Upgrade your trailer with a DIY suspension upgrade kit
No matter what kind of suspension is on your trailer, there are trailer suspension upgrades available for any trailer. This short article will help to explain which ones are best for your trailer. Hint: The best ones will keep you and your trailer out of harm’s way.
What kind of suspension springs are on your trailer?
The leaf spring trailer axles, aka leaf spring suspensions, is arguably the most common and cost effective type of trailer suspension. This suspension design is made up of a series of curved springs (leaves) that are stacked and attached to the underside of the trailer's axle using hangers and U-bolts.
Torsion trailer axles are the alternative to the more traditional leaf spring trailer axles and operate on an entirely different design: No metal springs of any type are used; rather, a series of long rubber cords are situated inside a square tube with an inner core piece that the torsion arms are secured to.
You might be asking “Which is better, torsion or spring axles?” Well, that’s a complicated question. Torsion axles offer a smoother ride and less maintenance. Leaf springs, on the other hand, are more durable, less expensive, and far easier to have parts replaced.
Upgrading a leaf spring trailer axle is far easier than increasing the capacity on a torsion axle. Later on, we’ll explain why this is so.
Does your trailer really need suspension upgrades?
Let’s assume that your trailer has a leaf spring suspension. A couple things could be happening:
- Trailer is leaning when loaded
- Too much sag & squat
- Dangerous roll & sway
If this is true, towing your trailer behind your truck or SUV becomes risky business. There is always a risk that you could end up in an accident even at the best of times if you’re unable to drive carefully and cautiously.
If the trailer’s load isn’t balanced properly, you’ll be white knuckling trying to reach the speed limit for the road you’re navigating.
If there isn’t anything fundamentally wrong with the suspension, a set of helper springs can...
- Level the load
- Reduce any sag and squat
- Stabilize the trailer
- Smooth out the ride
- Reduce the risk of an accident
There are suspension helpers available through Timbren that will fit your trailer improving the ride quality and performance.
What are the advantages & benefits of DIY trailer suspension upgrades?
Here is a list of some of the more popular spring helpers and how they can best help your trailer’s leaf-spring suspension:
Hellwig helper springs are supposed to sit on top of the leaf springs at the rear of your truck, working together with the existing suspension to keep the vehicle level under load. Hellwig helper springs are not easy to install as they require dismantling the entire suspension.
Products like Air Lift and Ride Rite have been around for decades. Designed to sit between the frame and the leaf spring, they will improve the ride quality. However, these suspension helpers are expensive and fail to reduce roll and sway.
Sumo Springs are made from microcellular polyurethane. They’re limited to use with lighter loads and will not work in extremely cold temperatures.
Timbren SES Upgrades
Timbren SES upgrades are made from natural rubber, designed to replace the bump stops on trucks, vans and SUVs. Easy-to-install SES upgrades do a lot more than just reduce sag and squat:
- They level your load
- They stabilize your vehicle
- They protect your suspension and other important components
- They increase safety by providing better control over your loaded truck
- They’re quick and easy to install
Which DIY suspension upgrades are best for your trailer?
All of the helper springs listed above can help keep your trailer level while loaded. It’s really a question of stability. Do you load your trailer right to the gills? Does your trailer carry a heavy and constant load?
Then, the helper spring that will work best under any circumstance or weather condition are Timbren’s DIY suspension upgrades. Timbren has over 50 years of experience in developing their Aeon® hollow rubber spring helpers. In fact, they are so confident in their product that they come with a no B.S. Lifetime Warranty.
Are DIY suspension upgrades easy to install on a trailer?
If you can remove a bump stop, you can install a Timbren SES upgrade. There are several universal-style SES upgrades available no matter what size trailer you tow – everything from small utility trailers all the way up to full-size highway trailers.
For more information on Timbren’s DIY suspension upgrades, visit our new website at www.timbren.com.