Are you suspecting that your Ford F-150 has developed suspension issues?
Check out the common suspension problems your Ford F-150 may develop and how to go about them.
Ford F-150 Suspension Problems
1. Bouncy and Noisy Front Suspension
If the front end pops and you hear squeaks when driving your Ford F-150 over bad roads, you could have a front suspension problem.
Unfortunately, this is one of the suspension issues plaguing the Ford F-150 2009 to 2014 model year range.
The front wheels of your Ford F-150 will feel so bouncy, and when you go fast over rough patches, it will feel as if the front end is losing its grip and floating.
The noise you hear could result from failed shocks, failed shock mounting bushes, or both.
You can correct it by tightening the shock bottom bolt while ensuring your Ford F-150 is at its normal ride height.
Tightening the bush at any other ride height other than the regular one will make this bush rest in a twisted condition. This significantly reduces the service life of the bush.
2. Front Clunk Noise
Another sign that your Ford F-150 suspension has issues you should look into is the front clunk noise you hear when going over bumps.
Even minor bumps on the road can cause front clunk noises. The noise persists even if the Tie Rods and Front Shocks are in excellent condition.
You can take steps to fix this issue by trying to shake the Anti Roll using your hand and carefully observing the noises that emanate near the joints.
Bear in mind that the chassis attachment bushing that holds the ARB (Anti-Roll Bar) to the chassis is nothing more than a cylindrical piece via which the Anti-Roll Bar.
A clearance between the bush and the ARB is created if the bush wears out, allowing the latter to move around freely, hence the clunking noise.
Get hold of Mounting Grease and apply it to the Bushing while you mount it onto the Anti roll bar. You should also consider making use of a harder Polyurethane bushing purchased from the aftermarket. Polyurethane bushings usually last longer and are harder.
3. Front Knocking Noise
Another noticeable suspension problem that plagues the Ford F-150 is the front knocking noise, probably caused by worn-out ball joints or bushings.
The knocking persists when driving over a rough road. This noise is usually higher during rainy weather but reduces significantly during dry weather.
This is because the ball joints get corroded or rusted during rainy weather, but it reduces noticeably when it is not raining, hence the lesser noise.
Moreover, you will feel the steering shake when driving your Ford F-150 at high speeds. This is because the wheel alignment is out of whack due to the worn-out ball joints and bushings.
Upper control arm failure is also responsible for steering wheel shake. Worn-out bushings and ball joints are behind the knocking sound you hear when cornering roads.
Bushes are not serviceable, meaning you may have to obtain them alongside the control arm because the press-fit can only be done with a specialized pneumatic or hydraulic fixture.
4. Bouncy and Noisy Rear Suspension
This is another problem that occurs when the damping in the rear suspension is insufficient. This may be a result of a failed shock absorber.
Some signs you will notice include squeaks and rear-end pops when you drive over bad roads. In addition, the rear wheels of your Ford F-150 will feel extremely bouncy while in motion, and handling feels somewhat vague with lots of rolls.
Moreover, the front end will feel as if it is floating and losing grip when you go fast over a rough patch of the road. These issues are commonly noticeable with the Ford F-150 2009-2014 model years.
The noise accompanying the bounciness of the rear suspension emanates from failed shocks, shock mounting bushes, or even both.
The bounciness experienced in your Ford F-150 rear is associated with the weak damping resulting from a failed shock absorber. The latter is utterly unable to dampen bounce efficiently.
You can carry out a bounce test to see how weak front damping is. Weak front damping heavily compromises the cornering ability of your pickup truck, resulting in an excessive roll.
You can fix this by tightening the shock bottom bolts while ensuring your Ford F-150 is at its regular ride height.
Tightening this bush at any other height other than the vehicle’s normal ride height will make the bush rest in a twisted condition. This significantly minimized the service life of the bush.
Cost of Replacing Ford F-150 Suspension
According to RepairPal, the average cost of replacing a Ford F-150 suspension shock or strut ranges from $502 to $590. Labor costs are also estimated to range from $183 to $231, while components are usually priced anywhere from $318 to $359.
Bear in mind that this range does not include fees and taxes. In addition, the specific model year of your Ford F-150 and your location have yet to be factored in.
Tips to Make Your Ford F-150’s Suspension Last Longer
These tips will help your suspension last longer:
- Ensure your tires are in excellent working condition and the tread is at the minimum legal depth of 1/16 of an inch.
- Ensure your wheels are correctly aligned, which improves handling and reduces tire wear.
- Inspect the steering and suspension joints and bushings from time to time or at every oil change—for damage or wear.
- Check the struts and shock absorbers for leakage, as leaking shocks will eventually require replacement. Not replacing shocks will contribute to severe damage to other suspension components.