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Everything You Need to Know about Air Suspension Systems -

Everything You Need to Know about Air Suspension Systems

A car is a worthwhile investment because it provides a convenient and affordable way to get from place to place. Cars also have the potential to save time and money on transportation costs, especially since traffic is increasing in many places. For this reason, all prospective car owners take their time looking for the perfect vehicle. However, not all cars are created equal, so they fit theirs with performance upgrades. You can install many performance parts, such as an air suspension system.

An air suspension system is a vehicle suspension powered by an air pump. Instead of conventional leaf springs or coil springs, airbags made of rubber and polyurethane are used. The air pump inflates the airbags to a desired pressure that acts as a spring, providing the necessary bounce and stability that is on par, if not more, with most suspension systems. Despite this, many car owners doubt air suspension systems because they think they are unsustainable, which is rarely the case. To help you with this, we will discuss the details in this article.

How Air Suspension Systems Work

An air compressor takes the atmospheric air and compresses it to a pressure of around 240 MPa. This air is stored in an accumulator tank equipped with a safety valve. The pressurized air is then directed through the lift control valve and the leveling valves to the air springs, which support the car's weight. When the wheels hit a bump on the road, the air becomes further compressed to absorb the shock.

During the 1990s, Dunlop developed a revolutionary new suspension system called the Electronic Controlled Air Suspension (ECAS). This was installed in the 1993 Range Rover Classic and the Range Rover P38A, offering several advanced features such as:

  • The car's wheels are supported by strong and tough vulcanized rubber air springs.
  • An air compressor is located in the car's trunk or under the hood (placements may vary).
  • A storage tank that stores compressed air at a high pressure of around 150 PSI for various applications.
  • Valve blocks that use solenoids, valves, and O-rings to control air flow from the storage reservoir to the four springs.
  • An ECAS computer works with the vehicle's main computer to determine where air pressure should be directed for optimized performance.
  • Air pipes transport air from the storage tank to the air springs in the suspension system for maximum support.
  • A desiccant-filled canister absorbs moisture and keeps the system's interior dry and moisture-free.

Electronic air suspension systems use sensors to measure the height of all four corners of the vehicle. These sensors send this information to the Electronic Control Unit (ECU), usually under the vehicle's floorboard. The ECU then uses this data to adjust the air suspension to the optimal height for the terrain, providing a smoother ride for the driver.

The Advantages of Air Suspension Systems

The first and foremost advantage of air suspension systems is that they provide more comfort for the driver, as they can adjust the ride height automatically, depending on the terrain. This is especially useful when driving on rough roads, as the system can change and level the car to provide a smoother ride.

By extension, less wear and tear is placed on the suspension components, as the system can adjust the height to suit the road conditions. This leads to a longer life for the components and less stress on the car's overall suspension system. Additionally, air suspension systems are also more efficient than traditional suspension systems. Since air-filled struts are lighter than conventional steel springs, it helps reduce the vehicle's overall weight.

Are There Drawbacks?

While air suspension systems are highly effective, they are not without faults. For one, they do not come cheap and require regular maintenance and upkeep, as the air pressure needs to be monitored and adjusted regularly. If left unchecked, rust and corrosion are likely to occur due to air exposure.

Additionally, compressor burnout is a common issue with air suspension systems. This can happen due to a faulty compressor or a leak in the system, which can cause the vehicle to lose air pressure. This can lead to an uncomfortable ride, as the car will roll and bounce more than usual. Regardless, it is still a valuable investment if you do your due diligence and be a responsible car owner through regular repairs and maintenance.


An air suspension system is a great way to improve the ride quality of your car, as it can help to absorb bumps and vibrations for a smoother ride. Air suspension systems also provide a more responsive and agile handling experience and improved load capabilities. Even if it may fail at times, it is still a worthwhile investment as long as you keep up with regular maintenance and upkeep.

If you are looking for Subaru upgrades, Subimods has what you need! We offer various selections for different Subaru vehicles, such as Impreza, Legacy, and Crostek, for affordable prices. Subscribe to our newsletter today to get updates on the newest releases, insider specials, and more!


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