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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've seen the Air Lift LoadLifter and the Firestone Ride-Rite online, and wondering how much additional height it gets you compared to a normal ride? Also, any smarter ways to lift the ride?

I'm not opposed to making multiple mods, whatever's cost effective. I gravitate towards the air bags because I hope they'll get me the most height. I would only need the extra height temporarily when hitting an incline for something like a steep driveway, so not sure how seamlessly they can be adjusted on the fly. If something like a lift kit is a way better solution, please let me know.

For context: I have a cargo 350 XL with a Tommy Gate cantilever lift gate on the back, which really cuts down the ground clearance unfortunately. Since it's got the extended rear end, it's even more likely that I'll scrape the ground if I hit even a relatively modest but sharp incline. I have a good amount of weight in the van regularly, and already have bumper stoppers installed.

I know I put myself in a bind by having the extended vehicle with the lift gate, but just looking for ways to fix it from here. Thanks very much in advance!
 

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I've paid a lot of attention to FarOutRide's build and they use the AirLift kit. They say they get 3" of ground clearance when needed. Link below. Will look forward to others thoughts/ideas.

 
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2020 High-Extended AWD EcoBoost Cargo with windows
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We did three things: Air Lift 5000, Roadmaster Active Suspension, and removed our tow-hitch. Air-Lift was around 3" at the back bumper; RAS (in our load case) was about 1-1/2" but we could make it more. Obviously, removing the lift gate isn't an option for you. But 5" more clearance might help a bit.

Both were very easy installs. Maybe 2-4 hours each?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
We did three things: Air Lift 5000, Roadmaster Active Suspension, and removed our tow-hitch. Air-Lift was around 3" at the back bumper; RAS (in our load case) was about 1-1/2" but we could make it more. Obviously, removing the lift gate isn't an option for you. But 5" more clearance might help a bit.

Both were very easy installs. Maybe 2-4 hours each?
**** yeah, that is inspiring haha. Again amazing work. Thank you so much for the help!
 

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Air lift gives you 3” (temporarily). VC Topo lift gives you 2” full time. Their shackles add another 1/2”.

pretty much your only options. Bigger tires can get you 1-1-5”
 
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Could have been mine… don’t put extra leaf springs on until you have at least 1000lbs in the back. Otherwise it maxes the Reese driveshaft angle and causes harmonic droning.

using airbags to raise the van temporarily for a steep departure angle is not a problem
 
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You can go to a truck spring shop and they will install an additional leaf or two. After my build (hr,el, srw) i was at about 5500 rear axle, 3000 front, and had maybe 1/2" between rubber stops and axle. Shop recommended 2 additional leafs, which i questioned as the 350 has 3 total while my stock 250 had 2. Went with their recommendation and i now sit about 1/2" higher than stock empty which is great. How many additional leafs depends on how strong/long each is of course. The ride is stiff, maybe not stock empty stiff, but better than before the xtra leafs. And better on the thruway. I already had added the ford swaybar.
Agree with other poster to not add leafs till your build is mostly done, wld be way too stiff. And since ur build is not done u wont know how much more spring u need.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
IIRC I'm pretty close to the max load, since my GVWR is around 9500 lbs. The van sat low before I had bumpers installed, and now I think it's at almost a normal position. Would leaf springs be useful in addition to airbags, or do airbags pretty much get you the most height possible between the axle and the body?

Thanks to you guys, so far I'm leaning towards looking into the trifecta (airbags, lift kit, and tires). ~$3k including labor (I hope) isn't too insane (~$500/inch haha).
 

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Air lift gives you 3” (temporarily). VC Topo lift gives you 2” full time. Their shackles add another 1/2”.

pretty much your only options. Bigger tires can get you 1-1-5”
RAS gives you whatever - 1.5"-ish is what we did, but could go more - for less money and trouble. Rear-only, of course. And should be pretty easy self-install for anyone willing to try.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
RAS gives you whatever - 1.5"-ish is what we did, but could go more - for less money and trouble. Rear-only, of course. And should be pretty easy self-install for anyone willing to try.
Thanks, that's good to keep in mind. Was wondering about the ability for adjustment on all these solutions.
 

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Thanks, that's good to keep in mind. Was wondering about the ability for adjustment on all these solutions.
Just a couple wrenches and some time... increase the tension on the spring - measuring it with some spacers that they include with the kit (we went the minimal amount) and match the other side. Slow work... but not difficult at all.

Automotive tire Wood Coil Bumper Automotive wheel system
 
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