Convert Air Ride to standard suspension?

Asked by Jan 21, 2012 at 10:59 AM about the 1996 Ford Explorer 4 Dr Limited 4WD SUV

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I just bought this explorer not to long ago for the sole purpose of running up and down the highway for work.  This SUV has 118K, and still has the original air shocks which Ford has discontinued.  I have researched and a replacement is available from Monroe.  During my research however, I have found a number of people have changed out their ARC system for a standard gas shocks and put heavier duty leaf springs that were standard in other Explorers.  The reason they cited is overall cost of maintenance since the air shocks are more expensive, along with other parts involved in the system.  I was curious what your thoughts are?  I need to do something because the Explorer has a lean to the drivers side which while still driveable, is very annoying.

2 Answers

that will have to be your decision to make,it cost to change it over & really not worth the time or $$$$$ to do it.just my opinion.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

You are experiencing Ford's famous gansta lean. They threw the gas tank on the driver's side and they all lean. One solution is to just swap left and right leafs. The right side should have enough spring left to carry the extra gas load when put on the left side and the left side will sit better with less weight on the right. If your air ride isn't functioning anymore, you can get away with standard shocks if just city driving but the ARC suspension uses lighter sway bars, torsion bars and leaf springs. You can add a leaf, pretty cheap, torsion twist to level front end and even upgrade to the solid sway bars front and rear. You'll get a firmer ride but very stable feel and road input.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

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