Dismiss Notice



Register Today It's free! This box will disappear once registered!

Torsion Bar Bolts and Adjustment Question

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by 239, June 7, 2019.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. 239

    239 Active Member

    Joined:
    April 4, 2011
    Messages:
    590
    Likes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    38
    City, State:
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    2000 XLT, V6 OHV
    I’ve always noticed that the front of my Explorer is lower on the driver’s side. I made sure my tires had equal pressure and measured at the center of the wheel well. Sure enough the driver’s side is about 1” lower than the passenger side.

    I crawled under the truck and the passenger side torsion bar bolt doesn’t stick out as much as the driver’s side. Someone on this site told me once that Ford used different size bolts on both sides, which never made sense to me.

    If I lift one side 1” should I be ok for a couple of weeks until I go get my alignment? I also have the leaf spring issue where it’s slightly lower on the driver’s side so I wonder if that affects the height of the front too. Thanks for any input.
     
  2. Support EF

    Join the Elite Explorers for $20

    Explorer Forum has probably saved you that much already, and will continue to save you money as you learn how to diagnose fix problems yourself and learn which modifications work without having to experiment on your own. Elite Explorer members see practically no ads, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create more private Conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.



  3. Mr. Alligator

    Mr. Alligator Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    November 30, 2014
    Messages:
    529
    Media:
    2
    Likes Received:
    106
    Trophy Points:
    53
    City, State:
    Tampa, Florida
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    1997 XLT Explorer
    Yes, you can raise drivers side one inch, and will be ok without changing alignment for a few weeks. Mostly just monitor front tires, as alignment may not be impacted much. At least that has been my experience.

    Rear leaf springs will not impact height at the front of the truck, but replacing rear leaf springs should equalize rear height side to side.

    Good luck.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
    • Disagree Disagree x 1
  4. poker4me007

    poker4me007 Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 21, 2013
    Messages:
    271
    Likes Received:
    38
    Trophy Points:
    28
    City, State:
    Western Ma.
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    97 Sport 4wd 4.0 ohv 5spd
    I just went out and measured mine and the drivers side is also an inch lower. I think there was a discussion about this sometime ago, that the roads are slightly higher in the middle and have a slope that's why one sides higher than the other.Someone correct me if i'm wrong.:)
     
  5. swshawaii

    swshawaii Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    April 3, 2009
    Messages:
    9,306
    Likes Received:
    317
    Trophy Points:
    93
    City, State:
    Kailua-Oahu, Hawaii
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    '05 Sport Trac XLS (RWD)
    @239
    Is this the same truck from 2014? Is only the FRONT drivers corner lower? Rear driver and passenger side are still close to level? As mentioned by Mr. Alligator, tighten the drivers torsion bolt to level the front. Also keep in mind that adjusting the front affects the opposite rear corner. Front left up = Rear right down. DO check alignment after tweaking the bolts because it changes toe, and misaligned toe causes the fastest tire wear.
     
  6. 239

    239 Active Member

    Joined:
    April 4, 2011
    Messages:
    590
    Likes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    38
    City, State:
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    2000 XLT, V6 OHV
    That’s interesting and something I’ve never heard of. Maybe it has something to do with the two piece control arm? I’m going to raise it 1” and I’ll mark the turns in case I want to go back.
     
  7. 239

    239 Active Member

    Joined:
    April 4, 2011
    Messages:
    590
    Likes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    38
    City, State:
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    2000 XLT, V6 OHV
    Yes the same truck. The re-arching is still helping but I removed the spring loaded shocks a few years ago and currently have RS9000’s. It leans a bit in the rear on the driver’s side but I can live with it for now since it’s not really noticeable. I may just swap springs left to right.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 17, 2004
    Messages:
    19,343
    Media:
    5
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,053
    Trophy Points:
    143
    City, State:
    Knoxville, TN
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 Limited AWD
    The torsion bar adjustments alter the ride height, which directly affects the tire camber. That will eat the tires fast if you alter that and not get an alignment soon after. I have made ride height changes many times, but only just before getting an alignment.

    FYI, the ride height should be measured on the chassis, not the body. The body is mounted to the chassis and is not exactly level left to right.

    So check the height from the ground up to the chassis, to the lower control arm mounts at the frame. I go by the center of the LCA bolts, which is easy to do from the front. I set those equal, whenever I've made any adjustments to the torsion bar bolts.

    If you fenders aren't equal height, after leveling the chassis, then the body needs adjusted, at the body mounts, not the torsion bars. Mine were not, and still aren't after leveling the chassis. But the chassis drives equally left and right. If you make the chassis un-level, but the fenders are level, then the truck will handle differently left versus right.
     
    Last edited: June 9, 2019
  9. Mr. Alligator

    Mr. Alligator Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    November 30, 2014
    Messages:
    529
    Media:
    2
    Likes Received:
    106
    Trophy Points:
    53
    City, State:
    Tampa, Florida
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    1997 XLT Explorer
    Just a quick question meant very respectfully: the torsion bar adjustment alters ride height. You could also adjust ride height by having two good size adults sit on the passender side. Either way, I do not think you “eat the tires up fast.” Although I understand that camber is affected, I have not found a one inch torsion bar adjustment to be substantial. Have you really found a torsion bar adjustment to have an immediate and substantial impact on your tires???

    Thanks for your time and insight.
     
  10. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 17, 2004
    Messages:
    19,343
    Media:
    5
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,053
    Trophy Points:
    143
    City, State:
    Knoxville, TN
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 Limited AWD
    In concept the camber is directly affected as the vehicle height changes. Obviously tire wear is best when going straight on level roads, at normal ride height etc. Everything different from that causes more tire wear. So it's an amount of effect on the tires, to what degree, each thing causes.

    The real issue there is the upper control arms are much shorter than the LCA's. That's on purpose, because as the vehicle rolls to one side from the weight of cornering, the UCA pivots the upper BJ inward more and more, which helps grip in corners. But it also improves tire wear, keeping the tires relatively flat to the road.

    As the ride height is changed, the UCA does the same thing, the upper BJ is moved inward compared to the lower BJ, and the tire leans over more, while setting still. Depending on how much the height is changed, the camber change will be less, or more. I've never driven long without an alignment on new parts or after a height change, mainly due to the cost of tires. Regards,
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Useful Useful x 1
  11. Mr. Alligator

    Mr. Alligator Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    November 30, 2014
    Messages:
    529
    Media:
    2
    Likes Received:
    106
    Trophy Points:
    53
    City, State:
    Tampa, Florida
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    1997 XLT Explorer
    Very sound mechanical review. Thanks!

    Just FYI, I have done one inch torsion bar adjustment on driver’s side, as the OP inquired about, without alignment, for 25,000 miles, and had ZERO adverse tire wear. Yes, tIres are expensive, as are alignments.

    Thanks again for your response. Your insights on this Forum are always appreciated.
     
  12. Mbrooks420

    Mbrooks420 High Voltage. Elite Explorer EF Vendor

    Joined:
    February 2, 2002
    Messages:
    8,898
    Media:
    4
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    990
    Trophy Points:
    133
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    1998 Mountaineer AWD
    I would just wait until you can get an alignment. No sense waiting weeks with it being questionable. On more than one occasion I was going to get that alignment, and ended up busy, and burning the front tires off before actuality getting to the alignment.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  13. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 17, 2004
    Messages:
    19,343
    Media:
    5
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,053
    Trophy Points:
    143
    City, State:
    Knoxville, TN
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 Limited AWD
    Well said, it's easy to plan something and put it off for a while. I have to do something with my transmission very soon, and I've put if off several times now. Maybe Wednesday or Thursday I'll make myself get to it.
     
  14. 96eb96

    96eb96 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    October 20, 2004
    Messages:
    2,924
    Likes Received:
    77
    Trophy Points:
    68
    City, State:
    Albany, NY
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    96 EB V6 OHV 4WD
    I second this, I installed replacement bars and never got an alignment. I checked camber with one of those angle gauges and it was in the ballpark, but it was months after I did the install. Tires are fine. I may have gotten lucky, I don't know.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  15. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 17, 2004
    Messages:
    19,343
    Media:
    5
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,053
    Trophy Points:
    143
    City, State:
    Knoxville, TN
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 Limited AWD
    The camber specs have a range, say +1* to -1*, so there is some room that the height can move and still be close to the recommended specs. Just don't plan to be fortunate each time you move the height up or down much.

    I've been wanting my ride heights down some with both my 98 and 99 Limited, but both at the alignment shop they said they couldn't make it work. So they raised them back up both times, and they are near stock height now, with the camber washers. I haven't pushed the issue, but my 98 I will get down close to where my Mercury is.
     
  16. 239

    239 Active Member

    Joined:
    April 4, 2011
    Messages:
    590
    Likes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    38
    City, State:
    Bonita Springs, FL
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    2000 XLT, V6 OHV
    Maybe I’ll let the alignment shop level the front end. But they told me last time it was level. Maybe they didn’t actually check it since I asked near the end of the job.
     
  17. CDW6212R

    CDW6212R Hauls the mail. Elite Explorer

    Joined:
    June 17, 2004
    Messages:
    19,343
    Media:
    5
    Albums:
    1
    Likes Received:
    1,053
    Trophy Points:
    143
    City, State:
    Knoxville, TN
    Year, Model & Trim Level:
    98 Limited AWD
    Yeah, start with telling them if you want it lowered or raised at all, etc, and level it by the mounting bolts of the LCA's.
     

Share This Page







We Support Our Troops!