When it comes to leaf springs, there’s a number of tell-tall signs that indicate to problems that require a new set of lead springs.
Most times, the signs and symptoms of a worn leaf spring may be sever and quite obvious, however, in some cases they can be hard to detect if they aren’t visually apparent.
When considering if you should replace your leaf springs, it’s hard to tell when, some obvious signs include a cracked leaf or the rear of the truck in a sagging position. Some less apparent indications can actually be a levelled truck that has not had a levelling kit installed. So yes, a level truck can mean a worn leaf spring, as most trucks are slightly raised by about 1.5-2.5 inches in the rear which will give a ‘nose down’ affect. The reason manufacturers set the vehicle this way is to accommodate for weigh or load on the rear of the truck so the lights are not pointing at the sky and blinding the on-coming traffic. If your vehicle is level, this may indicate that your springs are not sitting at the height they were intended to, due to fatigue and wear.
Adding a leaf will work, but this may only be a temporary solution, the single leaf spring is most likely to lose its strength, so by using a leaf pack, this will work together and instead of a quick fix, it’s a solution.
Helper springs are a great addition, but only after the original spring has been replaced. A helper spring is intended to do just as the name states, help a spring, but a healthy spring. You must have a good leaf spring because the vehicle is not designed to rely on helper springs which aren’t for the primary suspension of the vehicle.
If the back of the truck is only sagging when hauling or using something, then a helper spring is a good option. Even after replacing your leaf springs, if you’re constantly adding weight, then go with the helper spring. They’re designed to provide support to the middle. Should the leaf springs be to stiff, then you’re going to bounce all over the vehicle, if they’re too soft, you won’t be able to put anything heavy in the back. A helper spring will give you the option of the two, without constant compromise, most helper springs are progressive rate springs, meaning the more force on them, the more force they exert back.
A rough ride is also a clear indicator your shocks or struts may need to be replaced, when every bump on the road makes your car bounce, you’ve got suspension problems and need to get it checked out.
One thing you can do is the bounce test – when your car is parked, put all your weight on the front end, release then observe how the vehicle responds. If it bounces back and fourth, three or more times, the shocks and struts are worn and need replacing.
Leaf springs may sometimes cause problems with excessive bouncing, you can double check the possibility of a busted leaf spring by checking if the car or truck seems to lean back in a standing position. Many trucks are designed to be ‘nose down’ to accommodate extra weight in the rear. If your pickup truck appears to sit level, it could be extra proof of an issue with a leaf spring. Should you be experiencing these problems, it’s important to get your leaf springs replaced.