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Old 07-06-2012, 05:08 PM   #1
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Default New Member - '96 GMC Suburban C2500, Ride-Rite Leveling

Hello Everyone:

I'm a new member with a 1996 GMC Suburban C2500. We have the 7.4L engine and the 4.10 (4.11?) gears in the rear end so it'* a reasonably good tow vehicle.

I recently added an Extendo Bed to the rear compartment. I've attached a picture of a similar item.

We bought a used Extendo Bed from a volunteer fire department in northern Indiana. The Extendo Bed is the full-width of the rear compartment and it'* 60" deep (front to back). The 3rd row seat had to go but we didn't use it that often. The Extendo Bed is very useful for our camping gear (we have a travel trailer) but it sure is heavy. Consequently, the rear of the Suburban is sagging about 3/4" - not too bad, and it'* nowhere near sitting on the helper spring. However, I don't like the sag so I've ordered a set of Firestone Ride-Rite air leveling bags for the rear.

Does anyone have experience with the Ride-Rite (or similar)? Any comments are appreciated.
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Old 07-06-2012, 06:18 PM   #2
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Welcome to the forum from Ohio! Glad to have you here! Do you have any pics of your Suburban? Post 'em up, if you do, we'd love to see what you're driving! As far as the Ride-Rite, I've never dealt with anything like that, but, I'm sure other members on here may have. Again, welcome!
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Old 07-06-2012, 07:44 PM   #3
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Welcome aboard Lucius! As Bill has already mentioned, I also am not familiar with the Ride-Rite system. What are your questions pertaining to it?
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Old 07-06-2012, 07:59 PM   #4
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Here'* a picture of our Suburban hooked to our Airstream travel trailer.

Regarding the Firestone Ride-Rite system - I purchased the simple system that has two individually operated air bags. They bolt in place of the spring snubbers (bump stops) between the frame and the axle. The right and left air bags can be controlled individually from 0-100 psi. I am considering hooking mine up in parallel since I want both sides to inflate the same amount. I may also put a pressure gage in-line so I can see the pressure I'm applying rather than have to check the pressure with a separate gage.

For reference, the more elaborate system has a built in pressure gage and a compressor. You can set it to maintain a constanst pressure and ride height.

As I said, mine is the simple model that you control manually.
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Old 07-06-2012, 08:03 PM   #5
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From the view of the picture, it looks fine. Guess the best way to find out the proper ride height would be to empty everything out, measure the distance from the ground to the top of the fenderwell. Load it back up/or hook camper back up, adjust air pressure until you get the same measurement as before. Voila!
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Old 07-06-2012, 08:14 PM   #6
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Rig looks good for a '96...nice!
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:44 PM   #7
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i have the air lift brand version. did the same thing got this;
Amazon.com: AIR LIFT 25592 Load Controller II On Board Air Compressor System: Automotive Amazon.com: AIR LIFT 25592 Load Controller II On Board Air Compressor System: Automotive

it joins the two together and you can adjust it. its not as much about ride height as ride control. you play with it till the trailer you are hauling is not bucking you around. a good set of shocks like the kyb monomax or gas adjusts go hand in hand with that too.

that hauler thing is pretty cool.
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Old 12-30-2014, 11:30 PM   #8
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I haven't been on the forum in quite some time. There are a few things I've done (repaired) on both my 1996 and 2005 Suburbans. When I have time I'll post a few pictures.
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