Those of us who love our cars know the joy of customising them; making them our own and enhancing their functionality.
If you are looking for the perfect way to give your car increased stability and handling, improving its safety and performance and enhancing its comfort, there are a lot of ways of doing it.
Few of them come close, however, to simply optimising its suspension. Many people choose to do this by dropping it using vehicle air spring suspension, which has a number of excellent benefits relating to the car’s safety, performance, comfort and style.
In this article, we will explore what happens to your car when you drop its suspension.
We will do this by first looking at what exactly your suspension does for your car.
From there we will take a look at a few reasons people choose to lower it.
We will then explore the benefits and drawbacks to dropping your car’s suspension and will give you a few tips that will help you find the best air spring suppliers in South Africa, for your needs.
What Your Car’s Suspension Does
Your car’s suspension is made up of a few key components. These are the tyres, springs, shock absorbers and everything in between
These components all make up your car’s ability to hold the road properly. They give your car its stability and handling, particularly on uneven terrain or when taking corners. On top of that, your suspension is essential for driver and passenger comfort.
Though perhaps one of the most important features of your suspension is its ability to improve the safety of your car.
This comes as a culmination of its handling and stability, which are essential for giving you control over the car that you need to drive it safely.
The suspension is so important to the performance, comfort and safety of your vehicle that even the smallest changes to these systems can have the most dramatic impact on the overall performance and feel of your vehicle.
Because of this, motorists all over the world often turn to manipulate the layout of their suspension when customising it in terms of performance and handling.
Possibly the most popular approach to doing this is opting to lower your suspension to improve on its safety, performance, handling and comfort.
Reasons for Lowering Suspension
There are a number of reasons why you may want to lower the suspension in your vehicle; far more than we can simply cover in one article.
So, let’s take a moment to talk about the most popular reasons why people choose to do it.
These include lowering suspension to improve traction and handling, comfort and safety, as well as performance and style.
Improved Traction & Handling
By lowering your vehicle with air spring suspension, you can greatly improve the way your vehicle holds the road when driving.
This is particularly noticeable when taking corners.
By lowering your suspension your vehicle will have a lower centre of gravity, which means that it will make better contact with the road at all times.
This means that you will be given much better control over its handling, making for a safer, smoother, more comfortable ride.
This is particularly helpful for high-performance cars or those made up of custom builds. Cars that are used for racing also need to have better road traction considering the tricky conditions they are put through.
Of course, the lowered suspension is not just for high-performance vehicles, the benefits of better handling and road contact can be enjoyed from any car with lowered suspension.
Improved Comfort & Safety
The lowering of your car’s centre of gravity, that results from dropping its suspension, also meets the need for enhanced comfort and safety.
From the side of comfort, a lower ride often makes for a smoother one as well, since your car will make better, more consistent contact with the road.
The results speak for themselves and are instantly noticeable. This leaves the driver more in-tune with the feel of their car, while passengers can enjoy a turbulent-free, comfortable ride.
On the side of safety, lowering your suspension not only makes controlling the vehicle that much easier but also prevents any chance of rollover.
This fact alone makes a car with lowered suspension all the safer to drive in.
Lowering your car’s suspension also adds a certain sense of style to it. That low-rider look is timeless, especially when combined with luxury or high-performance cars.
The look stands apart from cars with factory suspension, and it does so for all of the right reasons.
For many, the aesthetic appeal of a lowered car is reasoned enough for them to do it, while all the other added benefits are just a bonus.
So, if you are looking to give your car a new look without having to rework the body, simply lowering it with vehicle air spring suspension will likely do the trick.
Improve Overall Performance
By lowering the suspension of your vehicle, you can also greatly improve its overall performance.
This is true for the engine performance, its fuel efficiency, aerodynamics, torque and stability.
There are a few reasons for this.
As we discussed above, lowering your suspension will greatly improve its contact with the road and handling, which makes for a much smoother drive.
By lowering your suspension, your car will be more reactive and responsive and will hold the road better while taking corners.
On the other hand, lowering your suspension also makes it much more aerodynamic. This is because less air goes under the car while driving, which in turn means that it works with less resistance.
As a result, it will have better speed and power, and most notably, will also improve in terms of fuel efficiency, which can save you a fortune on petrol in the long-run.
Benefits of Lowering Your Car’s Suspension
There are plenty of benefits to be had from lowering your car’s suspension, whether you do it to improve the vehicle’s aesthetics, afford it better handling, or to improve its overall performance.
Here we will explore a few of the most common benefits that motorists enjoy about lowering their suspension.
You will notice that these are closely tied to the reasons for doing so, but do, in fact, offer additional benefits as well.
Improving the aerodynamics of your vehicle brings a number of benefits to performance and stability, and can even save you money on fuel in the long-run.
This is particularly noticeable in high-performance cars where even the smallest deviations in tuning can make all the difference to performance and economy.
Reduce the Risk of Rollover
If you have ever driven a vehicle with a particularly high profile, you have probably felt that unsettling sway when you take a corner, especially if you take it at a speed.
Pack some weighty baggage and a few passengers into that vehicle, and that feeling of sway starts to intensify greatly.
Lowering the suspension of your car helps to eliminate this way, which in turn makes your car all the safer to ride.
This is because by lowering the suspension, you are also lowering the vehicle’s overall centre of gravity.
The results of this are reducing the risk of rolling the vehicle while driving; making it much, much safer.
If your car isn’t comfortable every time you get into it, you’re not doing it right.
Think about those particularly long trips and how even the slightest bit of discomfort can weigh on you as you go.
Every little bump in the road, the feeling of each turn, the hum of the terrain below you. These are all things that take away from the comfort of the ride.
By lowering your vehicle’s suspension, you will effectively improve the contact that it makes with the road by giving each of your tyres a little more traction.
This, in turn, will eliminate those bumps and sways that make the trip uncomfortable.
Performance & Fuel Efficiency
Now let’s go to the top benefit of lowering your car’s suspension, and it’s a benefit that lets you get that little bit more pleasure out of your driving experience while saving a few pennies here and there on fuel costs.
Because lowered suspension makes your vehicle more aerodynamic, it can have some fairly profound benefits to the actual performance of your car.
Since your car will be working against reduced wind resistance, it will perform with greater ease.
On top of this, it won’t burn through as much fuel as it normally does, for the same reasons mentioned above.
While the savings in the short-term might seem negligible in this regard, when you look at it over a year, or several years, they start to look substantial indeed.
Disadvantages of Lowering Your Car’s Suspension
Of course, nothing in life comes without its downside, and being able to appreciate something to the full, means taking the good along with the bad.
This means that in spite of the many benefits of lowering your car’s suspension, there are also one or two drawbacks to keep in mind.
These drawbacks are by no means defining, but rather something to prepare yourself for so that it doesn’t come as a surprise.
They include the undercarriage sometimes making contact with the road and uneven wear on tyre tread.
Carriage Making Contact with the Road
While one of the reasons for lowering your suspension is to get the body closer to the road, this can sometimes be achieved a little too well.
If the suspension in your car is particularly low, there is a danger that your undercarriage can make contact with the road while driving.
This is obviously not ideal since the components situated under the car might take damage when such a collision takes place.
So, wherever suspension is lowered on a vehicle, you should take care not to drive it erratically.
Uneven Tyre Wear
Because lowered suspension gives your tyres more traction with the road, they also put quite a bit of pressure on them.
Under a normal situation, the tread on your tyres will generally wear down at the same pace, which means that they will typically be in the same condition.
However, when your suspension is lowered, the pressure placed on tyres is often uneven.
This results in tyres wearing unevenly, which means more attention needs to be paid to each tyre.
Contact the Air Spring Supply Company
Here at the Air Spring Supply Company, we specialise in all things suspension.
We offer a range of products for lowering suspension, solutions for heavy trucks and buses, industrial and agricultural vehicles, light commercial vehicles and recreational ones.
If you would like to know more about our range of products and services for vehicle suspension, contact our team of air spring suppliers in South Africa today, or visit our website for additional information on our offers.