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Upgrade your Vehicles Suspension System for Shocking Results

If you are looking for a performance pick me up, a new suspension may be just what the doctor ordered. A rugged lift kit can provide clearance and strength for navigating rough and rocky terrain, while a set of lowering springs can enhance cornering and handling on the road. No matter the case, your suspension should be inspected and maintained periodically for optimal safety and performance.

Volkswagen said it right. "On the road of life, there are passengers and there are drivers." Not every driver wants a sports car. There are plenty of people content with their stock parts and the performance that comes with them. My grandma's 83' Corolla for example, is more than enough car to get her to art classes and friends' houses. But then there are automotive enthusiasts; drivers who are looking for the most from their car. Guys, and occasionally girls, who get behind the wheel and push their machine's limits until every last drop of performance has been squeezed out, like a person with OCD wringing a toothpaste tube until every last molecule is expelled. Odds are, you are like me, and fall somewhere in between.

Just like everything else, suspension systems are so technologically advanced that they can be adjusted by the turn of a screw. So if you're about to take on the curves of the Pacific Coast Highway, with the quick adjustment of a knob, you will be able to handle every twist and turn thrown at you. Done with the bends? In a few moments you can loosen up your suspension for a more relaxed ride.

Have you ever grabbed breakfast on your way to work and taken a sharp turn only to find your grande-skinny-mocha-frappachino spilt all over you lap? When you turn, weight is shifted in the opposite direction by gravity trying to compensate for the force. This is known as body roll, and consequently is the coffee-spilling culprit. Lowering springs reduce your car's center of gravity, and therefore reducing resistance on the chassis through the turns. The result you might ask? Quicker steering response and feeling like your car is glued to the road. It is important to realize your expectations and desires when shopping for new springs though. Higher spring rates will give you a tighter suspension, but will stiffen up your general ride. Basically, you will turn on a dime, but feel every nook and cranny in the road. Softer springs will still increase performance, but won't nearly affect overall ride quality as much. For the most part, I don't like extremes. I would advise against installing some really stiff springs unless you have a separate track car or are willing to put up with a bumpy ride.

I would also recommend upgrading your shocks as well. They are another component of you suspension system and crucial for the smoothness of you ride. Shocks serve two purposes. They absorb any larger than average bumps so the shock isn't transferred directly to the car chassis. Secondly, they keep all of your wheels planted on the road at all times. This means your car would turn into a rolling death trap without them. The shocks dampen vertical motion your car experiences from rough surfaces. Without shocks, your car would wallow all over the road until you got sick or it fell apart...or both.

About The Author I'm currently running a set of Eibach Lowering springs with Edelbrock shocks. Design your own suspension system to cater to your specific needs. -Mike Rosania
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