How to Jack up a Corvette C5by Kyle McBride
Chevrolet used the C5 designation for the Corvette spanning model years 1997 through 2004. The curb weight -- depending on the year and the transmission in your Corvette -- is between 3,100 and 3,300 pounds, so use jack stands and a low-profile floor jack rated for at least two tons, with a jacking pad no wider than 2.5 inches. Park on a hard surface and put your Corvette in Park if you have an automatic transmission, first gear or reverse for a stick. Set the parking brake and chock the wheels that aren't leaving the ground.
When jacking the front of your Corvette, the preferred jacking points are on a crossmember between and just to the rear of the front wheels. The crossmember is wide and has a crosshatch of ribs on the underside. Where the ribs meet, there is a circle -- one on each side of the crossmember. Those circles are your jacking points. Use a block on the lifting pad of your floor jack or the cradle of your jack stands large enough to span at least two ribs. As an option, you can use the smaller suspension crossmember between and just forward of the front wheels. Position the floor jack under either side of the crossmember, using a block on the lift pad that spans the width of the crossmember. Don't use a center lift point on either crossmember or contact the front suspension monoleaf springs.
Frame Jacking Points
There are four jacking points on the frame rails -- a front and rear point on each side. Find the points by looking for circular cutouts in the rocker panels. Use a block on the lifting pad of your floor jack no larger than 2.5 inches in diameter when using a jacking point on the frame and carefully position it so it doesn't contact the rocker panels. Don't use jack stands to support the weight of your Corvette on the frame rails. The frame rails are jacking points only.
For the rear, use the rear suspension crossmembers as the jacking points where they join the frame between and just to the rear of the rear wheels. Use a block on the lift pad that spans the width of the crossmember. As with the front, don't use a center lift point on the rear frame crossmember or contact the rear suspension monoleaf springs.
Things to Watch For
The block on the lift pad or the jack stand cradles should contact just the frame or crossmember at the jacking points. Depending on which jack and support points you use, you could possibly damage body panels, brake lines, fuel lines, the oil pan, the floor pan or the catalytic converter. Position the jack carefully and watch as the car raises to make sure the lift pad block doesn't contact other components.