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pnichols

The Other California

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Joined: 04/26/2005

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Good Sam RV Club Member


Posted: 10/16/20 03:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Gjac wrote:

pnichols wrote:

bobndot wrote:

memtb wrote:

pnichols wrote:

The best way to lift everything (suspension, transmission, engine, shock mounts, etc.) higher is by installing taller tires.

I did this on our Class C years ago to provide more clearance when we occasionally go on dirt/gravel backroads. Our Class C's chassis is the Ford E450, so it has plenty of extra fender tire well room for tires that our larger in diameter than what came stock on it.


pnichols, has “nailed it”! The chassis/frame/body are generally the contact points on irregular terrain.....the only way to address all of these is taller tires!

Awaiting my newish ( on unit when we purchased) tires to wear out or “date expire”.....will be going taller, for sure! memtb


What tire size ?
Will you need to adjust the speedometer ?
Will they fit the wheels already on the truck ?
You will need to upgrade the spare too.

7 tires and maybe wheels ? How much height is the expected gain ?


On Ford E350 and E450 based Class C motorhomes, it's real simple to go to larger diameter tires: Our E450 Class C came with 225/75R16E tires. By just changing out to 215/85R16E tires I was able to increase ground clearance by 0.6 inches (the 215's tire diameter was 1.2 inches larger), keep the stock rims, and keep the same rated tire loads and pressures. The speedometer reads about 1.2 MPH slower, but this is of no concern. I didn't want to go to any larger diameter tires so as to keep the step-up into the cab from being much higher.

Some Class C owners posting in the forums change to 235/75R16E tires to gain even more ground clearance without changing rims or losing load capability. I'm not absolutely sure, but maybe even 245/75R16E tires could be fitted onto the Ford E350 and E450 chassis to really gain ground clearance without rim, loading, or pressure changes.

Probably speedometer error can be corrected by Ford dealers or 3rd party ECU tuning equipment suppliers, if one is concerned with speedometer errors.
Phil, did you notice any increase in your MPG with larger dia tires?


I don't track MPG, so I don't know.

It did reduce engine RPM just a bit when cruising on the highway, so maybe in those conditions MPG would/should be improved. Of course it does change the difference in overall drive ratio between the Ford E350 chassis and Ford E450 chassis due to their rear differential gearing (4.10:1 on E350, and 4.56:1 on E450).

FWIW, larger diameter tires also improve tread wear somewhat because each square inch of tread surface contacts the road surface less times per mile.


Phil, 2005 E450 Itasca Spirit 24V

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Joined: 05/06/2013

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Posted: 10/16/20 10:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Mkewley wrote:

Not trying to off road it. Just some of the gravel roads have a few places that the rear end gets really close to the ground and just would like a few more inches. Not about to put a whole suspension lift.


Then throw some airbags or add a leafs on it.
But what you’re not divulging or don’t understand is whether your rig is sagging from “original” or unloaded ride height or if it’s already sitting where it should be on the springs.
If the first scenario, then add ons will help with height and likely the handling. If the latter, you’re just screwing up the suspension geometry and making the rear suspension unnecessarily stiff.
So provide some real info and maybe you can get a valid solution.
If you don’t know, then we can’t help you and you need someone who understands to look at it.


"Yes Sir, Oct 10 1888, Those poor school children froze to death in their tracks. They did not even find them until Spring. Especially hard hit were the ones who had to trek uphill to school both ways, with no shoes." -Bert A.

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