Posted on Sep 6, 2013Definitely go torsion. They have a smoother ride. Leaf spring is the only way to go! Being able to fix my axles myself is really important to me.
Do these two quotes sound familiar? If you’ve done some searching around the web trying to discern the pros and cons of torsion vs. leaf spring axles, then you’ve probably encountered the myriad of contradictory opinions about which is better. In fact, we get questioned, daily, about the pros and cons of each and thought that we would try to demystify the choice a bit for you. After all, we sell both kinds of trailers and believe that each are great in their own way. So here’s an overview of the two types – torsion and leaf spring – in our attempt to help you make an informed decision on which kind of system is best for you and your trailer.
The Skinny on Torsion Axles
Torsion axles have a straightforward, attached construction with adjustable ride height and a rubberized suspension system. Four rubberized cords are inside the axle housing which handle suspension travel and shock absorption. As each wheel moves up and down, the rubber cords compress offering an even wheel suspension system for a smooth ride.
In addition, this system offers trailer rigidity as the axle is bolted to the trailer frame. With this additional cross member, the frame is stiff and this reduces flex in cross winds and on rough roads. This system is less likely to corrode as each torsion axle tube is galvanized inside and out and there is no metal-to-metal contact.
Because of their attached construction, torsion axles do not have replaceable or repairable parts to deal with when they break. If the axles are ever faulty, you will have to replace the entire suspension system by cutting off the old one and installing new. But, on the plus side of this construction, the only maintenance that you need to worry about is the standard wheel bearing maintenance and lubrication.
Getting Real About Leaf Spring
Leaf spring axles come with the majority of Complete Trailers and have flat, curved leaves stacked on top of each other in several layers that are installed below the axle for the suspension system. This is the most widely used suspension system due to its affordability.
The parts are replaceable and, generally speaking, need more maintenance than torsion axles. However, many prefer them over torsion for this very reason – they can be fixed.
If you have more than one axle on your trailer, the leaf spring system is the most dependable for even tire wear and a steady ride. And, if you’re storing your trailer on uneven ground, leaf spring will hold up better over the long term due to the independent nature of each leaf spring. There are torsion options out there that make for better wear under these circumstances, but this will require an upgrade from any standard system.
These are just a few considerations to take into account when choosing between a torsion and leaf spring suspension system for your trailer. At the end of the day, whether you swear by your axles or swear at your axles depends on your preference and your planned use of your trailer. But perhaps even more importantly, your future satisfaction with your suspension system will depend on your trailer being loaded properly to get the longest wear out of whichever system you choose.
If you want to talk through your needs and which system is best for you, our staff will be happy to continue the conversation. Give us a call!