With a car jacked up (tires is in the air), automatic transmission in park, and the emergency brake disengaged, can really cranking on lugs nuts damage a parking pawl?


I was removing the front left tire from my 2008 Toyota RAV4. The car was in park, the emergency brake was disengaged. I had jacked up the car before loosening the lug nuts (I am a noob). The front two tires were in the air (front part was on two jack stands), the back two tires were on the ground (held with tire wedges).

I have recently gotten new tires, and the local auto shop had cranked down on my lug nuts. They were really tight. To loosen them, I had to practically jump on the lug wrench to break them loose.

Do you think this could damage the parking pawl?

Relevant Articles

Loosening lug nuts with tires off ground hints it's possible to damage the parking pawl while doing this.

My Car

  • 2008 Toyota RAV4
  • Trim: Base
  • Driver: 4WD
  • Transmission: 4AT (automatic)
  • 1
    Absolutely not, unless you are the Terminator.
    – Moab
    Feb 9, 2020 at 2:07

1 Answer 1


I've never heard of that problem happening and I think there is now way you could "really crank" on the lug nuts more than the force of the vehicle rolling backwards on a slope when you park it.

The parking pawl is quite substantial since the parking safety of the vehicle depends on it.

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