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      08-29-2009, 08:34 AM   #1
SS32
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How to lift the car on four jack stands?

I'm getting some new tires next week, and have decided to paint my wheels black while the wheels are free of rubber. In order to do this, however, I need to get the car up off the ground for a couple days. I know I've seen someone on here use 4 jack stands to lift the car while changing the exhaust. What's the proper way to lift the car? I've pulled A wheel off and had one corner sitting on a stand for awhile, but never all four and I don't have a clue as to how I should go about lifting the rest of the car.
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      08-29-2009, 12:01 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS32 View Post
I'm getting some new tires next week, and have decided to paint my wheels black while the wheels are free of rubber. In order to do this, however, I need to get the car up off the ground for a couple days. I know I've seen someone on here use 4 jack stands to lift the car while changing the exhaust. What's the proper way to lift the car? I've pulled A wheel off and had one corner sitting on a stand for awhile, but never all four and I don't have a clue as to how I should go about lifting the rest of the car.
The M3 is low enough that it will probably require two jacks to do this.

You can lift the entire front by jacking up the center jacking point under the engine - it looks like a hockey puck with a big bolt head recessed in the middle. It's on the cross-member below the engine. On my car, I have to lift one side of the car first to create enough clearance that I can get my jack under the cross member.

Once you have the front lifted from the center, just put stands under the side lifting points.

For the rear, once the front is in the air, just lift on the body of the differential. DO NOT LIFT ON THE REAR COVER (the thing with the cooling fins). The round bottom of the diff (forward of the cover) is cast iron and should be protected by a block of wood, but it's ok to lift on.

Put stands under the rear jacking points, and you're done.
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      08-29-2009, 01:24 PM   #3
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Here's a thread witht a pic of the rear jack point. Theres another with the front jack point on an M3, but I can't find it right know - Do a search - Here's the E90 335 front jack point thread with pics too - Probably similar for the M3 -

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showth...t=47468&page=3

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showth...light=jack+pad
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      08-29-2009, 02:36 PM   #4
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I've lifted my M3 from the differential cooler several times; it's plenty strong, and was recommended by a BMW tech. Just make sure to use the flat portion (closest to the driveshaft, which sits on the differential), not the angled portion towards the rear of the car, which has no upper support. However, I just lift the car and quickly put it on either ramps or jack stands as a precaution.

The E9x has different suspension, as well as plastic lift points, so it's like a different car for jacking purposes. I used the elbows of the rear subframe as jack stand points, but they're not too stable without jack stands with round (flat) pads, which I've been unable to locate (I like the screw type). I don't like to put cars on regular jacking points; that puts a lot of stress on the body. Much better to find a suitable strong subframe/suspension point IMO, but to each his own.

And finally, I'd avoid putting the car on a jack stand on just one corner; even more body stress IMO. Lift either the front or rear of the car. I've lifted each corner to remove one wheel at a time too (to clean rust), but what I did was remove the wheel and quickly lower car to stock level and let the car rest on the floor jack while working on it (I obviously didn't get under the car, which is a no-no without jack stands). Good day.
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      09-02-2009, 06:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS32 View Post
I'm getting some new tires next week, and have decided to paint my wheels black while the wheels are free of rubber.
I'd like to see a picture of the black wheels on the car. I'm thinking of getting my 19's painted gloss black, similar the the 'M3 Edition', but would really like to see a picture of them on the Jerez Black car first.
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      09-20-2010, 06:55 AM   #6
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Good info...
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      09-20-2010, 10:35 AM   #7
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Instead of lifting from the diff, I lifted up the rear first. I jacked the car from the front jacking point high enough to get the rear off the ground as well and then slid the jack stand under the rear jacking point. I did that on both sides until the entire rear is in the air. Then I jacked the entire front from the center jacking point for the front and installed both jack stands under the front jacking points.
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      09-20-2010, 10:49 PM   #8
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That sounds a little unstable. I assume you used wheel chocks for the fronts?
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      09-20-2010, 10:55 PM   #9
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Here is another thread in the track forum on the same subject.

http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=433714
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      09-21-2010, 12:17 AM   #10
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Quote:
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That sounds a little unstable. I assume you used wheel chocks for the fronts?
Yup until the back rear is up on both sides. Then I pull the chocks out and jack the front from the center.
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      09-21-2010, 03:17 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elp_jc View Post
I've lifted my M3 from the differential cooler several times; it's plenty strong, and was recommended by a BMW tech.
Caveats or not that sounds like a really bad idea and I can barely believe a tech put his blessing on that. I bet any factory mechanic or German trained mechanic would cringe at this idea. Perhaps it holds, but perhaps barely. Some shifting or unsettling of some sort might just be too much. Why risk it? Aluminum cast in a shape and designed for cooling is simply not a structural component.
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Last edited by swamp2; 09-22-2010 at 02:40 AM. Reason: typo
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      09-21-2010, 08:06 AM   #12
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The differential, (but not the cooling fins) should be suitable for jacking the car. I haven't looked closely enough under it yet to be sure, but I would be very surprised if that is not true. Many dealer techs are simply not going to recommend anything other than the provided lift points. They have no idea what some nitwit might do without supervision, claiming he was following instructions. Porsche says the same, but you will see virtually every race team using the diff.

Using the front jack points to place the rear jack stands might be okay, haven't tried it, but I used the same procedure in reverse on a GT3. It was so stiff, as soon as you jack by the rear jack point, that side front wheel lifts also. But it is a much stiffer platform.
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      09-21-2010, 09:58 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elh0102 View Post
The differential, (but not the cooling fins) should be suitable for jacking the car. I haven't looked closely enough under it yet to be sure, but I would be very surprised if that is not true. Many dealer techs are simply not going to recommend anything other than the provided lift points. They have no idea what some nitwit might do without supervision, claiming he was following instructions. Porsche says the same, but you will see virtually every race team using the diff.

Using the front jack points to place the rear jack stands might be okay, haven't tried it, but I used the same procedure in reverse on a GT3. It was so stiff, as soon as you jack by the rear jack point, that side front wheel lifts also. But it is a much stiffer platform.
I could lift the entire side of the car from a single lift point even on my old S4. The car doesn't have to be that stiff to do it.
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