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Ford Expedition Air Ride Suspension



  • I read your forum do you need any kind of plates just springs and shocks ugly ride my wife is pregnant and not good for her please reply my truck is an 00 ford expedition eb thanks
  • alwaysfords2alwaysfords2 Posts: 339
    I'd love to help, I have no idea what you are saying. Do you have air suspension or do you just need shocks?
  • sgp7911sgp7911 Posts: 1
    '97 Exp Eddie Bauer 4wd 115K miles, now rides very rough and I feel every bump and pothole. Will new air shocks help? The set of 4 is rather pricey, or should I do the coil over conversion. I rarely tow.
  • I recently had my air suspension go out... and replaced at a Ford Dealer. Truck rides fine now, on coil springs. However, the "check engine" lite is constantly on now... which really bugs me. Can that be turned off? The dealer said I'd just have to live with it, but that doesn't sound right to me. Anybody have any ideas or advice on what I can do to shut that dog-gone lite off... If it's easy, I'll do it. If it's something the dealer should have done, when fixing/replacing the suspension in the first place I'll take the truck back and ask them to do it. If you've done this at a dealer, its not cheap. Any advice would be deeply appreciated. Thanks!
  • I have read all 9 pages on here and lots of others. I have not found anyone with the sale problem as me. I don't know if this is good or bad please help!?!?!?
    1998 Expedition 4x4
    ~Just bought the truck (there for i don't know any history)
    ~When i bought the truck it was sitting fine (not deflated) (reason 1 why i think there is no leak)
    ~It had a dead battery
    ~It has a junk yard air pump (can tell by the writing)
    ~Replaced battery with a good Optima
    ~When truck is running the air pump runs ALOT
    ~I have caught the pump running when the truck is off (not often)
    ~Battery will die after 2 days of not running engine
    ~I have been disconnecting the battery to avoid having to jump start
    ~I have had the battery disconnect for 2 day and truck still shows no sign of sinking in the back. (reason 2 why i think there is no leak)
    ~It will run 5 sec after i start the truck and it will run for 4 mins of so, then stop. And for example every 5-10 mins it will do the same.
    ~I will be sitting parked with the truck running and it will still do them same.
    ?~Why is the pump running so much if there is no leak?
    ?~Is it the leveling sensor? relay? Solenoid? :( :(
    ?~What do i need to fix. I will fix it myself i just need to know what to fix!?!?!?
    I don't want to do the conversion. I did not know about the switch under the dash until this post. !!!THANK YOU!!! I will do this in the mean time. But I DO want to fix it.
  • I'm posting this info so that hopefully I can help someone who is looking for an alternative to the expensive coil conversion kits for the air ride suspension in their Ford Expedition. I did a coil conversion on my truck for $79 and a few hours of time. I have a 1999 Ford Expedtion XLT 4WD. The least expensive coil conversion kit for rear coils was $220 from Strutmasters on E-bay. I looked around and found that the Moog CC80841 would work the same as the coils sold by Strutmasters. I ordered a pair of the Moog coils from Amazon for $79. The instructions for installation are the same as those for the Strutmaster coils, and Strutmasters has the instuctions online. Just look up the coil you need on their website, and they have a tab on the product page for installation instructions.

    The Moog coils work for 1997-2002 2WD and 4WD Expeditions.

    Also, you will need a coil spring compressor for the installation. Auto Zone has a Loan-a-Tool program where you can borrow one for free. They charge a $35 deposit, and refund the deposit when you return the item.

    If you prefer to buy the coils from a local auto parts store, they can do a look-up using the Moog item number to find the comparable brand item that they carry. We opted to order the Moog coils from Amazon, however, because they had the best price and since it's tax free, it came out to be about $20 cheaper than buying the same item of a different brand from Autozone.

    The instructions that can be found online at Strutmasters do not include the instuctions for disabling the Check Susp light. You must buy their coils to get those instructions. However, I have seen instructions for removing the bulb for that warning light on this thread. We didn't even mess with the light, because quite honestly, it just doesn't bother us enough to spend the time to take the bulb out. If we sell the truck eventually, we might worry about it then.

    Lastly, the ride on our new coils is great. We've had ongoing problems with the air ride suspension for the last year, so it is great to have our suspension restored.

    I hope this information will help someone else.
  • Hello! I am experiencing the same problem. Did you ever get this fixed or find out why your pump kept running? Thanks I could use some help
  • Bought a new 2010 Expedition EL LTD in August 2010; the vehicle has had more than a reasonable number of quality problems. In the last few months, the vehicle will list severely to one side after being parked. The system will run the pump to level the vehicle after starting. This problem only happens once every few weeks, and I can't duplicate the problem for the dealer. Am a bit concerned when I take this rig up into the mountains next month if the problem is worsened by cold temperatures.
    Wish I had read this forum before buying - and had noticed that Ford does not seem to offer the Air Ride Suspension in the 2011 model.
  • Thank you for the extensive information regarding the Coil replacement. I located the Moog Coils, however, the parts salesman told me that the kit replacement coils were different than the moog he was selling. I noticed you needed a coil compression tool to install the coils...the instruction on do not reference the need for the tool. Do you think the coils you installed are larger; and if so, could that be a problem for the vehicle?
  • Hey 2011 Expedition EL owners, is anyone else experiencing a brief "grinding" noise while driving in 2H?

    My dealership's Service group is telling me it is a "normal" sound that happens when the air suspension pump turns on to refill the load leveling bags.
    Anyone? Anyone?
  • Have to disagree with you on your last comment; I've owned three Expeditions (2001 EB, 2003 EB & now 2011) and have enjoyed each of them.
  • Are you by chance turning when this happens? If so, it may be the LSD in the rear and not the suspension.
  • 01expy01expy Posts: 1
    Just a couple things I have read about the air suspension in the Expedition. 1 is that when you shut the vehicle off or open any door including the lift gate the truck lowers 2 inches. This is to allow for easy entry and loading/unloading. When the doors are closed it will raise 2 inches to driving hight. The second thing I have found out is that once you shut the vehicle off the air suspension will stay active for 40 minutes to compensate for any change in load ie. loading/unloading cargo. I will be doing the air to coil conversion on my 2001 Expedition due to the rear end sitting down.
  • I have had a few problems from ours, but a lot of the issues, I have learned to fix on my own. Recently, the pass. rear bag was losing air: but not all the time. I went through extensive time to search the problem. I figured out that if I disconnect the leveling sensor from the rear end (which is very expensive) and I push up on the sensor: the air bag will deflate and pulling down will inflate. With me doing this, i was able to find that my pass bag was cracked and losing air. It would not always lose air, just depending on how the car was sitting or if a small amount of weight was put on it to uncover the crack. Needless to say, this caused the pump to burn out. So i wasn't going to pay $2000 to repair it. We have a tire and service center close by and they replaced for $616 with Monroe coils and shocks in rear and shocks in front. I can honestly say; this car rides better than it ever did. I feel no difference, except "I don't here the pump kicking on all the time. Which is great. The light is no problem, I have the info on how to disable the light or just remove the bulb. But for any of you that need a leveling sensor or air bag sensor, I have them for sale on ebay.
  • I've tried this... I drive a 2000 expo, and it loses air within hours of turning off the switch. I've used the switch on the passengers side of the vehicle at last hope, but A quick fix I have found was in the manual. Put the key in the ignition, turn it to the 4th position (right before turning over), down to the 3rd posistion, then back up to the 4th, and finish by turning over the ignition (cranking up the vehicle). It resets, however my truck still doesnt hold air in the back. Hope that helps!
  • mike6187mike6187 Posts: 2
    edited March 2011
    In order to get some ideas of this air suspension grinding noise, let's diagnose it ourselves.

    (1) Do you feel any vibration when you hear the noise?
    (2) Does the noise appear to come from the right or left side?
    (3) list your mileage, suspension mods, engine mods, wheels, wheel size and, any brake mod and/or type of brakes you have.

    Mine goes like this:
    Note:the noise is a low grinding noise. the noise goes away if i turn the steering wheel to the right and gets ever so slightly worse if it is turn to the left.
    (1) no vibration.
    (2) noise from the driver side front wheel area.
    (3) mileage: 55k
    engine mods: n/a
    air suspension
    18x7.5 +36 wheels
    215/35/18 tires
    oem brakes

    And it was diagnosed to have a bad wheel bearing.

    Hope this helps.
  • I am having major issues with my 98 ford expedition eddie bauer. I have done numerous repairs on it and now my air ride isn't working. I put a different pump on it and it was coming on. it wasn't as high as before but at least it was coming on. now my pump isn't coming on and my rear end is practically on my tires. If my pump wont come on could it be relay switch or the bags? I have no idea and everybody I call and talk to they are clueless as well. If I dont have to replace the air ride to coil or whatever its called at this moment would be great. any ideas what it could be and even if its a quick fix for now. I'm still driving it with the rear dragging since I hve no other transportation but I need to fix it quick. I would greatly aprreciate it even ideas on converting it. Please help, my husband is even clueless. :confuse:
  • I noticed over the past month my air suspension was acting crazy, sometimes the airbags would pump up sometimes it wouldn't. Finally last week my Check Suspension light came on and I brought it to the local mechanic who I have been using for the past 3 years. After 2 full days of having my truck and running different diagnostics he finally called me and said he couldn't figure out the problem and that I should take it to the Ford Dealer. Rather than getting hammered at the dealership, I decided to ask for recommendations for another mechanic in the area. I found one and within 10 minutes he diagnosed the problem. He hooked the truck up to the computer to look for error codes and got 2 - suspension error code and a steering error code. He researched the steering code (which he said many mechanics would ignore if you are having suspension problems) and it turns out that this code disables the air compression. He said it would be about an $85 fix and will work on it tomorrow. Just wanted to throw this post out there for others having problems with the air suspension ride in the Expo's. I will keep you posted after I get my truck back tomorrow.
  • You do not have to deflate the system to perform this repair. In fact, the system self deflates when you shut the car off which is why you her the compressor every time you start the vehicle after it sits a little while. To get those front air shocks in you simply disconnect the air line by pushing on the outside ring on the shock. Then you need to pre-compress and wire the shocks in the compressed position and then move them into position. You cannot install them unless they are compressed or you have to drop the A-frame which is a difficult job and easily avoided.
  • mopsexpymopsexpy Posts: 1
    Since I bought this truck at 130k I felt like I was riding in a hydraulic trick mobile, compressors always running and never riding level. I like a good mystery but I wasn't enjoying that one. Air suspension on a full-size 4x4 is a joke. For those of you wanting to convert from air ride suspension to coil suspension: Strutmasters is a great place to read about all that's wrong with the air ride suspension, but don't bother buying from them, they do not have the best price! To go with one of their "guaranteed 4-hour-install" mechanics it would have been over $1000. I don't know enough about cars to feel comfortable buying parts off of Ebay or finding cheaper coils that are technically the same part, so I called around to local repair shops and ended up going to Midas: $750 installed using their parts (and it only took them 2.5 hours). I see another poster paid $616 for a conversion (wish they said where?). I know someone who paid $650 just to replace the rear air compressor. Bottom line, a conversion definitely saves the headache and expense of all the possible problems that can and will develop with air suspension, and a few phone calls to local repair shops can save alot of $ on the conversion itself.
  • dhuarddhuard Posts: 1
    what was the 85 dollar fix?im having problems with mine and would like to know if you fixed yours and what was the problem?
  • fml_3080fml_3080 Posts: 1
    i recently had my 2000 expedition taken in to get my inspection done. after leaving the shop, i noticed my ck susp. light came on and the vehicle started to ride like a low rider...normal in the front but low and bouncy in the rear. i got out and saw the rear end sitting on the tires almost. i took it to a shop and they said if they guy inspecting it didnt turn off the switch then he must have messed something up because the switch is supposed to be off when raising the vehicle up. well the guy there thought it was a sensor and come to find out the air bag was ripped. is this possible because they didnt turn the switch off and it didnt let the bags move? i am confused about it and need a little help..thanks in advance!
  • sfggamersfggamer Posts: 1
    Woke up this morning to a low-riding Expedition. I wonder what result you had back in March regarding your suspension issues. Thanks!
  • nae1060nae1060 Posts: 1
    We converted my air ride suspension to coils over the weekend. Drives great. No problems. HOW DO YOU TURN OFF THE CHECK SUSP LIGHT? It's driving us crazy!!
  • airconmanairconman Posts: 13
    Thanks for the info slfranci. I took your advice and did the same. I have 286,000 miles on my '97 Exp EB 4WD and finally have had enough with the air ride system. It has cost a lot of money, time and angst over the years. I bought the Moog parts you referenced and some new shocks from Amazon. - total cost was about $300 which included expedited shipment and a pair of jack stands. I "rented" a spring compressor from Autozone. I am by no means an auto mechanic...I used all hand tools - no air driven tools. It took a good five hours, but this included replacing the shocks and a little user error which easily added an extra hour. Anyone that is at all auto savvy should have no problem doing this conversion.
    I appreciate your post - it gave me the confidence to tackle this. No more air ride head aches...John
  • 58pacer58pacer Posts: 2
    edited September 2011
    Yes, there is an easy way, and you don't have to even get under the chassis to do it. Simply jack up one end of the truck until the tires (both front or both rears) are just touching the ground, but firmly enough to still leave some weight on the suspension. That last part is important. You don't want the wheels to be entirely off the ground. Some weight on wheels is necessary so the air springs don't become distorted. Do this with the air suspension switch in the "on" position. What you are doing is fooling the leveling system into deflating the air bags in an attempt to level the truck.

    If the engine's been off for more than about 40 minutes or so, you may need to start the engine, put your foot firmly on the brake, and shift in and out of gear a few times, just to get the air suspension to turn on again. When you stop the engine, you should hear the clicking of the solenoids and a gentle release of air from the air bags. This may cycle on and off for a few minutes with the truck parked and jacked up just as described.

    Come back in a few minutes, and gently press on the sides of the air bags with your fingers. You should find them nice and soft at this point. Don't let the suspension all the way down in this condition, or the bags may come loose from their footings and/or lose shape. Be sure to support the truck with jack stands if you intend to slide yourself under the chassis.

    When re-inflating the system, take the truck off of the jack stands and bring the jack down to where the truck is approximately level, then start the engine the same as when you deflated. The bags will now inflate to approximately normal level, and the jack can be removed. The system may continue some leveling adjustments to bring everything to a proper height.
  • I should clarify a couple of statements I made regarding the procedure for deflating the air springs on an Expedition.

    First of all, you should jack up the end of the truck on which you intend to deflate the air springs. So if you intend to deflate the rear air bags, you must jack up the rear of the truck, and correspondingly the front of the truck for the front air springs, if so equipped.

    Secondly, when re-inflating it would be useful to lower the truck to a little lower than level on the end you intend to re-inflate, rather than approximately level as I originally wrote. That will prompt the system to raise the truck by re-inflating the bags.
  • I have the same problem did you ever figure out how to fix it?

    thanks for any info.
  • ricks2524ricks2524 Posts: 1
    edited September 2011
    I have a 4x4 2004 Expedition with a problem in the air suspension. I'll try to expalin it as best I can. The vehicle passenger side front will lower completely down. The truck leans like it has a flat tire. The compressor runs as normal ,a few seconds in the morning, but doesnt pump up the passenger front side. If I put the the vehicle in 4WL, it will pump everything back to normal and will stay that way until driven. I don't think it has a leak because the compress don't run more than a few seconds like always and the fact that the bags seem to hold air until I drive it.
  • hi i have the same problem on my 1998 expedition did you find the problem thanks
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