Lifting a truck is not only cool but also allows for a bigger wheel/tire combination that makes your truck even more capable. You also gain more room for suspension travel and ground clearance that’ll make going off-road much less nerve-racking. You can use a lift kit to do the work yourself or pay a professional to install the kit. In this article, we’ll cover all of the different ways you can lift your truck, the benefits of each, and how much you should expect to pay.
If you’re only looking to raise up the rear of your truck, a block kit is the best type of lift kit to buy. Block kits add height without a high price tag and they are generally easy to install yourself. Cast lift blocks simply fit into place where your U-bolts go and raise up your truck’s back end easily and quickly.
- Price: Purchase block kits online and pay anywhere from $34 up to $600. They vary in price due to truck make and model, and some kits come with U-bolts while some do not. Blocks may come in different heights, allowing you to provide a more customized lift for your truck.
- Labor costs: If you’re hands-off when it comes to cars, opt for a pro installation for your block kit. This shouldn’t take more than an hour, and the labor cost runs anywhere from $200 to $500 with alignment.
Body Lift Kits
Body lift kits avoid manipulating your truck’s suspension and instead focus solely on adding height to your truck. This is a good option for truck owners who wish to add some lift but desire a less expensive option and want to leave the truck’s suspension out of the equation.
- Price: Body lift kits are available online for as low as $80 to upwards of $2,300. The difference stems from the truck’s make and model, lift kit brand, and how many components come with the kit.
- Labor costs: The downside to body lift kits is installation; installing one yourself can prove difficult, due to some vehicles requiring added parts such as steering extensions and brackets to properly install the kit. Older models may prove simpler to install but the process could be time-consuming and frustrating for someone who’s not well-versed in car mechanics. Hiring a pro can cost nearly $1,000 in labor fees.
Another cost-effective way to lift your truck without modifying the suspension or affecting the brakes is to use coil spacers. Coil spacers, also called coil springs, add at least a couple of inches of lift and install easily. The quality of your truck’s performance should not be affected by using coil spacers.
- Price: Coil spacers/springs can sell for $5 a piece for basic individual springs and up to $1,500 for more involved coil spring kits.
- Labor costs: If you’re not comfortable installing the spacers yourself, hire a pro to complete the job. Labor costs for coil spacer installation averages about $200 for labor.
Leveling kits are a very cost-effective way to add lift, and they’re easier for novice mechanics to install than other types of lift kits. As the name implies, a leveling kit raises the front of the truck to match the already higher back end of the truck. It eliminates any ‘rake’ your truck has from the factory and produces an allover lifted look for less work and less hassle.
- Price: Kits are available online from a multitude of retailers and they consist of a few simple components. There are different leveling kits for every vehicle of course, so price varies depending on your truck’s make and model. You can purchase a basic kit for around $20 or a more complex kit for $2,000 or more.
- Labor costs: One of the most appealing features of a leveling kit is its ease of installation. You don’t have to be an auto body genius to install your own leveling kit, however, if you feel more comfortable have a professional do the installation, you may add up to $500 in labor fees on top of your actual kit cost.
If you’re adding lift to an SUV, you may want to consider strut extensions. Strut extensions are for trucks that have a coilover strut at the front suspension, which are typically sports utility vehicles. Essentially, these vehicles need a spacer applied to the existing strut to create lift. These are easy to install and can also be removed if the situation warrants.
- Price: Strut extension kits are available online and retail from $31 for a basic kit to $1,700 for a more sophisticated, high-end kit. Price is largely dependent on your truck’s make and model, as well as the components that come with the kit.
- Labor costs: Labor cost for this job could run up to $500 with alignment included (which is recommended by professionals.)
Suspension Lift Kits
The suspension lift kit actually does alter your truck’s suspension, so greater care must be taken when choosing this method. If the kit isn’t purchased to fit your truck properly or isn’t installed correctly, there could be stability issues. Since you’re changing your car’s suspension system, this method may require other alterations, including gear ratio modification, brake upgrades, and added shock absorbers. For a suspension lift, you’ll also need to adjust and/or replace the steering rack. This could entail replacing worn nuts and bolts along with the rack itself, and any accompanying o-rings.
- Price: Find suspension kits online in a variety of price ranges, brands, and sizes, ranging from $30 all the way up to $5,000 and over
- Labor costs: Professional installation is recommended and could cost up to $1,500. A truck that’s not aligned could end up causing damage to your vehicle over time, which could cost more to fix.
Torsion keys work in conjunction with leveling kits. Torsion keys actually allow you to uninstall factory torsion pieces and replace them with keys that will allow you to create a lift. Using torsion keys is a less costly method than other methods of achieving lift and the keys are simple to install for beginners or home mechanics. Torsion keys lift the front end of the truck and can be installed with bolts.
- Price: Purchase torsion keys online for any make and model of truck, and you’ll pay anywhere from $30 to $500 or more. Most kits come with the bolts you need to do the job yourself, though you may need your own tools.
- Labor costs: Though torsion key installation should only take three to four hours at home, if you want to hand the job over to a pro, you’re looking at a labor cost of anywhere from $100 to $200, making a total cost of up to $700 for high-end keys and installation.
If you’re on a tight budget, you can find lift kits for as low as $20 that will add a little lift to your truck and that you can install yourself without any help. If you have a bit more money to throw around, you can find more expensive lift options and hire professional labor to do the job for you. Whatever your financial circumstance, if you’re looking to add some lift to your truck, there are plenty of options available to you.