There are many great reasons to install a lift kit on your truck, whether it be purely aesthetics or more for functionality purposes. Most truck owners will agree that although lift kits can be pricey, the pros outweigh the cons. The prices will vary depending on what kind of lift kit you want to install as well as the weight of your truck, but once you get those two factors figured out, the rest is quite simple. Let’s get started!
For this article, we will use a standard Chevy truck as an example of truck weight since it is a truck company most people are familiar with. According to Cox Chevrolet, a standard Chevy truck weighs around 6,500-13,000 lbs ( the weight varies depending on the model as well). We will use those two weight factors to help determine the cost. Aside from weight, there are different lift kit options such as:
- The Leveling Kit (lifts front-end of the truck)
- The Block Kit (lifts the rear/back of the truck)
- The Body Lift Kit (lifts cabin of the truck)
- The Suspension Lift Kit (lifts the entire truck)
Although all these lift kit options may seem like a lot to take in, rest assured that it is quite simple to establish the differences between them.
Do not worry if you are not familiar with the different lift kits, we have compiled a list down below for you as well the average price ranges. If you choose to have these kits installed by a professional, we have also included an estimated price range as well.
Note: please do keep in mind that the labor costs are estimated and could be lower or higher depending on the mechanic you call and if they are running any special deals/promotions.
Different Lift Kits and Their Costs
There are many lifting kits available depending on what area of the truck you want to “lift.” Each kit varies in pricing and labor, so it is best to decide whether you want to lift the front of your truck, the back of your truck, or the entire truck.
While most people think lifting your truck is done to simply “look cool,” or to “feel powerful” on the streets, truck owners understand why it is necessary to shell out money for this process.
Although it is a worthy investment, it is not an inexpensive one so it is best to do your research before you commit to installing a lifting kit.
The Leveling Kit
Leveling kits are the most popular and the most inexpensive lifting kits. Leveling kits are used when you want to bring the length of your truck to a flat, even plane from the front to the back.
Leveling kits help achieve this goal because they boost the front-end of the truck. You will notice that a lot of factory model trucks have this sloped-nose look to them, and leveling kits help eliminate this look.
Not only are leveling kits great if you want your truck to look more aesthetically pleasing, but they will also boost your driving experience when you are driving down more uneven terrains. The average leveling kits can add up to 3 inches of lift to the front-end of your truck.
This is usually enough added height to keep your truck level at all times, despite whether you have the back empty or not. Leveling kits are great for the frontal underside components of trucks because the extra height helps reduce the stress/pressure on the tires and axle.
However, do keep in mind that leveling kits will not raise the rear of the vehicle.
The prices of at-home leveling kits range from as low as $30, but high-performing kits range from $500 to $2,000. The more expensive leveling kits include anti-sway bar links and that is why they are a bit pricier.
If you are installing a leveling kit on a Chevy, be prepared to spend more than $30 if you want a high-quality kit. The heavier Chevys will cost you in the higher hundreds.
If you choose to have your leveling kit professionally installed, be prepared to pay up to $500 for labor. If you or someone you know is knowledgeable in installing leveling kits, then it would be best to do it yourself and pocket the extra change.
However, if this is your first time installing a leveling kit and you are not a mechanic in any way, then it would be safer to have a professional install it.
Aside from being inexpensive, another advantage to leveling kits is how easy they are to uninstall. If you ever decide to resale your truck, then you can easily uninstall it and return the truck to its factory state.
However, if the buyer is interested in the leveling kit, then you can leave it in and have it be an added bonus and selling point.
- Average Pricing for Leveling Kits: $30.00-$2.000.00 (at-home kits) + ~ $500 (additional labor).
The Block Kit
If leveling kits were designed to lift the front of your truck, then block kits were designed to lift the rear/back of your truck. Block kits can add around one or two inches of height to the rear of your truck.
Most truck owners would install a block kit in conjunction with a leveling kit. This is because if you lift the front of your truck and not the back, then the back will always look slightly sloped, even when it is empty.
Most truck owners get confused between whether they should install a block kit or if they should add extra leaves to their leaf springs. Block kits are used if your rear suspensions are in good shape and all you want to add some height to the rear of the truck. However, if the back suspension is weak due to low quality or old leaf springs, then you will need to change your current leaf springs for new ones.
For a chevy truck, you could spend the additional $500 for professional labor but most truck owners would argue that it is not a necessary investment. Block kits are usually quite easy to install because the directions are quite straightforward. If done right, it could only take a few hours out of your day.
We recommend watching an instructional video on the process before attempting to install it yourself if you do not have prior experience. You do not want to go into this process without doing your research, then, later on, having to hire someone to deinstall and then reinstall the kit again.
- Average Pricing for Block Kits: $30.00-$600.00 + ~$500 (additional labor).
The Body Lift Kit
Okay, so recap: lifting kits will evaluate the front of your truck, and block kits will elevate the rear of your truck. A body lift kit will elevate the cabin of your truck by 3 inches. The reason why many truck owners opt for installing body lift kits is that they want to lift the body of the truck without any effects on the suspension system.
A good body lift kit will lift the fenders of your truck, which in turn will make space for larger, thicker, and more durable tires. This is necessary if you are constantly putting more weight on your truck by carrying a lot of passengers or heavy items in the trunk.
Having larger, thicker tires also benefit your driving experience. If you normally travel down uneven roads or if you like to go on off-roading adventures, then more durable tires are a must. Normal tires will be worn out quickly if driven in these harsher road conditions.
Body lift kits are a bit more difficult to install than the first two kits (leveling kit and block kit) mentioned and this is because the additional components that needed to make this installation process run smoothly.
In order to lift your truck’s cabin, you need to add a urethane block. Other components include spacers and bumpers.
Unlike leveling kits and block kits that could be done with a clear set of instructions and some free hours in the day, the process of installing a body lift kit at home is a lot riskier if you do not know what you are doing.
If you do not want to pay the extra fees to have it professionally installed but you are also new to installing kits, then consider asking a friend or close family member to help. There are also useful videos and forums if you search for them.
Most people do not want to pay for a $2,000 kit and then pay over $1,000 for labor, which is understandable. Some mechanic shops will give you a discount if you buy a lifting kit from them, and also choose to have it be installed there.
The price of a body lift kit ranges from $80 to over $2,000 with labor costing as much as $1,000. We know that is not cheap by any means. However, do keep in mind the complications of installing this body lift kit.
It is more difficult to install which means the chances of error are higher; therefore, making the cost of labor higher as well.
For a Chevy truck, despite its weight, the cost here will depend more on the type of body lift kit used rather than labor. Labor might cost more for a heavier truck, but the biggest difference is the brand of the kit and the model of the Chevy.
Although it is more difficult to install a body lift kit, it does not mean that it is impossible. Be sure to watch as many tutorials as you can, and read as many articles as you can from people who have done it before.
More often than not, they will weigh in on the pros and cons of self-installing and whether they would recommend it to others.
- Additional Pricing for Body Lift Kits: $80.00-$2,000.00 + ~$1,000.00 (additional labor).
The Suspension Lift Kit
Lastly, there is a suspension kit. If you have decided that you want to lift your entire truck, then the suspension lift kit is the kit for you. When you install a suspension lift kit, the frame and the underside of your vehicle are both elevated many inches higher than the factory model comes with.
This is great because it gives you a lot more clearance which will allow you to install bigger, tougher, and more quality tires.
If you are someone that rides on rugged terrain often, then you should consider a suspension lift kit. When you are driving through difficult and uneven roads, if your truck isn’t elevated enough, your tires could get caught with underside brush-ups.
What makes a suspension lift kit such a great investment is the fact that it could raise your truck 4 to 6 inches off the ground, even if your leaf springs are in good standing as well as your coil springs. If 4 to 6 inches still seem a bit too low for your taste, with some additional research, you can suspension lift kits that can raise your truck even more than that.
Many truck drivers are fans of suspension lift kits because they feel more at ease with it installed. When your truck is several feet off the ground and you are driving through harsh weather conditions, your truck is better protected by the harsh after-effects of the elements.
For example, if you are driving in heavy rainy weather, there is a smaller chance that puddles of water or rock salts will get onto your vehicles. With time, these small effects will damage your truck. Not only will a suspension lift kit give you better driving support, but it will also keep your truck looking as new as possible as well.
However, because of its many benefits, good quality suspension lift kits do not run cheap. For a heavier Chevy truck, suspension lift kits average around $5,000. As always, the weight of the truck and the type of kit does factor in how much it will cost to install a lifting kit.
However, the suspension lift kit is the most difficult to install yourself. This is because the instructional steps are very time-consuming, and they require strict attention to detail. This is not the kind of installation that you can zone out in, and fix easily if a mistake has been made.
If you have experience in installing lifting kits before and you have time to dedicate to this project, then you can try installing it at home and save yourself a lot of money.
Or even if you do not have experience in installing lifting kits, but you have the time and the dedication to learn, then you should be able to complete installing this kit within a day.
If you would rather hire a professional to install the suspension lift kit for you, then labor for the installation would cost around $1,2000.
- Additional Pricing for Suspension Lift Kits: $5,000.00+ + $1,2000.00 (additional labor).
However, there is more…before you decide which lifting kits you want to install, keep in mind that you will need to have your truck aligned. This process is necessary because it will ensure that all the parts line up evenly from the front to the back and also, along the underside of the vehicle.
If you install any of these lifting kits without getting a proper alignment check first, then you risk your car being uneven.
If you choose to have it taken care of by a professional, it will cost you anywhere from $80.00 to $200.00. If you would rather take care of the job yourself, then you will need to put together your own toolkit. Toolkits, depending on the brand, range anywhere from $50.00 to $100.00. Here are some tools you will need if you want to perform an alignment check yourself:
- Some wrenches and screwdrivers
- A hammer
- Jacks and jack stands
- Nuts and bolts
- Tire stops
- Tire removal tools
- Your choice of lubricant
- Torque wrench
- Some spring clamps
All in all, lifting a truck is not cheap. The heavier the truck is/the overall weight of the truck, the type of lift kit, the brand of the lift kit, as well as the decision on whether or not to install at home or do it at a mechanic shop are all factors that come into play.
However, despite the price, many truckers feel that these kits are worth the money in the long run. That is why trucks are hardly ever left in their factory form. Also, please keep in mind that these are estimated prices for lifting kits and maintenance services.
If you would like to find out more information about which lifting kit is right for your truck, pricing for installment, and pricing for services please call your local mechanic shop. If you would like to find out more information on the benefits of installing lifting kits, please check out General Spring’s website.