'05 Navigator -- Air Suspension GONE!

Lincoln Navigator / Lincoln Aviator

  1. tosaman

    tosaman LVC Member

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    My Nav has over 175K on it, and I've been dealing with air suspension problems for a while. Last year I replaced the front air bags struts with after-market units from Suncore (they're okay) - also new solenoids just to be safe. Then the compressor went out - replaced that this spring. Recently, a height sensor went bad and replaced it (Rockauto). Unfortunately, that repair required the system to be reset, and that only can be done at the dealer. After a very bumpy ride to the dealer I was informed that there were three failed attempts at getting the system to reboot and that my control module was bad. THAT DID IT!

    I finally bit the bullet and ordered the Unity coil conversion kit from Amazon ($320 free shipping). I had recent arm surgery so was forced to have a local shop install them -- 4-1/2 hours labor per the book, but a very easy DIY project. Anyway, I am very pleased with the conversion -- should have done it a long time ago! The ride is a bit different, but certainly not worse than with the air suspension. Frankly, I was a little concerned about that based on comments made by others, but the ride is fine. My wife hasn't noticed any difference, and she's the one who likes a soft ride!

    Regarding the air suspension warning message, Unity's site says that the dealer can turn that off with their computer as some Navigators were sold with conventional suspensions and they all have the same onboard computer. I'll take care of that when I go in for my transmission servicing. Saves the effort of hunting for and cutting wires as recommended by other sites.

    My message is this -- don't invest a nickel into repairing your air suspension system -- it's a money pit! I personally think that anyone with a high mileage Navigator should maybe do the conversion even if they haven't started to have air suspension problems, which will happen eventually. It will be more convenient and less costly in the long run. Just saying...
     
  2. Ezjpimp

    Ezjpimp LVC Member

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    I agree. I have a '99 rwd that I replaced the airbags with the Monroe 4wd coil kit and I am much happier with the ride. Over time things fail and just end up snowballing with these air ride systems. I don't hear a noisy compressor kicking on and off anymore which is awesome.
     
  3. tosaman

    tosaman LVC Member

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    AGREE! Just the peace of mind is worth a lot in itself -- I'm no longer paranoid going on long trips, worrying that something will happen with the suspension. Noisy compressor?? The replacement that I bought from Rockauto was twice as loud as the OEM unit. But I had no trouble knowing when the system was working -- even at highway speeds!

    I winter in Mexico and plan to leave the vehicle down there this next trip. You might as well throw a match into it if you have air suspension problems there! Another good reason for the conversion.
     
  4. Rich88LSC

    Rich88LSC Dedicated LVC Member

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    Please let us know if the dealer turns off the check air suspension message. I have a small leak that I am ignoring for now because none of the kit providers(also expedition struts bolt on) can turn off the message.
     
  5. tosaman

    tosaman LVC Member

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    Will do. There are a variety of forum streams on the subject, but they read more like guys arguing over what wire to cut, etc. The Unity kit that I bought had the reference to having the dealer change the computer (even had instructions for how to do it). I'm going in for a dealer oil change in the next week or two and will have them do it then. I will post the results.
     
  6. metalriff

    metalriff LVC Member

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    Agreed on the Monroe kit, I did my Navigator in under 2 hours and the kit was $200 from Rock auto. I just pulled the compressor fuse, light is on but it doesn't bother me.
     
  7. tosaman

    tosaman LVC Member

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    I didn't mess with the fuse - just turned the system off with the switch at the back of the vehicle. Message comes on that the system is off every time I start the car, but will have the dealer reset the computer to show no airbags when I go in for a oil change in a few weeks. Then all I'll have is the stupid "Tire Pressure Sensor Fault" message to deal with each time!!!
     
  8. Rich88LSC

    Rich88LSC Dedicated LVC Member

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    Any update on getting the suspension error message turned off? I'll prob end up doing this int he next year or so and there are modules to turn off up to 04. no one sells 05+
     
  9. tosaman

    tosaman LVC Member

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    Still plan to do it in next few weeks when I get an oil change. 04 and 05 should be the same as model didn't change between those two years. I'll still post results.
     
  10. tosaman

    tosaman LVC Member

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    Sorry for the late reply. I finally took the car to the dealer for an oil change, etc. -- I asked them to update the computer so that the "suspension system off" light doesn't come on (i.e., set the computer as if the vehicle had a conventional spring suspension). They said no problem, but would have to charge me one hour labor to do at $110! I told them forget it -- not that big of a deal to me. I'm taking the car to Mexico and will be leaving there for the next few years. There's a Ford/Lincoln dealer down there that I'll take it to to see if they will do it for a lot fewer pesos!


     
  11. Rich88LSC

    Rich88LSC Dedicated LVC Member

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    Thanks for confirming this can be done!
     

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