A Comprehensive Guide to Lifting Your Truck
Are you thinking about buying a lifted truck, or lifting your current truck? If so, it’s understandable to want to learn more about the process. Ultimate Rides is a custom auto dealership that specializes in lifting vehicles and shipping them across the country. We’ve spent much of our time over the last 15 years working on these vehicles, and we’re more than happy to share some useful information on the subject. Read on to learn about the benefits of lifting a vehicle, as well as some of the complications that might arise. We’ll be able to tell you about the installation process, what you can expect if you drive a custom truck on a daily basis, details on the different kinds of lift kits out there, and so much more. Take a look and make sure to get in touch with our team when you’re ready to get behind the wheel of an amazing custom truck.
Value and Benefits of Lifting a Truck
Most drivers find the process of lifting their truck to be well-worth the cost. These upgrades can range in price anywhere from just a few hundred dollars to several thousands of dollars, all depending on what you’re looking to accomplish. There are many reasons why drivers decide to lift their truck. For some, it’s simply about changing up the look and getting a more aggressive stance for the vehicle. However, there are a number of tangible benefits you can gain from these upgrades as well.
First and foremost is off-road capability. Depending on how high you raise up the vehicle, you’ll be able to gain more clearance between the bottom of your vehicle and the ground. This can help you navigate difficult terrain, climbing your way over rocks, stumps and other obstacles without scratching up your truck. You’ll also benefit from having a higher vantage point, giving you a clearer view of your surroundings. Perhaps most excitingly, a lift kit gives you the ability to install larger wheels and tires. Choosing your tires is an important decision to make, especially with off-road driving in mind, and a lift kit will open up your options even further.
Lift kits can be great to have in cities and on the highway as well. That higher vantage point will help you see over other vehicles on the road, and more awareness of your surroundings is never a bad thing. With the right suspension lift, you’ll also have the ability to tow heavier cargo without bottoming out. You’ll even have easier access to the underbody when it comes time for maintenance and repairs, if that is something you handle yourself.
As long as you keep your vehicle in good shape, having a lift kit installed will help it maintain more value over time. If you eventually decide to sell your lifted truck, you’ll be able to get more for it than you otherwise would. That just adds even more value to the idea of installing a lift kit.
Installing a Lift Kit
The process of installing a lift kit can be quite difficult, especially for those without experience. While some more basic kits can potentially be installed at home, you will almost certainly experience a loss in ride quality. This, along with the potential for a mistake, should make most drivers second guess the idea of installing their own lift kit. Instead, we encourage you to get in touch with a team of professionals who know what they’re doing, whether that’s Ultimate Rides or someone else.
It’s even possible to buy a truck already outfitted with a lift kit. While it will cost you more upfront, it will save you lots of time and hassle. Additionally, as long as you buy from a trusted and reputable source, you can drive around knowing you’re safe and in good hands.
Lift kit installation can be quite expensive. However, if you want the best results, you’re always going to have to pay more. Spend some time saving up your money and you should find it worth your time. If you have any questions about the installation process, reach out to us at Ultimate Rides and we can help.
Lifted Trucks as a Daily Driver
It’s absolutely possible to drive a lifted truck on a daily basis, and it’s becoming more and more popular. Most of those who choose to drive a lifted truck in their day-to-day lives do it because they love the look of custom pickup trucks. These vehicles stand out on the road, and they’re a great way to confidently display your personality. It’s important to remember that customizing vehicles is a hobby that hundreds of thousands of people, if not millions, are passionate about. While there are some things to be aware of if you choose to drive a lifted truck on a daily basis (more on those down below), the vast majority of lifted truck drivers feel that these potential complications are easily worth it.
The key is to know what you’re trying to do with your vehicle and building it accordingly. For example, some lifted trucks are designed specifically for off-road use, with certain tires and suspension tunings that enhance that kind of performance. Other vehicles were designed to function well out on the road and highway, with tires tread patterns designed for low road noise, better mileage, and a cool look. Your own priorities may differ, but whatever it is you’re after, you’ll find a truck configuration that works for you.
Potential Complications of Driving a Lifted Truck
Some drivers worry that lifting their truck will ruin aspects of it, but we’re happy to say this isn’t the case. As long as you receive proper installation, you should be able to count on your truck running just as well as it did before. There are, however, some things to be aware of before you make the decision to lift your vehicle. If you don’t believe you can follow certain safety protocols, you shouldn’t lift your truck. For example, a lift kit will raise up the center of gravity on your vehicle. This means you’ll need to start taking turns slower, with care. While you should already be doing this in any vehicle, it becomes easier to flip a truck with a higher center of gravity, so the stakes are higher with a lift kit.
Additionally, while being up higher off the ground has its benefits, you should know that it can make it difficult to see things that are close to you. That means you’ll need to be extra careful when parking, or any time you’re driving up close to any obstacle. We also encourage you to look into your vehicle warranty, if you currently have one. There is a chance that altering the suspension could void your warranty, or parts of it. Lastly, there is a chance that a lift kit will lower your truck’s gas mileage. It should only be a small difference, but it can undeniably add up over time. Most drivers, though, find that these extra costs are easily worth everything you have to gain from a high-quality lift.
Quality Over Time
Lifted trucks can last a very long time as long as you take proper care of them. In general, taking vehicles off-road for rough rides can increase the level of wear and tear on a vehicle, especially when it comes to suspension. There are steps you can take to mitigate this damage, however. Make sure to regularly bring your vehicle in for inspections, making sure your chosen mechanics take a good look at the suspension system. Along with that, all your regular maintenance procedures such as tire rotations and oil changes will keep the vehicle in better condition. Make sure to choose a team of mechanics that know their way around lifted suspension or body lift kits. Otherwise, you could find that your vehicle doesn’t last as long as you might like.
Lift Kit Styles
The two primary types of lift kits are suspension lifts and body lifts. While these two styles attempt to achieve the same results, there are quite a few important differences to be aware of. Body lift kits are more affordable and usually easier to install. They consist of a set of spacers, blocks, springs, or something similar that simply raises up the body of your truck. They can usually be bought for anywhere from $100 to $500, depending on your vehicle and the specific kit you want. While they can work fine in a variety of situations, there’s a good chance you’ll feel an effect on the way your truck drives. Steering may not be as responsive, and it could feel sluggish to handle. Not all body kits have this problem, but it is quite common.
Suspension lift kits cost more, sometimes much more. In return, though, drivers will have access to a high-quality ride, as long as the installation is done correctly. These kits actually alter vehicle suspension to raise the height rather than just the body. They can be much more difficult to install, requiring heavy-duty equipment and lots of knowledge. However, the end result is always going to be better compared to a body kit.
It’s also worth learning about leveling kits. They can be found as either suspension or body lift kits, but they raise up one end of the vehicle higher than the other. In the past, you have probably noticed that many trucks and SUVs feature a tilt towards the front end. While this does have the benefit of pointing you slightly towards the road, not every driver likes this look. A leveling kit allows you to even out the front and rear end of your vehicle, making for a nice, even visual style.
Lift Kit Maximum Height
Most states have restrictions in place on how high you can raise up your vehicle. These regulations are put in place for safety reasons, and it’s important to learn what is and isn’t allowed in your state. Some states, such as North Carolina, has somewhat restrictive laws, while other states such as Florida have no restrictions at all when it comes to height. If you plan on driving your truck across state lines, make sure you do your due diligence if you wish to avoid a ticket/fine. In many states, these height regulations are based on the weight of the vehicle, so that’s another figure that you’ll need to be aware of.
In terms of physical limitations, the highest suspension lift available is around 12 inches, but even those are extremely rare. Anything beyond 12 inches, and you’ll be putting the safety and integrity of your vehicle at risk. In most cases, the highest lift kit we would recommend is six or eight inches depending on your vehicle and situation. However, our team at Ultimate Rides will always work with you to help you achieve what you’re looking for. Get in touch with us over the phone and we can start talking details today! Reach out to our office at 815-634-3900. If you find yourself in the Chicago area, you can visit us at 38 W. Division St., Coal City, IL 60416.