How to Properly Install a Lift Kit on a Jeep Cherokee for Enhanced Ground Clearance?

April 18, 2024

The desire to conquer rough terrains and experience off-road adventures often necessitates modifications on your vehicle. If you’re a Jeep Cherokee owner, one of the key adjustments you might consider is installing a lift kit to enhance the ground clearance. This alteration affords your vehicle the ability to traverse rocky roads, steep inclines, and other tough terrains with ease by providing extra room for larger tires, improved suspension, and clearance from the ground. The question that now emerges is how to install the lift kit successfully? In this informative piece, we’ll delve into the step-by-step procedure of correct installation of a lift kit on a Jeep Cherokee.

Understanding Lift Kits

Before embarking on the installation process, it’s crucial to understand what lift kits are and the types available for your Jeep Cherokee. Essentially, lift kits are aftermarket vehicle modifications that raise the vehicle’s height, either by altering the suspension system or physically raising the body from the chassis. They are typically composed of spacers and blocks used to lift the body or suspension of the car.

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Lift kits can be categorized into two types: the suspension lift kits and the body lift kits. Suspension lift kits raise the vehicle by replacing the front and rear suspension components and dramatically changing the suspension geometry of the vehicle. On the other hand, body lift kits only raise the body of the vehicle from the frame, providing the necessary space for larger tires without altering the suspension geometry.

When choosing a lift kit, consider factors such as the type of off-road driving you’ll engage in, the tire size you plan to install, and your budget. Your choice of lift kit will significantly influence the performance and ride quality of your Jeep Cherokee.

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Necessary Preparations Before Installation

Before you start the installation process, it’s necessary to organize your workspace and gather all the essential tools. Ensure you’re working in a safe, well-lit area with enough space to maneuver around the vehicle.

Among the tools and equipment you’ll need are a hydraulic jack, jack stands, wrench set, pry bar, and probably a helping hand. Ensure that the lift kit you’ve purchased comes with all the necessary hardware such as spacers, shocks, coils, and control arms for a complete installation. Reading through the kit’s manual will give you an idea of the tools you’ll require and the steps involved in the installation process.

Front Suspension Installation

To begin, jack up the front of the Jeep and place it on jack stands. Remove the front wheels, followed by the front shocks and sway bar links. Then, proceed to remove the springs and stock track bar. Be careful around the brake lines, ensuring no damage is done to these critical components.

Once the old components are out of the way, it’s time to install the new suspension. Start by installing the new springs, followed by the new shocks. Attach the sway bar links and ensure all components are tightly secured.

Rear Suspension Installation

Just like the front, lift the rear of the Jeep and place it on jack stands. Remove the rear wheels, followed by the shocks and sway bar links. Detach the rear axle from the leaf springs, then remove the springs from the Jeep.

Upon successful removal of the old components, commence the installation of the new rear suspension. Begin by attaching the new leaf springs to the rear axle, then secure the axle back onto the Jeep. Attach the new shocks and sway bar links, ensuring they are all tightly fastened.

Final Touches and Adjustments

Following the successful installation of the lift kit, it’s necessary to perform some final adjustments and checks. Ensure all the bolts are torqued to the specifications given in the kit’s manual. Now would be a good time to install larger tires to take advantage of the increased ground clearance.

Remember to have your Jeep’s alignment checked by a professional after the lift kit installation. This is due to the changes in suspension geometry brought about by the lift that could affect your vehicle’s handling and performance.

While the process of installing a lift kit on a Jeep Cherokee may seem daunting, with the correct tools, appropriate planning, and attention to detail, it’s a task that can be accomplished successfully. The improved ground clearance will not only enhance your vehicle’s off-road capabilities but also give your Jeep an aggressive, commanding presence on the road. Remember, safety should always be your priority. If you feel overwhelmed, don’t hesitate to seek professional help.

After Installation Maintenance

Now that you’ve successfully installed your lift kit, it’s essential to maintain your Jeep Cherokee to ensure optimal performance and longevity of the modification. Regular maintenance is vital to keep your vehicle in top form, particularly after such significant alterations.

Firstly, regularly check your vehicle’s undercarriage. The newly installed lift kit and the larger tires can put additional stress on your Jeep’s suspension components. Regularly check the control arms, shock absorbers, and springs for any signs of wear and tear.

Next, monitor the ride quality of your Jeep. If you notice any changes in handling or feel any vibrations, it is advisable to get your Jeep checked out by a professional. Changes in ride quality could be due to issues with the coil spring or other suspension components.

Moreover, your Jeep’s alignment should be checked after every few thousand miles. The installation of a lift kit and larger tires can throw off your vehicle’s alignment, leading to uneven tire wear and negatively impacting the vehicle’s handling.

It’s worth noting that installing a lift kit increases your vehicle’s ground clearance and changes its center of gravity, which could make it more prone to tipping over. Always drive responsibly and be aware of these changes when off-roading.

Conclusion

Proper installation of a lift kit on a Jeep Cherokee can significantly enhance its ground clearance, improving its off-road capabilities. The process involves understanding the types of lift kits, preparing your workspace, and carefully installing the kit, considering both front and rear suspension. It’s also crucial to remember that maintenance is key in ensuring the long-term performance and safety of your modified vehicle.

While the task can be challenging, especially for beginners, it’s a rewarding process that allows you to customise your vehicle to your specific needs. Whether you’re looking to install a 2-inch lift or a more dramatic 6-inch lift, the improved ground clearance will open up a new world of off-roading adventures.

However, always remember to prioritize safety. If the process of installing a lift kit feels overwhelming, don’t hesitate to involve a professional. After all, the thrill of off-roading in your Jeep Grand Cherokee with the new lift kit is worth every effort. So, here’s to conquering more terrains and creating memorable off-road experiences with your improved Jeep Cherokee!