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Thread: Question about air bag suspension

  1. #1

    Default Question about air bag suspension

    I have a situation with the rear suspension on my 99 LTC Krystal 120. The car rides great and the compressor works fine but when I park in my driveway the right rear rides about 1" to 2" lower than the left. A mechanic I talked to thinks it must have a tiny leak but it doesn't go down all the way. Sometimes after driving it rides close to level. But then it goes down. Is there some kind of level adjustment with these suspensions? Thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member Party Bus Andy's Avatar
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    Sounds like an airbag may be losing air through some dry-rot cracks and when it goes down a little it closes off the leak.
    Andy
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    Senior Member MrQ45Limo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Los Olivos Limo View Post
    I have a situation with the rear suspension on my 99 LTC Krystal 120. The car rides great and the compressor works fine but when I park in my driveway the right rear rides about 1" to 2" lower than the left. A mechanic I talked to thinks it must have a tiny leak but it doesn't go down all the way. Sometimes after driving it rides close to level. But then it goes down. Is there some kind of level adjustment with these suspensions? Thanks
    There are no adjustments you can bend the sensor and get about a Half inch height difference, but your problem is the air bag itself or possibly a line leak. On the side that is sagging apply a soap & water mix around the base where the bag meets the metal sleeve bubbles should appear if there is a leak. Good luck, you can always remove the expensive airbag system and replace it with Coil Springs, the ride of your vehicle will be tighter but you never have to worry about this problem again.
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  4. #4

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    I might consider converting to coil springs in the future. I was reading some old posts on the subject and someone suggested the left side might be higher on purpose to allow for more weight on the left side when loaded. Does that make sense?

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    Senior Member Wade Randolph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Los Olivos Limo View Post
    I might consider converting to coil springs in the future. I was reading some old posts on the subject and someone suggested the left side might be higher on purpose to allow for more weight on the left side when loaded. Does that make sense?
    This sounds crazy but it is probably not a rear air bag. It is most likely a weak front spring. There is a lot of weight on those front springs. If a spring is weak or sagging it will change the level of the back and make you think an air bag has a problem. This has been the case each time one of my rear sides was lower than the other.

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    Senior Member MrQ45Limo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Los Olivos Limo View Post
    I might consider converting to coil springs in the future. I was reading some old posts on the subject and someone suggested the left side might be higher on purpose to allow for more weight on the left side when loaded. Does that make sense?
    That would make sense and sounds good but these are Standard Ford airbags, the sensor is what makes the adjustment for level and height.
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    Senior Member MrQ45Limo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wade Randolph View Post
    This sounds crazy but it is probably not a rear air bag. It is most likely a weak front spring. There is a lot of weight on those front springs. If a spring is weak or sagging it will change the level of the back and make you think an air bag has a problem. This has been the case each time one of my rear sides was lower than the other.
    This is also a great point.
    Badger State Limousine Service
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    Senior Member Wade Randolph's Avatar
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    It will ride like a tank if you take those air bags off.

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    Wade, are you serious? Replacing a front spring made the rear ride level? Wow!

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    Senior Member Wade Randolph's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Los Olivos Limo View Post
    Wade, are you serious? Replacing a front spring made the rear ride level? Wow!
    Yes this has happened twice. Both cars were made about a week apart. They were defective springs and the right front sagged raising up the opposite rear end. As soon as we replaced the front springs with new ones the vehicle leveled out perfectly.

  11. #11

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    I discovered the problem. The previous owner had replaced one of the airbags with one that was the wrong size and that lead to the gangsta lean. The Ford dealer (who discovered the problem) wanted over $1000 to put in 2 new airbags but I'll get it done for probably 1/3 of that. It's a pretty simple job and I will buy the bags myself.

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    Senior Member Party Bus Andy's Avatar
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    When you pull the solenoid out of the old bag it may sound like a gunshot, I know mine did and we had already released the air pressure.
    Andy
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  13. #13

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    Thanks for the heads up. I wonder if theres a way to bleed the air off first?

  14. #14
    Senior Member Wade Randolph's Avatar
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    Hey be very careful there have been deaths from these things going off. There was a guy taking one of these off in Detroit that was killed by the explosion. They are under very high pressure.

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    You can use a scan tool (in my case a NGS) to bleed the air off the system safely.

    Steve

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