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  1. #1

    Default Proper ride height and torsion bar adjustment

    I hope I'm OK starting a new thread, though it's related to my shock absorber failure post it is a different/specific question.

    I've had 2 failures of my Monroe Reflex monotube shock within the last 2 years, the most recent on a road trip. When replacing the shock today (driver side) I noticed that it would not line up on the bottom mounting bracket (the shock was too short- just by a hair). This got me thinking that maybe the shock was failing because it was getting over-extended and my ride height needs to be adjusted.

    I measured and determined that indeed my driver side front was about 1/4" higher than my passenger side. It also appears that my front is higher than my rear (as measured from ground to top of wheel wells).
    A few questions:
    • How do I determine proper ride height for front? should it rest against the bump stop on the lower control arm?- this is for stock, no lift
    • It appears that my rear end is uneven as well- could the front torsion bar adjustment effect this?
    • Should torsion bar adjustment be included in alignment?


    I searched the forum and Google and couldn't really find information on proper ride height- any help would be appreciated!
    Current Rides: |99 Chevy Suburban- the family truckster |93 Lincoln Town Car- 250K miles & still churning -now a fan of the Panther platform
    Former GM cars: |78 Suburban 454 |71 Buick Electra 225 (deuce & a quarter) |75 Monte Carlo- 400SB- heaviest doors GM every made |70 Impala coupe- my 1st car

  2. #2

    Default

    Any help? I think the shock I just replaced blew again! I need to get this straightened out. Maybe I should just take it to the dealer?
    Current Rides: |99 Chevy Suburban- the family truckster |93 Lincoln Town Car- 250K miles & still churning -now a fan of the Panther platform
    Former GM cars: |78 Suburban 454 |71 Buick Electra 225 (deuce & a quarter) |75 Monte Carlo- 400SB- heaviest doors GM every made |70 Impala coupe- my 1st car

  3. #3

    Default

    Torsion bars allow for a lot of adjustability in ride height and so long as your using the specific shock for your vehicle variances in torsion bar adjustment should not cause shock failure. Most chevy's do "lean" a little in the rear, mine is almost an inch lower on the drivers side ( really noticeable since I lowered it! ) but you should try to adjust the front so it's even. I'm not familiar with your other thread, but from this description it does sound like your shocks are too short.
    Adam


  4. #4

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by adampaul1964 View Post
    Torsion bars allow for a lot of adjustability in ride height and so long as your using the specific shock for your vehicle variances in torsion bar adjustment should not cause shock failure. Most chevy's do "lean" a little in the rear, mine is almost an inch lower on the drivers side ( really noticeable since I lowered it! ) but you should try to adjust the front so it's even. I'm not familiar with your other thread, but from this description it does sound like your shocks are too short.
    I've put the correct shock on- verified it when I picked up the replacement this last weekend. I think I'll just try lowering the driverside by a 1/4 " and see if that does it. I still would like to figure out how the torsion bar should be adjusted. I've read about the "Z height measurement"- does that have anything to do with it?
    Current Rides: |99 Chevy Suburban- the family truckster |93 Lincoln Town Car- 250K miles & still churning -now a fan of the Panther platform
    Former GM cars: |78 Suburban 454 |71 Buick Electra 225 (deuce & a quarter) |75 Monte Carlo- 400SB- heaviest doors GM every made |70 Impala coupe- my 1st car

  5. #5

    Default

    OK, spent a bunch of time researching this and just wanted to update the thread.
    GM does have a recommended "trim height" or "z" height. This is determined by measuring from the middle of the lower control arm to frame pivot bolt to the bottom of the steering knuckle(you can also measure from each of these to the floor, then take the difference). You must be on a level surface. For my 99 Suburban the factory trim height is 4.5". Additionally I read that the front should be adjusted so that vehicle almost touches the rubber bumper "jouncers" on the lower control arm.
    I took it back to the shop that did my alignment a few weeks ago and paid them to adjust the torsion bars down and re-check the alignment (there was about an inch of clearance between the lower control arm and the jouncer). The suburban rides MUCH nicer now, and I got my 07 rims mounted too. It rides awesome now!
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Current Rides: |99 Chevy Suburban- the family truckster |93 Lincoln Town Car- 250K miles & still churning -now a fan of the Panther platform
    Former GM cars: |78 Suburban 454 |71 Buick Electra 225 (deuce & a quarter) |75 Monte Carlo- 400SB- heaviest doors GM every made |70 Impala coupe- my 1st car

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