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Today on our 2016 Ram 2500, we're going to show you how to install the Firestone Ride Rite Double Convoluted Air Helper Springs for the rear axle. The part number is F2580. Now before we begin our installation, we're going to get a couple of measurements here inside the rear wheel well and the front wheel wells, so we have them for reference. It looks like we're right at about 43 1/2 here on the back and about 40 1/4 here in the front. Now we've loaded about 175 gallons of water in the back here, just to simulate either 5th wheel or gooseneck weight here, or a trailer load on the back and let's see what we've got now as far as measurements. It's like we're down here about 2 inches to 41 1/2 and we've come up about 1/4 inch here in the front to 40 1/2. All right, we got the same load in the back of the truck now, just a bit more wet out here this afternoon, so we're going to use our inflater here.
Perfect, right back at 43 1/2 here and at the front we're back down to just over 40 1/4. With our truck level, it's only taken about 40 PSI to get us back to where we want to be. The back has a capacity of 100 PSI, so you can see how good of a job these airbags are going to do at maximizing our safe load handling capabilities. As you can see here in the rear with our airbags inflated, we don't have that sag that we had the first time we loaded up the tank. That's going to reduce the wear on this rear suspension and it can also prevent permanent sagging. Also, with our load nice and level, we're not going to have to worry about excess wear on our tires and it actually helps to smooth out our ride, it's going to soften that contact that we might have between the frame and the axle there. It's going to help to absorb any of that road shock that we get sometimes.
Here in the front, being back at our factory height, it's going to do a couple of things for us. It's going to really help out with safety. Once we can get the proper weight back on our front tires, that increases stability, handling and also braking power. Also, with our truck being level, our headlight beams are gonna be level. They're going to be pointing where we're heading and not pointing up. The nice thing about having our dual inflation valves, is that we can account for off center loads, so we can put a little more air in one side or the other to keep everything nice and balanced. As you can see here, we've already got our spare tire lowered down and out of the way just to make it easier to see.
We're also going to be dropping down our heat shield. Now you can approach this from a different direction. You can take off your tires and work over the side of the frame, this for video is just a little bit better. Now on each side we're going to want to take the jounce bumpers out. We'll need a 5/8th's socket and we'll take this bolt out and also the one on the front side. Now we can grab our upper mounting plate, it's going to look like this.
You can see the holes are off set. We've got a shorter distance here than we do here. We want that shorter distance to be towards the front of the truck. We'll use our 10 millimeter flat head bolts and secure it right where our jounce bumpers came out. We'll get those secured and also torque down to the proper specifications that you can find in your instructions or also on top of the airbag itself. We'll do the same thing for our passenger side. Now we're going to preassemble our airbags. We're going to have the left side bracket, which is going to look like this, single tab that comes straight up. Then we're also going to have a passenger side bracket. You can see this has more of an angle to it, so it doesn't matter which one you grab right now, these are going to sit right on top of those studs, but first you see we need to get our air valve in there. We want to tighten this down, so that it fully engages our thread locker here, but we also want the valve to be faced in this direction, so we can hook our air line to it. We'll bring our bracket right down over the top of that and we'll take a couple of our locking nuts and put down on top of there. We'll flip that over, bring in our lower bracket. It's going to have one side that's nice and straight, the other side is going to have a little curve to it. This curve should face towards the rear of the vehicle. Here we're going to use one of our short or flathead bolts, so it threads right down to the spring there. We'll leave that hand tight for now. I'll take care of our left bag and then we'll do the right bag. Now for this one, we'll take our bracket and we want to orient it so that the large hole sits overtop of our valve area. Now we can get our bottom plate and put on this bag and again, just hand tight for now. Now we're going to come to the back of this jounce tower, where that jounce bumper would hit. We've got a bolt in the backside, so use a 13 millimeter socket, we're going to pull this out on both sides, driver, and passenger. Now we're going to take just a second to get our air line routed up where we want it. As you can see we're going to go right over these cross members, they actually slide right down behind that and we'll be able to make our connection here. The reason we're going to do this is because once we have our bag in place, it's extremely difficult to get that attachment made, so when we put our assembly in here, we'll make the connection and slide it into place. Now let's get our bag slid up here. We want the taller side of that upper bracket to be over toward the outside of our frame. Now we'll want to feed our air line in and we want to push, you should feel 2 little clicks and then you should be able to pull on it without it coming out. We'll line our holes in our brackets. Then we'll slide our bolts through and put a nut on the other end. Now I'm just going to thread in my longer 8 millimeter bolt here at the bottom. This is going to help me with positioning my bag and then I need to make an alignment mark. All right, with fully assembly back out. Now we'll realign our marks there, get our lower bracket torqued down properly. We can put it back in and bolt it in place. Now we'll bring our M8 bolt through. Now we need to take our spacer block, we need to get that slid in between the lower bracket and our jounce stop. Now we'll take our M8 bolt and we're going to place it through that, through the hole in the front of that stop and on out the back. Now we can take our brake line bracket, feed that onto the bolt and thread on the nut and get it tightened up. Now we'll torque it to specification, as well as our upper bracket bolts. Now we'll get our air fittings fit into our bracket here, just going to take that brass nut off and you can see we already got one in there. With a couple of flat washers we'll slide one on each side of the bracket. Then we'll grab the 2 thick zip ties and we'll get this mounted. Once we've decided on our location we'll take the thick zip tie, it's going to go through our bracket and around whatever we're mounting to. In our case here, we're using our hitch. That's pretty much what that brackets been designed to fit around. Now we're going to use a tubing cutter to cut our air line, it's F9009. We'll give ourselves a little bit of slack there just in case you may need to make any changes, just like the fittings on top of the air bags. We'll press them in and then we'll want to secure that air line up and out of the way so it doesn't get snagged on anything. Now we just want to take a look at our air line on each side here and make sure it's not up against anything sharp and anywhere we got a little bit of play we can just use another zip tie to secure it up. All right, now we'll add about 70 PSI of air into each bag and we can check it for leaks. We'll use our soap spray to spray down the fittings to make sure we don't have any small air bubbles forming. All right, now we've checked it out, we don't have any leaks present, so now I'm just going to put on anything that we removed for installation, like our heat shield and also our spare tire. That will complete our installation of the Firestone Ride Rite Air Helper Springs, part number F2580 on our 2016 Ram 2500. .
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