How it works (the physics part)

The basic rule of using hydraulic power is Pascal's Principle.

Pascal's Principle:

pressure exerted on a fluid is distributed equally throughout the fluid.

lift pic

Hydraulics uses incompresible liquids so the applied pressure from one end (small arrow) is equal to the desired pressure on the other end (big arrow).

The big arrow is pointing toward a piston that is free to move, and is sometimes connected to a rod. When the force is applied, the piston moves up or down.

The equations are: 

Of course, as Prof. Newman says, "there is no free lunch," In order to move the larger area, the smaller area has to move a lot  in order to move the larger area a little.

The larger area is nine times greater than the smaller area. In order to move the larger piston one inch, the smaller piston has to move nine inches.

Real Life