(approx) 4 Hours
Light to Moderate mechanical skill required.
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What's up, guys? Travis from www.americantrucks.com. And today, we're gonna show you how to easily and affordably get a 2.5-inch lift kit on your 2004 or newer 2-wheel drive or 4-wheel drive F-150. I'm actually talking about Supreme Suspensions 2.5-inch front and 2-inch Rear Pro Leveling Kit, and this is gonna be the most affordable option available at around $180 for a pretty simple reason. We're adding some spacers on both of the struts up front and then we're replacing the lift blocks out back. That's gonna result in a nice leveled stance, and you'll easily be able to fit up to 33-inch tires. You might actually be able to fit up to 35s with some basic cutting and trimming. If you take a look, we threw on some Raptor wheels, and those have 34.5-inch tires. We did not have any rubbing or clearance issues whatsoever. Now, if you do throw on aftermarket wheels, and they have a lower positive or even a negative offset, you're gonna have a little bit more swing in that tire. That's gonna decrease overall clearance. And with 35s, you might have to do some very basic cutting or trimming, so I'm not gonna officially say you can fit 35s. But, again, if you want to, I'd imagine you'll be able to with little issue.Now, why would you want a leveling or a lift kit like this, as opposed to a full-pull suspension lift? Well, obviously, a full-pull suspension lift is gonna improve your damping, your articulation, your suspension travel. It's gonna make you a lot more capable off-road. But let's face it, it's a lot more expensive, it's a lot more time-consuming. And replacing a ton of components on that suspension, it's just a lot more work. So, if you daily-drive your truck, maybe you hit a fire trail once in a while, maybe you hit a snowstorm, but you're more interested in that leveled-out stance, you're more interested in some ground clearance, and you're more interested in saving some money and you want some aesthetics, then this is gonna be the kit for you. Another reason why you should consider this, guys, this is actually something that you can install at home, with some relatively basic hand tools. I'm actually gonna give this install a modest two out of three wrenches on my difficulty meter. There's no permanent modification required. There's also no cutting or drilling. It's technically a bolt-on job. It'll take you about four hours to get it done. And I'm actually gonna walk you through that entire install, step by step.All right, guys, before we get started, you'll need some standard drive ratchets, with sockets ranging from 8 millimeters up to 24 millimeters. Just to be safe, I'd recommend having both shallow and deep for those. You'll also need a 5/16 Allen key or Allen-head socket. And you'll need a 15, 18, and 19-millimeter wrench, as well as a torque wrench. Now, optional but helpful tools include some breaker bars to get things started, a pry bar for leverage, an impact gun, a flat-head screwdriver or a trim panel removal tool, some extensions with some swivel sockets, and some hangers for your brake calipers.All right, guys, once you've got your tools out, you're gonna need to grab that 13-millimeter socket. We're gonna be removing our caliper as well as our brake pads and the bracket. We want to take some weight off of our rotor. Now, if these do not come off easily, you can use a pry bar to help get them off there. And you're gonna wanna hang your caliper out of the way using a bungee or a bracket. I usually like to hang them on the frame rails off to the side. All right. Next, we're gonna remove the bracket. Gotta remove these bolts here, one on the bottom, one on the top. You'll need a 21-millimeter socket for these.Okay, guys, once you've pulled that bracket for your caliper, you can also remove the rotor to take all that weight off. Once you've done that, you can remove the nut here on the end link for our sway bar. You'll need an 18-millimeter wrench for this. Now, when you go to put the wrench on the nut and start spinning it, you can see that the entire assembly here likes to spin as well. So, what you wanna do is actually grab an eight-millimeter socket and actually put it on top of the stud, like, here, and that'll hold it in place so you can take that nut off. All right, once you remove this side, you wanna do the same thing to the other side.All right. Next, we're gonna disconnect our tie rod end link. This guy is a 21-millimeter nut, so we need a 21-millimeter deep socket. Same thing here. If the guy starts spinning on you, you can hold the stud with a 10-mil socket or wrench. All right. So ours is spinning, so we're gonna grab a 21-millimeter wrench and we're gonna hold that stud with a socket. Now, once you've removed that nut, you can gently tap the stud with a hammer to unseat it from the knuckle.All right, guys, next stop, we're gonna tackle our upper ball joint here. So you'll need an 18-millimeter deep socket for the nut. And it's the same process. If it starts spinning on you, you'll need to hold the stud with a smaller socket and spin the nut off with a wrench. Now, also, when you go to do this, keep in mind that the bushings on the upper control arm are under tension. So, when you pop this out, it's gonna wanna fly out of the knuckle. Okay, guys. Now, we're ready to start removing our strut. It's secured to the lower control arm with these two bolts right here and these two nuts. So you'll need that same 18-millimeter deep socket. Okay, guys, the last step in removing our strut is removing the three nuts from the studs on top. You'll need an 18-millimeter wrench for this.All right, guys, we're almost ready to remove our strut. But before we do that, we have to put a lot of leverage on the lower control arm and the knuckle here, and that's gonna put tension on all of these cables. So we're gonna remove some of the brackets to give them some slack. Now, this first one is a 10-mil socket for this main bracket. Then we're gonna remove this little secondary bolt right here. This is for our ABS line. That's an 8-mil. All right. And we got one more, up top, here on the frame rail.All right, guys, now that those top nuts are removed from the strut, now, at this point, you can begin attempting to remove the strut. If you want to, you could put a pry bar or get some leverage on the lower control arm and push this entire steering assembly down enough to get the strut out of there. I'll be honest with you, guys, in my experience, especially with F-150s, getting the leverage on here is kinda difficult because of your axle shafts because of 4-wheel drive. So, to make this a lot easier, I'm actually gonna pop this little dust cover off of there. I'm actually gonna remove the nut from the axle shaft. That's gonna give me a lot more play in this whole thing, so we can get this down low enough to pull the strut out.So, to remove this cap is pretty simple. Go ahead and grab a small flat-head screwdriver and a hammer. Now, if this is your first time doing this, you might mar up the ring around here. That's not a problem. It's not gonna cause any issue. Okay. Next, we're gonna remove that nut. For that, you'll need a 13-millimeter socket. All right. Now, if you have a problem with the spinning, you can actually get it started with an impact gun. Okay. Now, you can see our axle shaft is separated from inside of here. That's gonna give us a little bit more leverage to pull down on this and get the strut out of there. All right. So the bottom studs might be a little bit tight inside the lower control arm. If that's the case, you can kinda tap them free with a dead blow mallet.Okay, guys. Now that we got our strut removed, that's pretty much the hardest part, honestly. Now, we gotta get the spacer on there. But before we do that, we have to install the new studs for the top of the spacer. Now, these are Allen-head studs here, so we need a 5/16 Allen key or Allen-head socket. You wanna get all these hand-threaded in here first, then we'll drive it home with our impact gun. Okay. So, once you got the studs on the spacer, go ahead and grab your strut. And you're gonna line up the other holes on the spacer with your original studs. Now, there's only one way to orient this. So you just kinda have to play around with it until everything fits perfectly.All right. So, once you got that in place, those little bags of hardware in the kit, you're gonna grab all those nuts with those flat washers and crush washers. And to tighten these hardware down, you'll need a 17-millimeter deep socket. These are pretty tight spaces that we're getting all these hardware into. So, once you get the nuts on the original studs, it's actually helpful to just grab the socket itself, without any tools, and just kinda get them hand-threaded first. Now, doing this is also gonna make sure that the spacer is lined up nicely. So, when you go to drive all the stuff home, the spacer is not gonna jump around on you and unalign [SP] the holes, making it harder to get the socket in there. All right. And then, once you get them started, you can drive them home.All right, guys, now, before we throw the strut back in the truck, there's something we have to tackle, and it's gonna make the reinstall a hell of a lot easier. Now, you might not have noticed this, but something happened when you installed that spacer. You actually reversed the direction that the strut rests inside the truck. And because the mounting points on the bottom of the strut are at an angle, they're now gonna be at the exact opposite angle when you go to throw it in the lower control arm. Now, you can kinda fight with that and loosen up the bolts on the lower control arm, but a much easier way is if you have a tabletop vise, simply get that seated in there, use the entire strut as leverage, you can actually spin this bushing just enough to actually change that angle back to the correct orientation.All right. So I have my strut tightened in here. You can see how our angle is kinda going out on the stud. We're just gonna spin this. That didn't take much effort at all, but now you can see that angle is in. Now, everything will line up for us. All right. Now, we can throw the strut in place. The easiest way to go about this is to actually get the studs on the bottom of the strut in the lower control arm. And, guys, I'll be honest, it's very helpful to have a friend with you. You might need a little bit of help with that upper control arm clearing the top of the studs as well.All right, guys, now that our strut is back in place, we're gonna reinstall the nuts on the top of the strut here. Go ahead and get all three hand-tight, and then drive them home with your 18-mil wrench or socket. All right, now, we're gonna do the same thing with the bottom of the strut here. Again, just thread those nuts in place, get them as tight as you can, drive them home with your 18-mil socket.All right, guys, now that all that stuff is tightened down on the shore, our suspension is starting to look like something. Next, we're gonna tackle our half shaft here. We gotta get the stud inside of our knuckle. I'll show you guys how to do that. Basically, you're gonna be manipulating the knuckle around. You wanna line up all the splines on the shaft itself. Then we can get the stud protruding out from there. And then we'll torque that down to 30 foot-pounds.All right, guys, now, we're gonna get the stud of our upper ball joint into the top of our knuckle here. Now, you can see down below me, we very carefully and very slowly compress the strut and the lower control arm so we can kinda raise this up. You wanna get it high as possible, but obviously, you don't wanna lift the entire truck up off of your floor jacks here. Now, I'm gonna get a pry bar here, I'm gonna line up the top of the knuckle, push them down in there. Make sure your pry bar is seated in here. This thing will come back and hit you. Then go ahead and get that nut in place. All right, guys, once you get that nut seated, you can drive it home with your 18-mil socket. Now, when you put the spacer on and you leave the suspension off load, the new geometry might cause the knuckle to rest against the coil right here. It might be difficult to get any tools in here. If that happens to you, pretty simple, just keep the floor jack on the lower control arm, kinda keep it pushed up. That'll push the knuckle out just enough so you can get some stuff in here.All right, guys, now, we're gonna get our tie rod end link back in our knuckle here. Pretty simple stuff, just go ahead and rotate the steering assembly enough to get the stud in there, push it down all the way, and hand-tighten that nut in place. Now, a little trick when you go to tighten this down, if you apply some pressure to the top of the tie rod, it should keep the stud in there pressed nice and tight inside, and you shouldn't have it spinning out on the bottom. All right, guys, next up is the sway bar end link here, go ahead and spin that nut on there. And, again, you'll need an 18-millimeter wrench to spin the nut and an 8-mil socket to hold the stud in place.All right, guys, now, we're gonna reconnect our brackets to our knuckle as well as to our frame rails here. Again, for this hardware, it's a 10-mil and an 8-mil socket. All right, guys, our front is just about wrapped up. Last thing we're gonna do is throw our rotor in place, as well as our bracket and our caliper with our pads. All right, now, for the bolts for the actual bracket, it's a 21-mil again. Go ahead and throw your pads in place. All right. Once you got your pads seated, you can throw the caliper back on. It's very helpful to have a dead blow mallet to help get this thing seated. All right. And then to tighten down the bolts for the caliper, you'll need a 13-mil socket.All right, guys, we got our brakes and all our lines back in place. Now, you can step back, take a minute to breathe here. And do yourself a big favor, guys, double-check that you made sure everything on here is tight. One loose bolt, you turn the wheel, your truck might disagree with you. Nobody wants that, right? Once you've double-checked that everything is good and tight up front, go ahead and meet me out back, grab yourself two jack stands, as well as a jack itself. I'll show you how these new lift blocks and U-bolts in place.All right, guys, once you got those jack stands out, you wanna support the rear axle on either side of the differential. And when the time comes and you drop it out of the leaf pack, you might have to get a third jack stand underneath the pinion flange, but that's for another time. At any rate, once you have the axle supported, you're gonna have to get the shocks unbolted. And for that, you'll need an 18-millimeter wrench and a 15-millimeter socket. All right, guys, once you've removed the bottom of both shocks from the axle, you can actually pull the nuts on your factory U-bolts. These are a 21-millimeter socket.All right, guys, once you've removed all those U-bolts, now comes the fun part, this is where you really wanna take your time because, technically, the axle is now completely disconnected from the truck. Go ahead and start to slowly lower the axle down. Make sure you're doing both jack stands at the same time. You just wanna lower them enough that you can get the factory lift block out from underneath the leaf pack. Again, if the pinion starts to come down, then you need to grab a third jack or have a friend just kinda push it up and down, help rotate things, because you're gonna have to line up some holes and some pins on the new lift blocks inside the leaf pack and on the axle. Now, when you go to adjust the pinion angle with that third jack, you wanna have it at an angle that it would be if the truck was under load with its suspension. That's gonna make it easiest to line up all those holes on the new blocks.All right, guys, once you've lowered everything just enough to get the factory block out, go ahead and remove it. And, again, you got some pins on the block, looks kinda like a Lego piece, go ahead and line those up with the axle. And once you got those pins seated, you wanna do the same thing with the pins on the overload spring on the leaf pack. So, to do that, just gently raise up the axle. Make sure doing both sides at the same time. And getting these holes and pins lined up might take a couple of trial runs. You can see here, our jack stands wanna kinda move around a little bit. So you gotta pull on the axle and make some adjustments yourself as you're doing this.All right, guys, once you got the new lift block in there and the pins and holes are all lined up, you could throw the new U-bolts in place. Now, there's a step you can do here. It's entirely optional if you want to. But once you go to throw those new U-bolts on there, you can see these guys are crazy long, and they're actually too long to get a deep socket on when we go to tighten down those nuts. Now, if you want to, you can tighten down those nuts with a wrench. But I like being speedy here, so we're gonna quickly head over to the chop saw, I'm actually gonna take about two and a half inches off of here because it's a little excessive.All right, guys, so when we go to cut this, a good little tip is to actually zip the nuts on all the way past the point of your cut. That way, you can actually zip the nut off afterward, and it'll clean up the threads for you. All right, guys, so we made our first cut. We zipped our nuts off, checked the length. We can take off a little bit more here, and we should be all set. All right, guys, we went ahead and we cut these to length, cleaned up the threads. Now, we can throw everything back in place. All right, once you got all those hand-threaded, you can drive them home, you'll need a 22-millimeter deep socket instead of a 21. All right, guys, we're just about wrapped up. Last thing we gotta do is get our shocks back together, and that's pretty much it.All right, guys, once you got your shocks bolted up and the truck's back down on the ground, do yourself a favor, double-check everything one more time and that'll wrap up this install. And that also wraps up my review of the Supreme Suspensions 2.5-inch front and 2-inch rear Pro Leveling Kit fitting your 2004 or newer 2-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive F-150. I'm Travis. Thanks for watching. And for all things F-150, keep it right here at www.americantrucks.com.
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Fitment: 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 Details
Supreme Suspensions FDF104FK2520
CA Residents: WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm - www.P65Warnings.ca.gov
(approx) 4 Hours
Light to Moderate mechanical skill required.
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