our Ridgeline, and the Badland jack has made each of those jobs super simple. 

The Can-Am got a tire rotation—with a brake job incoming—and the Ridgeline got a front brake replacement, with new rotors and pads. I’ve also used the Badland to get the Can-Am up off the ground to regrease all of its zirc fittings, which I’ve neglected for a while. 

What made it far more of an initial test, at least for the Can-Am, was that I had to use it outside in our gravel driveway. That’s thanks to the Roofnest roof top tent that’s currently fastened to my Prinsu rack and my garage’s fairly low ceiling height. Had I tried either inside, I would’ve been pressing the Roofnest into the garage door or the ceiling. No bueno. 

At first, I thought the Badlands jack would’ve sunk more in the gravel, thereby losing some height, but the way it disperses the weight onto it made it hold true throughout each job. What’s more, after using it a bunch, this seems like the perfect answer for most off-roaders who don’t want to attach a high-lift tower jack to their hood. Just throw it into your trunk, or onto your roof rack, and get out into the wilderness. 

Better yet, it isn’t as expensive as others in its class thanks to this being from Harbor Freight. At the time of writing, the Badland off-road jack costs just $320, which isn’t bad considering I paid $215 for my 2.5-ton aluminum Duralast.

I have a few more tests in mind coming up, along with replacing the Can-Am’s brakes soon, so stay tuned for more on the Badland and whether it’ll live up to these initial impressions.