Reader slangheld asked my opinion about Ram 1500 rear suspension options after seeing one of my Ram 2500 heavy-duty rear suspension post photos showing TufTruck, Timbren, and Air Lift aftermarket springs.
I’m confused, and I’ve considered all of these options for my 1500 (Ram). I’m leaning towards the Air Lift 1000 for the ease of install, maintaining unloaded ride quality, and price. Any opinions?
Give me more info… what is your load?
Load and use details:
I’m pulling a bumper-pull camper (trailer). Tongue weight is close to 900 pounds, and I figure my 1,471-pound payload is close to the maximum. I probably take six, two-to-four hour trips per year. The truck might get another six heavy loads each year doing stuff. The rest is street or highway driving.
Reply, HD Ram 1500 springs:
There’s nothing wrong with the Air Lift 1000 drop-in springs, and I agree that the ease of installation and low price, along with retaining the soft factory ride when unloaded are pluses. Possible negatives with air suspension can include leaks, and sometimes a bouncy ride, deepening on the rest of the chassis setup and suspension. Air Lift’s Universal 1000 springs were the first heavy-duty spring upgrade to the rear of both my 2014 and 2017 Ram 2500s, worked quite well, and it’s a simple and inexpensive place to start. The pair on my 2014 crew cab have remained leak-free, however I do have a leak somewhere on my 2017. That truck has had the springs installed and removed a couple times, where the 2014 has remained plumbed.
TufTruck rear coils for my 2500 are designed to add about 500 pounds of additional carrying capacity, which is really not that much. I would love it if they made an extra-heavy-duty set for my application. Looking at TufTruck’s site I was surprised to learn that they make four different rear coil options for the late model Ram 1500s. Their variable-rate TTC-1223V is presumably their softest-riding spring when unloaded. It’s nice to have choices, and they are all quite inexpensive, from $215 to $270. Rear coil spring installation is so much easier than leaf springs. Like the Timbrens below, the TufTruck coils are never going to leak and should be maintenance-free.
The Timbren rubber auxiliary springs seem to work impressively well with my truck camper, both the DR2500D regular-duty set I installed June 2019, and the DRTT3500E severe service springs added six months later. With my heavy truck camper the Timbrens are constantly loaded, same as they were on my 2011 Toyota Tundra with a slide-in Four Wheel Camper. On trucks that only see occasional loading, Timbrens are set-up to only engage after a load is added. I’m considering putting the DR2500D springs on my 2014 crew cab that no longer hauls a truck camper, and sees more typical, mixed use. Installing the Timbrens is arguably even easier than the Air Lift 1000s. There are no airlines to run or leak, though they are more expensive and theoretically not as adjustable. Theoretically because it’s likely that you would simply inflate the Air Lift 1000 to their maximum 35 psi when loaded, and then reduce them to the minimum 5 psi when not hauling.
If I owned a Ram 1500, depending on my loads, I am guessing that I would try a pair of TufTruck coils, which I’d possibly augment with either Timbren or Air Lift 1000 auxiliary springs.
There are a lot of good options and products, but it is sometimes a crapshoot of where to start or what will work best on your outfit for your needs. Often some tinkering is required to get things exactly where you want.
Tell ‘em you saw it on RoadTraveler.net.
Copyright James Langan/RoadTraveler. All Rights Reserved