Submitted By: MudRanger

Tools Needed:

  • Jack

  • Sockets

  • WD-40 (maybe)


1)  Measure the space between the top of the tire to the bottom of the fenderwell. Also measure the ground clearance in the center.

2)  Jack up the front until the front tires are 3 inches off the ground. You may need to use blocks of wood and don’t forget to block the back wheels.

3) Spray WD-40 on the torsion bar bolts. There are no locking nuts or anything to loosen.

4)  Measure the distance that the bolts are out in case you want to put them back to stock.

5) CRANK THEM BABIES… as you turn the bolt in you should see the tires drop toward the ground. Stop after about 2-1/2 inches. Try to get the same number of turns on each with the same distance gained.

6) Drop the truck off the jack and check measurements. You should get 2″-3″ of increase. Drive it around the block and move the suspension as much as possible. Bring it home and check your measurements again.

7) (IMPORTANT) Get a lifetime alignment (usually $100). this way, you can modify them and get it re-aligned for free.  If you do not get the alignment, It will ROAST a set of tires REAL Quick.

Pros / Cons

Cons – NONE ( and I drive 200-300 miles a day )

Pros  – Height. Stiffer front end. No More bottoming out coming off small bumps while wheeling

2008-2011 Ford Ranger 4×4 Torsion Suspension Versus 1998-2007 Torsion Bar Suspension:

In 2008, ford clocked the keys a few degrees to lower the Ranger and give it better handling and MPG characteristics. If you get a set of factory torsion bar keys from a 2007 or older 4×4 Ranger, and install them in a 2008 or newer Ranger, it will lift that Ranger 1.75-2.00 inches in the front.

Also, the rear lift blocks in the 2008-2011 Ford Ranger are lower. You can lift a 2008-2011 4×4 Ranger a little bit simply by installing the earlier parts. If you add a Superlift suspension lift on a 2008 and newer Ranger, then the earlier keys will lift the front more. The Superlift already comes with taller rear blocks.

This modification is referred to as the Pre-Key Mod, and can be found described HERE.

MudRanger’s 1998 4×4 Ranger
4-door 3.0L 5-speed With
33 x 12.5 ProComp Muds

After Cranking The Torsion Bars

NOTE – This Ranger also has a 3-inch body lift that is adding to the height shown in this photo.

Comment from forum member Elmobile:

(This comment was in a thread about torsion keys, but still applies since we’re talking about cranking the torsion bars)

 It is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED to upgrade to extended length front shocks during the install process. The reason being that when the new torsion keys are installed the stock shocks have to be extended unnaturally to accommodate the 2.50 inch front lift. When the old shocks are maxed out like that there is nothing to allow them to actually compress and “shock” anything. As a side note, it also causes the bushings to become flattened which also can cause unnatural wear and risk damage to the mounting brackets. In short, using the old shocks will make the vehicle behave like a bobble head toy. I recommend using the Rancho RS5000 1.25 to 2.25 inch extended shock part #RS5374. Once you install the new torsion keys, rancho shocks, and have an alignment done; the ride quality will be restored to stock quality and will neither be too stiff or too weak.


Also check out our 4×4 Suspension Forum.

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