F-150 Nose Lift: How to Level a Late Model Ford [Video]
Adding on a small lift is almost a right of passage for many truck owners. With so many late-model trucks rolling off the factory floor with a nose-down rake, leveling kits have become almost as common of an upgrade as heavy-duty floor mats. While the factory nose-down stance is intended to keep the front of the truck from pointing skyward when a trailer is attached or heavy load placed in the bed, the nose-down look is an aesthetic few like. Luckily, you can pick up a leveling kit for under $100, making for a budget-friendly upgrade.
Since most leveling kits only alter the front suspension by less than two inches, there’s typically not much work or component cost involved. This slight bump in height is usually enough to not only remove the nose-down stance, but allow for a larger set of treads. The 2009 to 2018 Ford F-150 is a great example of a pickup that could use a nose lift. Given that the late-model F-150 4x4 uses a coil-over-strut design, you can easily place a spacer atop your factory strut to net you the lift required to level the truck.
We recently stopped by our local 4x4 shop to check out a 2013 Ford F-150 that was getting a Rough Country 2-inch leveling kit. While you can see highlights from the install in the video above, we’re looking into the details of the upgrade in the article below.
Rough Country has a few 2-inch leveling kit options. This one included the 2-inch front spacers along with a 1-inch rear block.
Installing the Kit
The composite spacer bolts to the top of the F-150’s OE strut. This allows you to retain your factory ride and makes for an incredibly easy bolt-on install.
Out back, a set of 1-inch blocks are placed between the stock block and springs. Secured by a new set of included U-bolts, this is a great option for those wanting a little rear lift, while reducing the nose-down pitch of the truck.
This truck owner was a fan of Bilstein 5100 series shocks, so he opted for a set of BIL33-253190. These nitrogen-charged units easily accommodate the extra inch of lift and are tuned for the late-model F-150.
With more space for larger tires, a set of LT275/65R20 Nitto Ridge Grapplers were installed. Since this pickup splits its time between jobsites and the highway, the hybrid all-terrain tire was a great fit. This 34-inch-tall tire also works well with the stock 20-inch wheel, so no trimming was needed.
Given this truck is typically hauling gear in the bed or has a trailer in tow, adding the 1-inch block will keep the nose of the truck from quickly pointing up. For those looking for a closer to level stance, we’d recommend forgoing the rear block. However, we’d strongly recommend adding a set of helper air bags to the rear of the truck, as any significant bed weight or trailer will bring the nose of the truck up. This can create some less-than-desirable handling dynamics, which can be especially dangerous while towing.