• Squat is Not Normal

Squat is Not Normal

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Think it’s normal for the back of your truck, van or SUV to squat or sag while towing and hauling heavy loads? Think it’s just the reality you have to live with when you load the family and hook up the boat or RV? Think again.

Not only is your vehicle not designed to operate in this matter, it also poses several hazards, including:

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We’ve all seen those pickup trucks cruising down the highway pulling a large 5th wheel with the rear of the truck sagging 4 or 5 inches lower than the front. This is called squat or sag. And it is not stable.

Not only is your vehicle not designed to operate in this matter, it also poses several hazards, including:

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We’ve all seen those pickup trucks cruising down the highway pulling a large 5th wheel with the rear of the truck sagging 4 or 5 inches lower than the front. This is called squat or sag. And it is not safe.

Not only is your vehicle not designed to operate in this matter, it also poses several hazards, including:

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Have you ever felt queasy after towing or hauling a heavy load over a long distance? You could be suffering from the symptoms of squat: the improper weight distribution often from towing or hauling a heavy load that causes the back end of the vehicle to sit lower than the front.

Not only is it uncomfortable to ride in a squatting vehicle, it also poses several hazards, including:

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We live in the days of gas at $3+ per gallon. Hook up an RV, boat or other trailer to your vehicle and you can see a decrease of up to 40% in fuel consumption efficiency.

When your vehicle squats or sags, more of the underbody of your vehicle is exposed, increasing frontal area and therefore increasing aerodynamic drag. According to the EPA, aerodynamic drag is the greatest factor impacting engine efficiency when traveling at high speeds. If you’re towing, squat may also cause the front of your trailer to dip, affecting the aerodynamic design the trailer manufacturer may have engineered.

Rolling resistance (also called rolling friction) also increases when weight is not distributed properly, again negatively affecting your engines efficiency. On top of that, add in excessive and uneven tire and brake pad wear from poor weight distribution and squat could really start to affect your pocket book.

Not only is squat inefficient, it also poses several other hazards, including:

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Poor Braking and Steering


Front tires account for the majority of braking power and steering. When the weight of the vehicle is primarily on the rear tires, and not distributed to all four tires, braking and steering can become compromised.


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Poor Headlight Aim


When the rear of the vehicle squats down, the front of the vehicle angles up, resulting in improper headlight aim. Even a slight degree of change can make a huge difference 500 feet down the road.


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Rough Ride


Minor bumps and dips in the road are amplified when your vehicle is loaded – making your drive uncomfortable.


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Trailer Sway


One strong burst of wind can make your whole vehicle or trailer sway. When over-corrected or ignored, it can trigger a chain reaction that may lead to a total loss of control.


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Body Roll


Rounding corners and curves shifts the weight in your vehicle and trailer, causing excessive body roll.


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Bottoming Out


As your trailer and vehicle shift from bumps in the road, the weight change can be so drastic that it causes your vehicle to bottom out.


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My vehicle is rated for a payload and trailer like this. Why does it squat?

The truth is that factory suspension systems on most vehicles are static – using steel coils or leaf springs. A static suspension is tuned to perform best under specific conditions. For example, most half-ton pickup trucks are not towing or hauling heavy loads every single day, so truck manufacturers design the suspension to ride most comfortably when driving without a load. This doesn’t mean that the vehicle can’t handle towing or hauling, it simply means the suspension isn’t tuned to perform best under these conditions. However, you should never exceed your vehicle’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating.

What can I do about squat?

There are several load-assisting products available on the market today. While most options effectively address squat for a loaded vehicle, they present the same core challenge as the factory suspension. They are static solutions that leave your vehicle’s suspension tuned for a single driving state: loaded. This results in a whole new set of complications, namely an uncomfortable ride whenever the vehicle is not carrying a heavy load.

Air springs (also called air bags) are the only load support products that offer adjustability. Adjustable air spring kits work with your existing suspension to level your vehicle to normal ride height, thus eliminating the hazards of squat and the inconvenience of a static suspension. Adjustable air suspension enables you to change the spring rate of your vehicle on-the-fly by simply inflating the air springs when towing or hauling and deflating when riding empty.

Air springs can be adjusted using an on-board air compressor system or by using the included Schrader valve (the same valve used for filling most tires)

Why Air Lift’s Air Springs?

Air Lift offers the best Lifetime Warranty in the industry. It covers the air springs, brackets, fittings and all mounting hardware—other companies cover only the springs.

Air Lift offers a 60 Day No Questions Asked Money Back Guarantee. If you’re unhappy with your purchase for any reason, return the kit to the place you purchased it within 60 days for a full refund.

Air Lift has specialized in air suspension since our inception in 1949. We focus all of our attention on designing, engineering, manufacturing and selling the best, most technologically advanced suspension solutions for cars, trucks and commercial vehicles.

Air Lift is based in Lansing, Michigan. We have been a locally owned and operated company since 1949.

Air Lift’s satisfied customers. Visit our Testimonials page to read how our products are helping to create better lives for our customers every day.

Air Lift is an ISO 9001:2008 certified company. Quality is integral to everything we manufacture at Air Lift.

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