What Parts Do You Need for a Full Suspension Replacement?
Over time, whether you drive your truck every day or use it for heavy-duty rigging, your vehicle's suspension system will require service. Sometimes you’ll need to swap the entire suspension with new parts while other situations will call for the replacement of select components. It’s vital to understand which elements are necessary for a full replacement so that you can make the best decision based on your needs and budget.
Inspect each part of the suspension system for excessive wear and damage to determine how much work you need to complete. For example, there is no sense in replacing your leaf springs if rusty, breakable U-bolts are in the equation. When you know the condition of your truck’s suspension and how each element operates as part of the system, you can form a more economical and effective repair job. General Spring professionals are here to support you through the entire replacement process.
Leaf Springs: The Backbone of the Suspension
The main part of any suspension system is the leaf spring. You'll find leaf spring suspensions on trucks, SUVs and vans, as well as older model vehicles such as classic muscle cars from the 1960s and '70s. Made of spring steel, leaf springs allow your suspension to move in congruence with bumps in the road. Energy from hitting potholes and driving over bumps won’t transfer from the wheels to the chassis of your vehicle, providing a smooth ride.
Each leaf spring is made from several individual pieces of spring steel — often four or five leaves — that work together to absorb the impacts that you encounter while on the road. While some vehicles have only rear leaf springs, others also have front springs. Over time, the weight and stress put on the suspension system cause parts to sag, crack and break, requiring for replacement.
Leaf Spring Replacements: What Hardware You Will Need
Hardware for leaf springs includes more than a few bolts to hold the system together. Leaf spring tools include:
- Floor jack: Use this to raise and lower the vehicle.
- Lug wrench: This tool helps you remove the back tires and put them back on.
- Ratchet wrench: Use this tool to take off the nuts and bolts, U-bolts, eyelet bolts, mounting bolts and other hardware, and replace with new
Many leaf spring hardware kits have everything you need to replace the entire suspension, including:
- Center bolts
- Spring pins
- Cross bolts
- Lift blocks
Before you begin replacing your truck’s suspension, make sure you have the correct equipment and pieces to ensure a successful application. If you’re not sure if you have the right hardware, reach out to us and we will get you on track.
Shackles, Hangers and Bolts: Key Pieces to Attach the Leaf Springs
Different vehicle models require different hardware to attach the leaf springs. You must choose the shackles, hangers and bolts that are right for your car or truck. It’s often worthwhile to replace these small parts when you are performing leaf spring suspension repairs because they are relatively low-cost. Using new hardware is also easier to manage when doing the assembly.
Located at each end of the rear axle, leaf spring shackles help the leaf handles adjust properly to maintain balance at the back end. Equally important, the hangers connect the leaf springs securely to the vehicle's chassis. Used in conjunction with high-quality bolts, the hangers and shackles provide additional support to the leaf springs and keep your tires in contact with the road for a safe and smooth ride.
U-bolts: Make Sure You Get the Right Connectors
U-bolts are used to hold your leaf spring to your axle firmly. Yet, not just any U-bolt will fit all vehicle models. In general, there are three different shapes for leaf spring U-bolts — round, square and semi-round. You will need to make sure you get not only the right size for your vehicle but also the correct type of U-bolt for your leaf spring attachment.
Our U-bolt parts for suspension replacement projects are made using quality materials. We sell them individually and include the necessary nuts and washers. If you are not sure what to choose, our team of General Spring experts can help you to make the right decision for your truck.
Coil Springs: A Necessity on Certain Vehicles
Many vehicles only need a standard set of leaf springs to provide all the shock absorption needed for safe and productive performance. However, some heavier-duty trucks or vehicles with high-capacity applications benefit from using coil springs . Along with the coil springs, the leaf springs can then take the more massive impacts that come from larger loads.
Heavy-duty coil springs are ideal for trucks used in farming, construction, landscaping, road maintenance and any other jobs that require hauling and towing heavy loads. There are a variety of options in rear suspension coil springs capable of increasing your rated load per spring capacity, from 25% to 50% or more.
Some vehicles also have shock absorbers to assist in load distribution, so make sure you know what your truck needs when you start upgrading or replacing your suspension. If you have any questions about which parts of a suspension system you require, let us know and we'll help you determine the product that is best for you.
General Spring: Your Score for Suspension Equipment
Since 1965, General Spring has been a suspension and automotive leaf spring authority. Our dedicated team has learned the intricacies of how a suspension works inside and out. The people who answer the phone when you call are the same technicians who work to replace suspension systems in our full-service shop. When you work with our experienced suspension specialists, you can feel confident that you’ll find the perfect parts for your unique needs.
From our easy-to-navigate website and secure online ordering to a quick turnaround and fast shipping to anywhere across the country, we're your one-stop-shop for individual and full suspension replacement kits. All our products are made by trusted manufacturers using the highest-quality materials.
Suspension Replacements: Shop Online
Whether you need leaf springs or hangers and shackles for a suspension replacement, General Spring solutions will fit your make and model of truck and meet or exceed OEM standards. When you need to repair a suspension replacement, we stand ready to help and offer a one-year warranty on our leaf springs. We'll get you the leaf spring parts you require to restore or upgrade your suspension system.
Shop our website today or submit our online contact form to request more information and assistance from a live representative. We'll be happy to discuss your projects and help determine which parts you need for a full-suspension replacement.