Car ramps are the best way to lift your vehicle without having to worry about stability whilst lifted from the ground. They are a cost effective and simple solution that can withstand heavy vehicles for long periods of time.
The best car ramps are the Race Ramps RR-XT-2, which uses a low profile design to easily lift vehicles with low ground clearance.
Car ramps are available in several designs that range from heavy duty to low profile constructions. You should choose a ramp suited to your vehicles weight and ground clearance otherwise you will cause stress to the ramps or damage to your car.
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Car Ramps Comparison
|Race Ramps RR-XT-2
|Race Ramps RR-56
|Nicky Nice Steel
|Rage Powersports Low Profile
|OTC 5268 Truck
Car ramps are the best alternative when compared to the more expensive 2 and 4 post garage car lift. You won’t get the height of a lift but the additional lift you get from the car ramps ensures you have enough room to perform most tasks.
You can have the best floor jack on the market but there will still be the worry of it becoming unstable. Therefore, many mechanics will upgrade their car jacks with a quality car ramp for additional safety whilst underneath the vehicle.
Below is a list of the best car ramps that are easy to drive up and will hold your vehicle securely for long periods of time.
The Best Car Ramps
1. Race Ramps Low Profile Car Ramps
Race Ramps produce a wide range of car ramps and are very popular across the USA. If you have a sports or lowered car, we highly recommend that you purchase this kit with the additional components as it makes getting on the ramp far easier.
Each ramp is able to withstand a maximum weight capacity of 1,500 LBS with a 10.75 degree angle of approach.
Other features of the Race Ramps XT include:
- Constructed of space age foam
- Non-skid polyurea coating
- Textured rubber finish for maximum grip
- Lifts up to 10 inches
- Suitable for 12 inch wide tires
- Lightweight at 15 LBS per ramp
- Large solid bottom and no sharp edges
They are the best low profile car ramps that are easy to drive up and are built to the highest of standards. The main drawback is that they are fairly expensive but if you have a low car, they are the best option that won’t disappoint.Check it Out
2. RhinoGear 11909ABMI Vehicle Ramps
By far the most popular car ramps available are the RhinoGear 11909ABMI set, which are constructed of a specialized resin. This may not seem the most durable material but these ramps exceed the PALD (Portable Automotive Lifting Device) standards.
The rugged construction of these ramps are able to hold a gross vehicle weight of 12,000 LBS, which is suitable for all passenger vehicles.
Other features and specs of the RhinoGear 11909ABMI include:
- CoreTRAC non-skid base
- Non-skid tread pattern for extra grip
- 17 degree incline
- Made in the USA
- Lifts vehicles to 6.5 inches
- Ramp length is 22 inches long
- Can combine both ramps together for storage
The brand state that they have been proven to be as strong as steel and they can even be combined together for easy storage. The RhinoGear car ramps offer the best value for money and the weight capacity make them ideal for most vehicles.Check it Out
3. Race Ramps RR-56 Auto Ramp
Another set of car ramps by the reputable Race Ramps brand is the RR-56 set. Unlike the alternatives recommended above, they use a one piece design and are constructed of high-density expanded polystyrene.
In terms of the dimensions, they are 56 inches long and 12 inches wide with a weight capacity of 6,000 LBS.
Other features of the Race Ramps RR-56 include:
- 8 inches of lift
- Weigh 10 LBS per ramp
- Lightweight and strong construction
- 10.8 degrees angle of approach
- Doesn’t damage the garage floor
- Hybrid polyurea coating
As with any car ramps produced by the brand, they comes with a premium price tag. However, they are designed to be the best and are highly rated across the US with an excellent design and high quality construction.Check it Out
4. Rage Powersports Car Service Ramps
Many car owners feel more confident under the car if their car is lifted using a metal construction. The Rage Powersports car ramps are a great option that uses an all aluminum construction that is designed for heavy duty usage.
They provide 7 inches of lift from the ground and have a weight capacity of 3,000 LBS, which is more than ideal for most vehicles.
Other features of the Rage Powersports ML-1066 include:
- 11.5 degree angle of approach
- 100% aluminum construction
- Raised side rails for helping wheels stay straight
- 66 inch in length
- Suitable for 14 inch wide tires
The long, wide and heavy duty design of these ramps make them ideal for larger vehicles or cars with ultra wide tires. As they are made from aluminum, they also have the added benefit of being rust resistant. However, the Rage Powersports ramps come with a premium price tag, which may put them out of budget for many people.Check it Out
5. Nicky Nice Steel Car Ramps
The Nicky Nice car ramps are constructed of solid steel and have a compact design, which is just 35 inches in length. To help steer your car onto these ramps, they have raised side rails, which compensates for the compact design.
A unique features of these ramps is that it has extruded traction holes, which provides superior grip whilst driving up the ramp.
Other features of the Nicky Nice Steel Car Ramps include:
- Weight capacity of 6,500 LBS
- Heavy gauge stamped steel construction
- Suitable for 9 inch wide tires
- Durable powder coated finish
- 8 inches of lift
- Made in the USA
They are the cheapest steel car ramps that are designed for heavy duty usage. Compared against the Rage Powersports ramps, they can hold more weight but the smaller design may make it more difficult to drive onto the ramps.Check it Out
6. Rage Powersports Low Profile Car Service Ramps
Another Rage Powersports is their low profile alternative that it constructed of heavy duty plastic. Although they aren’t made of metal, they can still hold 4,400 LBS of weight, which is suitable for most cars.
For vehicles with low clearance, these car ramps provide a 9.05 degree angle for an easy incline whilst driving onto the ramp.
Other features of the Rage Powersports Low Profile Ramps include:
- Honeycomb channels to prevent moisture build-up
- 2.5 inches of lift
- Lightweight at just 4.5 LBS per ramp
- 27 inches in length
- 7.5 inches wide
- Easy to store
The low profile car ramps by Rage Powersports offer excellent value for money and are suitable for most low clearance vehicles. The only drawback is that they only provide only 2.5 inches of lift, which may not be enough for some tasks.Check it Out
7. OTC 5268 20-Ton Capacity Truck Ramps
The OTC 5268 are 20 Ton truck ramps for professional mechanics that require a rugged solution for working on heavy vehicles. These are not your average car ramps and are fairly expensive but a worthwhile investment for those working on trucks.
These are very heavy duty ramps, which has the drawback of adding extra weight that requires more effort to move them around.
Other features of the OTC 5268 Ramps include:
- T-handle for easier maneuverability
- Suitable for 10 inch wide tires
- Weight capacity of 40,000 LBS
- Heavy duty rubber wheels
- Non-skid rubber matting for extra grip
- 10 inches of lift
- Lifetime warranty
The OTC 5268 are heavy duty truck ramps that have a rugged design and are suited to loaded large vehicles. The 10 inches of lift allows for easy oil changes and the T-handle makes transporting the ramps around the garage much easier.Check it Out
8. Trailer-Aid Tandem Service Ramps
The Trailer-Aid Tandem Ramps are designed for changing trailer tires but they can also be used by most vehicles. It uses a lightweight yet strong polymer construction that can withstand weights up to 15,000 LBS.
These auto ramps provide up to 4 1/2 inches of lift from the ground, which is more than ideal for most tasks.
Other features of the Trailer-Aid Tandem Ramp include:
- Weigh 5.0 LBS each
- Available in black or yellow
- Designed for trailers
- Rugged polymer construction
- Holds up to 15,000 LBS
The brand also offer a “Plus” model, which provides additional lift to 5 1/2 inches that can make access to the brakes or axles easier. Although they are can be used for cars and trucks, they are best suited for trailer usage.Check it Out
Car Ramps Buying Guide
Whilst you are under your car, you will want to ensure it’s completely stable whilst lifted. One of the best solutions that ensures maximum stability is to use car ramps. They are available in several different designs and can hold large amounts of weight.
They have a range of uses that include performing a simple oil changes or even used in car showrooms to display the undercarriage. To help you make an informed buying decision, we have created a detailed guide that covers all aspects of car ramps.
Before purchasing a car ramp, you need to measure the axle weight of your car, which is usually the heaviest at the front. All of the recommended car ramps above have their axle weight listed, where all are suitable for the average car.
Some car ramps use single axis ratings as opposed to GVW (Gross Vehicle Weight), which are usually noted. Remember never to overload the ramp because your life will depend upon the ramp holding the weight whilst you are underneath.
Wheel Width & Wheel Chocks
If you own a sports car with wide wheels, be very cautious on the wheel width ratings. The majority of car ramps cater for all passenger cars with the OTC ramp rated for much wider wheels from trucks.
Once you have your vehicle loaded onto the ramp, safety is something you want to ensure is paramount. Wheel chocks are the best form of safety as they ensure your car doesn’t roll on the car ramp. We strongly recommend buying a set of wheel chocks if they do not already come with the car ramp kit.
You will notice that all of the recommended car ramps include either serrated or punch plated ramp surfaces. The purpose is to ensure the car has optimum traction when loading and off loading.
For those that create homemade car ramps, they will most probably use a blank of wood with no traction features, meaning its virtually impossible to load safely.
Angle of Approach
Not every car ramp will be suitable for your car as ground clearance can be an issue. If you own a low car, choosing low profile car ramps are highly recommended and will safe you a lot of hassle trying to load your vehicle each time.
As a rough approximation, below 10 degrees would be recommended if you class your vehicle as low. If your car long, ground clearance may still be an issue as you may end up scratching the undercarriage as you drive onto the ramp.
Car Ramp Safety
Although car ramps are far safer than the alternative car jack stands, it is still important that to take safety precautions. The obvious safety tip is that you ensure the ramp is placed upon a stable surface because as the car is loaded, it could potentially fall over or even break. It needs to be correctly positioned on a stable surface with no more than a 5 degree incline to make it easy to drive onto the ramp.
Once you have loaded your vehicle onto the car ramps, you should ensure the brake is securely locked on. Putting the car in gear with the handbrake engaged is essential and prevents the vehicle from rolling backwards off the ramps. For further safety, we highly recommend placing wheel chocks behind the rear wheels as a backup in case the brakes fail.
Loading Vehicle Onto Ramp
To prevent any damage to both the car and the car ramps, its important that you load your vehicle correctly. To begin with, have the wheels pointing straight and then slide the ramps against the front wheels and ensure they are centered with the tire. Repeat this for both of the ramps and ensure that the surface is stable.
Once positioned correctly, simply drive forward onto the ramp until you have reached the edge. Most car ramps have a bump, which helps indicate that you have located the wheels correctly. During this stage, it really helps to have another person watching you drive onto the ramp.
Finally, once loaded and positioned correctly, you will want to put the vehicle in park (or in gear for manual) and engage the handbrake. If your auto ramps come with wheel chocks, place them behind the back wheel.
Car ramps are fairly easy to use and the most important thing is that they are positioned correctly and are suitable for the weight of your vehicle. Watch this video tutorial for safely loading your vehicle onto the ramps.
Construction of the Ramps
Thanks to the advancements in technology, plastics, molded foam, resin and similar materials are being used within the design of car ramps. They are able to handle large amounts of weight that are similar to steel car ramps but with the benefits of being more lightweight. Choosing between the materials is a matter of preference but many professionals will prefer the steel or aluminum ramps.
For those that do not have a car lift and want additional safety over using car jacks and jack stands, then car ramps are the best option.
Not only are they easier to use but they are more stable, which adds to the overall safety when working underneath your vehicle.
All of our recommendations are suited to a range of budgets and vehicle types. To avoid disappointment, we advise you assess the ground clearance of your car because you may require a low profile ramp for better usability.