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Z71 Rancho's are terrible


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OK I swapped out the Rancho shocks and struts on my 2015 GMC Z71. I have 20,000 miles. 3 out of the 4 were bad. 1 strut was leaking, 1 shock was leaking, and 1 shock would not expand back out.

 

On the highway the truck would wallow around, a little at first and then got worse slowly that I didn't notice the change at first, then it got really bad.

 

GM, if you are listening, I would gladly pay a little more on the Z71 and get better shocks.

 

I tried to find Bilsteins but ended up I got a smoking deal on Pro Comp Pro Runner. So far I am very happy with them.

 

I know there are better Rancho lines, but honestly, I think this experience has ruined me from the brand.

 

Anyone else have such luck?

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Saying they are terrible is being generous. Horrible is more like it. Replaced mine with Rancho 5100's and it is like I transformed the truck. No longer did a pebble on the ground knock out my grandma's dentures when I ran over one.

 

GM knows the Ranchos are complete junk but they were the low cost bidder.

Edited by O_J_Simpson
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I personally like my Z71. But then again, I don't do any straight up OFF-ROAD driving. Besides dirt/gravel roads to look at properties I own, driving through cow field to pick up hay rake, etc. So I really can't say a lot for mud-bogging or stuff like that. But what I can say is when I got my Sierra, I looked at a 2016 Ram 1500 Outdoorsman(Ram's "equivalent" to the Z71) and their is a huge difference. The truck does not handle bumps, "waves" in the road, or ride quality like the z71. The salesman even told me(literally told me during the test drive) that the CLOSEST Ram has to the Z71 8$ the Outdoorsman, and that even it doesn't compare. Now most of the differences weren't HUGE, but if I was able to notice differences during the average truck driver's typical drive, then you guys would probably notice a bigger difference during off road driving. But the comment about the dentures,that's the kind of stuff I enjoy about driving my truck with my mother-in-law in the passenger seat.

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OK I swapped out the Rancho shocks and struts on my 2015 GMC Z71. I have 20,000 miles. 3 out of the 4 were bad. 1 strut was leaking, 1 shock was leaking, and 1 shock would not expand back out.

 

On the highway the truck would wallow around, a little at first and then got worse slowly that I didn't notice the change at first, then it got really bad.

 

GM, if you are listening, I would gladly pay a little more on the Z71 and get better shocks.

 

I tried to find Bilsteins but ended up I got a smoking deal on Pro Comp Pro Runner. So far I am very happy with them.

 

I know there are better Rancho lines, but honestly, I think this experience has ruined me from the brand.

 

Anyone else have such luck?

How much were those?

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How much were those?

My system shows currently unavailable. 4 wheel parts had them on sale. I use the same wholesaler. The part number is s/dgm1500pr-1 and includes all 4

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I personally like my Z71. But then again, I don't do any straight up OFF-ROAD driving. Besides dirt/gravel roads to look at properties I own, driving through cow field to pick up hay rake, etc. So I really can't say a lot for mud-bogging or stuff like that. But what I can say is when I got my Sierra, I looked at a 2016 Ram 1500 Outdoorsman(Ram's "equivalent" to the Z71) and their is a huge difference. The truck does not handle bumps, "waves" in the road, or ride quality like the z71. The salesman even told me(literally told me during the test drive) that the CLOSEST Ram has to the Z71 8$ the Outdoorsman, and that even it doesn't compare. Now most of the differences weren't HUGE, but if I was able to notice differences during the average truck driver's typical drive, then you guys would probably notice a bigger difference during off road driving. But the comment about the dentures,that's the kind of stuff I enjoy about driving my truck with my mother-in-law in the passenger seat.

 

Neither do most of these guys, they are just regurgitating what some others have said so it must be right. They are stiffer so they ride rougher, they aren't softer like high end off road shocks as theses have to haul, tow and handle ok on the road. They are also a cheaper shock meant to handle what the engineers need them to at a price point; be ok on road, off road, towing and hauling. All makes (minus a raptor) come with a cheaper shock. The Tacoma TRD comes with a cheap bilstein. People just say they are horrible (which they aren't, they just aren't great) because they buy one of the higher end shocks and it rides a little softer in most cases.

 

In the end I am good with them. I am not going to drop hundreds of dollars for a softer off road shock if I am not running off road at higher speeds regularly or they need replacing. Yes they have had some failures (anything does) but many of the others aren't great for towing or hauling, these are a descent balance, they fit 90% of what the people use them for with out complaints. I have no doubt in many instances an expensive off road shock is better, I am sure it does great for riding softer for those coming from a CUV or luxury car before as most aren't running off road at higher speeds to take advantage of them.

 

When these wear out (probably closer to 100k) I will look in to some others.

 

Tyler

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Neither do most of these guys, they are just regurgitating what some others have said so it must be right. They are stiffer so they ride rougher, they aren't softer like high end off road shocks as theses have to haul, tow and handle ok on the road. They are also a cheaper shock meant to handle what the engineers need them to at a price point; be ok on road, off road, towing and hauling. All makes (minus a raptor) come with a cheaper shock. The Tacoma TRD comes with a cheap bilstein. People just say they are horrible (which they aren't, they just aren't great) because they buy one of the higher end shocks and it rides a little softer in most cases.

 

In the end I am good with them. I am not going to drop hundreds of dollars for a softer off road shock if I am not running off road at higher speeds regularly or they need replacing. Yes they have had some failures (anything does) but many of the others aren't great for towing or hauling, these are a descent balance, they fit 90% of what the people use them for with out complaints. I have no doubt in many instances an expensive off road shock is better, I am sure it does great for riding softer for those coming from a CUV or luxury car before as most aren't running off road at higher speeds to take advantage of them.

 

When these wear out (probably closer to 100k) I will look in to some others.

 

Tyler

I'm not sure I'm following you. The Ranchos on mine were never stiff and when I took them off 3 of the 4 had failed, leaking and lost pressure and wouldn't expand after compressing by hand.

 

I tow so I need a decent shock and I doubt the Ranchos were ever good for towing

 

The new shocks are stiffer but more important, the rebound is a million times better

Edited by FreeAmerican
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The Ranchos should be under warranty. Either from the dealer (3yr 36,000 mile bumper to bumper) or from Rancho (Lifetime original owner). My old S10 went 240,000 miles through 4 sets of aftermarket Ranchos. 3 replaced free under warranty with no hassle at all.

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The Ranchos should be under warranty. Either from the dealer (3yr 36,000 mile bumper to bumper) or from Rancho (Lifetime original owner). My old S10 went 240,000 miles through 4 sets of aftermarket Ranchos. 3 replaced free under warranty with no hassle at all.

 

Does the lifetime apply to the GM OEM factory ranchos? I would assume no?

Edited by BSME1115
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Neither do most of these guys, they are just regurgitating what some others have said so it must be right. They are stiffer so they ride rougher, they aren't softer like high end off road shocks as theses have to haul, tow and handle ok on the road. They are also a cheaper shock meant to handle what the engineers need them to at a price point; be ok on road, off road, towing and hauling. All makes (minus a raptor) come with a cheaper shock. The Tacoma TRD comes with a cheap bilstein. People just say they are horrible (which they aren't, they just aren't great) because they buy one of the higher end shocks and it rides a little softer in most cases.

 

In the end I am good with them. I am not going to drop hundreds of dollars for a softer off road shock if I am not running off road at higher speeds regularly or they need replacing. Yes they have had some failures (anything does) but many of the others aren't great for towing or hauling, these are a descent balance, they fit 90% of what the people use them for with out complaints. I have no doubt in many instances an expensive off road shock is better, I am sure it does great for riding softer for those coming from a CUV or luxury car before as most aren't running off road at higher speeds to take advantage of them.

 

When these wear out (probably closer to 100k) I will look in to some others.

 

Tyler

 

Tyler, I always wondered why the general consensus was "ranchos suck". I assumed people must have had different expectations than I did. It seems that the Z71 shocks handle average driving just fine. I don't know why or how they are lacking. I would love someone to show me with data what the problem is. When a guy on a forum says "they suck" I wonder if they are too stiff or too soft. I think our Z71 trucks are stiffer than a car, but softer than a HD truck - right where they should be. In fact, due to the larger tires, there are many bumpy roads near me that my truck handles better than my wife's car or my beater. So if the shocks are better than two passenger autos, i must be missing something.

 

If my ride can actually be improved by 4 new shocks, i would like to do it. But as for now, i am left wondering if people just don't know how it feels to ride in a truck that is capable of carrying some 2000 lbs more than an empty vehicle. Your post made me realize that for someone with reasonable expectations, they stock shocks seem to be fine.

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