Air Spring Preventative Maintenance Checklist
By: Parts for Trucks
The following are items that can be checked when a vehicle is in for periodic maintenance. Never attempt to service the air suspension on a truck or trailer with the air springs inflated.
- Inspect the O.D. of the air spring. Check for signs of irregular wear or heat cracking.
- Inspect air lines to make sure contact doesn’t exist between the air line and the O.D. of the air spring. Air lines can rub a hole in an air spring very quickly.
- Check to see that there is sufficient clearance around the complete circumference of the air spring while at its maximum diameter.
- Inspect the O.D. of the piston for buildup of foreign materials. On a to the reversible sleeve style air spring, the piston is the bottom component of the air spring.
- Correct ride height should be maintained. All vehicles with air springs have a specified ride height established by the O.E.M. This height, which is found in your service manual, should be maintained within 1/4″. This dimension can be checked with the vehicle loaded or empty.
- Levelling valves (or height control valves) play a large part in ensuring that the total air spring system works as required. Clean, inspect and replace, if necessary.
- Make sure you have the proper shock absorbers and check for leaking hydraulic oil and worn or broken end connectors. If a broken shock is found, replace it immediately. The shock absorber will normally limit the rebound of an air spring and keep it from overextending.
- Check the tightness of all mounting hardware (nuts and bolts). If loose, re-torque to manufacturer’s specifications. Do not over-tighten.
- Approved cleaning media are soap and water, methyl alcohol, ethyl alcohol and isopropyl alcohol. Non-approved cleaning media include all organic solvents, open flames, abrasives and direct pressurized steam cleaning.
The total inspection process described on this page can be done in just a matter of minutes. If you find one of these conditions exists, please take corrective action to ensure that it is fixed properly. It will save you both time and money!