Lifting the 2023 Ford Super Duty Gets A Lot More Complicated With Onboard Scales
Not only can incorrect installations disable the feature, but they can also mess with the auto-leveling headlights.
Love it or hate it, lift kits are a staple of truck culture. It's the first mod a lot of people make when they buy a new rig. That's already been the case with the 2023 Ford Super Duty, but on pickups equipped with those trick onboard scales, improper installs are messing up the calibration. This not only disables the feature but it also throws the headlights out of level.
To understand why it's a problem, you first need to know how the onboard scales work. The tech—which comes standard on the Limited trim and is available on Platinum, King Ranch, and Lariat Ultimate trucks—measures payload and trailer tongue weight with sensors mounted front and back. This gives you a live reading of how much weight the truck is bearing, both in the cab as well as in the bed and over the rear axle.
As Wicked Customs was quick to point out in a video rundown, modifying the Super Duty's height without correcting the position of those sensors—especially at the front—creates issues. The rods and sensors there move vertically between the lower radius arm and the frame. They relay real-time data to the truck and adjust the headlights accordingly so they aren't blinding drivers or shining away from the road. If the sensors aren't adjusted to compensate for the altered suspension height, a warning will display on the dash that reads "Advanced Features Unavailable."
While it might not be a crucial feature for everyday driving, you pay for it and you might as well use it. Plus, nobody wants to drive a $90,000 truck with warnings all over the dash.
Wicked Customs points out that it's simpler to keep the rear sensors in spec because the rod brackets are mounted above the leaf springs. That means you can add a lift block and longer U-bolts to the rear end without much headache. If owners opt for leaf spring replacement kits, then the sensors—which move horizontally out back—have to be relocated but it's apparently a straightforward job.
Shops and owners have to keep these steps in mind, even if they're only leveling the front end. That's actually a more common mod than a complete lift kit as a lot of drivers just want their truck to sit flush. A leveling kit also allows more room for bigger tires, and I've seen new Super Duty pickups run 38-inch tires without altering the rear suspension at all. The last thing you want is for a truck that tall to have super-bright headlights shining directly in oncoming drivers' eyes.
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