Air suspension has become a standard feature on modern Range Rovers, providing benefits like a smoother ride and adjustable ground clearance. However, air suspension is also prone to problems as Range Rovers age and rack up mileage. Many Range Rover owners eventually face issues like air leaks, failed air springs, and faulty compressors. Understanding how the system works and properly maintaining it is key to getting the most out of your Range Rover’s air suspension.
In this introductory section, we’ll provide a high-level overview of Range Rover air suspension. We’ll look at what makes it different from traditional steel springs, what it does for the vehicle, and why it can be problematic. We’ll also touch on the importance of staying on top of maintenance and repairs to keep your air suspension running smoothly for years to come.
Overview of Range Rover air suspension as a standard feature
Since the early 2000s, Land Rover has made air suspension standard on the Range Rover. Unlike traditional steel coil springs, air suspension uses flexible air bags filled with compressed air to absorb bumps and provide cushioning. This gives a smoother, more adjustable ride.
Mention of common problems associated with air suspension in Range Rovers
Many Range Rover owners encounter air suspension problems like leaking air bags, faulty height sensors, and failing air compressors. As parts wear out from use and exposure, air leaks, drivability issues, and even total failure become more likely.
Importance of understanding and maintaining air suspension for optimal performance
Knowing how the system works and staying on top of maintenance is key to maximising longevity. Air suspension is complex and needs regular care. With proactive maintenance and repairs, a Range Rover’s air suspension can deliver many years and miles of smooth, reliable performance.
What is Range Rover Air Suspension?
Air suspension has been a defining feature of Range Rover SUVs since the early 1990s. It uses compressed air as a spring instead of traditional steel coils or leaf springs. The air springs consist of rubberized bags filled with pressurised air that provide a smooth and comfortable ride.
Here’s a quick overview of how air suspension works in Range Rovers:
- An engine-driven air compressor sends pressurised air to the air springs via nylon tubes and valves.
- Sensors monitor the vehicle’s ride height and make adjustments by adding or releasing air from the springs as needed.
- Raising the ride height gives more ground clearance for off-roading. Lowering it improves aerodynamics and access at low speeds.
- The air suspension self-levels when stationary, keeping the vehicle balanced even with uneven loads.
Compared to traditional steel springs, air suspension provides some key advantages for Range Rovers:
Improved Ride Comfort
The air springs absorb bumps and vibrations better than steel coils, giving a smoother, more comfortable ride on any terrain.
Adjustable Ground Clearance
Being able to raise the ride height is great for clearing obstacles and rough terrain when off-roading.
Better Handling and Control
Air suspension allows for flatter, more stable cornering by counteracting body roll. The self-levelling also maintains balance when towing or hauling heavy loads.
The main components that make up the air suspension system in a Range Rover include:
- Air springs/air bags
- Interconnecting tubing and valves
- An air compressor
- Height sensors
- An electronic control module
Proper maintenance and operation of these components is key to enjoying the benefits of Range Rover air suspension.
Why Does Range Rover Air Suspension Fail?
There are a few key reasons why the air suspension system in Range Rovers tends to fail over time:
Wear and Tear on Components
Like any mechanical system, the components that make up the air suspension are subject to normal wear and tear. The air springs, valves, compressor, and sensors are constantly moving and working to adjust the vehicle’s ride height. After years of use, these parts simply wear out.
The air springs themselves are made of rubber, which can become brittle and develop cracks over time. Exposure to ozone, UV rays, and temperature fluctuations takes its toll. Small cracks in the rubber can cause air leaks or lead to sudden failure.
Many Range Rover owners use their vehicles for off-roading adventures. The jolts, bumps, and vibrations from rough terrain put extra strain on the air suspension parts. Off-road use tends to accelerate wear and tear.
Like any electronically-controlled system, electrical problems can cause issues with the air suspension. Failed sensors, damaged wiring, or computer glitches can all lead to improper operation or failure of the system.
Lack of proper maintenance is another common cause of air suspension failures. If leaks, worn parts, or other issues are not addressed promptly, it puts extra strain on the system and leads to premature failure.
In summary, the unique demands placed on the air suspension combined with ageing parts leads to a higher rate of failure compared to standard suspension systems. Proper maintenance and repairs can help maximise longevity.
How to Maintain Range Rover Air Suspension?
Regular maintenance is crucial for getting the most out of your Range Rover’s air suspension system. Here are some tips to help keep it in top working order:
Check Air Pressure Weekly
The air springs on a Range Rover require a specific air pressure to function properly. Check the pressure weekly with an accurate tire gauge and fill as needed. Driving on underinflated air springs can cause them to fail prematurely. The correct pressure levels can be found in your owner’s manual.
Inspect Air Springs and Connections
Visually inspect the air springs and connections under your Range Rover every few months. Look for any signs of cracking, damage, or leaks. Damaged air springs or loose connections can cause the system to fail. Replacing damaged parts right away prevents further issues.
Replace Air Suspension Parts Regularly
The rubber components in air suspension systems wear out over time. Industry experts recommend replacing air springs and shock absorbers every 6-10 years or 90,000 to 160,000 miles. Off-roading accelerates wear and may require more frequent replacements.
Service Air Compressor and Valves
The air compressor and solenoid valves control the air suspension’s function. Have them inspected and serviced as recommended in your owner’s manual. Typical service includes checking electrical connections, cleaning filters, and testing performance. This prevents premature failure.
Seek Professional Help at Warning Signs
Be alert for common warning signs of air suspension problems like uneven ride height, leaning to one side, strange noises, and error messages. Have a professional inspect the system right away if any of these symptoms arise. The Land Rover specialists at Stedmans Garage can accurately diagnose issues and make any necessary repairs. Proper maintenance keeps a Range Rover’s air suspension performing optimally. Following these tips, along with the recommended service schedule, can add years of reliable function. Contact Stedmans Garage if you need professional assistance maintaining your air suspension.
Conclusion and Call-to-Action
In this blog post, we have explored the intricacies of Range Rover air suspension. From understanding how air suspension works to learning about common failure points, this guide has provided an in-depth look at maintaining these complex systems.
A few key takeaways:
- Air suspension provides benefits like improved ride quality and adjustable ground clearance, but requires proper maintenance.
- Components like air springs and struts wear out over time, especially with off-road use, leading to failure.
- Regular inspections, servicing, and addressing potential problems early is key to longevity.
While air suspension offers advantages, it remains a sensitive system prone to issues if neglected. We hope this article has armed Range Rover owners with the knowledge needed to understand their vehicle’s unique suspension.
Take Action to Maintain Your Range Rover’s Air Suspension
Don’t wait until you experience failure to take action. Based on the information provided, here are some proactive maintenance steps to take:
- Inspect air springs and struts frequently for signs of wear or damage.
- Check air suspension components during routine servicing.
- Address any leaks, noises or ride height issues right away.
- Consider preventive replacement of components at higher mileages.
Following these simple guidelines can add years of smooth operation to your air suspension system. For those needing repairs or replacements, contact our certified Range Rover specialists at Stedmans Garage. We offer affordable solutions to get your vehicle back on the road and riding properly again.
Don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions! We’re here to help keep your Range Rover performing at its best.