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Ray Woo installs the AirLift Rear Air Suspension

By, Ray Woo

AirLift® Rear Air Suspension
The Installation

Install the airbags into the coil springs, making sure that the nippled end is on the bottom. The bags are quite stiff and it is difficult to fit them through the coils or the ends. It helps to squeeze the air out of them and cap the nipple with the supplied plug. Trying to zip-tie the bags into a rolled bundle (as illustrated in Four Wheeler) was impossible. Try to get the bag as close to the bottom of the spring as possible before removing the nipple and re-expanding the bag. Next, feed one end of the flexible airhose through the spring pad hole and connect it to the nipple using the supplied clamp. I routed the other end of the airline through the lower shock bracket, then next to the brake lines as they cross over the top of the axle and differential housing.


The supplied plastic pad is then slipped between the bottom end of the pad and the endloop of the spring. The hose is fed through a hole in the center of the pad.


The spring assembly is reinstalled onto the axle. Feed the top of the spring around the bumpstop, then gently maneuver the bottom into position without pinching the hose. Reconnect the trackbar, sway bar, and shocks in that order. Use a floorjack under the differential housing to raise the axle enough to allow the free end of the trackbar to fit into its bracket. Below are shots of the suspension at maximum droop (with everything disconnected) and at normal load.


As you can see, there is a lot of potential droop in the TJ's rear suspension. The shocks do limit down-travel, but unless the mounting points are relocated, switching to a longer shock would limit the amount of compression. Currently there are Rancho RS9118's mounted in the rear with JKS bar pin eliminators adding 1" to the height. This was a perfect setup before the AirLift. I removed the lynch pins from the TKSliders® rear sway bar links before I 'wheel to prevent any loss of articulation that the rear swaybar may cause. Extended length braided stainless steel brake lines from Explorer ProComp were added to prevent damage at full droop. The stock track bar also limits droop because the ends bind within their brackets. Unfortunately, there is no available bolt-on replacement solution to this yet.


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