Quick Thinking And Garden Blocks Saved This Guy's BMW X5 And E36 M3s From Harvey

All photos credit Cody W. Crochet

It’s common sense to move your valuables to higher ground when floods threaten your home, however, we’re not sure jack stands, garden blocks and a trailer are what they mean. Regardless, one Texas man had the foresight to raise his two BMW E36 M3s and one BMW X5 just enough to stand above the floods brought by Hurricane Harvey.

Flooding around Crochet’s home.

Houston-area BMW enthusiast Cody W. Crochet isn’t the only person in Harvey’s flood zone to save his cars by raising them up. Several friends of mine put their favorite vehicles on a home lift before the floods came, and another parked his car on an upper floor of a parking garage. However, Crochet may have had the most inventive solution to the rising waters.

Crochet told Jalopnik that he was originally supposed to get only around one foot of flooding. That was enough to prompt him to put his white BMW E36 M3 up on his trailer, and his red BMW E36 M3 up on jack stands last Friday.

He figured the BMW X5 would be safe, as it’s pretty tall in the air to begin with. He’d installed a Fluid MotorUnion lift kit and 33-inch Open Country off-road tires.

Garden blocks: not just for decoration anymore.

Sadly, the water kept coming and coming. When Crochet realized the flood would reach above the projected one foot mark, he turned to garden blocks to raise up the red M3:

I woke up on Sunday morning at 4:45 a.m. to a decent amount of water outside. All cars were safe at that point. By 6:00 a.m., I knew the water was rising past the 1'-0" mark. So I went out to raise the car to the top of the jack stands.

As I was doing so, the water was rising faster and faster, about 5 inches every 30 minutes. I had to improvise and only thing I had were garden blocks. I immediately started grabbing garden blocks and put one set under each jack stand thinking this was enough. But as I would finish that, the water rose to the bottom of the tire. So I progressively added more an more as the water rose. By the time I was done I was working in above knee water using the last of my garden bricks to get the car to the max height you see.


At this point, even the lifted X5 was in danger. So, Crochet drove it up as high on his property as he could—right to the front porch. Unfortunately, the house eventually got about one foot and six inches of water inside but at least the BMWs were safe.


Crochet documents his adventures with his BMWs on his Texas E36 Garage YouTube channel, and he says he plans to upload the process of lifting his car to safety there once he has power back. For now, though, Crochet and his cars are at least safe in the unprecedented storm that has claimed ten lives to date and left thousands stranded across the area.

“In 100 years this house has never flooded at all,” Crochet told Jalopnik. “This area has never seen this amount of water.”


The rain isn’t over yet, and Crochet may need to source a few more blocks. In the meantime, it’s hard not to appreciate his quick thinking.

Water barely touched the bottom of the M3’s tires.

UPDATE [11:29 p.m. ET]: Crochet posted the video of how he saved as much of his stuff from the flood as possible. He started by jacking up the car little by little using the original BMW jacks that came with the car as well as another jack with large block of wood on top that kept trying to float away. After a while, he has to go back and add more blocks under the car so it could withstand up to waist-deep water.

You know he’s our kind of guy when he’s already thinking about what projects he can do after the water recedes with the red M3 up this high.

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Stef Schrader

Contributor, Jalopnik. 1984 "Porschelump" 944 race car, 1971 Volkswagen 411 race car, 2010 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS.