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Old 01-18-2016, 08:49 PM   #1
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Air bags vs overload springs

Okay, friend of mine has a 3/4 ton pu and he is towing a fiver toy hauler that overloads the truck. Yes, he and I have had "that" discussion. He just got the truck out of the shop. Both rear spring packs had to be replaced due to worn out bushings...apparently worn into the spring. Anyway, he has asked about adding additional rear support. So I'm wanting to give him intelligent guidance as to air bags vs overload springs.

How would you advise him and why.

Thanks in advance
d
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Old 01-18-2016, 09:22 PM   #2
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My 2500 HD used only to pull the horse trailer is within 400 pounds of max weight when hooked up. Put the AirLift 5000 wireless system on it mainly to get the truck a little more level (needed just under two inches). Ride and handling improved dramatically.

It's not a very difficult install.
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Old 01-18-2016, 09:43 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emm-dee View Post
My 2500 HD used only to pull the horse trailer is within 400 pounds of max weight when hooked up. Put the AirLift 5000 wireless system on it mainly to get the truck a little more level (needed just under two inches). Ride and handling improved dramatically.

It's not a very difficult install.
My trailer also loads my 2500 to near max. cargo capacity, and I use AirLift 5000s too. All it takes to re-level my headlights is about 12 lbs. of air. Air bags allow adjustability that additional springs don't.
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Old 01-18-2016, 09:50 PM   #4
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I went with air bags also, but just to firm up the back end went with the hellwig big wig air bags just 15 pound takes my truck up off the overloads and makes the back end much more stable and i happy with them i can drop them down to five pounds when not towing.
my set up was pretty level as i did not want too raise the back of the truck i talked with hellwig before i bought them and they told me they would not, but it did about 2 inches unloaded btu still happy with them and they were easy to put on. It took me about 1.5 hours to do it my self
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:13 PM   #5
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My father bought airbags for his Dodge 2500. I bought Supersprings for my F250. Honestly I can't tell much difference between the two. They both work.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:22 PM   #6
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I have a lighter truck, but added Airlift 5000 Ultimates for several reasons.

1. Nearly Infinite adjustability
2. Easy adjustability (just add/remove air) even without an onboard compressor. I know when I will tow and when I won't and fill accordingly. It just takes a little forethought and I carry a small portable compressor anyway.
3. They do not effect unloaded/empty ride
4. The Ultimates have an internal bumper/jounce allowing them to be run a 0 PSI in a pinch, where others should not be.
5. Simple installation. I did it alone in my driveway in an afternoon.
6. I don't tow all the time. See #2, #3 and #4

I tried Timbrens and put a lot of thought into bags vs. RAS vs. add on leafs before going this route. The Timbrens worked, but are unforgiving when they first make contact. RAS is fully adjustable and I have never heard a bad thing about them from an owner. I just didn't want to fiddle around under the truck for adjustability. Every type of helper spring I found (for my truck) seemed like it either had a contact point (ala Timbren) or added a stiffer ride when unloaded.
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Old 01-19-2016, 07:27 AM   #7
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i have used both....overload springs was the way to go before the advent of airbags....with o'load springs if you hit a bump in the road going over 30mph when the o'load springs came into play the back end of the truck would jolt bad like running over a log at speed....not good for trailer or slide-in camper.
airbags every time.....i even had timbrens on one truck ...not bad,but airbags are the way to go.... 2 cents from an airbag .
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Old 01-19-2016, 09:16 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Davidg View Post
Okay, friend of mine has a 3/4 ton pu and he is towing a fiver toy hauler that overloads the truck. Yes, he and I have had "that" discussion. He just got the truck out of the shop. Both rear spring packs had to be replaced due to worn out bushings...apparently worn into the spring. Anyway, he has asked about adding additional rear support. So I'm wanting to give him intelligent guidance as to air bags vs overload springs.

How would you advise him and why.

Thanks in advance
d
Changing the springs or adding airbags does not change the situation. You didn't give any numbers, so we don't know how far over his limits we're talking about here. But assuming you are correct in your initial statement ("...overloads the truck"), this will not change that statement.

How should you give him intelligent guidance?
Tell him to get a sufficient truck for the task.
Don't continue to encourage him by helping him choose which Band-Aid to use.
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Old 01-19-2016, 10:22 AM   #9
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I've used air bags on three vehicles now... What a difference. I was never overloaded but man did it really smooth the ride.
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Old 01-19-2016, 11:04 AM   #10
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I would the night the majority of owners go the air bag route, like stated before it is not hard to install.

Sounds like he got one heck of a load on it to do the damage you described in the post!
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