How to Install Brackets on a Ford F-150 XLT V8 for Rear Spring Shackles

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A Ford XLT pickup equipped with a V8 engine uses a pair of leaf springs to hold the rear axle in place as well as determine the ride height of the vehicle. The rear mounts on the leaf springs are called spring shackles and they allow the leaf spring to pivot. If you want to lower the truck, you can install a new spring shackle bracket, which lifts up the mounting point for the leaf spring, lowering the rear end.

Things You'll Need

  • Wheel chocks
  • Jack
  • Jack stands
  • Tire iron
  • Open-end wrench set
  • 1/2-inch ratchet and socket set
  • Shackle kit
  • Park your Ford on a level surface and put the wheel chocks around the front wheels. Lift the rear axle of the Ford off the ground with the jack and put the jack stands under the frame and under the axle. Take off the rear wheels with the tire iron.

  • Locate the spring shackles, which are connected to the back of the leaf springs. Unbolt the leaf spring shackle brackets from the leaf spring and the frame using the 1/2-inch ratchet and socket and an open-end wrench. Pull the spring shackle brackets away from the frame.

  • Install the shackles from the shackle kit onto the leaf spring and the frame with the 1/2-inch ratchet and socket and an open-end wrench.

  • Reinstall the rear wheels with the tire iron. Lower the Ford XLT off the jack stands using the jack.

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References

  • "Chilton Ford Pick-Ups/Expedition/Navigator 1997-09 Repair Manual"; Eric Michael Mihalyi, et al.; 2009
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