Truck Leaf Springs and Hauling: What You Need to Know
In a truck, the leaf springs are the main component keeping the wheels moving smoothly over bumps and potholes without transferring the jarring to the body of the truck. This makes your ride smoother and easier on your passengers, as well as on any type of load that you may be carrying. Without leaf springs and the rest of your vehicle suspension, your drive would be extremely uncomfortable.
However, not everyone realizes that leaf springs come in many different load capacities for the same type of truck. If you’re going to use your truck to haul heavy loads, then you need to know what weight your leaf springs can hold so that you don’t exceed the limit they can carry. Options are available to improve the carrying capacity of the leaf springs and suspension, but knowing how large your biggest load will be is an important first step.
What if I Overload My Leaf Springs?
If your leaf springs have a capacity of 3,000 lbs., and you overload them with 3,200 lbs., during the first trip, you’ll not likely have an immediate problem, but if you constantly overload the springs with cargo in excess of the limit, you’ll eventually have difficulty. Constant overloading can lead to excess early wear, stress cracking and fracturing, and potentially catastrophic failure of the leaf springs.
Even with careful care and maintenance, you’ll find that your leaf springs will show damage and cracking more quickly than if they were not stressed beyond their limits. You may not have a breakdown on the highway, but you’ll end up replacing your leaf springs sooner than originally expected.
What Does Hauling Have to Do with Truck Leaf Springs?
Many people think about the load on a truck coming only from cargo in the truck bed, but what if you’re attaching a trailer to handle a bigger load? Many people forget to consider that with the trailer attached to the hitch, not all of the load in the trailer is carried by the leaf springs on the trailer. Part of the load is transferred to the back wheels of the truck. So, if you already have the maximum capacity load in the truck bed and attach a trailer, you’re still increasing the load on the back leaf springs.
How Do You Determine What Load Capacity You Need?
When you bought your truck, you probably had a good idea of what it could do in terms of hauling and towing. However, over time, needs can change and so can the performance of your suspension system.
Determining what load capacity you require is a matter of analyzing your applications and seeing how they match up to your current truck specifications. If you have heavy-duty applications that exceed the payload limit, you can upgrade to leaf springs, offering the necessary increase in load capacity.
How Can You Increase Load Capacity?
It may come as a surprise that there are not only a variety of ways to increase your truck's capacity for hauling heavy loads but that it's relatively easy and inexpensive.
The most common way to give your payload a boost is to upgrade the rear springs with a top-quality OEM replacement or heavy-duty set. Additional ways you can increase your truck's hauling capabilities including adding coil-over shock absorbers or bed racks, attaching a trailer or installing a longer truck bed.
Do You Need Heavy Duty Leaf Springs?
If you're wondering whether or not you need heavy-duty leaf springs, here are questions to ask:
- Do you use the truck on a job where you are consistently hauling heavy loads?
- Do you frequently replace standard springs because they prematurely wear out, crack or break?
If you have robust applications and push your truck's payload capacity to the limit regularly, you most likely need heavy-duty leaf springs for hauling and towing safely and efficiently.
How Do Leaf Springs Help With Hauling and Towing?
Leaf springs are a critical component of most truck suspension systems, providing support to the vehicle while absorbing bumps, potholes and other impacts for a smooth ride. In addition to the weight of the truck, the springs help keep the body elevated when loaded with passengers and cargo and when pulling a trailer and other attachments.
The unique, time-test design of leaf springs allows the suspension to adjust based on the current capacity and keep your truck at the right height and position.
What Solutions Does General Spring Provide?
As the leaf springs and suspension authority in the industry, General Spring offers a variety of ways to increase the load capacity of your vehicle. We offer standard and heavy-duty leaf springs for towing and hauling heavy loads for just about any make or model of truck. We also provide custom design services to fit your exact specifications.
In addition to leaf springs, we carry add-a-leaf kits to boost the strength of your suspension. From heavy-duty coil springs designed to help trucks carry and tow more significant loads to innovative SuperSprings and Roadmaster Active Suspensions that instantly upgrade your capacity, we're a single, reliable source for premium quality parts.
If you're not sure which products you require, let us know and we'll help analyze your needs to identify the most efficient solution.
Where to Go for Help? The Team at General Spring!
At General Spring, we have been in the leaf spring and suspension business for over 50 years. Our dedicated service team has the knowledge and experience to help you with any questions you may have about your suspension and leaf springs. We even have the ability to work with our suppliers and have custom made leaf springs designed specifically for your unique needs, such as an older vehicle with difficult to find leaf springs.
Additionally, we have a full-service shop in the New Century, KS area, but can also ship out our suspension products throughout the United State and even around the world. If you need advice on your vehicle suspension and are in the area, you can contact us locally at 913-829-0619. National customers can call us toll-free at 1-888-829-0619. For your convenience, you can also contact us online right now!