Examples Of 1st, 2nd And 3d Class Levers: A Detailed Guide

We notice various machines around us when we go about our days. Unknowingly, these machines work based on some scientific principles and ease our day-to-day lives. From these varieties of machines,  a machine called ‘level’ plays a crucial role in easing our lives and reducing our daily efforts to do any tasks.

In this blog, we will discuss various examples of 1st, 2nd and 3rd class levers along with the simple definitions and comprehensive working mechanism behind these lever examples.

Examples of 1st, 2nd and 3d class lever

A] What Is A Lever?

A lever is a simple machine consisting of a rigid rod that is fixed at the point. Lever generally amplifies the input force and offers an increased amount of force. When input force is applied on one of the ends of the lever, force travelled to the other ends of the lever raising the object with the help of a rigid beam. The fulcrum is a crucial part of the lever that facilitates the movement of the rigid beams and is situated at either the centre or corner of the lever.

B] What Is First Class Lever?

1st class lever is a type of lever that reduces the effort of doing tasks while increasing the initial force exerted on the lever. In the first class lever, the fulcrum is pivoted in the centre of load and effort. A rigid beam works as a medium to propagate the effort to the load using the fulcrum pivoted in between the rigid rod.


Scissors are the necessary household objects and one the best 1st class lever examples, used in a variety of works such as cutting clothes, paper, and plastic materials. Apart from that, It is also used as a kitchen utensil in many homes. It consists of two sharp cutting edges, two finger holes and a balance point called a fulcrum.

Scissor is one of the best first-class lever examples that works based on a first-class lever principle. In this mechanism, a fulcrum is pivoted in the centre of the scissor to balance the load and effort. The effort applied to the finger holes gets converted into a force and presses the scissor’s blades using the pivot point. 


Balance Scale 

Balance is a common conventional tool to measure the mass difference between two materials. It consists of two pans and one pivot. The pivot or fulcrum is situated in the centre of the horizontal bars and both pans hang on either side of the same bar. The hanging pans are used to hold and balance the masses using a fulcrum.

Balance is also one of the best examples of 1st class levers that uses the first-class lever principle to distinguish the mass differences between two objects. Pans hanging to each side of the beam uses effort and resistance to balance the weight. 

balance scale lever example


Seesaw is a long and narrow playing tool supported by a single pivot at the centre of the bar. It consists of two sitting corners, both situated on either side of the bar. It uses load and effort to balance both ends with the help of a pivot point. When an individual applies the effort by pushing their feet on the ground from one end, the load of the other ends goes upward using the load and effort principle of 1st class lever, showcasing a perfect example of a lever.

seesaw 1st class lever example


We think of machines in terms of engines and gears. But, there are plenty of machines that don’t fulfil the criteria that need to be presented in a full-fledged machine. In this context, a crowbar is a simple machine that allows users to pluck out the nail or screws by applying effort from the top of the crowbar. In addition, twisted corner works as fulcrum and fissure parts use the effort to force out any object from any substance.


Pliers are the prime first-class lever examples that are found inside every household. They are used to twist, turn and cut tough objects or open nuts and bolts. They are used in holding and bending any object formally. In the plier, a fulcrum is located at the centre, and the load and effort area are located at the edge of the plier. When an individual applies effort on the handles of the plier, the applied force gets amplified, performing the task more strongly and easily.

C] What Is Second Class Lever?

The second-class lever is a type of lever that positions the load between the effort and fulcrum. In the second class lever, the load is excellently arranged to enhance the machine’s mechanical advantage without increasing the effort. The effort produced by the doer will amplified and give a suitable amount of force for the work completion. 

2. Examples of Second Class Lever

Nail Clipper

A nail cutter is an essential tool that is used to cut or clip one’s raised nails. It efficiently uses the second-class lever principle to clip out the nail accurately. During the clipping process, effort is applied to the upper handle of the nail clipper to amplify the force using the fulcrum. The amplified force efficiently enhances of efficiency of the nail cutter and thus clips the nail accurately. Therefore, a nail cutter could be at the top of the list of 2nd class lever examples. 

nail clipper second class lever example


A stapler is a very common stationary tool used in offices, homes and schools. It is used to bind documents or packaging items without any need for traditional stitching. In this common second-class lever example, the fulcrum is situated at the base of staple arms. When you apply force (effort) at the top of the stapler arm, the force travels through the fulcrum and amplifies the effort to bind the documents with each other. 

stapler second class lever example

Hand Squeezer

A hand squeezer is a portable solution for those people searching for a sustainable solution for extracting fresh juice from any citrus fruits. It gives pure juice with minimal wastage while saving electricity. In this class 2 lever example, the fulcrum is located near the hinge of the handles. Load is placed inside the designated compartment and effort is applied at the other end of the handle. When you press the handle of the fruit squeezer, the force travels to the fulcrum and gets amplified to smoothly squeeze the fruit.

hand held juicer

C] What Is Third Class Lever?

When the effort is applied on the centre of the lever and the fulcrum and load reside on either side of the lever, known as a third-class lever. Although, third-class levers don’t amply the applied force, they increase the load movement or speed instead. 

3. Examples of Third Class Lever

Human Jaw

The human jaw is a complex mechanism of the human body. As we all know, it helps to chaw something and further helps in supporting the teeth as well as the digestive system. The human jaw is an excellent third-class lever example that follows its principle to achieve core functions. 

The meeting point of each side of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) acts as a fixed pivot point or fulcrum. Due to the human jaw mechanism, When effort is applied to the jaw, it creates a mechanical advantage which further helps in chewing food.

human jaw


A long handle brush called a broom, is usually made from plastic, hair or corn husks that are used as a cleaning tool. It is used to wipe away the dust from the floor or wall. When you apply effort to the upper part of this third-class lever example, the force travels through the broom handle while acting as a lever arm. The force increases the sweeping motion and thus cleans the floor effectively.

broom lever example

Hockey Stick 

A hockey stick is a common class 3 lever example and a playing tool that hits the ball to its desired location. During hockey play, you apply effort by gripping and pushing or pulling the top of the stick. The force travels to the bottom of the stick, transfers the force and hits the balls with greater force than that of applied force.

hockey stick



Wrapping Up-

Lever simple machines a vital role in our daily lives, making our lives easier and living-friendly. The discussed examples of 1st, 2nd and 3rd class levers are commonly used in our day-to-day lives, making our lives a lot faster and easier. Explore more examples of levers around you and try to find out the working mechanism of those machines. 

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