How To Measure & Set Coilover Spring Preload

Updated: 8/18/16

Getting the correct coilover spring preload is the first step in setting up your suspension. So what is preload?  Preload is the initial (pre) tension (load) on your springs before carrying the weight of the vehicle.  Coilover spring preload is measured in inches, in other words, how many inches have you compressed the springs before applying weight.

Setting Initial Preload on New Springs or Coilovers:

Follow this procedure if you have just purchased new springs or shocks from us.

  • Start with the springs and shocks installed on the vehicle.
    • Springs loose
    • Dual rate nuts high on the body, spring slider not touching nuts
  • Screw the upper adjuster nut down while gently rattling the springs, when they stop rattling that is Zero Preload
  • Measure and record how many inches of threads are showing above the upper spring collar
  • Every inch you screw the spring perch down is another inch of preload
    • Every inch you screw it up is one inch of negative preload
    • Screwing the spring perch down one inch will also increase the shaft showing by one inch
  • Screw the upper spring perch down to give you the target preload
    • Contact us if you’re not sure how much preload you are supposed to have
  • Adjust the spring perch up or down to give you the desired amount of shock shaft showing at ride height

 

If you have negative preload, or your preload is more than  +/-1″ from our target we should swap springs.

Read our article How To Calculate New Preload And Springs By Using Existing Springs in order to take measurements for the new springs.

 

 

Preload Thread Measurement Location

Photo courtesy of King Shocks.

 

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