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Best Shocks for Lifted Trucks

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Shock absorbers ensure a smooth ride for any car that roams the roads. They are even more critical to trucks that often go off-roading for recreation or work. They may be sold alone or as part of a suspension lift kit, which increases a vehicle’s ground and fender clearance.

Shocks fulfill two roles in trucks and other vehicles. First, shock absorbers help manage the impact and rebound movement of the vehicle’s springs and suspension. They make the ride more comfortable for driver and passenger alike.

Second, shocks improve vehicle handling and safety by maintaining solid contact between the tires’ bottom surface and the ground surface. A vehicle that loses its only point of contact with the ground becomes harder to control or stop.

side view of a pickup truck's shock absorbers
Shock absorbers help manage the impact and rebound movement of the vehicle’s springs and suspension, making the ride more comfortable.

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Top 10 Best Shocks For Lifted Trucks

There are many brands that offer various models of shock absorbers. They offer a plethora of options that include hydraulic or gas operation, monotube or twin tube designs, and remote or dual fluid reservoirs, among others.

It can prove difficult to decide on the most appropriate shock absorber for your lifted truck. To make the search for shocks easier, we compiled a list of the 10 best brands and models.

  • Rancho RS5000X Shock Absorber
  • Rancho RS9000XL Shock Absorber
  • Bilstein B8 5160 Series Shocks
  • Bilstein B8 5100 Series Shocks
  • ACDelco 519-2 Specialty Spring Assisted Shock Absorber
  • Monroe 34690 Gas-Magnum Truck Shock Absorber
  • KYB 565104 MonoMax Gas Shock
  • Skyjacker M95 Monotube Shock Absorber
  • Teraflex Falcon 3.4 Remote Air Adjust Piggyback Shocks
  • Teraflex Falcon Sport Shock Absorbers

1. Rancho RS5000X Shock Absorber

rancho RS5000X
The Rancho RS5000X Shock Absorber is the successor of the RS5000 with wider body and twin-tube design.

The Rancho RS5000X is the successor of Rancho’s long-serving RS5000 shock. Its wider body holds more oil for greater dampening, and it can take advantage of the increased hydraulic fluid with its modern progessive engagement valving and nitrogen gas charging.

Features & Specifications

  • Gas charge
  • Twin-tube design
  • Direct Fit
  • Extended Length: 20.79 in
  • Compressed Length: 13.85 in
  • Damper Travel: 6.94 in
  • Damping Type: Non-Adjustable
  • Bushing Material: Rubber
  • Non-adjustable damping with progressive engagement valving
  • Comes with Lifetime Rancho limited warranty

Compatible with: 2005-2019 Ford F-250/350/450 Super Duty, 2005-2019 Ford F-350 Super Duty, 2005-2019 Ford F-450 Super Duty, 2007-2018 Ford F-550 Super Duty

2. Rancho RS9000XL Shock Absorber

The first Rancho shock absorber to implement a 9-position manually adjusted ride control series, the Rancho RS9000XL lets you adjust your vehicle’s level of performance and ride comfort to match the terrain at hand. Be it on the road or in rough terrain, you can rest assured of easy handling and a stable ride.

Features & Specifications

  • Manufacturer #: RS999287
  • Gas charge
  • Triple-tube design
  • Direct Fit
  • Extended Length: 30.5 inches
  • Damper Travel: 11.88 inches
  • Damping Type: Adjustable
  • Compressed Length: 18.63 in. Compressed Length
  • Bushing Material: Polyurethane
  • 9-way manually-adjusted damping
  • Warranty: Lifetime Rancho limited warranty

Compatible with: 2004-2018 Ford F-150, 2006-2008 Lincoln Mark LT

3. Bilstein B8 5160 Series Shocks

In designing the B8 5160 series, Bilstein leveraged its experience and experience with racing shocks and the very first monotube shock absorbers. The combination of monotube and remote reservoirs lets these shocks run cool while also delivering exceptional handling during off-road jaunts.

Features & Specifications

  • Manufacturer #: 25-261417Gas charge
  • Monotube design
  • Direct Fit
  • Extended Length: 28.620 inches
  • Collapsed Length: 16.850 inches
  • Shock Stroke: 11.77 inches
  • Damping Type: Non-adjustable
  • Bushing Material: Rubber
  • Warranty: Lifetime Bilstein limited warranty

Compatible with: 2016-2018 Ford F-150

4. Bilstein B8 5100 Shock Absorber

Bilstein B85100
The Bilstein B8 5100 Shock Absorber’s zinc finish provides durability and reliability needed when driving off road.

Few shock absorbers can match the ease with which the Bilstein B8 5100 fits on your lifted truck. Installation requires only a few hours and doesn’t require any special preparations or alterations to the truck. The B8 5100 fits on various vehicles and lift combinations and its zinc finish gives it the durability and reliability it needs for driving off road.

Features & Specifications

  • Monotube design
  • Direct fit
  • Non-adjustable damping
  • Lifetime Bilstein limited warranty

Compatible with: 2005-2016 Ford F-250 Super Duty, 2005-2016 Ford F-350 Super Duty

5. ACDelco 519-2 Specialty Spring Assisted Shock Absorber

If you need sturdy shock absorbers that won’t send your wallet into shock, ACDelco offers 519-2 Specialty Spring Assisted shocks. They cost less than the RS5000 or B9 5100 while still delivering good performance. The shocks wear a coat of chrome that repels corrosion.

Features & Specifications

  • Spring-assisted single tube with piston
  • Direct Fit
  • Extended Length: 20.45 in
  • Compressed Length: 12.62 in
  • Shock Stroke: 7.83 in
  • Damping Type: Non-adjustable
  • Bushing Material: Rubber
  • Lifetime AC Delco limited warranty

Compatible with: 1976-1995 Toyota Pickup, 1982-1996 Mitsubishi Mighty Max, 1983-1997 Nissan Pickup, 1998-2004 Nissan Frontier

6. Monroe 34690 Gas-Magnum Truck Shock Absorber

Like their ACDelco counterpart, Monroe 34690 Gas-Magnum shocks offer an affordable alternative without sacrificing performance. They hold up to twice the amount of fluid in a typical shock absorber with a 1-inch bore, so they can deliver greater performance for the same effort. 34690 Gas-Magnum shocks fit on many mid-size and full-size pickup trucks.

Features & Specifications

  • Twin-tube design
  • Direct fit
  • Extended Length: 26 in
  • Collapsed Length: 16 in
  • Damping: Non-Adjustable
  • Bushing Material: Rubber
  • Lifetime Monroe limited warranty

Compatible with: 1999-2004 Chevrolet Silverado 2500, 1999-2004 GMC Sierra 2500, 2001-2006 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 HD, 2001-2006 GMC Sierra 1500 HD, 2001-2010 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD, 2001-2010 GMC Sierra 2500 HD

7. KYB 565104 MonoMax Gas Shock

These gas shock absorbers can increase the power, stability, and handling of your lifted truck. The KYB 565104 MonoMax can outlast other shocks thanks to their heavy-duty build, zinc-coated piston, and protective rubber boot.

Features & Specifications

  • Monotube design
  • Extended Length: 25.2 in
  • Collapsed Length: 16.14 in
  • Damper Travel: 9.06 in
  • Damping Type: Non-Adjustable
  • Bushing Material: Rubber
  • Lifetime KYB limited warranty

Compatible with: 1999-2004 Chevrolet Silverado 2500, 1999-2004 GMC Sierra 2500, 2001-2010 GMC Sierra 2500 HD, 2002-2010 Dodge Ram 1500, 2011-2018 Ram 1500, 2001-2010 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD

8. Skyjacker M95 Monotube Shock Absorber

Considered one of the best shock absorbers on the market, the Skyjacker M95 monotube shock runs cooler than twin-tube designs. It’s an excellent choice for serious off-roaders who want their shocks to last and their rides to go smoothly.

Features & Specifications

  • Manufacturer #: M9560
  • Monotube design
  • Direct Fit
  • Collapsed Length: 17.32 inches
  • Extended Length: 29.83 inches
  • Damping Type: Non-Adjustable
  • Lift Amount: 1.5-8 in. Lift
  • Warranty: Lifetime Skyjacker limited warranty

Compatible with: 1969-1972 Chevrolet Blazer, 1967-1972 Chevrolet K10 Pickup, 1967-1972 Chevrolet K20 Pickup, 1967-1995 Ford Bronco, 1984-1990 Ford Bronco II, 2000-2004 Ford Excursion, 1966-1976 Ford F-100, 1980-1996 Ford F-150, 2004-2018 Ford F-150, 1980-1998 Ford F-250, 1997-1998 Ford F-250 HD, 1999-2014 Ford F-250 Super Duty, 1980-1997 Ford F-350, 1999-2014 Ford F-350 Super Duty, 1983-1997 Ford Ranger, 1970-1972 GMC Jimmy, 1967-1973 GMC K15/K1500 Pickup, 1967-1972 GMC K25/K2500 Pickup, 1994-1997 Mazda B2300, 1995-1996 Mazda B3000, 1995-1997 Mazda B4000, 1967-1984 Toyota Land Cruiser, 1980-1983 Toyota Pickup, 1993-1998 Toyota T100

9. Teraflex Falcon 3.4 Remote Air Adjust Piggyback Shocks

Teraflex Falcon 3.4 Remote Air Adjust Piggyback Shocks
Teraflex Falcon 3.4 Remote Air Adjust Piggyback Shock Absorbers are perfect for Jeep Wrangler enthusiasts.

When Jeep aficionados need shock absorbers for their lifted Jeep Wrangler (JK) and Wrangler Unlimited (JKU), a lot of them turn to Teraflex. Its Falcon series of shocks uses lessons drawn from racing to improve the Jeep’s comfort, performance, and stability. The latest Series 3.4 Remote Air Adjust Piggyback shock absorbers let drivers switch between soft and firm damping settings.

Features & Specifications

  • Piggyback design allows more fluid capacity, reduces heat buildup, and provides better clearance for large tires
  • Piggyback fluid passage improves oil flow and prevents common leakage issues
  • Direct fit
  • Front Collapsed Length: 15.700″, 16.900″, or 18.000″
  • Front Extended Length: 25.700″, 28.100″, or 30.300″
  • Front Damping Travel: 10.00″, 11.20″, or 12.30″
  • Rear Collapsed Length: 15.300″, 16.500″, or 17.600
  • Rear Extended Length: 25.300″, 27.700″, or 29.900″
  • Rear Damping Travel: 10.00″, 11.20″, or 12.30
  • Damping: Adjustable with soft and firm settings
  • Passed a 1,000 hour corrosion resistance test using salt spray
  • Teraflex Limited warranty for 3 years

Compatible with: 2007-2018 Jeep Wrangler (JK)

10. Teraflex Falcon Sport Shock Absorbers

Want your pickup to handle like a sports vehicle in any driving condition? Falcon Sport shock absorbers can adjust their performance to best suit the terrain and the vehicle’s velocity. Thanks to Teraflex’s Volume Optimized Damping system, these shocks keep your truck stable, controllable, and responsive at both low and high speeds.

Features & Specifications

  • Manufacturer #: 05-04-21-400-002
  • Gas charge
  • Monotube design
  • Direct Fit
  • Damping Type: Adjustable
  • Warranty: TeraFlex Limited Warranty

Compatible with: 2015-2018 Ford F-150

Tips on Choosing the Best Shocks for Your Lifted Truck

It can prove tough to pick a shock absorber on purely technical terms. They all seem good or even identical. But you can narrow down the contenders by asking yourself a few questions.

Start by reviewing your driving habits. How often do you take your lifted truck off-roading? What speeds do you drive your truck, be it on the road or off the beaten track? Depending on your driving preferences and plans for your vehicle, some types of shock absorbers will suit you and your truck better.

semi front shot of a lifted pickup truck
Your driving preferences and application will determine the type of shock absorbers that best suit your truck.
  • If you usually stick to the roads, use twin-tube shock absorbers. They help your truck’s tires stick to the road surface and can take most bumps on the occasions you go off-roading.
  • For drivers who often travel on bad roads and rough terrain, pick either gas-pressurized or monotube shocks. These shock absorbers have superior damping capability over twin-tubes.
  • People who usually drive at 20 miles per hour or faster, be it over smooth roads or off-road, should use monotube or reservoir shock absorbers.
  • Finally, for enthusiasts of off-road racing and extreme off-roading, always go for bypass shocks. Reservoir shocks can serve at a pinch but will not work as well as bypass shocks.

Next, keep in mind how high you lifted your truck. The higher it rises, the wider the gap between the shock absorbers’ mounting points.

  • If your truck rose by 3 inches or less, you can use standard shocks.
  • If the lift amount exceeds 3 inches, you will need longer, stronger shocks. Otherwise, the gap proves too much for shorter shock absorbers.
  • You don’t need new shocks if you install a body lift kit on your vehicle. It raises the vehicle’s body but leaves the suspension alone.
  • Leveling kits modify the suspension, but they raise the vehicle’s front only. You can usually keep using the rear shock absorbers.
  • Short suspension lift kits that don’t raise the vehicle past 3 inches can make do with the existing shocks.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost to lift a truck?

Exactly how much it costs to lift a truck will depend on several factors, such as the type of vehicle you have and what lift kit you’re installing. On average, however, you can expect to pay between $1,000 and $5,000 to have a professional install a lift kit on your truck.

What are the best shocks for 6-inch lifted trucks?

There are a lot of great shocks on the market these days. Some of the best for 6-inch lifted trucks include the Rancho RS5000X and the ACDelco 519-2.

How can I make my lifted truck ride smoother?

Lifting your truck almost always leads to a harsher ride. To help offset this problem, consider adding some additional dampening in the form of reservoir shocks, coilover shocks, or traction bars.

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