How to Replace rear shocks on a pickup truck or any vehicle
Installing Air Shocks on a Classic Pickup
Every make will be different, there will be differences in every model. All the steps are basically the same though.
I’m replacing the regular rear shocks on my 66 Pickup with air shocks for 2 different reasons.
Why use Air Shocks?
One is for the rake, the lift in the rear that gives these old classic trucks that “Strong Muscled” look. The “I can haul the world” feel and style.
Two, I use air shocks because it improves the driving ability, less leaning in the corners loaded or not, makes it able to tow a trailer better, with more load capacity and control.
I’m just not in too these newfangled suspension systems, all computerized or not. Yeah I know “old School” however, I’ve used these ways for years, I trust these ways. You can choose to use the newer systems, I’m just too old school. (I’m an Old Fart?)
(Update 02/11/16 I’ve been happy with these Monroe shocks. I’ve had no bleed down or other issues.)
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Installing Rear Monroe Air Shocks or any rear shocks on a pickup truck.
The steps for replacing Shocks on a classic car or truck.
1. Safety First, block your tires before jacking. Be sure you use a jack and jack stand the can handle the weight load.
2. Remove the tires if it makes it easier to access the shocks. You’ll have to decide if removing the rear tires is what you need to do. I really did not need to remove the tires, I did in the video for ease of video taping.
3. I start on the bottom bolts. Make note of which way the bolts face, it may or may not matter. Get them broken loose and remove the lower shock bolt and let the shock hang loose. You might have to knock the shock out of the lower shock mount or use a pry bar and spread the mount some.
Then loosen and remove the upper shock bolt and remove the old shock.
4. You may need to reuse the steel inserts/bushings if the brand you get does not give you all new bushings/inserts. If you can’t just tap them out with a hammer and drift, drill the rubber around the inserts several times then tap them out.
The drilling relieves the pressure and makes it easier to remove them.
I have no idea what pickup truck or car you have. You may want a different brand, type or style, so this button goes to a search for all air shocks, and then you can refine your search from there.
5. After cleaning the inserts and bolts as needed be sure to oil them. It’ll make it easier to install and if need be, remove later on and help keep them from rusting and squeaking.
Insert your new shock into top bracket and slide bolt in, (I choose to put it back in the way it came out.) put lock washer and nut back on, hand tight only for now.
6. You may have to either, pull the bottom of the air shock down or push it up to get it in to the bottom shock mount. Then put the bolt through. Now you can tighten both down.
I’ve never torqued these, I’m sure that there is a torque setting for them, I just tighten them down real tight. I’ve never had a problem with that.
Repeat steps 1 thru 6 on the other side.
7. Now you have both air shocks installed, it’s time to route the tubing. You first need to determine where you’re going to put the Schrader valve, (drill a hole as needed or make yourself a mounting plate.) so you can start routing the tubing from the longest side side first.
I prefer to mount the valve, centered if possible. You also may need a short length of the tubing to for the “T” fitting Schrader Valve depending on what brand of air shocks you get.
8. In routing your tubing be sure you secure it well with the supplied tubing clips and it will not rub on anything, sharp or hot.
After routing and hooking the tubing to the Schrader valve, (You may need to wait on fully installing the Scharder valve until all leaks are fixed for easy access to the valve.) now you can air the shocks for the first time.
Using a soapy water solution, check for leaks and tighten all connections as needed to stop the leaks. If you have not fully installed Scharder valve, do so now.
There, you should be done. Be sure you keep an eye on your new air shocks for a few weeks. You’re looking for bleed down a sign of possible leaks.
If you do see any bleed down check for leaks again. Like tires, you might have to put air in them once in awhile or when it gets cold, however it should not be very often.