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 My car it's too high in both the front and rear

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albertj
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carguy8888
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Name : Brian Cohen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyWed Jun 10, 2020 11:55 pm

It looks like my car is on stilts. The little rod was disconnected on the rear level ride sensor so I tied it together with wire and I hear i the pump working at times. But, my car is way too high. Can somebody point me in the right direction?
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albertj
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PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyThu Jun 11, 2020 9:58 am

carguy8888 wrote:
It looks like my car is on stilts. The little rod was disconnected on the rear level ride sensor so I tied it together with wire and I hear i the pump working at times. But, my car is way too high. Can somebody point me in the right direction?

Ride height is determined by the components in and installation of the suspension.

I think your ride may be higher than you like but not higher than spec. But without a picture and your actual measurements, I don't know.

If you have a factory service manual, specs are in there. If not, you need to purchase a manual set.

If not, post a picture and tape out (measure) the height from the ground to the apex of each wheel arch. Car must be parked on a dead level surface. Check the level with a level. holding front bumper, press down repeatedly and firmly 5-6 times to settle the suspension, and do the same in the rear. Then measure. Bottom of tape needs to be at the centerline of the contact patch of each tire and extend through the center of the hub cover (middle of the R on a stock cover). Measure all four. Specs for the measured height are in the factory service manual. I don't have them at hand.

Now, about fixing things.

The little rod connecting the height sensor in the rear to the chassis may still be available to your GM dealer through Vintage Parts or another source. Just ask. Typically it's best to ask an older, experienced parts counter person. The P/N is 25604758. That failing, they can easily be made using the fittings from the old one that you put onto a new piece of threaded steel rod the same length. Detach the old rod, screw and epoxy the new threaded rod in place and paint the whole thing with RustOleum or similar. If you don't have an old rod, find a junkyard Aurora or Riv and get one there. You can also make one up using common hardware from larger hardware or supply stores. With good shocks, and a good air compressor assembly the gadget will adjust ride height to spec. Adjustment instructions are in the manual. Another thing tat will make the rear ride high is replacement non-air shocks (the ones with the "helper springs").

For the front, there are other GM cars with similar front struts that are made to different specs, and there are ways to use the correct components and screw up the installation. Depending on ride firmness that you want, you will want to get Monroe (close to factory) or KYB (not much stiffer than factory) or Gabriel (stiffer than factory) or Sachs/TRW (never tried, but very good brand). Gabriels when they are new will ride a little high and settle in after about a month. Not sure why. As for other struts, I have heard that Unity, Detroit Axle, and Sensen struts ride high and fail fast but I have no personal experience with them. As for installation, the installer MUST somehow set the suspension level and reset the control arm bolts that hold the arm onto the subframe, when replacing the control arms *or* if they loosened the arms to get the struts out. If not, the torque in the control arm bushings will mess up the ride height and make the bushings fail early.



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stan
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyThu Jun 11, 2020 1:23 pm

In newer cars you can adjust almost everything the way you want by just pressing a button. That I know is the case in Rolls Royce Wraith but............ ( $340,000 )
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carguy8888
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyThu Jun 11, 2020 9:41 pm

Here is some info:
I have 17.5 & 18" from the center of the center cap to the bottom of the wheel opening molding. The pics show the bottom of the wheel opening molding to the ground. The leveling sensor rod was broken when I got the car so I had a guy attach it with a wire, I guess that could be my problem now that I know it is adjustable? Does this sensor control the front and rear or just the back?



Front
My car it's too high in both the front and rear  49996208443_9d7b6111e2IMG_20200611_192503853 by Brian Cohen, on Flickr

Rear
My car it's too high in both the front and rear  49996206108_1cedc1fce4IMG_20200611_192445499 by Brian Cohen, on Flickr

My car it's too high in both the front and rear  49996724011_76613db8e9IMG_20200611_192948657 by Brian Cohen, on Flickr
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LARRY70GS
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LARRY70GS


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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 12, 2020 8:22 am

First, you need to replace that level sensor. The rear is supposed to adjust itself up and down. The FSM has trouble charts for rear too high and rear too low. You need to follow them and do you own diagnostics. It's really the only way unless you want to guess what's wrong. I've been through this before. Yeah, it's time consuming and a pain, but you need to do it yourself, or pay the mechanic to do it. Like I said, it's time consuming. When I first bought my car, the ALC was not working, the back of the car was low. Took me 2 days to get through the trouble chart, but it led me to one single broken wire between the level sensor and the ALC relay under the seat. NO WAY I would have found that without the FSM.

Second, the front height has nothing to do with the ALC. Years ago, there was a problem with the Monroe ready struts. Seemed they made the car too high in the front, my guess, wrong coil springs. I used the Gabriel Ready struts and had no problem at all. Read about it in this thread,

https://rivperformance.editboard.com/t9615p50-monroe-quick-strut-complete-strut-assembly?highlight=monroe+struts

Go back to page 1 and read the whole thread. I linked you to where I ordered the Gabriels. If you read beyond that, I list the stock ride height specs.

_________________
98 Riviera SC3800  All stock except gutted air box.
1970 Buick GS455 Stage1, TSP built 470BBB, 602HP/589TQ
Best MPH, 116.06 MPH, Best ET, 11.54
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHCda-t_Jls
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfT2tEO4XcU
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carguy8888
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Name : Brian Cohen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 12, 2020 1:50 pm

I found the parts for the sensor and I will read everything when I get home. I am headed to Belmore tonight, are you going?
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LARRY70GS
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LARRY70GS


Name : Larry
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 12, 2020 9:25 pm

I was there, under the tracks, 1st spot adjacent to Bellmore road.

_________________
98 Riviera SC3800  All stock except gutted air box.
1970 Buick GS455 Stage1, TSP built 470BBB, 602HP/589TQ
Best MPH, 116.06 MPH, Best ET, 11.54
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHCda-t_Jls
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfT2tEO4XcU
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carguy8888
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Name : Brian Cohen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 12, 2020 9:41 pm

I was under the trestle and brought my riv for the first time. I guess once I fix the back I'll figure out how much lower I have to make the front?
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LARRY70GS
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LARRY70GS


Name : Larry
Age : 65
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 12, 2020 9:43 pm

Read the thread I linked and measure.  Or look at your FSM for correct trim height and measure.

Here, I'll copy and paste it for you,

I just looked in my FSM, volume 2 of 3. On page numbers 3-6 and 3-7 under Trim Height, they tell you to measure exactly 23 1/2" back from the front wheel center line to locate the front under body point. Then measure from the front under body point to the ground. The spec for the Riviera is 6 7/16"- 7 1/4".

The rear under body point is found by measuring exactly 23 1/8" forward from the center line of the rear wheel. Then measure from there to the ground. The spec is 8 3/8"- 9 3/16". It would seem that the car should sit up in the back.

They specify level ground, nothing in the trunk except spare tire and jack, etc., and a correctly functional ALC.

_________________
98 Riviera SC3800  All stock except gutted air box.
1970 Buick GS455 Stage1, TSP built 470BBB, 602HP/589TQ
Best MPH, 116.06 MPH, Best ET, 11.54
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHCda-t_Jls
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfT2tEO4XcU
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carguy8888
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Name : Brian Cohen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySat Jun 13, 2020 9:07 am

Thank you, I will do it once I get to parts installed.
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albertj
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albertj


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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySat Jun 13, 2020 9:37 pm

You'll need to fix the level sensor assembly in the rear.  The way the link is attached, it will never set properly.

It would not surprise me that you have an issue with the front struts that would be resolved by (a) installing Gabriel ready-struts (b) finding junkyard struts/springs with the factory tags attached - the factory springs are quite good - and with those struts (the yard will let you have them for a song) just use those springs - replacing the struts and mounts.  Just a thought. Also, a pair of springs is about $75 from rockauto.com -- you might want to simply replace the springs that are in your current struts with those. Supposedly they are variable rate which should improve ride and handling. .


Last edited by albertj on Mon Jun 15, 2020 8:25 am; edited 1 time in total
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carguy8888
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySat Jun 13, 2020 10:13 pm

I'm going to order the parts to fix the center in the back on Monday. I have a feeling the previous owner replaced the front struts with the Monroes that are too high. Aside from the look will I feel a difference if the front is lowered?
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LARRY70GS
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LARRY70GS


Name : Larry
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Location : Oakland Gardens, NY
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 14, 2020 8:18 am

carguy8888 wrote:
Aside from the look will I feel a difference if the front is lowered?

I doubt it.

_________________
98 Riviera SC3800  All stock except gutted air box.
1970 Buick GS455 Stage1, TSP built 470BBB, 602HP/589TQ
Best MPH, 116.06 MPH, Best ET, 11.54
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHCda-t_Jls
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfT2tEO4XcU
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carguy8888
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Name : Brian Cohen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 14, 2020 1:37 pm

Thanks Larry, in that case I may just leave the front for now but I will fix the arm on the back.
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Rickw
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Name : Rick
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 14, 2020 8:17 pm

You mentioned you hear the air compressor coming on and shutting off.
If it is frequent, you may also have leaking tubing due to a crack in the plastic tubes or bad O-Rings in the end fittings as well.
Use some soapy water in a spray bottle or welders leak detector to squirt on all the pressure fittings all the way back to the compressor which is under a splash panel in the rear fender well behind the right rear tire.
If you can't find the level switch with the arm on it, let me know. I might have one I can send you. Will have to double check though. It will be in storage with a lot of other Riviera used parts that I have. They all worked good when I put them in storage.

I also have a complete set of FSM's for a 1998 and a 1999, if that is what you need.

PM or email me.

Good Luck,

Rick
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carguy8888
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 14, 2020 8:36 pm

The arm is broken and I'm buying a new one this week. Actually, I don't think the compressor is over working.
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carguy8888
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyThu Jun 18, 2020 8:51 pm

I met a guy w/ A 38k mile riv and measured from the wheel opening molding to the ground. My car is 1.5 inches higher.
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DeepFrozen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 19, 2020 6:16 am

Mine is ~ 28 1/3".
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carguy8888
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Name : Brian Cohen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 19, 2020 6:38 pm

That is roughly what he had, ty.
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carguy8888
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptyFri Jun 19, 2020 6:41 pm

Instead of searching junk yards I am thinking of buying Moog or AC Delco front springs and having them installed. Just making sure the front should be a constant rate spring b/c AC Delco offers it both ways. Also, is one brand better for our cars?
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carguy8888
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 21, 2020 3:56 pm

This was attached to the shock, I have not been able to get it on a lift to see if there is a brand name.
My car it's too high in both the front and rear  50030241443_1e2d39e17aIMG_20200621_154955654 by Brian Cohen, on Flickr
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albertj
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 21, 2020 6:05 pm

carguy8888 wrote:
Instead of searching junk yards I am thinking of buying Moog or AC Delco front springs and having them installed. Just making sure the front should be a constant rate spring b/c AC Delco offers it both ways. Also, is one brand better for our cars?

Either will work, originals were constant rate, variable rate would perform somewhat better but really it's a preference thing. Variables will handle a bit firmer toward their limits.

You would be able to get a set of Gabriel readystruts for about the same $$.
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albertj
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albertj


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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 21, 2020 6:09 pm

carguy8888 wrote:
This was attached to the shock, I have not been able to get it on a lift to see if there is a brand name.

are they air shocks, or conventional, or spring assist?
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carguy8888
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Name : Brian Cohen
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 21, 2020 6:31 pm

I'm almost positive they are shocks that come together with the springs but I am going to check again. They're definitely not air shocks and they're not original.
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LARRY70GS
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LARRY70GS


Name : Larry
Age : 65
Location : Oakland Gardens, NY
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My car it's too high in both the front and rear  Empty
PostSubject: Re: My car it's too high in both the front and rear    My car it's too high in both the front and rear  EmptySun Jun 21, 2020 6:41 pm


_________________
98 Riviera SC3800  All stock except gutted air box.
1970 Buick GS455 Stage1, TSP built 470BBB, 602HP/589TQ
Best MPH, 116.06 MPH, Best ET, 11.54
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHCda-t_Jls
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfT2tEO4XcU
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