Leaf Spring VS Coil Spring Suspension: Which Is Better?
May 3, 2021
Which is better between a leaf spring and a coil spring?
Any vehicle’s suspension system is integral to its performance. Some of its most important parts — the springs, tires, shock absorbers, bushings, joints, linkages, and the like — help the driver in maneuvering and handling the vehicle. When it comes to the spring, in particular, drivers have been debating on the leaf spring vs coil spring and which of the two types provide a better driving feel. Although both spring systems have their strengths and disadvantages, understanding their differences can help you choose the right one for your car. Read on to learn more.
Part of any vehicle’s performance is comfort. Sure, a driver may have all of the top-of-the-line and tuned car components in their arsenal, but if none of them provide a comfortable ride, then it’s no better than the average car.
Keeping this in mind, there’s really no clear choice on which of the two — leaf spring and coil spring — offer better comfort. Generally, leaf springs are used for heavier vehicles such as trucks, tractors, tank trucks, and the like. They can come in either a multi-leaf or parabolic form, with layers of steel. The entire system is connected to the axis and the chassis of the vehicle
Meanwhile, a coil spring comes in a looped design that’s usually installed atop the vehicle’s framework or axel. While it may be more lightweight compared to the leaf spring, it doesn’t perform well in load-bearing situations. It’s usually found in smaller vehicles to help in adjustments for different terrains.
As mentioned, coil springs are not really ideal for larger vehicles. This is due to the absence of load-bearing support in the component. While they may be lighter compared to the leaf spring, they can’t be used in overloaded vehicles as the weight concentration can speed up the wear and tear of this component. For older coil springs, cracks and breakages are common, making them unsuitable for medium or heavy-duty vehicles.
Since the leaf spring is made for heavier vehicles, it’s made out of durable materials such as hardened steel. Investing in a good quality leaf spring such as the Tiger Super Molye for example can bring more value to your vehicle due to quality craftsmanship. You can also lower expenses in the long run when it comes to car part maintenance and repair due to the sturdiness and longevity offered by the Tiger Super Molye leaf spring.
Leaf springs are generally more cost-effective compared to coil springs. Coil springs may be able to improve mobility and performance for lighter-weight vehicles, but they are more prone to damage due to the design. Coil springs are also rarely installed on their own — they usually come with other enhancements such as an auto buffer, booster, or a rubber stop to sustain its quality.
What makes leaf springs more affordable is their wide availability and simple, yet effective design. It has been a staple in automotive manufacturing ever since early 1800. Moreover, they’re not expensive to produce, since the raw materials don’t require excessive post-processing nor complex refinements.
When choosing between a leaf spring vs a coil spring, the answer really depends. Coil springs are oftentimes found in lighter vehicles, like the everyday sedan or the mini-SUV — usually to improve shock absorption and handling. However, the design of the coil spring makes it more complex to produce. Not to mention that it comes with other attachments when installed.
Compared to the coil spring, leaf spring production depends on already available materials and designs. Although it sports a simple look, it has been effective in improving maneuverability, comfort, and providing cost-effective solutions for heavier vehicles. Keep all of these in mind the next time you’re shopping around for the perfect suspension system for your vehicle.