A question for the FORUM - I've spent many hours researching lifts (here, there and everywhere) - I consistently return to AEV as it consistently receives great reviews. I want a 3.5" lift and 35" tires .
Here is the deal - I am currently living here in the Middle East, where I've encountered a variety of terrain - desert, sabkha (look it up) and off-road trails into the mountains. I don't rock crawl, my trips are expedition in nature (getting to the campsite!).
So, I haul on 2009 Unlimited Sahara, packing all of myr gear in a Gobi Rack.
My most concern is about the 3.5" lift and Tire size Micky Thomson MTZ ?
1. Would it damage or effect my front suspention or any other components in there ?
2. Do I Have to replace any other parts?
3. Do I need to re-gear ? and to what combination ? can someone explain to me why people re-gear ?
4. I will install heavy front and rear bumper . I'm worried that it will wake or sink back or forward.
The reason I'm asking those questions is because one of my friends bought a jeep unlimted tj and it was lifted 3.5" and 35 tires ....He had some much trouble with it , balance was off, stearing wheel shakes , breaking was bad , shocks bad, Suspension bushes bad etc . so I'm really worried I will face those problems ......
5. What to replace ? or what to do to avoid damages from happening.
I have quickly done some research and I found that there is a wide variety of lifts and with different applications. Some are spacers. Some are long arm kits. Some were simply different springs and shocks. And they range in price from 400$ to 4000$ depending on how much you want to do.
Considering where you are I wouldn't want to break down while in the back country. Or have mechanical issues. If you just want a little lift and some bigger tires go with 2.5" kits and some 35" tires so you're not affecting or changing too much in the suspension.
With that said. I had a dodge ram 1500 4x4 and I added 2.5 lift and 33.5" tires and the ride was noticeably different. Rough ride, more wobble over bumps and my gas mileage went Dow the toilet big time. After 6 months i got a front squeak noise everytime I went over any bumps.
If you are going to do this I would recommend something like a springs, spacers and shocks application. Pro comp makes a nice one for about 700$ Canadian. Pick something that would be easy to fix while in the back country. You start getting into these hardcore lifts that change the whole suspension and you may find yourself stranded waiting for parts to arrive from the US.
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OF4WD member #7523. Durham 4x4 member.
Something to look at is a group I think called the lower forty. They have gotten 40's under their JK with minimal lift. If you want the bigger tires then just do flat fenders and this way you know there is no change to the suspension. When it comes to the bumpers and extra weight get some leveling pucks, or perhaps a bit stiffer spring. But I would recommend putting the bumpers on and see what it does. I have a 3.5 Rock Krawler lift, flat fenders and 37 inch tires. My JKU rides great. The only issue that I have is the wheels and tires. I went with humv wheels and can't get them to balance correctly. I hope this helps.
The AEV 3.5 kit is a terrific suspension kit. I had it on my ’08 JKUR and liked so much that I now have one on my 2012 JKUR. It performs well in just about any terrain except for maybe extreme rock crawling, although I have done some major crawling with no problem.
Being that you have the Unlimited with a long wheelbase I think that a lift of 3.5 is better than a 2.5 to help in the break-over angle while off roading. With 35-inch plus tires you will most likely have to trim the pinch seam and Rubi rails so be sure to check before any off road trips just to be safe.
No need to worry about sag from the AEV springs, they are made to support just about any load you add to your Jeep plus the rears were redesigned a while back for towing trailers too.
You should be fine with the AEV 3.5" lift. The ride will be much better. This is because the new springs are much stiffer than the stock, that means not only will it still look nice with the new bumpers, but it will also make sure you don't get any wobbles. Also I'm not sure what the exact kit you are getting is, but you should definitely get a heavy duty steering stabilizer, adjustable front track-bar, and rear track-bar relocation brackets. As far as the tires go, I have heard nothing but god reviews about the mickey thompsons, I have bfg km2 FYI and they are fantastic.
Re-gearing. That is where you change the gear ratio in your differentials. What happens when you increase tire size is that the circumference increases too. Going from 32's to 35's makes the circumference increase by 10%. This means that for every rotation of your axle, you are traveling 10% further than with the old tires. This means that the engine will be putting out fewer RPM's to go the same speed as before. This means that the engine will have to work harder to push out those RPM's. So when you re-gear, you increse the gear ration so that the engine puts out more RPM's to turn the axle once. It will give you a little more power. I don't know what type of gears you have, but if you have 3.21 I would re-gear definitely, but if you have 3.73 you don't have to but may still want to. It also has to do with the type of transmission you have. If you have a manual, your best ratio would be 4.56 and if you have an automatic, your best ration would be 5.38. Her's the link so you can check it out. http://i149.photobucket.com/albums/s.../JKgearing.jpg
The stabilizer shock (Bilstein) that comes in the kit is a hit or miss. Some have experienced a slight pull to left because of it. I have also experienced that same pull. If you do have that “pull” then all you need to do is reinstall the factory SS and you’re good to go.