I am the owner of an auto repair shop, and I see a lot of my customers coming in to lift their vehicles with different kinds of lift kits.
A lift kit can do your vehicle wonders with higher ground clearance, a much smoother ride, better off-road performance, better visibility, the ability to fit larger tires, and other benefits.
But there are a lot of different ways to lift your vehicle without installing a proper suspension lift kit, such as using new lift springs or spacers.
What are the differences between lift springs vs. spacers?
There’s a huge difference between lift springs and spacers, as they are completely different ways of lifting your vehicle. Lifty springs replace the stock springs of your suspension to add height to your vehicle, while spacers sit on top of your stock coil spring assemblies or struts to lift your vehicle.
Read More: Spacer Lift Vs. Suspension Lift
Spacer Lift or Coil Spring Lift? EXPLAINED | Northridge4x4
What Are Lift Springs?
Lift springs are aftermarket coil springs that are usually longer than the already installed stock coil springs of your suspension.
These aftermarket lifted coil springs not only add height to your vehicle by raising the suspension from the ground but also make your ride smoother on rough terrains.
Lifted coil springs are much more expensive compared to spacers. But they are much more durable and sturdy.
They can increase the ground clearance of your vehicle by a few inches and help you get the best kind of off-road performance on tough terrains.
What Are Spacers?
There are two types of spacers. These are strut lift spacers or coil spring spacers. And both of these types of spacers can help raise your vehicle a few inches off the ground.
Lift spacers are much more inexpensive than lifted springs, and they don’t affect the ride quality of your vehicle.
But strut spacers can easily wear out and even harm your suspension if you install them in your vehicle.
They can be made out of two types of materials, which are steel or polyurethane. But polyurethane spacers are much less durable than steel spacers.
And spacers do not add much height or ground clearance to your vehicle compared to lifted coil springs.
Difference Between Lift Springs Vs. Spacers
There are a lot of differences between spacers and lifted coil springs. And I will explain them all to you through their pros and cons.
Pros of Lifted Coil Springs
Lifted coil springs are completely different than spacers, and they have some great advantages, which are:
- Fresh Spring Rates: If you install new lifted coil springs on your vehicle to lift it, you will see a difference in the spring rates. Your old coil springs might have worn out, as they usually do. So new springs will come with fresh spring rates!
- Less Collapsed Change in Length: The lower and upper spring pads of your vehicle and the compressed length between them will increase after installing lifted coils. However, it would not be a large amount of change.
- Adjustable Spring Rates: Lifted coil springs come with the advantage of customizable spring rates. You might want a stiffer ride, and to get that, you can change the spring rates easily.
- Improved Performance: You can expect the performance of your vehicle to improve after you install new lifted coil springs.
Cons of Lifted Coil Springs
There are a few disadvantages of installing new lifted coil springs on your vehicle, and I’ll list them down:
- Expensive: New lifted coil springs are much more expensive compared to lifted spacers, as I have already mentioned before. It also depends on the type of lifted coil springs you get, the brand of the coil springs, and how tall you want them to be. However, you could even get custom-made lifted coil springs for your vehicle for the best outcome. But this kind of high-quality lifted springs will set you back a couple of hundred dollars.
- Potentially Getting the Wrong Spring Rate: There is also a possibility that you might end up with the incorrect spring rates you have been looking forward to.
- Potentially Providing Wrong Ride Height: There is a possibility that installing new lifted coil springs can give you the wrong ride height than what was advertised.
Pros of Lifted Spacers
There are a lot of advantages to spacers for your vehicle. I will tell you all about them in a second!
- Affordability: If you are a beginner to lifting your vehicle and want a cost-effective way of doing so, spacers are the perfect option for you. They do not cost more than a few hundred dollars, and you can even get them for under $100! But I should warn you about getting the cheap ones, as they might not perform the best.
- Intact Spring Rates: If you want to keep your spring rates intact after installing your new lift kit, you should definitely go with lifted spacers. They do not alter your vehicle’s spring rates!
- Versatility: Lifted spacers are really versatile to work with, as they will work with most factory or even non-factory struts or coil springs.
- Installation: If you want the ease of installation, there are no other ways of lifting your vehicle than installing spacers.
- Fixed Lift Height: Lifted spacers will only alter your spring pad height. So you will get a fixed ride height with them!
Cons of Lifted Spacers
You will be at a bit of a disadvantage with installing spacers to lift your vehicle, which I’ll tell you about now:
- Non-Adjustable Spring Rates: If you want to make your vehicle stiffer by adjusting the spring rates, you can’t do that with spacer lifts, as they keep the spring rates intact.
- Might Fall Out: There is a low possibility of the spacers falling out while riding on tough terrains if they are not designed to be tightly attached to your coil springs or struts.
- Decreasing Travel Potentiality: If you install lifted spacers to raise your vehicle, You might experience a bit of a decrease in the travel of your suspension.
There are a lot of differences between lift springs vs. spacers, as they are totally different types of aftermarket components that can lift your vehicle.
If you want a beginner-friendly and cost-effective way of lifting your vehicle, you should go for spacers.
But for extreme off-road performances, you would be better off with lifted springs!