To change snow tires, I am looking for the lifting point of my 2003 325i.
To be specific, I want to put my 3-ton jack in the middle (not on the side),
so that I can lift my car in the air with 2 wheels at one time. Any idea
where is the best location to put my 3-ton jack (both front and back)?
I did that with Honda all models (under towing hook) and Lexus ES300 no
problem.. just wanna make sure I can do this with 325i.. Thanks..
The differential in the rear, and the front cross-member in the front.
You can't really lift each side - the rocker panel has no reinforcements,
and the uni-body is designed to have support at the ends, not the center.
I see by the photo in the pelicanparts website that the jacking point
illustrated is at the extreme aft end of the differential exactly under the
aft mount of the differential.
I believe that it is very important to use this jacking location as it
avoids putting any stress on the subframe or the forward mounts of the
subframe. If the jack were placed farther forward on the differential then
the jacking load would have to be carried over to the sides of the body by
the subframe. I think this could possibly overstress the subframe or it's
forward attachments because they normally don't have to carry any vertical
loads except the weight of the differential.
I see that my Chilton's manual for the 3 series shows the jack in exactly
this same position but the Chilton's manual for the 5 series contains this
caution: WHEN JACKING THE REAR OF THE VEHICLE, LIFT THE CENTER OF THE FRAME
SECTION. DO NOT JACK UNDER THE DIFFERENTIAL. Some days you can't win, or
on second thought, maybe you can't lose.
Not if you use two jacks or a jack and a jack stand. Personally, the
only way that I ever jack my 3 series (E36) is via a piece of steel rod
stuck into the jacking holes and a trolley floor jack. I forget exactly
what diameter the rod is but the sides are flattened some so that it
fits in the holes precisely. It performs identically to the jacking
plate tools you see around for sale. Once one corner is lifted a jack
stand goes under and the the lack is moved to the other corner you want
I do this all the time, such as when rotating tires, etc. Yes, I know
rotation is not recommended by BMW, but I usually just want the set of
tires to wear out at the same time so I can buy a complete new set.
Again, not so. Just how many E46s have you jacked up? By the time one
wheel is two or so inches off the ground, the other is also off the
ground (at least, with sport suspension; quite possibly not true of
standard suspension). In fact, when I did my wife's brakes last week,
jacking the rear on each side up high enough to make it comfortable to
work on had the front wheel *well* clear of the ground--which I took
advantage of to put on the wheels with her snow tires without having to
jack the car more than twice.
I discovered this quite by accident one day when I was changing a
wheel. I jacked the car up high enough to change the wheel with a
couple inches' extra space--in short, no higher than usual--and noticed
that the other end was also off the ground. The body and springs are so
stiff that while it's possible to jack just one corner, the other on the
same side generally follows suit not long after the suspension at the
corner you're jacking gets to full droop.
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