Best jacking points below the car? - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1987-1991 Parley with regards to your 1987 to 1991 Bonneville, Olds 88 or Buick Le Sabre Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 03-05-2007, 08:17 PM   #1
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Default Best jacking points below the car?

I'm going to change my oil myself for the first time once the springs temps come and I was wondering where are some the best points to place the jack? The manual loosely explains this when it shows you how to change a tire, and my Chilton manual also loosely explains it too. I want to lift the front end so the can place jack stands under it and slide under it.

Also I bought a 2 Ton jacking kit today at Pepboys and tested it out and I believe the Bonnie weighs more than 2 tons, I tried to lift the car enough to get the front wheel off and it could not get it up before the pressure of the car kept it from rising. And once again, the manual really does not say exactly how much the car weighs pound for pound. So I'm going to step up to a 3 ton plus a 3 ton jack stands (just so I can feel safe under there ). I also bought a AC Delco oil filter and 4 bottles of Castrol GTX. I returned the kit.
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Old 03-05-2007, 08:48 PM   #2
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I go under the center of the front crossmember with a 2x4 about 18" long on the jack pad to distribute the load. You might have to lift up on the bumper a bit to gain clearance to roll the jack with the board underneath. I then place the jackstands under the side rails of the subframe assembly. When I want a lot of clear room under the front, I use an 18" 2x4 on the jackstands underneath the "unibody frame rails" under the front doors.
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Old 03-05-2007, 11:29 PM   #3
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please be sure to get jack stands also. You made mention that you wanted a 3 ton jack to "feel safe" The only reason to use a jack is for getting the car lifted to place the jackstands. You dont ever want to place any part of your body under a car supported only by a jack
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Old 03-06-2007, 01:42 AM   #4
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Your car should weigh in the neighborhood of 3400 pounds American. If a 2 ton rated jack wouldn't lift it, either it is a piece of junk and was bypassing or didn't have enough lifting range.
To change the oil on my 90 LE, I have a low spot on the gravel driveway that I center up the front of my car on. It makes a trough in the middle under the front of the car that I have enough room to slide in the drain pan and myself. Turn the front wheel to the right to reach the filter. It'* a ten minute job if you don't have to "jack around."
Your car should hold around four and a half quarts of oil with the Bonneville filter. I use a truck filter. I always ask for a filter for a 1990 S10 4.3 V6. It is a little bit longer and holds a little bit more oil. Mine tops out right at 5 quarts with the longer filter.
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Old 03-06-2007, 08:04 AM   #5
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Default Re: Best jacking points below the car?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BonnevilleLErocks
I'm going to change my oil myself for the first time once the springs temps come and I was wondering where are some the best points to place the jack? ...snip
Well, for simple fluid changes, I use a pair of plastic ramps (Rhino). It'* less of a pain to simply drive the car up the ramps.

To jack the car up, I use a pair of floor jacks on either side. I come in behind the drive wheels and lift it where the engine cradle connects to the body (looks for the pressed steel channels welded to the underside of the car, it pretty effective.) Another place is to lift it by the lower control arms.

Once up in the air, a pair of jackstands go in and under the engine cradle or subframe rails.

I shy away from jacking the car up using Bill'* method...visions of the car sliding off the jack and punching a hole in the oilpan.

Any way you slice it, you never need a jack capable of lifting the entire weight of the car. The car is in contact with the ground in four places to start with, so even a cheap sissors jack can pick up a corner of the vehicle. (Weight distribution is about 60/40, so picking up the front corner of the car is only about 30% of the total weight of the car...or about 1000lbs.) If the Pep-Boys jack wouldn't lift a corner, then I'd take it back and get another...there'* something wrong inside if it can't lift 1/4 of it'* rated capacity...like maybe they forgot to put hydraulic fluid inside it !

Most important of all...you need a level spot of ground to work with. Trying to jack up any car on a hill is a real adventure. Oh, and don't forget to set the parking brake (FWD car can only lock the front wheels in "Park"...parking brake locks the rear wheels only)
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Old 03-06-2007, 09:14 AM   #6
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Thanks for all your tips, bonneville owners have our own technical support :o . I edited my original message to include 3 ton jack stands, left those out.

Curt, can I use those ramps to lift the car up to change the oil? Those seem more simple and cheaper than the jack and stands. Plus Pepboys have them on sale (DAVRIC 8000lbs ramp $34.99)
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Old 03-06-2007, 09:19 AM   #7
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Ramps are the best option by far, unless you need to remove a wheel.
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Old 03-06-2007, 09:22 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willwren
Ramps are the best option by far, unless you need to remove a wheel.
Thanks, thats all I needed to hear, I will pick some of them up today. Yesterday I also bought two big cylinder blocks from Home Depot to place behind the rear tires
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Old 03-06-2007, 12:05 PM   #9
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the ramps are great! very good just for takeing a peak under the car, but as said before not so good if you have to remove a wheel.
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Old 03-06-2007, 12:27 PM   #10
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2 ton should be ok for a Bonn. If you use 2 is 4 ton and for 4 is 8 ton, should be plenty enough to support a 2.5 ton car. do not forget that you are not placing all the weight of your car on only one stand. Than the 2 ton stand may have a problem, even if these 2 ton rated should be able to take 2.5 as a max before failure. And same thing for the jack, the 2 ton jack does not lift the car up in the air, you still have 3 wheels on the ground, is like you are lifting 500kg.
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