Leveling Coil Installation

Submitted by: Rick Wilds (Mud_Buggy)

(Leveling Coil Left – Stock Coil Right)

Leveling coil installation isn’t extremely difficult, as long as you have access to the proper tools and equipment.   

Tools I Used: 

  • 1/2″ Air Impact Wrench
  • 1/2″ Rachet & Breaker Bar
  • 1/2″ Metric & Standard Sockets
  • 18mm & 1-1/8″ Wrenches
  • 8″ & 12″ Adjustable Wrenches
  • Coil Spring Compressor
  • (2) 2-Ton Floor Jacks
  • (2) 3-Ton Jack Stands
  • (1) Can of PB Blaster.

First off, I jacked up the truck by the axles, and placed both jackstands to hold the frame rails by the radius arm crossmember.

Next, I lowered the jacks to float out the suspension, and removed the bolt holding the swaybar to the axle, and also unfastened the shocks from their upper mounting spots, which allowed for full drop of the axles.

Next, I removed the nut that holds the coil to its perches, using the 1-1/8″ wrench & a good bit of PB Blaster (this step make take awhile)

Next, I used the spring compressor to remove the stock coil (this may or may not be necessary, depending on how much drop of the axles is present). At this point I decided to take some time to clean up and repaint the parts that hold the coils in, to help keep rusting to a minimum. After the paint had dried, I continued with installing the leveling coil.

I placed the coil over the stud, then moved the coil into its seat, while keeping pressure on the 4×4 hub (this allowed for installation without the spring compressor).

Once the coil was in its seat, I placed the jack under the axle and lifted the axle till it was setting about level. Then I put the beveled washer, and nut back on the stud, and tightened it down, reconnected the swaybar, and upper mount of the shock. (if reusing the stock shocks, use an shock extension stud, available at most auto parts stores, to prevent shock damage).

Repeat same procedure for other side. Pictures of the truck were taken after installation.

From Jim Oaks:

Some people think that you need a coil spring compressor to get the coils out. You don’t.

When I remove the front coils, I follow these steps:

1. Jack up the truck

2. Support the frame with jack stands

3. Remove the wheels

4. Remove the not from the upper shock stem (this will let the shock slide down and out of the mount in a later step)

5. Remove the brake caliper (need a 18mm wrench or socket) and support it so it’s not hanging by the brake hose (I remove it so I don’t over extend the brake line pushing the axle down to get the spring out.

6. If you truck has a sway bar – disconnect it.

6. Then I push down on either the hub or rotor with my foot until the spring pops out of the upper coil bucket. The coil is held on to the front axle with a nut and retainer, so it won’t come shooting out at you. The shock will also come down out of the mount and let the axle travel down enough for the spring to come out.

7. Then I use a deep 1-1/8 inch socket, extension, and breaker bar to go down through the coil spring and remove the retaining nut.

When Installing:

1. Install the new spring, retainer and tighten the nut (75-100 lb-ft)

2. Jack the axle back up so the coil goes back up in to the upper coil bucket

3. Note that the upper bucket has an indentation that the end of the coil spring wire sits in to.

4. Make sure the coil goes up over the tabs in the upper bucket.

5. Reconnect the sway bar.

6. Reinstall the shocks, brakes, and wheels.