Axle stands have sturdy tripod legs and can be adjusted to different heights.

They enable you to support the car off the ground safely, with sufficient clearance for working underneath.

Axle stand

Axle stand

Position stands under axles or structural members, not under unsupported sheet metal. It is unsafe to fit them under a car that is tilted.

Axle stands that give maximum ground clearance of about 370 mm and will support a weight of up to 1.5 tonnes are usually sufficient.

Buy stands that are securely welded all round at load-bearing points, not just spot welded in a few places. Make sure the platform fits firmly in the stand and cannot be rocked from side to side.

On some axle stands the height is adjusted by means of pins, on others by a ratchet system, which is easier to operate.

Guides that use

Bleeding the brakes

How a single-circuit system works A single hydraulic brake pipe carries the brake fluid to each ...

Applying underbody sealant

Where to apply sealant On a fairly new car, covering the underbody with sealing compound will di...

Renewing hinge pins and hinges

Worn hinge pins occur most often on front doors, where the hinges get the most use. Many hinges ...

Adjusting the brakes

Types of brake drum adjusters A typical braking system uses disc brakes at the front of the car ...

Adjusting the handbrake

The handbrake provides some braking effect if the hydraulic system fails, but it is primarily a ...

Renewing drum-brake shoes

Separate drum A front break with a drum separate from the hub. The hub stays in place when the...

Removing wheel bearings

Using a puller A hub with ball bearings, and even one with rollers, may stick. If so, use a...

Replacing wheel bearings on driven wheels

Front wheel drive bearings A front-wheel-drive system with the inner and outer wheel bearings in...

Cleaning and checking leaf springs

Leaf-spring suspension Leaf springs are used at the rear in many cars. Measure ride height from ...

How to drain engine oil and remove filter

Bolt-on filter bowl An oil-filter bowl of a type found on many early cars. The bowl is secured t...

Replacing a drum-brake wheel cylinder

Brake fluid is generally renewed when a leaking or sticking wheel cylinder on a drum brake is re...

Engine oil pump replacement

Externally mounted pump Multi-lobe rotary pumps are the most common type of oil pump. Externally...

Coil springs replacement

The top coil of the spring may be flattened. Be sure to fit the new spring in the same...

Checking rack and pinion steering

Points to inspect when checking a steering-rack. There are also ball joints and gaiters on the o...

Checking the gearbox oil level, draining and refilling

Layout under a transverse-engined front-wheel-drive car The filler plug is on the side of the ge...

Renewing MacPherson-strut inserts

Unit-replacement strut When the damper inside a MacPherson strut wears out, you can buy a replac...

How to replace dampers

Where dampers are located If dampers are worn or damaged they affect not only ride and comfort b...

How to replace anti-roll-bar bushes

Anti-roll bars are sometimes fitted only to the front suspension, but many cars also have them f...

Checking suspension joints and pivots

Almost all joints and pivots in a modern suspension system have rubber or plastic bushes, with t...

Replacing track-rod-end ball joints

This type of steering gear usually has just one replaceable ball joint at the outer end of each ...

Replacing steering-rack gaiters

Removing a gaiter Loosen clip or untwist or cut off wire clips, and throw them away. Replace wit...

Checking fuel pipes

Pipe joints Flexible hose is usually secured by clips, but may be a push-on fit. Twist and pull ...

Lubricating steering swivel joints

A MacPherson-strut suspension system with a steering box In this steering-box system, the extra ...

Checking for wheel and tyre damage

Tyres are put under tremendous strains when a car is being driven. There are only four relatively...

Replacing lever-arm dampers

Front lever-arm damper A lever-arm damper on the front often acts as part of the suspension unit....

Fitting a new speedometer cable

Speedometer failure is likely to be caused by a fault in the cable that runs from the gearbox to ...

Checking a clutch cable

The clutch cable has a steel-wire inner core sliding inside an outer sheath. It should last at le...

Adjusting wheel bearings

Hub-bearing layout Wheel bearings need periodic checking - and adjusting if necessary - usually ...

Replacing transmission oil seals

Replacing a gearbox-extension housing seal The extension housing seal can usually be replaced wi...

Checking the half shafts

Half shaft on a rear-wheel-drive car The half shaft is splined into the differential assembly an...