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Cheap Way to Lift a Truck

by Cee Donohue

A very popular upgrade with truck owners is lifting the ride height. It often improves performance and keeps larger wheels and tires from rubbing against the fenders. Lifting the ride height can also be beneficial to heavy-duty work trucks because larger tires increase the load rating, making it a safer ride while hauling heavy cargo. A full suspension system can raise your truck but may cost up to $3,000. However, there are a few ways to increase your ride height while staying on a budget.

Add aftermarket torsion keys. They can add up to 1.5 inches to your ride height while maintaining the factory settings. Although many trucks have a torsion bar suspension system, it's better to add aftermarket torsion keys than to adjust the factory's torsion keys. Adjusting the factory keys can tax the suspension system, leaving you with a rough ride.

Purchase a leveling kit. Typically, trucks have a higher rear end than front end, and a leveling kit can add 1 to 3 inches on the front suspension. Leveling kits come with various ways of leveling your truck, including polyurethane coil spring spacers, aluminum spacers and strut extensions. Leveling kits range in price depending on the what's included. It costs about $30 for a basic kit, with some kits reaching $500 if they include shocks and other components that will keep the suspension in place.

Give your truck a body lift. Body lifts are an inexpensive way to give your truck ride height without affecting the suspension. A body lift can give you up to 3 inches of height by stacking urethane blocks on top of the factory blocks to raise the body above the frame. You will need to adjust a few other components with a body lift because it causes a gap between the truck's body and frame. Most body kits include the necessary bumper brackets and spacers to accomplish this.

Install a a "premium lift system," which combines a body lift and a leveling kit. Depending on the vehicle, you can gain up to 6 inches of ride height without affecting the suspension. Premium lift systems include all the necessary components to give you the same effect as raising the suspension, for a lot less money. Typically, a premium lift system takes six to eight hours to install.

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About the Author

Cee Donohue started as a comedy writer in 2004. She has written for "One to One Magazine" and the "South Hollywood News." Before moving to Los Angeles, Donohue attended the University of the Arts.

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