If you want to lift your truck, then you need some lifting shocks, obviously. But Why? Well let's dial into some suspension talk real quick and we can lay it all out for you.
Your truck or SUV is held up in the air by a variety of different things. On a 1988-1998 Chevy Silverado, for example, there are coil springs up front and leaf springs out back. Some trucks or SUVs use leaf springs all the way around. Those springs hold the mass of the vehicle and keep it at a specific height.
Now those springs are lifting the weight, but if you did not have shocks then your ride would be pretty horrible. That's because while the springs allow your suspension to travel up and down, they have no way to dampen that ride. Were you to cruise down the freeway and hit a bump, you might keep bouncing up and down for a mile before you stopped — and that's assuming you have a perfectly flat road, which we all know never happens.
Shocks fix that problem. A shock absorber is designed to dampen the oscillation that your springs go through and give you a smooth and comfortable ride. It's why you can always tell when a car or truck has blown shocks. They'll just bounce down the road, while a car with functioning shocks are just fine absorbing the bumps and cruising comfortably.
So where do lift shocks come into play? Well let's talk about how you lift your truck or SUV. One method is to use bigger steering knuckles or spindles. Others drop the entire front suspension down lower, and sometimes there are bigger leaf spring packs. The idea is to make the distance between the bottom of the truck and the ground higher, and that involves making your suspension taller. If your suspension now cycles farther than it would stock, you need lifting shocks to fill in that gap.
Let's put it another way. Say you have a 2004 Chevrolet Silverado and you want to lift it. Right now, at stock height, you have say 8 inches of suspension travel up front. To raise the truck up higher, you install bigger and taller springs. This gives you more suspension travel — say 10 or 12 inches up and down. Do you think the stock shocks can handle that?
Probably not, which is where lifting shocks come into play. With lift shocks, you get that extra suspension travel that you need, ready to go. It means your ride is dampened throughout the entire range of travel, and that is a good thing. Otherwise your shocks could be the limiting factor between how far you can go up or down with your suspension.
Now there's another type of lifting shocks out there that are really something different. These are coilovers, and although they do the same thing as other lift shocks, they're set up a little bit different.
A coilover is similar to a strut, in that there is a shock absorber and coil spring contained in one unit. A coilover, however, is usually adjustable. Meaning there is a threaded body on the lifted shock that has the bottom spring perch threaded into place. This allows you to adjust that spring perch up or down to raise or lower the vehicle. This setup is ideal for some trucks and necessary for others, particularly if they were already equipped with struts. Regardless, some lifted truck owners prefer coilovers because they have both the lift shock and coil in one package, making it easier to install.
No matter what path you choose, if you lift your truck, you're going to need lifting shocks. Check our our selection of lift shocks right here and if you have any questions, don't hesitate to call or email.