Bilstein B8 5100 Adjustables for WK2

DogCatcher

New member
I was changing the brakes on our 2014 Grand Cherokee and noticed that the front driver strut was leaking. One of the rear shocks had previously blown out as well. It was replaced under warranty, but at this point I just want to replace the factory stuff with some Bilteins since I've always had good luck with their products.

I noticed that in addition to the typical B6 4600 series, they also have a B8 5100 series. These have an adjustable snap ring that sets the hight of the spring perch, allowing for adjustment of the ride hight in a few predefined increments. I took a couple of measurements and it seems like the 1.25" setting would probably just about level the ride.

Has anyone here used these? If so, what setting leveled the ride height out?
 

DogCatcher

New member
Noteworthy is that raising the ride height with this kind of strut assembly does change the behavior of the vehicle at the top of your suspension travel. While your static preload (or sag) on the spring doesn't change at normal ride height, the minimum preload is increased as you raise the vehicle so when your wheels transition from bearing weight to not bearing weight that can lead to some funny ride characteristics - I've seen others call it "like a pogo stick" and that's about how I'd put it too.
Thanks for the detailed response! This is exactly the kind of feedback I was looking for.

I live in Pennsylvania... we're not renowned for having the smoothest of roads, so I was curious if there would be any "quirks" introduced with this kind of adjustment to the ride, and it seems like this "pogo stick" behavior is something I'll want to look into a bit more. Thanks again!
 
FWIW, the B8 5100s are used widely in the Toyota world. I am expecting a set to be delivered today for my Sequoia. I went with these so I can retain the factory coil while still being able to adjust the height to match the rear OME coils I purchased. They can also be adjusted for bumper weight when adding an aftermarket bumper/winch.

I'm hoping to install these this weekend so I will follow up once I get them in.
 

DogCatcher

New member
f you had a Ram 1500 I would strongly suggest sticking with the 2.1" or lower position but I would not expect identical results on other platforms. If you have no other source of information at all then I'd say the safe bet is to dial it back at least one notch from the highest one.. but in the end you'll have to be the one to determine what works best for you.
I did a little more measuring today and it seems like the 1.75" (top setting) would actually get me perfectly level with the rear... but based on this feedback and what I've read from other reviews, I think the 1.25" (second setting from the top) is probably going to be a safe bet. I went ahead and placed the order. I'll be sure to post my actual experiences here when I get them installed.

I'm hoping to install these this weekend so I will follow up once I get them in.
Definitely interested to hear your feedback as well. Thanks for the input.
 

DogCatcher

New member
I got the struts and shocks installed. The coil spring compressors I had were not up to the task of compressing the front springs quite enough. Instead of ordering a better tool, I just took the factory assemblies and the new struts to a local shop. $35 and a few hours later, I had two fully assembled front struts at the 1.25" lift height.

Getting the passenger side back in was easy as it seems the passenger CV axle is a bit longer than the driver side. On the driver side, I ended up sliding the CV axle out of the transfer case to get enough clearance to fit the slightly longer assembly back into place. I think I could have forced the assembly into place, but was really worried about tearing the CV boot...

Overall, I'm pretty happy with the new shocks/struts. At the 1.25" height, the ride is firm, but not too bouncy. I don't think it is fully settled yet, but I think it will come very close to leveling out the front and back height. I still need to get it aligned, but wanted to give it a chance to settle a bit before I do that.

I'm definitely more used to working on smaller cars (and usually, if I modify the suspension, it is making it lower). But overall, not a terrible install and I'm pretty happy with the results. This would definitely allow me to clear some slightly larger tires and I like the freshened up feel of the ride.
 
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