Best Options for a Lifted Truck

Best Options for a Lifted Truck

If you're thinking about lifting or leveling, it sounds like you enjoy adding some personality to your truck. Why have it look like all the others? If you're willing to get your hands greasy, consider these other options while you have your truck jacked up in the garage.

Tires and Wheels

When you lift a truck, you open up your options. A factory-spec truck usually takes tires that measure up to 33 inches. A lifted truck can take tires up to 37 inches. Before proceeding, be sure to measure your old tires and the wheel wells, along with the distance between the tire and hard parts when the wheels are fully turned left and right. That way you can avoid having your new tires hitting the wheel well while you're driving.

What's the advantage of bigger tires? Obviously, there's the jacked-up showroom look that many truck enthusiasts love. Also your truck will also go faster, since every revolution of the tire covers more ground. You may want to recalibrate your speedometer for exactly that reason. If you opt for wider tires, you may find you have better handling and performance. One slight disadvantage is that your fuel economy will suffer slightly because bigger tires add weight and rolling resistance.

Engine and Exhaust

If you're lifting your truck for better off-roading, you also might consider upping your performance. A cold air intake pulls air from outside directly into your engine. Like fresh oxygen to a fire, this provides better combustion. That means the engine doesn't work as hard, providing better horsepower and torque.

You can also try your hand at tuning your truck. Tuning means adjusting the settings on a truck's electronic systems. Why do that? Factory settings don't usually optimize performance or fuel economy. Manufacturers usually take a middle-of-the-road approach, programming the truck to have general appeal or meet government or company standards. When you tune, you can mold the truck to function the way you like by changing the electronic systems to your specifications, not anyone else's.


When lifting, your hands will be on the suspension of your truck anyway. Let's see what options you have there. If you want to enhance your off-road performance, you'll be interested in installing some performance shocks. Leaf kits allow you gear your truck to off-road adventures, and purpose-built springs in the link system can help you change up the cushioning system to either get a stiffer or softer ride across various types of terrain.



If you notice more vibration after lifting your truck, you may have to replace your drivetrain. Your old U-joint-style driveshaft might need to be replaced with a double cardan or CV joint that can operate smoothly at higher angles.



Here's where your lifted truck gets really fun. When you've taken care of the logistics and made sure the guts of your lifted truck are in shape, look at accessories. Lifted trucks can add an extra layer of utility with things like lights (opt for light bars, strobes, square lamps, flood or spot to help you in the backwoods), winches (which can help you get out of some seriously sticky or sandy situations), and storage racks. Want to protect your undercarriage? Armor can help the rocks bounce off without damage.

A whole host of other accessories can help you turn your lifted truck into exactly what you've always imagined.