Silverado question


New member
Hello everyone!

I'm a new member to these forums so I hope nobody minds me coming out the gate with a question.

I've got a 2004 Silverado with 100k miles and original suspension on it and it rides rough. Like "I need new kidneys now" rough. I was thinking of doing something with the suspension to make it ride a bit nicer and put a leveling kit on so I thought this looked like a good place to get advice on solutions.

My wife and I live in Sheridan, Wy and while we are not "busting through the bush" overlanders we do like to get up in the BigHorns and cruise the back roads for fishing/camping spots. It would be awesome to run around those mountain roads and not feel like you've had the crap beat out of you at the end of the day. We aren't looking for the ability to rock climb or do anything too extreme.

anyway, I'm hoping someone might have some simple advice for me. :)



Not sure what version of a Silverado you have, but when my '01 2500HD Duramax started really riding terrible it was due to the shocks being completely worn out. The torsion bar suspension is pretty hard on shocks from what I understand.

Some new, quality shocks and a torsion key level sound like they might help your situation.


New member
I've got a 1500 crew cab.

Just new shocks sounds like a much nice (ie. cheaper) solution to me. lol

Any particular brand that you guys would recommend for rougher use than some guy driving around town all the time?


Bilstein, Icon, Fox.

Bilstein will probably be the best bang for your buck.

The new shocks will likely make a world of difference.


New member
Thanks Nitro.... I'll do some shopping around and see what I can learn about your recommendations.

My back thanks you in advance! lol


Wiffleball Batter
if you're sure you don't need lift, a set of decent shocks and good tires will probably be all you need.
Not sure what the rear lift options are for the Silverado, I presume either new leaf springs (more expensive) or a simple lift block (cheap) would get the rear up an inch or two and you could comfortably run 33's if you wanted to Even 35's would not be hard to do on that truck. For the front a simple key lift is easy and cheap.
I put Bilstein 5100's on my 1500 Suburban and I really like them. They are pricier than some of the other options out there but I figured "buy the best and cry once" because I hope to not have to replace these! The rears were fairly easy to do with 2 people but the fronts were more difficult - not something I'd want to do again if I could help it.


I put Bilstine 5100 on my GMC and I can't believe the difference. Also added KO2 tires. Handles like a different truck.


Expedition Leader
Yup, like lots of people here say, go Bilstein. I have run them for years and they keep working well....:)


Autism Family Travellers!
I installed Monroe reflex monotubes on my z71 burban and its awesome. SOOOO SMOOTH....and composed. Best part lifetime warranty...blow one, buy a new one and return the used one for full refund! great! I had terrible luck with bilstiens on every rig I ran them on.....wear quickly, stiff, pure over rated!


Expedition Leader
You might need new torsion bars too, they do fatigue. new shocks will improve things greatly, but they'll wear faster if the torsion bars are worn too.

Might also consider new control arm bushings or lubing what you've got, that will smooth things out a good deal as well. An overall lube will help that too. On the rear spring packs too. They might be rusted / frozen to each other, particularly if you don't often put a heavy load in back. You can just disassemble the rear spring packs and clean / paint / grease them up and re-install. Lube their shackles too.

new they're about $250 each. Used / unknown about $50-75. You might look up the part number yours came equipped with and find out the newest year vehicle they were fitted on, then find that vehicle in the wrecking yard for the least costly solution, if you have more time than money, like I do. They're real easy to remove, with a few tools. And the torsion bar unloader tool is a 'free' loaner tool from many chain stores.


New member
What kind of tire pressure do you run? Sometimes it is a pain but if a gas station is close on pavement dropping the tires to 25/20 psi will smooth out the ride considerbaly.


I concur on the Billie 5100 shocks, we have them on all 3 of our trucks and they perform very well. I also concur with lubrication on the control arm bushings and checking them for wear. As to a leveling kit correcting harsh ride, the repositioning keys create the same effect as cranking the adjusters and that will not reduce harshness.
Good luck with the diagnosis and correction of the ride quality issue.