Diesel trucks have been a reliable mode of transportation for years, and it is now a leading choice for many people looking to own a vehicle. The sales of diesel-powered trucks and SUVs have continually increased in the past decade, indicating the vast popularity of the machine in the transportation industry.
Though these trucks already have numerous benefits compared to their gas counterparts, countless drivers still modify their trucks to achieve the most diesel performance. This is usually done to improve the driving experience or enhance the truck's fuel economy. One of the most common customizations done by many truck owners is found in exhaust systems. Apart from this, another diesel part commonly altered is the suspension system.
4X4 trucks usually sit higher in the rear than the front, this is called “rake”. Even though this is done for hauling purposes, some owners install leveling and lift kits. These two products can significantly improve the utilization rate of the truck. But there are various factors that consumers must consider when deciding to purchase these tools, including how far they can alter the truck, the truck's purpose, and how much they are willing to spend. Here is everything you need to know about leveling kits and lift kits to help you decide what is best for your ride.
As the name suggests, the primary purpose of a leveling kit is to fix the rake. This kit is usually designed to give the front part a maximum of two- inches of lift. Truck owners can also pair leveling kits with spacer blocks if they are looking for a stock-style stance. Leveling kits also provide an opportunity for truck owners to utilize larger tires should they want to.
Types of Leveling Kits
There are various types of leveling kits available in the market, such as:
● Coil Spacers – This product is usually inserted into either the top or bottom part of the spring buckets. When purchasing one, shock extensions and bump stop relocation are typically added.
● Strut Extensions – These extensions are placed on the top or bottom of the existing struts of the truck.
● Torsion Bar Keys – Contrary to coil spacers and strut extensions that are attached or added to the stock parts of the truck, using torsion bar keys requires replacing factory parts. These are designed to hold the added lift and are built for trucks with a torsion bar suspension system.
Since there are different types of leveling kits, owners must consider numerous factors before buying one. They should first think about how much lift they wanted on their truck, what kind of suspension they are using, and the model of the truck, such as Dodge Cummins, Powerstroke or Duramax Diesel.
Advantages and Disadvantages of a Leveling Kit
The biggest benefits of installing a leveling kit are: (1) it increases ground clearance in the front end and (2) it expands the distance between the truck's body to the axles, helping prevent larger tires from hitting the bumpers when turning.
In addition, a leveling kit can improve the truck's off-road capability as it helps prevent the front bumper from making contact with rocks, mud, and other debris in various terrains.
However, it can decrease the truck's fuel economy due to an increase in wind resistance. Also, since the rake is removed, the truck's rear end will sink more than usual when loaded or towing. This can cause increased wear and tear on the suspension and increase the need for repairs.
Apart from the improved aesthetics, lift kits are used to boost the truck's ground ++clearance significantly.
Unlike leveling kits that can give a maximum of two-inches of lift, lift kits come in various sizes; there are 2, 4, 6, 8, and even 10-inch kits available on the market. But should the client want their Duramax, Cummins or Powerstroke to be higher, they can also choose custom lift kits. There are also some lift kits that provide customers a choice to install 4 or 5 inch space blockers to maintain a slight rake. Moreover, lift kits are more complex than leveling kits. The truck may need new shocks, control arms, springs, and other necessary components to maintain the ride height. It may also require aftermarket tires that are significantly bigger than the stock tires.
Advantages and Disadvantages of a Lift Kit
Lift kits are perfect for people who like to run with large tires and wheels. Off-road enthusiasts, especially those who like rock crawling, can use lift kits to give their trucks an improved performance over many terrains. The much-increased height of the truck is also beneficial if traveling in mud or deep snow.
Despite this, adding too much lift to the truck also puts more stress on the suspension components. Wider wheels and larger lifts can drastically affect the truck's fuel consumption, the extra weight and drag from the wind might lead to a twenty percent drop in fuel economy. Also, lift kits are more expensive than leveling kits.
What to Choose for Your Truck?
Both products can give extra height for your ride, and you can pick what you think would be best for your truck. If you are using the truck for towing or utility and are only looking to get a small amount of lift, a leveling kit would be an excellent option for you. On the other hand, if you want an aggressive look and do more off-road driving, lift kits would be the right pick for you.
If you are looking for a diesel shop to purchase either of the kits, Pure Diesel Power can help you.
You can reach us Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM CST. Please call us at 715-254-1833, email us at [email protected], or visit us at 2600 South Galvin Ave., Marshfield, WI, 54494.