Automotive FAQ: Truck Suspension

Automotive FAQ: Truck Suspension

Have you ever seen a lifted or lowered truck? No matter the brand – Ford, Chevy, Dodge, etc. – they always look cool and are sure to turn heads. If you’re thinking of giving your pick-up this star treatment, you should be aware that it requires some suspension work as well. Check out this automotive FAQ about truck suspensions for some fast answers to the most pressing of questions. Or, if you would like to speak with a professional automotive performance specialist in Houston, feel free to call 281.231.9950 to connect with HP Motorsports. Our friendly and knowledgeable team is always happy to answer customer questions and provide free estimates.

Frequently Asked Questions About Truck Suspensions

  1. Lift or lower – what’s the difference?
    Modifying your truck’s suspension is literally a give or take situation. You can beef it up with a big lift, or tighten the springs via lowering. If you want to traverse even the meanest of unbeaten paths and control your lane with dominance, raise your truck. If you want to drastically improve handling and get a sleeker look to your truck, lower its center of gravity.
  2. Does adjusting the suspension affect the alignment?
    In so few words, yes. In so many more, the reasoning isn’t quite clear-cut. Basically, if you are going to adjust something as critical to your handling and steering as the suspension of your truck, you should expect that the alignment could be altered inadvertently. And consider this: it never hurts to have an alignment check performed.
  3. The bed of my truck seems higher than the front – is that a suspension problem?
    Nope. Most trucks intentionally have a taller tail end so when you load the bed or trailer up with cargo, furniture, and mounds of dirt, it won’t slam to the ground. This is known as forward rake, and it should be taken into consideration when you’re going to get the suspension system modified.
  4. How low is too low for truck suspensions?
    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so don’t let anyone tell you that your truck is “too” low. However, the tighter and shorter a suspension spring you have in place, the bumpier your ride will get as the suspension has less room to spread out and absorb shock. You will need a professionally installed, and possibly custom made, suspension modification to avoid this “too low” scenario.
  5. Why do I get wheel wobble now that I raised my truck?
    Dramatically raising your truck without a complete lift kit and suspension adjustments can cause frequent and annoying wheel wobbling or shimmying due to a change in handling. Using properly-installed steering stabilizers can reduce the wobble and make your ride smooth again.
  6. Will my truck’s warranty be affected if I mess with the suspension?
    Great question for any sort of modification! Aftermarket parts that are properly installed to your vehicle shouldn’t void out your warranty automatically, but dealers can have special clauses that say otherwise. For the most part, a dealer will only say the warranty is void if a problem comes up later that can be linked directly to the alteration. Check with them before modding your truck if this is a concern.
  7. How can I avoid shock fade?
    The shocks in your suspension system rely on a highly-viscous oil that both dampens the heat of friction and makes hydraulic pressure resistance, i.e. absorbs impact. The more you use, or abuse, you put into your suspension, the more likely that oil is going to wear down and start failing. Thus, shock fade and a bumpier ride. Talk to our specialists about oil reservoirs, twin-tube systems, or shock replacement to find the solution that works best for you and your truck.
  8. Someone mentioned camber to me – what is that?
    Tinkering with your suspension isn’t technically the only way to lower your truck. By tilting the tires inward, so the top hides significantly inside the wheel well, your truck will have a “negative camber” and ride lower than if your tires were totally perpendicular to the road, as they normally are.
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