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2005 Lotus Elise
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Discussion Starter · #41 ·
Mai Mai, did you get under the car whilst it was supported only by the jack? Please don't do that. Possible serious injury, death.

I put mine on low angle ramps (Rhino) to change oil. Jackstands work too.
Thanks Kevin. No thankfully. Though I have a PhD I do some stupid things sometimes. But not putting my head under the car. I was on the side which is almost just as bad.
Yes I was repositioning my jack stands when the hydraulic jack lift failed. Sigh. Thanks again for the concern.
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
She will maybe tell us how this happend, but I guess the design of the "Nifty Lifty" and the hydraulic failure lead to this.

Others members had already concerns about using this adapter.



Bolting the "Nifty Lifty" on the jack, could be an improvement...
Hi yes I noticed that too but it couldn’t have been the bar when there was tons of hydraulic fluid too.
I was thinking of getting a welder to weld that on. Im definitely rethinking the set up for next time and maybe getting the rhino ramps!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #43 ·
YIKES, its called a diffuser and lots of aftermarket one out there. Look for a Diflow.

You have lifting points on either side, NOTHING IN THE MIDDLE! That's not a hydraulic fail, that's a human fail!!!!!!!
Hi I used a niffy jiffy bar made for the Elise with the hydraulic jack. Lifts the back end at once so I could place my 1 Ton jack stands. Thanks for the di flow info.
 

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2005 Lotus Elise
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Discussion Starter · #44 ·
At the leading edge of the diffuser, not just in front of the exhaust cutout, and the panel and diffuser should be removed to use it securely as shown in your pic. I also believe you are supposed to raise it from the other rear lift points and then position the jack stand there.

With the diffuser still attached you are just aiming/“hoping” you have the jack in the proper location unless you use the nifty lifty, which ensures it is lined up with that beam while proving proper support to it despite the diffuser being in place.

A google search will turn up a pretty good guide/reference on properly lifting the car and using those points.
Hi Mark!! Thanks. Yeah I’ve done this about 5 times oil change Already with the niffy jiffy which has the alignment. I read the manual where the lift points are. All good reminders. Lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #45 ·
Did you have the front wheels chocked? If you weren’t using a nifty lifty, that is not the proper location/way to lift the back end. To me it looks like the jack may have just been under a small portion of the cross member and the car shifted forward, leaving nothing but the diffuser to support the weight of the car.

Also, make sure you rely on the jack to only lift the car - jack stands should be used to support the car as soon as possible after it is lifted.
Yes thank you for the reminder. Yes i chocked both front wheels front and back. And yes was repositioning my jack stands when it fell. At least my head wasn’t crushed. Lol one less lotus member. Hahahaha. Sorry bad joke but I was smart about it knowing the dangers. Thank you for the concern.
 

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Discussion Starter · #46 ·
Looks like a good wake up call to start doing things properly.

1. Lift from the correct place
2. Don't get under the car without jackstands

I'm confused how this even happened, how is the jack up in the air stuck in the diffuser through the exhaust outlet?
Mark hi. Thanks for the concern. Yes I’ve done the oil change many times before. I used a niffy liffy bar made for Elise using the hydraulic lift to lift the back end it has two points as per the instructions. and was in the middle of repositioning the jack stands. I had chocked both front wheels. The jack failed and car came down with it stuck there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #47 ·
In the middle of a lightly stressed, mostly concealed flat panel like that, I'd just rivet on a new piece of aluminum after hammering the edges flat. Maybe some epoxy to for extra bonding and to smooth out the edges and a little paint if cosmetics are important.

If one was to continue lifting at that location, perhaps the repair piece could incorporate some sort of doubler or a leveling/locating depression for the jack. Glad none of the body shell got hit!
Thanks for the advice. No that piece usually don’t get touched after I place the jacks. I’ve done 5 oil changes already. This time was just bad luck.
 

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I had something similar happen with a jack helper/nifty lifty. But it wasn't a jack failure. It was because I didn't properly chock the front wheels and the car rolled a bit and the jack shifted off the helper and destroyed my diffuser. I stopped using the jack helper after that.

But this looks like a pretty similar accident.
 

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Discussion Starter · #49 ·
The jack punctured just in front of the exhaust cutout, but we don't actually know where the jack was located when he was lifting the car - we only know where it ended up when the car fell. The diffuser looks bent between the main mounting bolts, so I assume the jack was on the subframe through the diffuser. Not the best idea, but also not necessarily a contributing factor here (again, we don't really know much about what happened, only what the OP has said). I used to lift mine using a rubber pad on one of the bolt heads and never had issues.
Yes I used the niffy liffy where the rubber matched the bolt heads but I saw someone posted others having issues with that bar. Thanks!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #50 ·
But this was centered not on the bolt heads. She didn't state if using nifty lifty but if it was just on the diffuser that is so wrong and dangerous. It only takes minutes to drop diffuser and belly pan to get access to subframe. So many options this just wasn't one of them.
Hi I updated my post. I used the niffy liffy bar and used jacks. It fell when I was repositioning one of the jacks
 

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Discussion Starter · #51 ·
I had something similar happen with a jack helper/nifty lifty. But it wasn't a jack failure. It was because I didn't properly chock the front wheels and the car rolled a bit and the jack shifted off the helper and destroyed my diffuser. I stopped using the jack helper after that.

But this looks like a pretty similar accident.
Thanks I thought the same. But the big rubber chocks I used two for each wheel. Yeah I may stop using that bar. Thank you.
 

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Hi I updated my post. I used the niffy liffy bar and used jacks. It fell when I was repositioning one of the jacks
Glad it did not end worse for you. Was the jack fully supporting the car with the nifty lifty when you were repositioning the jack stand? If not, I would strongly recommend to you and others that you do not try to reposition jack stands without a jack properly supporting the vehicle at that location. It looks from the pictures as though you may have been using a broom handle or something to reposition the jack stand? If so, I would also recommend that you lift the car up enough with the jack that you can clearly see where you are positioning the stand and carefully do so by hand, then lower the car carefully onto the stands while ensuring they remain in the proper location for the lift points. I have also used a "backup" of another, lower jack stand or cinder block in these situations to keep the car from falling all the way if it lets go. The jack points in front of the rear wheels on each side are the perfect location for this in your situation.

In addition to the ramps, another option is to use the nifty lifty to raise the car and use the jack stands under the lift points in front of the rear tires. These are safer because you do not have to get far under the car to properly place them, and placement will be much quicker and easier. Then remove the jack, nifty lifty, diffuser and panel. Then add jack stands under that cross member as "back up". You could also lift the cross member slightly with the jack at this point and rest all of the weight on the jack stands under that cross member with the diffuser removed. That is my understanding of how you should use the nifty lifty for lifting the vehicle from reading the instructions.

I am also perplexed by how you planned to change the oil while the diffuser was still in place and apparently still between what was being used to support the vehicle and access to the oil pan and filter. Which points did you plan to use in order to remove the diffuser?

Ed
 

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Discussion Starter · #53 ·
Glad it did not end worse for you. Was the jack fully supporting the car with the nifty lifty when you were repositioning the jack stand? If not, I would strongly recommend to you and others that you do not try to reposition jack stands without a jack properly supporting the vehicle at that location. It looks from the pictures as though you may have been using a broom handle or something to reposition the jack stand? If so, I would also recommend that you lift the car up enough with the jack that you can clearly see where you are positioning the stand and carefully do so by hand, then lower the car carefully onto the stands while ensuring they remain in the proper location for the lift points. I have also used a "backup" of another, lower jack stand or cinder block in these situations to keep the car from falling all the way if it lets go. The jack points in front of the rear wheels on each side are the perfect location for this in your situation.

In addition to the ramps, another option is to use the nifty lifty to raise the car and use the jack stands under the lift points in front of the rear tires. These are safer because you do not have to get far under the car to properly place them, and placement will be much quicker and easier. Then remove the jack, nifty lifty, diffuser and panel. Then add jack stands under that cross member as "back up". You could also lift the cross member slightly with the jack at this point and rest all of the weight on the jack stands under that cross member with the diffuser removed. That is my understanding of how you should use the nifty lifty for lifting the vehicle from reading the instructions.

I am also perplexed by how you planned to change the oil while the diffuser was still in place and apparently still between what was being used to support the vehicle and access to the oil pan and filter. Which points did you plan to use in order to remove the diffuser?

Ed
Hey Ed. Lol that broom stick was AFTER I was trying to get the jack out after the car dropped but ended up taking the diffuser off to get it out.
Wow thanks so much for all of that detail. So cool all of you to share your thoughts. Would be so cool if there was one big garage for us loti folks to meet and share ideas.

maybe I’ll come up with a better lifting system you never know!
 

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David I’m not Nader i can’t go in reverse real well let alone up a ramp! Ha! But hindsight is always 20/20 I’m going to buy those gorilla ramps after I jack up the car I’ll set them on the ramps. Still need to buy a nicer jack. Thanks for the note I’ll take a look for selling parts. Now I know it’s called a diffuser.
The first time I backed up the ramps I was terrified. I felt like I'd go too far. But now I am used to it. As I recall I keep the revs steady and the clutch partially engaged at all times.

Your idea to jack up the car and then slide the ramps underneath would probably be less stressful. Good idea.

If you do decide though to reverse up the ramps make sure that the ramps do not slide around on the pavement. Mine have some rubber on them but sometimes move a bit nevertheless. My neighbor gave me some wooden ramps years ago. I don't use them as ramps but just to prevent my plastic ramps from sliding when I back up.

BTW, your joke about one less LotusTalk member was priceless.

Car Vehicle Tire Wheel Plant
 

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The first time I backed up the ramps I was terrified. I felt like I'd go too far. But now I am used to it. As I recall I keep the revs steady and the clutch partially engaged at all times.

Your idea to jack up the car and then slide the ramps underneath would probably be less stressful. Good idea.

If you do decide though to reverse up the ramps make sure that the ramps do not slide around on the pavement. Mine have some rubber on them but sometimes move a bit nevertheless. My neighbor gave me some wooden ramps years ago. I don't use them as ramps but just to prevent my plastic ramps from sliding when I back up.

BTW, your joke about one less LotusTalk member was priceless.
I have those exact same ramps. I have used them for everything from an Elise to a LX470 (Land Cruiser, 3 tons.) On the Lotus, I jack them up, then slip the ramps under the rear tires one side at a time, typically sideways for better access to everything. The Land Cruiser climbs up them like it's a small speed bump.
 

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Glad you are OK and in 9 yrs of Elise ownership I never lifted it in the middle, 2 jacks or ramps. Long live the HOCKEY PUCK!
 

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It looks like you were using the nifty-lifty and the floor-jack failed, and the nifty-lift to slipped off and the jack punch through the diffuser? I also use the nifty-lifty to lift up the rear, then slide ramps under the rear wheels before removing the under tray, which has the same risk before the ramps are in place. The nifty-lifty slipping off has always seemed like a risk.

I reach under with car on ground and remove both the diffuser and belly pan then I jack up under the rear subframe and put a jack stand at either end of the subframe. So glad you weren't hurt!
That's a good idea, but has always seemed too low to do easily, particularly putting the undertray back on with the car back on the ground. Is putting it back on difficult with it on the ground? I've thought of getting a cordless ratchet, which would be helpful with the car on the ground.

Good reminder though that I should be using front wheel chocks while lifting the back. And to be a little paranoid about lifting safety.
 

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It looks like you were using the nifty-lifty and the floor-jack failed, and the nifty-lift to slipped off and the jack punch through the diffuser? I also use the nifty-lifty to lift up the rear, then slide ramps under the rear wheels before removing the under tray, which has the same risk before the ramps are in place. The nifty-lifty slipping off has always seemed like a risk.


That's a good idea, but has always seemed too low to do easily, particularly putting the undertray back on with the car back on the ground. Is putting it back on difficult with it on the ground? I've thought of getting a cordless ratchet, which would be helpful with the car on the ground.

Good reminder though that I should be using front wheel chocks while lifting the back. And to be a little paranoid about lifting safety.
I use my HF dolly with one or two foam blocks on position belly pan and tilt up to catch the groove and finger start all bolts and tighten with air ratchet. Basically the same with diffuser but usually don't use the dolly with the Difflow. I don't fully tighten with air prefering to use my calibrated wrist so it's not overtightened. First click on the wrist.
 
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