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Air Lift Ride Rear Helper Springs Installation - 2017 Ford F-150

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How to Install the Air Lift Ride Rear Helper Springs on a 2017 Ford F-150

Speaker 1: Today on our 2017 Ford F150, we're going to be taking a look at and showing you how to install the Airlift right control air helper spring for the rear axle, part number AL59570.Whether you're towing a heavy trailer or your truck's under constant load like ours is with all the toolboxes, ladder racks, not to mention all the other equipment we've put in, you will notice that the back end is going to sag down a little bit and the ride's just not that comfortable. Not to mention, it's going to put a lot of strain on our rear suspension and it's actually going to lift up the front just a bit, which will misalign our headlights and not give us as good a traction on the front tires.Our airbags are going to help support that load and that weight and put our suspension back where it should be. Before we install them, let's take it out for a drive and see how it handles. As I drive my truck over the speed bumps, I can definitely tell you, I can feel it resonating through the seat and it just feels a lot harsher than it normally does, especially with all our toolboxes and equipment in the back.As I come up to the slalom course and I'm going around the turns, it definitely wants to lean extremely hard before it actually starts turning. Since one of my toolboxes has more stuff in it than the other, some turns are a little worse than the others.Here's what our right control air springs are going to look like once we have them installed. These are going to give us that extra support that we need whenever we're hauling a heavy load, or pulling a heavy trailer.

They're designed to be installed between our leaf springs and our frame, and the airbags can inflate giving us that support to prevent that sagging, getting everything back in line. Now a big benefit of having that airbag get everything back in line back where it should be, is it's going to take a lot of the stress and strain off of our factory suspension, not to mention, getting our front tires back in place, getting our headlights aimed right, and just extending the life of our factory suspension.Our right control springs are going to give us up to 2,000 pounds of load-leveling support. Keep in mind that these aren't designed to increase the payload of our truck, they're just there to help with those heavy loads and you don't ever want to exceed the manufacturer's recommended weight.Our airbag kit is going to come with all the brackets, airlines, and the bags necessary to get it installed. Unlike a lot of airbag systems, we're going to be able to retain our factory bump stop, and we're not going to have to drill into the frame at all. Our kit is going to come with some inflation valves that we chose to mount at the back here.

Each one is going to independently adjust each airbag so that way we can adjust for those off-center loads.With our airbags installed, we'll go and put our wheels back on and take our truck for a quick ride. Going over these speed bumps definitely is a lot less noticeable. It's a lot more comfortable and it's not jarring on my back. As I'm going through the slalom course, it genuinely feels a lot more stable. Going through the turns, it just wants to grab the road better and genuinely feels like it just wants to go faster.

The fact that my toolboxes aren't weighted the same really isn't affecting anything, it's still grabbing the road and turning in just fine.As you can see, it raised our bed back up to where it should be, giving us that support so we don't have that sagging down and that really big sloppy feeling when we're going around the turns. Our airbags are going to have an operating range from five up to 100 PSI, we'll be able to adjust that depending on the load that we're carrying or the trailer that we're towing. We got our truck back to about factory height, with about only 30 PSI.Now that we've seen the end result and gone over the features in our airbags, let's show you how to get them installed.To begin our installation, we went ahead and raised the back end of our truck up, lifting it by the axle, and we removed the rear wheels. This is going to make it a lot easier to get all the components in place. If we come in directly from where our brakes are, come to the frame, we're going to have our jount stop.

There's going to be a hole in the very bottom of it, if we grab our 13 millimeter socket and a short extension, we should be able to reach from the bottom and put our socket in place. We're going to be removing that bolt so we can pull our factory joust stop out.We will be reinstalling our jount stop but we're not going to be reusing this bolt. On either side towards the front and towards the rear of where our jount stop is mounted, we're going to be putting in these U bolts, they're going to go from the inside going out and going around the frame. We do have quite a bit of lines and electrical things on the inside of the frame here, you want to make sure that U bolt is all the way against the frame and you're not pinching any lines or any electrical connections.If we bring our U bolt up sideways and then turn it, make it a little bit easier to get in place. We can grab our upper bracket now. Now these are specific to the side. If we look on the top here, we're going to have an "L" so we'll know this is for the left side because we're over here on the driver's side, and you want to make sure that that flange here that has no holes in it is facing out to where the tire would be. Then each corner is going to have a hole, we're going to line those up with our U bolts going through the frame.We don't have to worry about getting everything lined up right away. We're just going to put one side in, fit it loosely in place and we're going to take a flat washer, go over the stud and then put in a 3/8 lock nut just hand tight so it won't fall down. Once we have those in place, we can move the bracket along with our U bolts to make sure that they line up and we get them to go through the hole. Once we have the other set of the bracket up, we put our flat washers and 3/8 lock nuts hand tight.I took my factory jount stop and if we look at the bottom, you'll notice that it has a crescent shape, that's what's going to go over the axle, and this being the outside. We're going to need to grind this lip off here so it's as close to flush with our jount stop as we can to make room for our airbag so it doesn't rub up against it. I'm just going to take an angle grinder and grind this area right here nice and flat.You can see, we just ground that edge down so it doesn't stick out anymore and it's nice and flat. We got a little bit more room here. You don't need to ground any of the actual bump stop, just that metal cap that goes around. It's not a good idea to leave exposed metal on your vehicle, so I'm going to take a little bit of black spray paint, I'm going to spray all the edges down, that are down to bare metal.Instead of reusing the factory bolt, we're going to have a long metric bolt in our kit, and we're going to take one our flat washers, going over the bolt, and we're going to drop it down into our bump stop so the bolt comes out the top. We're going to be using a 17 millimeter socket and an extension, we could put it inside the jount stop for now to help it out, and we're going to line it back up, and underneath on this bracket, you'll notice that there's going to be three holes. The center hole, you want to line up to where we took our bolts out and the other two bolts are going to be where our jount stop has those alignment tabs.For now, we're just going to loosely get it in place, just get a couple threads on it so we can get everything lined up, and then we can snug it up. Using that extension and socket is going to help you get it to line up and snug that bolt up enough so we could get a ratchet in there to fully tighten it up.Once you have enough room to get a ratchet in place, make sure that the alignment tabs are in the holes and we're going to run the bolt in until our bracket snugs up against the bottom of the frame. We don't really want to crank on it, we just want to get it nice and snug to where it's going to sit against the bottom of the frame right there. With our jount stop and our upper bracket securely in place, I'm going to come back with a 9/16 socket, and I'm going to snug up my U bolts. When you're tightening these up, you want to alternate going from the top to the bottom to make sue they snug evenly and also going left to right, making sure that you don't get a weird bind either up and down or front to back.With everything snug, I'm going to come back with that same 17 millimeter socket and short extension, I'm going to go into my jount stop and I'm going to come back with a torque wrench and usually it's a little easier to get everything in place in the jount stop and then put your ratchet or torque wrench on just because of the limited space we have underneath. We're going to torque our jount stop down and we'll find the specification in our instructions.We can come back and we're going to torque our upper bracket bolts down and again, just remember, you can only go back and forth alternating, do a few turns on one and switch to another bolt so we get a nice even torque.We can grab one of our air springs now and we're going to have a fitting that's going to go into the end that has the threaded hole in it. We'll take the fitting and we're going to thread it in hand tight, just want to get it nice and snug. Once you have it in as tight as you can get it by hand, we're going to come back with a half-inch wrench, and we're going to tighten this one and a half more turns. There's one, and one-half more turn. That'll be plenty tight for our air fitting.Now we can grab our lower bracket. When we put this in place, this lip here is going to need to go towards the outside and you want these tabs here so that center is raised up. This section right here will be the top and we're going to take our airbag, place it directly over it and then if we just flip it over, we'll notice that we're going to have a hole that's threaded, it's going to line up with the slotted hole in our bracket. I'm going to take this short half-inch bolt along with a flat washer, we'll go through the bracket, we're going to thread it right into that airbag. Now you want to leave everything kind of loose, doesn't need to be really loose but you don't want to crank down on this. You still want to be able to have adjustments where you could move that bag back and forth and slide it in that slot.On our upper bracket, you'll notice there there's an oval hole. Our airline fitting is going to go through that hole when we put our bag in place. The easiest way to get everything in is if we just slide our fitting loosely into the hole, we have to move things around a little bit, and then we want our bracket to sit right on top of our leaf springs, making sure that the bag goes all the way through, and it will be crooked right now but that's okay, we're just going to get everything loosely in place and you just want this section here to go right over the leaf spring U bolts so these tabs will go directly over the leaf springs themselves.Once you have your bag in place, you want to make sure that the top is going all the way to that slotted hole. Then we're going to take a star washer and we're going to go over the fitting, slide it over so it falls down over the threads, and then we're going to take a nylon nut, sliding it over the fittings again, and right now, we just want to get this on there hand tight, and you want to take your time getting it started because it is nylon so you don't want to damage the threads and cross thread it. Just get it started and then loosely tighten it up til it just makes contact with the upper plate holding the airbag in place.With the nut in place on top, we can move to our lower bracket now. We're going to have some shorter U bolts, and coming from the bottom, we're going to go around our leaf springs, and we're going to be going up until they can come through both sides of our lower bracket. Just like the top, we're going to take a flat washer, and then a nylon lock nut, and secure it down. You want to make sure you leave these nuts and bolts extremely loose right now, so we want to get them on there just enough to hold it in place. You want to run them down at all.Our airbag kit is going to come with one length of airline tubing, and it'll have fittings on each end. Basically, if we take our two fittings and we just run our hand down, we're going to want to find the center point and we're going to want to cut it directly in half, that way, we have one for each side. When you go to cut these, you want to make sure that it's a straight clean cut, because we don't want any leaks in our airbags, so I'm going to be using a tubing cutter. That way, it's a nice clean straight cut, we don't have to worry about any leaks.Now we can take on end of our air hose to the bag on the left side, and we'll show you how to put it in. We're just going to take our airline, the end that we cut, we're going to push it directly into the fitting that's on top of our bag and you'll feel a little bit of resistance, you're going to want to push it in until it completely bottoms out and if we pull on it, we'll that it locks it in place. For reference, if you ever need to disconnect them, if you push in on the airline fitting, that small ring that's going to be on the outside, if we hold it with our finger, we'll be able to pull the airline fitting out.We're going to go ahead and put our airline in. Again, double check to make sure it's locked in and we're going to route this to the back where we're going to be mounting our fittings. Before we do that, we're going to go ahead and install our other airbag so our brackets and everything's in place and we'll run the other airline as well.Each one of my airlines I just ran along the outside of the frame, and then once I got to the back bumper, I just went to the inside of the frame, bringing them out towards my license plate right by my hitch. We're going to mount our inflation valves right here on the bumper next to our license plate on the left hand side.We're going to need to drill two 5/16 holes in order to get them in place. I just took a piece of metal that I have that I know is straight, put it against the bumper here. I'm just going to make a few marks of where I'm going to drill. That way I know it's going to be nice and even and I don't have my holes on a weird angle. Now I'm going to take a drill and a 5/16 drill bit and I'm going to drill directly in. Now before you do, you want to double check, make sure there's nothing behind there that could get damaged like wiring or any other kind of brackets or anything.We'll start with our airline that's on the left hand side of the car. I'm going to take a nut and thread it on to the end of the thing here. Once we have that in place, we're going to take a star washer, slide it over the fitting. Then reaching from behind, we're going to have our airline come through the side it corresponds to so we're on the left hand side so we'll come through the left hole. We're going to take a rubber washer, slide it over our fitting, get a flat washer, and then we'll secure it down with another nut. We're going to do the same thing for the other airline.I'm going to come back with a half-inch socket and I'm just going to snug these up. You don't need to go crazy tight. Just want to make sure they're not going to be moving around and come loose on you.We're going to want to fill each one of our bags up to only about five pounds. Just enough so it expands and starts to sit upright so that we get into our adjustments and make sure it's nice and level. Once you have your bag inflated, you're going to want to make sure that you have an even amount of air around the internal sides, so if you just kind of give it a squeeze, you can feel the inside of the airbag and make sure that it's nice and even and that's it's sitting straight up and down.Once you have everything adjusted and it is sitting straight up and down, you're going to want to take a marker of some kind, and you're going to want to mark the bottom of the plate in relation to where the bag is, so basically, just want to go around and trace the bag so that we can make sure that it's in the same position when we tighten everything up.Our bottom is in the correct position as well as the top, so we want to make sure that the top doesn't move either. What we can do is if we reach up into the top section, we can make just a small mark, letting us know that it's not going to move side to side on us. Once we have everything marked out and know that our bag is nice and straight, we can let the air out. You got a couple different ways you can do it. You can go back to the inflation valve and push on the center and slowly let the air out. Since there's only around five PSI in here, if we push in on the air fitting up by that little ring and hold it with our fingers, we can slowly pull the airline out. We're just going to let the air out of the bag, giving us a little bit more flexibility to move everything. You want to make sure you get that airline fitting pushed all the way back in.Since the nut on the bottom of the bag is still loose, we still will be able to move it back and forth, that's why we wanted to make that mark. What we're going to do is, we're going to lift up on the plate so that we can get access to the nut underneath and we can tighten it up. You want to take a three-quarter-inch wrench, take the open end of it and you're just going to want to snug it up. We're not going to go crazy tightening it, just only a few turns just so it's snug. Move our bag down, double check that it hasn't moved when we're going to tighten everything and make sure that the top section hasn't moved at all, and then we can come back and tighten up that upper nut.That upper nut is that plastic nylon nut, so we really don't need to go al that tight. Just want to grab a medium-sized adjustable wrench, and come from the side, just give it a few turns just so it's nice and snug because we don't want to strip it out.With the bag nice and secure, we can secure our U bolts. I'm going to be using a 9/16 socket. Just like the other ones, you want to run them down evenly so you want to alternate going back and forth. Then we'll come back and we're going to torque our U bolts down to the specified amount in the instructions. With this bag all adjusted and torqued down, we're going to repeat that for the other side as well.With all the excess airline that we had, what I'm going to do is I'm going to make a big loop, that way if there's any issues in the future or any leaks, we'll have extra airlines if we need to make any kind of repairs. Let's make a loop and then you're going to want to tuck it up out of the way so it's not going to interfere with our spare tire, or anything else, and we just take a few zip ties and secure everything up underneath our bed.Now we can fill both of our bags up. You're going to want to put at least somewhere between 20 and 30 PSI in here. We can check for leaks. You're going to want to spray the fitting and where the fitting is going into the bag and what we're looking for is for expanding bubbles. We're using soapy water so there's going to be a little bit of bubbles but we want to find those expanding bubbles that don't seem to go away. If we aren't finding any of those, then we should be good but you're going to want to check all of your connection points including back at the inflation vales.That'll finish up your look at the Airlift Ride Control Air Helper Springs for the rear axle, part number AL59570 on our 2017 Ford F150.

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Info for this part was:

Installed by:
Jeff D
Video Edited:
Joshua S
Video Edited:
Jacob T
Video by:
Kathleen M
Test Fit:
Brent H
Test Fit:
Robert C

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