air shocks? | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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air shocks?

jake the snake

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City, State
Louisiana
Year, Model & Trim Level
2002 XLT 4x4 4.0/SOHC
do air shocks like the gabriel hi-jackers work well on explorers? i was just wondering.......i thought i could gain a little bit of lift (front and back) with these, or at least get it back up to stock height from spring sag?
 
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I wouldn't rely on the shocks to provide any lift. That's not really what they're designed to do. If you have spring sag, you need to address that with an AAL, shackles or F150 leaves (or a combination thereof). For the front, you could do a TT.
 






I have a similar question: how about airbags (firestones,airlift etc.)? I occasionally tow a tent trailer and have a '97 4-door with a 4.0 v-6. Do I need to replace the shocks when I do the install? The truck is bone stock. p.s. My explorer is a selectrack (push button) 4x4 if that makes a difference. I have no immediate plans to lift (yet), will air bags affect that decision in the future. I've also thought of helper springs but I like the fact that the bags are there only if you need them.
 
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The air bagged Explorers came with the softer "H" code leaf springs. You could switch over, I suppose, but it might be pricey and hard to find all the parts, in good condition, unless you bought them new. I don't think you need to replace the shocks simply because you're switching to an air bag rear suspension but you might want to change them if they're "time is up". I doubt the type of 4x4 system you have makes a difference. If you do decide to lift, in the future, you'll want to ditch the entire system, unfortunately and go with the stiffer "F" code leaves (and an AAL, shackles or F150 leaves). You could even buy custom leaves with lift built in, if you're so inclined and have the $$.

D.
 






Got my air bags today (airlift, ride controls). I'll install them tomorrow. I'm also going to do an add-a-leaf in the future + a t.t. for the front. Shouldn't be any probs....right?
 






Bronco638 said:
I wouldn't rely on the shocks to provide any lift. That's not really what they're designed to do. If you have spring sag, you need to address that with an AAL, shackles or F150 leaves (or a combination thereof). For the front, you could do a TT.

i did not think that that the first gen's had torsion bars
 
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Charlie is correct. First gens don't have torsion bars. For the front I would get f-150 spacers. In the rear I'd toss on a set of shackles, or an AAl.
 






Finished putting on the bags in 2 hours with no real problems.
 












I knew this might come up, but I don't have a digital camera yet. I'll see if I can borrow one and show the finished product. Stay tuned...
 






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