Where to begin with coilovers? Coilovers are arguably the most popular suspension upgrade available to the entire automotive industry. If you have ever installed lowering springs, or have paid another shop to install lowering springs, then you know how labor-intensive the work can be. You rent a spring compressor from your local auto parts store. Then you have to begin Read More
Where to begin with coilovers? Coilovers are arguably the most popular suspension upgrade available to the entire automotive industry. If you have ever installed lowering springs, or have paid another shop to install lowering springs, then you know how labor-intensive the work can be. You rent a spring compressor from your local auto parts store. Then you have to begin the process of removing your stock spring and strut setup. Depending on your make and model this can either go two ways, and that is straightforward and somewhat simple, or you have every tool sprawled out in the garage or driveway, fighting over that extremely long upper control arm bolt, just before trying to fight with the entire knuckle and axle assembly to get enough clearance to get the spring and strut assembly out. All for 3/4 to a little over an inch of difference with lowering springs. Now, the same installation method is required for coilovers, BUT, at least you have a wider range of adjustment if you are not satisfied with the height, and it takes a fraction of the time to make adjustments when compared to lowering springs. Let's dig in.
WHAT CAN COILOVERS OFFER?HEIGHT ADJUSTMENT: One of the main reasons why enthusiasts have coilovers at the top of their mod list is because coilovers are versatile enough to lower the car at lowering limits that greatly surpass traditional lowering springs. And, you don't have to go through the arduous process of removing your entire strut assembly when compared to installing lowering springs. The height of the coilover can be set by loosening the spring perches with the supplied coilover spanner wrenches. The majority of the strut bodies on the coilovers will simply thread into the lower coilover mount so you don't have to modify or mess with spring preload. However, on entry-level coilover setups, the height can be adjusted by lowering the bottom spring perch. A much easier process that can be performed within an hour on all corners of your vehicle.
RIDE QUALITY: The majority of coilover systems will have damping and rebound settings to adjust the ride quality and strut stiffness. There will be a knob or an adjustable nut located on the top or bottom of the strut body, and you can turn to stiffen the strut clockwise, or you can go counter-clockwise to soften the strut. And adjust the damping can benefit a variety of driving conditions. If you daily your vehicle then set the damping to your liking on all corners to a softer setting. If your vehicle is lowered for weekend track events, you would want to stiffen the struts to adsorb the crown of the road at higher speeds. Or if you even drag race your vehicle, you would want to raise your vehicle just enough to where you've got an inch and a half between the tires and the fenders so that your vehicle will have enough squat to properly launch. You would also want to run a soft setting to absorb the launch and driveline shock. Whatever your driving style or purpose, you can set the damping levels to accommodate your comfort and driving style.
PERFORMANCE: Lowering the center of gravity combined with stiffer spring rates is a great way to improve the handling, driver feedback, and response from the rest of your suspension components. From spirited canyon drives, weekend autocross events, or driver education or competition sessions. Coilovers will simply endure high-speed corners where major lateral shifts in the chassis put a lot of weight and stress on one side of the suspension. When compared to lowering springs, you are limited by your stock struts. With a proper stance and alignment, the chassis of your vehicle will remain planted at higher speeds to provide the driver with more confidence to drive comfortably within their limits.
WOULD I NEED OTHER SUSPENSION MODIFICATIONS TO RUN COILOVERS? Of course not. BUT, suspension modifications for enthusiast vehicles such as the Subaru WRX/STI. Mitsubishi Evolution, A90 Toyota Supra, and anything else, suspension modifications, upgrades, and maintenance are limitless. Anything else you perform to your vehicle such as SWAYBARS, NEW BUSHINGS, especially STRUT TOWER BARS will enhance the performance of your coilovers, and all-new, maintained, and upgraded suspension components will work hand and hand to drastically improve the handling of your vehicle.
WHAT OTHER SUSPENSION UPGRADES ARE IN THE COILOVER AREA THAT I COULD LOOK AT THAT WILL LOWER MY VEHICLE?
So there are other components that you can purchase for your existing coilover setup such as upgraded springs. And if you decide coilovers are too aggressive to your driving style because some prefer comfort over everything, then there are lowering springs. Let's talk about the options.
TOP HATS: With certain coilover setups, you may not get a set of top hats. And this could be due to the actual design of the coilover that wants you to utilize your OEM strut mounts. However, we actually carry top hats that are camber adjustable to allow owners to reach deeper levels of camber. And we also have a great selection of top hats that are OEM-like with stiffer technology, All of the options will work with many different levels and brands of coilovers to suit your needs.
IS THERE A SUSPENSION SETUP MORE AGGRESSIVE OR OFFERS MORE ADJUSTABILITY THAN COILOVERS?
AIR SUSPENSION: Air suspension will be hands down, the most versatile setup you can install on your vehicle in terms of ride height. When compared to coilovers, you have to raise or lower the strut body for ride height. Still leaps and bounds easier than installing lowering springs. But you can adjust the ride height on air suspension with a push of a button in your interior, just like that. Additionally, you can lower the chassis much lower than coilovers. If you go to a weekend car meet, you can drop the chassis on the frame. And when you're ready to go home, you can air back up and have a very comfortable ride home. Now the installation method is highly involved when compared to coilovers, and you have to run air lines through the chassis. You have to install an air compressor and air controller, along with all of the electronics to complete the installation. But air suspension is for enthusiasts who are committed to a higher standard of upgrades.