Potential problems from 2.5" leveling kit?

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
I'm looking into a 2.5" leveling kit and am wondering what some potential issues that this could cause? Would it put extra strain on ball joints, sway bar end links, or cv axles?
 

TangoBravo

Member
Dec 5, 2011
208
Yes. You will find parts that may have been close to failing due to age or abuse will fail shortly after the lift. I knew both my cv's were going to need to be replaced. So I made sure to have extra on hand, sure enough almost one month exactly one failed. I dont run sway bars so couldnt tell you there but my ball joints were right behind the cv's to go. But I planned for this to happen, mostly because I could see they all needed to be done, but knew I could get afew more miles out of em.
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
TangoBravo said:
Yes. You will find parts that may have been close to failing due to age or abuse will fail shortly after the lift. I knew both my cv's were going to need to be replaced. So I made sure to have extra on hand, sure enough almost one month exactly one failed. I dont run sway bars so couldnt tell you there but my ball joints were right behind the cv's to go. But I planned for this to happen, mostly because I could see they all needed to be done, but knew I could get afew more miles out of em.

Well my cv's still look good and work fine but I wouldn't want to risk damaging them also my sway bar links are new as well as new ball joints
 

Opeth

Member
Mar 25, 2012
177
Easiest thing to say here.... If you want to spend the money on a lift, be prepared to have money set s side for fixing shit that breaks. Biggest pain in the arse is dealing with the CV's, I'm currently trying to find someone to build me some differential input flanges that will mate to a Porsche 930 cv joint so I can run higher angles and more lift.
 

Pittdawg

Member
Dec 5, 2011
538
TangoBravo said:
Yes. You will find parts that may have been close to failing due to age or abuse will fail shortly after the lift. I knew both my cv's were going to need to be replaced. So I made sure to have extra on hand, sure enough almost one month exactly one failed. I dont run sway bars so couldnt tell you there but my ball joints were right behind the cv's to go. But I planned for this to happen, mostly because I could see they all needed to be done, but knew I could get afew more miles out of em.

No sway bars? Do you have to greatly slow down for every turn? #soundsdangerous
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
Not sure about the effect of the front but I ran without my rear bar connected when my end links broke. The only time I really noticed it was when I had a lot of weight in the back and/or taking turns more aggressively. I was surprised how little difference there was under normal driving.
 

TangoBravo

Member
Dec 5, 2011
208
Pittdawg said:
No sway bars? Do you have to greatly slow down for every turn? #soundsdangerous

Well I might if there were any turns(Wyoming Joke), on a serious note I don't really drive it any different then when I had them on. But then I don't drive an SUV like its a sports car either so that may play a factor. Besides I am very rarely on a paved road, like maybe 15 out of 150-180 miles a week. The biggest change I have noticed is in rutts and how much flex I really have but couldn't use.
 

The_Roadie

Lifetime VIP Donor
Member
Nov 19, 2011
9,957
Portland, OR
Pittdawg said:
No sway bars?
Many offroaders run without sway bars, or have quick-disconnect end links. We highly value flex which gives more traction. Anti-sway bars are the enemy of flex.

With a couple hundred pound rooftop tent, I go slowly around turns anyway. :wink:
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
Opeth said:
Easiest thing to say here.... If you want to spend the money on a lift, be prepared to have money set s side for fixing shit that breaks. Biggest pain in the arse is dealing with the CV's, I'm currently trying to find someone to build me some differential input flanges that will mate to a Porsche 930 cv joint so I can run higher angles and more lift.

Ok sounds like I'm better off leaving it alone, im trying not to spend any more money then i have to, thanks for the advice
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
Opeth said:
Easiest thing to say here.... If you want to spend the money on a lift, be prepared to have money set s side for fixing shit that breaks. Biggest pain in the arse is dealing with the CV's, I'm currently trying to find someone to build me some differential input flanges that will mate to a Porsche 930 cv joint so I can run higher angles and more lift.

The cv's are good for almost 4 inches of lift. You need more than CV's to go with more lift than that.

Pittdawg said:
No sway bars? Do you have to greatly slow down for every turn? #soundsdangerous

I ran every combination of swaybars/no swaybars you can for weeks or months at a time. The rear swaybar does virtually nothing. Can't really notice it removed. Fully disco'ed is not bad. I spent an entire winter driving in all kinds of conditions sans swaybars. It was not bad at all. I even let the wife drive it that way. Prolly 5,000 miles or city and highway driving. Not dangerous.

blackout51 said:
I'm looking into a 2.5" leveling kit and am wondering what some potential issues that this could cause? Would it put extra strain on ball joints, sway bar end links, or cv axles?

It puts minimal strain. Adaptors or spacers required for larger tires and the weight of larger tires are the things that wear these parts out faster. I had about 90K on my stock parts when I lifted mine and it was another 30K or so of DD and hard wheeling before any of the parts needed replaced, but at 120K...thy needed it anyway. I have no cv issues other that trail damage even being one of the most lifted TB's. I actually have my stock front swaybar links on the truck now and they are still functioning fine, but they were off for awhile. My ball joints lasted 50K lifted miles. No complaints there.

The real key is what you are going to do with it leveled? Wheel it or just drive it? Stock tires or bigger tires? Spacers or not? Wheeling and offroading are what really cause any issues. Bigger tires are tough on parts as well.

If you do level...a good alignment makes all the differenceand will do wonders to help all your parts last for their full service life.
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
HARDTRAILZ said:
It puts minimal strain. Adaptors or spacers required for larger tires and the weight of larger tires are the things that wear these parts out faster. I had about 90K on my stock parts when I lifted mine and it was another 30K or so of DD and hard wheeling before any of the parts needed replaced, but at 120K...thy needed it anyway. I have no cv issues other that trail damage even being one of the most lifted TB's. I actually have my stock front swaybar links on the truck now and they are still functioning fine, but they were off for awhile. My ball joints lasted 50K lifted miles. No complaints there.

The real key is what you are going to do with it leveled? Wheel it or just drive it? Stock tires or bigger tires? Spacers or not? Wheeling and offroading are what really cause any issues. Bigger tires are tough on parts as well.

If you do level...a good alignment makes all the differenceand will do wonders to help all your parts last for their full service life.

I have the 1.5" wheel spacers, I really have no plans to do crazy offroading, I just want it to look a little better. I mean I may do a small amount of light offroading as I live by a field and there are some small offroad places local I may visit eventually. Tire wise I only plan to up the size just enough to get the tires I want (bfg t/a ko) which is practically stock, I don't have any need for anything more then 30" tires.
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
Those spacers are harder on components than the lift and unnecessary for bfg at tires. Look at bartonmd running them with no spacers and previously without lift.
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
HARDTRAILZ said:
Those spacers are harder on components than the lift and unnecessary for bfg at tires. Look at bartonmd running them with no spacers and previously without lift.

How do the spacers cause damage? I just wanted the look they give to the truck
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
If I'm not mistaken it is because it moves the mounting points out further, so there is more leverage working against the hubs/bearings/joints/etc.
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
blackout51 said:
How do the spacers cause damage? I just wanted the look they give to the truck

Sparky said:
If I'm not mistaken it is because it moves the mounting points out further, so there is more leverage working against the hubs/bearings/joints/etc.

Bingo. It physics.
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
Sparky said:
If I'm not mistaken it is because it moves the mounting points out further, so there is more leverage working against the hubs/bearings/joints/etc.

Oh I see, would it be doing any damage to my cv's though?
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
blackout51 said:
Oh I see, would it be doing any damage to my cv's though?

No. But why the concern about cv's? They are one of the cheapest simplest parts to replace. Under 50 bucks.
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
HARDTRAILZ said:
No. But why the concern about cv's? They are one of the cheapest simplest parts to replace. Under 50 bucks.

Oh, I didn't know that, they kind of look like a pain to change out. So really my main sorry now is that the spacers will mess up my hubs? I mean making sure everything is tightened down good should help some shouldn't it?
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
blackout51 said:
Oh, I didn't know that, they kind of look like a pain to change out. So really my main sorry now is that the spacers will mess up my hubs? I mean making sure everything is tightened down good should help some shouldn't it?

Would rather do shafts than ball joints or tie rods. Tie rods are cheap but then you got to do an alignment. Ball joints are a pain in the ass.
Hubs are not bad to do. I replace them yearly as a typical wear item since I use cheap ones and they get beat on and water and dirt soaked.

Properly torquing / not just tightening will help everything last as long as possible.
 

Sparky

Member
Dec 4, 2011
12,927
I don't know how much more wear it causes on average but my impression is that unless you're going really crazy and/or really beating on them with severe offroading like Hardtrailz does, then it isn't wearing them too much faster. More of something to be aware of than a major "you will burn through them" type of thing. Just my impression, I'm not lifted (yet?). That said, I have replaced the driver side hub once and the passenger twice - first replacement went bad early but was covered under warranty.
 

MTouz

Member
May 9, 2012
69
I had the 2.5 lift on my for roughly 3 years. I took it off a couple months ago, in doin so....I had to replace my passenger side upper ball joint and my driver side wheel hub. I believe my driver side UBJ is goin bad also. But both of these repairs are not bad or "that" hard to do. Also I can't remember if anyone mentioned...flipping the upper control arm...I believe thats what its called. I did not do that when I put my lift on, so my UBJ pinched pretty good.

Lookin back now...I wish I would have just done the repairs and flipped my control arm and not taken the lift off. So now I'm looking at saving for the 3in lift in a few months. I'm not liking this factory stance!! Makes me feel all weird and stuff. lol
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
MTouz said:
I had the 2.5 lift on my for roughly 3 years. I took it off a couple months ago, in doin so....I had to replace my passenger side upper ball joint and my driver side wheel hub. I believe my driver side UBJ is goin bad also. But both of these repairs are not bad or "that" hard to do. Also I can't remember if anyone mentioned...flipping the upper control arm...I believe thats what its called. I did not do that when I put my lift on, so my UBJ pinched pretty good.

Lookin back now...I wish I would have just done the repairs and flipped my control arm and not taken the lift off. So now I'm looking at saving for the 3in lift in a few months. I'm not liking this factory stance!! Makes me feel all weird and stuff. lol

What does flipping the control arm do?
 

jrSS

Member
Dec 4, 2011
3,950
Realigns ball joint angle and makes it so the front can be aligned properly. (I sometimes hang out with the lifted folk)
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
jrSS said:
Realigns ball joint angle and makes it so the front can be aligned properly. (I sometimes hang out with the lifted folk)

Oh ok so that would help my brand new ball joints last longer
 

HARDTRAILZ

Moderator
Nov 18, 2011
49,665
blackout51 said:
Oh ok so that would help my brand new ball joints last longer

Only if you lift it.

You have to flip them upside down and swap them side to side. Several threads around on doing it and how it works.
 

blackout51

Original poster
Member
Oct 18, 2012
157
HARDTRAILZ said:
Only if you lift it.

You have to flip them upside down and swap them side to side. Several threads around on doing it and how it works.

Ok I'll look into that
 

jrSS

Member
Dec 4, 2011
3,950
the roadie said:
You might as well. In Indiana, they probably outnumber you 10 to 1. :raspberry:

Lol....they do now. Although I have met some other SS guys around my area.
 

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