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Might read again?

Pretty clear not all BMWs have center jack point. Not sure what else I might say. It's your car, do as you choose. However, if using as center jack point don't be surprised if crushes. But doesn't appear to be big deal. Or spend extra minutes to jack as noted above - which works just fine. Your call
The superficial "crushing" indeed does not appear to be a big deal. There is road rash on the chassis plate from whatever the PO was running over that is worse than the saddle imprint from the floor jack. Having said that, definitely, each must chose for themselves and go with what they feel comfortable doing - no argument there.

About the alternate method, though, I am curious how high you can lift the front if you need a decent amount of clearance to do say an oil pan or refill a transmission? That's the big issue I have. The practicality of that method just seems limited, although to be fair I haven't tried it.

As for the newtis page, I'm not sure if it clarifies or confuses:

The first diagram/picture purports to show a center front jack point at the area labeled #1, which looks alot like the rectangular area on the aluminum reinforcement plate we are talking about. Basically, that page says some vehicles dont have a center jack point and then the only visual representation of a front center jack point it shows (on a non-e46 awd?) actually kind of looks like what is on the e46 aluminum chassis plate. The references to E67s further down the page also suggests that the information is not e46 specific necessarily. I had the impression that there was similar info in the Bentley, but couldn't find anything except page 010-4, which is mainly about using the emergency jack to change a flat.

Also, bmw's self-serving "lifetime transmission fluid" assertions come to mind when I hear things like no center jack point (or no oil dipstick needed, etc) despite real world experience suggesting otherwise.
 

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Of course, this is all academic as most will continue as before. And it's okay to disagree. However, pretty convinced above is correct, and this TIS seems only to confirm. Enjoy!
Ha, ha ... that's true. Cheers!
 

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About the alternate method, though, I am curious how high you can lift the front if you need a decent amount of clearance to do say an oil pan or refill a transmission? That's the big issue I have. The practicality of that method just seems limited, although to be fair I haven't tried it.
For oil pan, I raised onto two jack stands (plus safety backups). Each side will go up fairly level so floor jack will extend roughly the same height as your jack stand (maybe 3-4 inches higher). Just don't flip the car on its side ;) And do to use wheel chocks at each step. Indeed don't do this if you aren't using wheel chocks or something equally effective. I use the triangular rubber ones; $10-15 a pair
 

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The xi has a front center jack pad, it's just hard to raise the car because you can't get much movement with the jack handle. I put my small jack under the front side pad, raise the car enough to use the front pad. Its .punted to a tubular cross member.

Sent from my [device_name] using E46Fanatics mobile app
 

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If the TIS is E46 specific, then it would be saying even more specifically that not all E46s have center jack point, yes?

The 320i , for example, using tubular steel reinforcement does indeed have a front center jack point. However, the newer formed aluminum reinforcement plate covers the previous jack spot on the front axle carrier; so cars with the formed aluminum plate do not. And crushing of the aluminum reinforcement plate should further confirm.

Of course, this is all academic as most will continue as before. And it's okay to disagree. However, pretty convinced above is correct, and this TIS seems only to confirm. Enjoy!
You need to understand that reinforcement plate doesn't have anything to do with the jacking point. This is not a matter of opinion, so there is nothing to agree or disagree on. If you ever removed the reinforcement plate on an e46 (doesn't matter what it looks like), you must have noticed that the car is jacked up by the subframe, from the designed jacking point as per the e46 TIS.
 

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The reinforcement plate isn***8217;t what bears the weight, the subframe above it does. The plate is going to crush a bit, not much you can do about it, it***8217;s aluminum.
+1 finally someone gets it...
 

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You need to understand that reinforcement plate doesn't have anything to do with the jacking point. This is not a matter of opinion, so there is nothing to agree or disagree on. If you ever removed the reinforcement plate on an e46 (doesn't matter what it looks like), you must have noticed that the car is jacked up by the subframe, from the designed jacking point as per the e46 TIS.
Nah, we're saying the same thing... Front center jack point is actually the front axle carrier under the aluminum reinforcement plate. Only divergence is whether BMW intended for access by jacking on the reinforcement plate, or to decreed that we didn't need. I'm thinking latter, and you're thinking former. Headed towards hottest May in recorded Texas history; if I can just my AC to cool properly... Cheers
 

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BMW engineers need to get jacked up on this one....lol

How to safely jack up your e46
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KrePZlsKZdI

How to install BMW jack pads
(Pads may differ based upon series of bmw but the process is similar)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7DVTTAkfKcU

How to weld new jack points
Rusted out jack points often occur when jack pads are lost or missing off the vehicle. (speed bumps) When the pads are missing it exposes a hole which collects water salt and rust
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=apEQ5NQL0Po

Alternative to using multiple Jack stands
Ramps and or wooden blocks underneath the tires.
 

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I've just come to jack up my car to find that the front jack point appears to be damaged on my car (pic attached). Does this damage look like and other parts of the car may have been damaged as a result? Will this be safe to jack up on? Or will it potentially cause further damage? I***8217;ve seen pictures around of other jack points that look similarly deformed and nobody seems to be suggesting it***8217;s an issue. Thanks.


Never use the chassis re-enforcement panel as a jack point. Doing so can deform it and/or damage it. BMW engineers designed it to keep the chassis ridged.
 
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