How to Hold a Car Up Without Tires: Safe Methods Explained

June 16, 2024

Working on a car can present various challenges, especially when it comes to lifting and supporting a vehicle without tires. If you're looking to complete tasks like pulling the transmission or making rust repairs underneath your car, knowing how to hold a car up without tires is crucial.

Hydraulic Lifts: A Costly Option

Using hydraulic lifts could be an effective solution, but they are often expensive and impractical for most home garage DIY enthusiasts. Alternatives need to be considered for getting the car high enough without constantly swapping out jacks and stands.

Hydraulic lift raising a car

Using Jack Stands Safely

Jack stands are a low-cost option to access the underside of a vehicle safely. It is important to ensure they are used on level ground and placed correctly on the structural areas of the chassis. Not only do they provide a stable lift, but they also allow for working comfortably under the car.

Jack stands holding up a car

Exploring Wheel Cribs

Wheel cribs present another alternative to jack stands. These can either be purchased prefabricated or made at home using 2x4s and basic power tools. They offer a two-tiered design and can lift all areas of the vehicle effectively, especially for low-profile cars.

Wheel cribs supporting a vehicle

How to Hold a Car Up Without Tires

If you're working on a parts car or need to support a vehicle without tires, considering options like cinder blocks or wood blocks might cross your mind. However, using these materials can be risky if not done correctly. Safer alternatives like jack stands or wheel cribs are recommended to ensure stability and safety.

Cinder blocks and wood blocks under a car

Air Lifting Bags and Creepers

Air lifting bags or air jacks elevate a car by inflating a bag placed under a tire, making them a versatile and non-invasive lifting method. Additionally, investing in a good-quality creeper allows you to easily slide underneath the vehicle, maximizing your comfort and efficiency during the repair process.

Air lifting bags in use

Clearance Issues with Low-Sitting Cars

For cars with performance suspension or a lower profile, getting sufficient clearance can be challenging. Low profile jacks can help, but alternatives like Race Ramps Trak-Jax are designed for low-sitting cars, providing the necessary lift without the hassle of constant adjustments.

Low profile car on ramps

Ensuring Safety While Lifting

Safety is paramount when lifting a car. Always use wheel chocks on the opposite side being jacked up, and engage the handbrake to prevent movement. Locate the proper jacking points as specified in the owner's manual, and use axle stands or other reinforced areas for added safety.

Wheel chocks placed under car wheels

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