Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Installing lift kits

If you are thinking of buying lift kits its important to understand first what it is. A lift kit is a vehicle modification that is used to lift either the suspension or the body. Installing lift kits will make the wheel wells of your vehicles to become higher so you can install bigger tires that are at least two sizes larger than stock. Currently there are two types of lift kits in the market, the body lifts and suspension lifts, each with their own advantage and disadvantage.

If you are in a tight budget you might want to consider body lifts. Body lift kit is inexpensive and made up of blocks and spacers. Offroaders does not usually prefer this kind of lift because it does not change or improve suspension or increase travel. Body lifts kit can increase the wheel wells so you can use larger tires but you might need to invest in raising the bumpers and other modifications to your car to accommodate the body lift.

On The other hand, suspension lift kit improves the clearance between the axles and ground as well as creates greater travel. By replacing the front and rear leaf springs and shocks the suspension lift kit can raise the suspension of your vehicle. If you also want to improve the articulation of your vehicle a good suspension lift kit is the right answer. Suspension lift kit will cost you a little more compare to body lift kit but you will surely love the results once you installed a suspension lift kit. Height, handling and ground clearance are some of the advantages of installing a suspension lift kit. There are lift kits as high as 18 inches but usually people prefer the 4-inch or 6-inch lift kits. Extreme lifts are not advisable because it can compromise safe handling and it is usually installed for showcase or hobbyist cars only.

Another thing to consider when you want to install lift kits is re-gearing. Installing lift kits and getting bigger tires will make your speedometer and odometer off. You can check the internet for ratio charts to give you an idea of what kind of gearing you will need for your vehicle. Re-gearing is important because it will keep the mileage of your vehicle as close to stock as possible.
Prices of lift kits vary from one manufacturer to another depending on the model and type of lift kit. Aside from the price of the lift kit you should also consider added cost for re-gearing, tires and modification cost to check if you are still on your budget. You can also try to talk first with your mechanic just to give you an idea of how much you will have to spend for the entire modification.

Before installing a lift kit you should always remember that the higher you raise your vehicle the less stable it will become specially in making sharp turns at high speeds. The recommended lift kit is 4 inches above this will make your vehicle less stable in sharp turns or lean more in banked turns such as freeway interchanges and off ramps. If you decide to install a higher suspension lift kit it is important to re-familiarize yourself with your vehicle because accidents can happen in split second such as avoiding an accident, debris or other reasons.

You might want to pay a mechanic or a trustworthy shop that specializes in 4x4 gears than installing it by yourself. There are a lot of shops out there that specializes in installing lift kits and other modifications. Do not forget to check with your dealership for warranty issues of your car before installing lift kits.

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