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View Full Version : Advise on pressure for Firestone Air Bags



lizzymit
03-29-2012, 01:26 PM
Hello,

We have a 2010 Bighorn 3610RE that we are towing with a 2012 Ford F250 4x4 Diesel. I recently added a set of firestone airbags on the truck and are having problems with finding the right air pressure for the bags.

I started with 50 lbs but the trailer seemed to bounce and items fell out of cupboards. I lowered to 42 lbs and it didnt seem to solve the problem.

There does not seem to be any information that tells me what is correct. Recently I meet an RV'ER who said I should increase the pressure, not decrease it. There is some formula I think about tongue weight.

Anyone have any suggestions or comments?

Thanks

Tom

cookie
03-29-2012, 01:40 PM
I keep my air bags inflated to 38 psi when unhitched. When I hitch up the truck is level.
The idea is to keep the truck level. 42 and 50 psi seems kinda high.

Peace
Dave

recumbent615
03-29-2012, 01:48 PM
Tom,


Welcome to the Family. The Air Bags are for leveling the load on your truck. What you want to do is find a level location and stand back from the Rig and see if your truck is level, if the back is hanging low then add air to the bags until it is level. with my Rig I normally run about 40-60 LBS depending on what I have in the back of the trailer ( empty I need more air due to the increased Pin Weight ).

The Air bags are not going to help with the bounce on the trailer - Bounce is a factor of the suspension on the Rig and the push/pull on the Hitch. Much improvement can be found with a Air Ride Pin Box but I will let others with experience with those speak to that.

You will find many people here very willing to provide assistance in great detail.

Kevin

wingfoot
03-29-2012, 01:49 PM
You can contact Firestone ride rite division for some insight:

1.800.247.4337 Follow the voice prompts.

BTW: Firestone recommends a minimum of 5psi unloaded.

lizzymit
03-29-2012, 02:42 PM
I talked to the factory technician and he said there is no magic chart or formula. He said to make the truck level and then attach the trailer. Afterward increase the air pressure to maybe sixty or 70 lbs and back down as necessary.

Too soft a ride will create more bounce he said. So maybe at 42 lbs I was too light on air.

Thanks for the phone number and advice.

cookie
03-29-2012, 02:53 PM
When I had over 40 psi, the ride was rough. I didn't realize how rough until I backed off the pressure and remained level.
The magic formula is to keep your truck level when hitched up.
Play around with it till you find what works for you.

Peace
Dave

porthole
03-29-2012, 04:08 PM
When I had the airbags in the GMC I set the bag pressure so the truck sat about 1" lower then the unloaded height.
Try that and conside upgrading the shocks.
Ford shocks are kind of a weak point in the ride quality.

wingfoot
03-29-2012, 04:18 PM
When I had the airbags in the GMC I set the bag pressure so the truck sat about 1" lower then the unloaded height.
Try that and conside upgrading the shocks.
Ford shocks are kind of a weak point in the ride quality.

Very good point Duane..If I remember (dangerous for me) the shocks on OEM application are a single action shock. Shortly after I got my truck I replaced the OE shocks with Belstien's a double action shock.

DougS
03-29-2012, 04:22 PM
Like others have said, depends on your rig. I have a similar setup only older truck, and set mine at 35 pounds unhooked.

porthole
03-29-2012, 04:34 PM
I forgot to mention I also upgraded the shocks to Bilsteins all around.

jmgratz
03-30-2012, 08:31 AM
I normally run 35 psi in our airbags. I do have a Hensley Trailer Saver hitch which is equipped with airbags and shocks. It helps with the bouncing, but if we get on a road that is really rough or the trailer starts bouncing too badly I add air to the trucks airbags. Remember if you are too stiff you could cause the frame to break on the RV. The hitch air bag has really made the biggest difference. BTW when empty I run 5 PSI in the trucks airbags.

sandman
03-30-2012, 06:51 PM
I run 35lbs in mine. I don' have as large of fifth wheel as you but i started out at fifty pounds and started down on mine until the truck was about level.once you get the right pressure it will help on the bounce too i know it did on mine.

beardedone
03-30-2012, 11:57 PM
Two posters have mentioned that they installed Bilstein shocks. Which model did you install. I have had airbags on this truck and my last one and I run about 50 lbs in them.

brianharrison
03-31-2012, 07:15 AM
Two posters have mentioned that they installed Bilstein shocks. Which model did you install. I have had airbags on this truck and my last one and I run about 50 lbs in them.

I looked at the Bilsteins and will be purchasing the 5100 model, stock ride height. Anywhere from $80 to $85 online.

Brian

Moose
04-01-2012, 08:24 AM
I run mine at ~30-35#.

MC9
04-01-2012, 10:00 AM
I normally run about 35# when I am towing. This year I am carrying a cooler with an elk I got in Jan. behind the hitch so, I put 50# in the bags. Won't know until the morning when I hook up to go home if it works.

GOTTOYS
04-01-2012, 11:47 AM
My Dodge really rides rough with too much air in the bags. I've also noticed the pressure in the airbags is a lot higher when hitched than when unhitched. I set mine so the truck is just barely level when hitched. Mine read about 20# hitched. I had them set to read 30# hitched when I started my last trip and it rode pretty rough. Dropped them 10# and it made a big difference. Remember all they are designed to do is level your truck. They are not designed to increase your load capacity...Don