Best Shocks for Towing and Hauling- Heavy Duty Shock Absorber of 2021

best shocks for towing and hauling

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Shock absorbers could be your best friend on the road. When you drive for long periods, or periodically go through rough roads, and consistently carry heavy loads, you should make sure that the shock absorbers your truck is carrying are reliable and quality ones.

Trucks? Yes, we’re talking about trucks here, not only sedans or regular cars which carry only light passenger load.

Rough roads, heavy luggage, towing of heavy loads and loaded trailers will be the regular burdens of your trucks. That’s how trucks are destined to make a living. How damaging it can be if your truck doesn’t have right quality shock absorbers designed for heavy loads and towing?

In a hurry? Check out our top 3 picks that we highly recommend!

Our Top Picks for Heavy Duty Shock Absorbers!

Image PreviewProduct NameQuick Links to Amazon
Rancho RS9000XL RS999269 Shock AbsorberCheck Price On Amazon
ACDelco Specialty 504-554 Rear Air Lift Shock AbsorberCheck Price On Amazon
Monroe Shocks & Struts Max-Air MA785 Shock AbsorberCheck Price On Amazon

Do Heavy Duty Shocks Help With Towing and Heavy Load Duties?

Yes, they definitely do. Shock absorbers help with slowing down and controlling the movement of the vehicle. Keep in mind, truck’s rear leaf spring will have a key role under heavy loads. Choose shocks that compromise between quality and price if you are on a budget.

What to Look For When Choosing Your Heavy Duty Shocks for Towing and Hauling?

  • Buy shocks that can maintain the level height of your truck and has adjustable air pressure – preferably from 20 to 200 psi so that your truck can breathe easily. This adjustability is important because you can easily remove or add air according to your needs.

If it could maintain a ride height that could reach up to 1,100 lbs per pair, that is already exceptional.

  • With regards to the piston rod of the shocks, it should have a smooth chrome finish that is leak proof. It should be resistant to corrosion and also should be digressive and velocity sensitive. It reacts well to changing road and weather conditions but still gives you a smooth ride all the way through.
  • Your chosen heavy duty shocks should also offer full displaced valving which enables you to enjoy a smooth ride aboard your truck. It would also help if, for example, the shocks’ travel length is a little more than 9 inches, but it could have an extended length of up to 25 inches.
  • Its overall body diameter should be approximately 70 mm to show a robust look ideal for heavy loads and towing.

Overall, when all factors are considered, your chosen heavy duty shocks should have a long product life, have a consistent wear surface, and should also possess good seal lubrication.

Pro Tip:

But whatever heavy duty shocks you buy, make it a consistent habit to always carry load or tow heavy
burden that’s UNDER CAPACITY of the maximum payload that your truck can carry because consistently
overloading your truck can’t make the most quality heavy duty shocks stand the pressure after a short
period of service. It will eventually break apart.

  • Before buying heavy duty shock absorbers, be sure also that they are compatible with your own brand and make of truck. All the above features are a summary of ideal heavy duty shock absorbers.

Now, It’s Time to Take a Look at the Best Shock Absorbers Models/Brands for Towing and Hauling

1. Monroe MA822 Max-Air Adjust Shock Absorber

Get to know the facts about this product:

The good thing about it is it MAINTAINS THE RIDE HEIGHT UNDER LOAD. This is important because if your truck is on or above capacity all the time while carrying or towing all those heavy burden, it will eventually break apart. The key is Under Capacity Most of the Time!

The air chamber can either be inflated or deflated up to 150 PSI to maintain the ride height even if there is an additional weight of up to 1,200 pounds.

It is FLEXIBLE TO ADJUST because it can either manually inflate with an air compressor or operate on a special air fitting that resists air leakage and works on a factory default system. You can pair with these Monroe shocks those shock air hose AK kits.

It has EXCEPTIONAL HANDLING because it has a character of full displaced valving on extension and compression cycles, making for a smooth ride.

It is a sintered iron piston and a hardened and precision ground piston rod that does a consistent performance.

It is BUILT TO LAST. Its lubricated air sleeve minimizes friction, making it durable and giving you a longer shelf life with a smooth operation.

The OE all weather fluid within contains SPECIAL MODIFIERS WHICH HANDLES EXTREME TEMPERATURES and lowers friction and guarantees smooth rod reactivity.

2. ACDelco 504-511 Specialty Shocks for Towing and Hauling

Get to know the facts about this product:

Do you know that ACDelco parts like shocks are installed in more than 2 million GM cars every year? This makes ACDelco one of the few Original Equipment (OE) parts to be part of the GM parts brand that is constantly requested for GM vehicle production.

These heavy duty rear shocks are covered under the ACDelco Parts Warranty (24 months) coverage for those products purchased April 1, 2018, and later. There is coverage for the parts and also possible labor coverage.

These shocks are designed to haul heavy load, towing boats, or towing a trailer TEMPORARILY. This means heavy loads can’t be a part of the truck’s routine on a daily basis.

These shocks have an air pressure adjustable to between 25 and 200 psi and also up to 1,100 lbs per pair of load capacity that it can carry.

When it is loaded, these shocks add or release air as needed to help maintain the level of the vehicle height, stabilize the alignment angles, minimize suspension component wear, improve overall handling and minimize bottoming out risk.

3. Gabriel 49235 Hijackers Air Shocks

Get to know the facts about this product:

They are the original air adjustable shocks. Hijackers shocks inflate just like how your tires do it. Air them up before towing chores to minimize the risk of bottoming out. They provide customized performance and support that can be adjusted again and again to handle TEMPORARY towing or hauling needs.

Gabriel, as a company, started in 1907 and invented the first shock absorber, followed by the first hydraulic shock absorber, and then the first air adjustable shock absorber. These Hijackers Air Shocks is part of this line of air adjustable shock absorbers.

It levels a loaded vehicle to enable safe driving. It has up to 1,100 lbs per pair of leveling capacity.

Hijackers also have a superbly finished chromed piston rod that reduces corrosion, ensures seal lubrication, and makes for more consistent wear of the surface.

It is also leak proof, giving it extended shelf life. It’s Drawn Over Mandrel (DOM) Tubing also minimizes internal wear and tear for longer service of the shocks to you.

4. Bilstein 24191203 Shocks for Towing and Hauling

Get to know the facts about this product:

They are a direct fit heavy duty shocks solution for your lifted truck. Bilstein features a monotube design that provides consistent comfort performance.

It consists of a distinctive digressive and velocity sensitive piston which reacts with the flexibility to changing road conditions. You will feel the sudden substantial improvement in handling, ride quality, and comfort.

When using Bilstein shocks, never tow or haul up to maximum capacity.

Only three fourths capacity at times, and one half capacity on regular load.

5. Rancho RS999269 Series Shocks for Towing and Hauling

Get to know the facts about this product:

It’s great adjusting shocks with RESERVE TUBES. This feature allows it to run at a cooler temperature and makes it work consistently in almost all situations. It’s 70 mm BODY DIAMETER gives it a robust appearance but also at the same reflects its internal excellent performance for the function of towing heavy duty vehicles.

This large Rancho 18 mm NITRO ROD has a durability for long journeys because of its 2x strength capacity.

Its advanced 9 position tuning technology offers 9 DIFFERENT LEVELS OF SHOCK ABSORBER PERFORMANCE. Additionally, it has optimal shock performance because it is NITROGEN GAS CHARGED.

It shows good looks because of its METALLIC LIQUID FINISH but at the same time makes it long lasting. With regards to LONG LIFE EXPECTANCY, it fulfills that due to its banded piston that is FILLED WITH GRAPHITE FLUON.

6. Monroe MA785 Max-Air Adjust Shock Absorber

Get to know the facts about this product:

It can be INFLATED OR DEFLATED AS REQUIRED from a range of 20 psi up to 150 psi with the truck having a load.

This Monroe product is designed for your vehicles that tow trailers or haul heavy loads. It contains SPECIAL MODIFIERS which reduce friction and guarantee smooth rod reaction. Its hardened and precision ground piston rod which measures 1/2 inch displays consistent performance and long life expectancy.

It offers FULL DISPLACED VALVING. There is an efficient valving range on both the compression and extension cycles of the shocks which gives you a comfortable ride. It is proudly made in the UNITED STATES.

7. Bilstein 24-186735 Front Shock for Towing and Hauling

Get to know the facts about this product:

They are high gas pressure monotube shocks designed for vehicles carrying heavy loads consistently. They have a 46 mm digressive piston with a self adjusting deflective disc valving. They have a larger working piston area which enables super damping ability which makes it ideal for heavy towing and Hauling and occasional off road travel. But still maintains a superior ride.

These shocks have a collapsed length of 11.3 inches and an extended length of 15.76 inches. Its high flow piston minimizes harshness and offers independent rebound and compression tuning.

These shocks are also compatible with large diameter tires when it comes to control on the road.

8. ACDelco 504-539 Specialty Rear Air Lift Shock Absorber

Get to know the facts about this product:

It’s very similar in features to the ACDelco 504-511 Air Lift Shock a Absorbers. They are both rear shocks but the 504-539 is $15 cheaper than 504-511. And both ACDelco shock variants appear in more than 2 million GM cars annually.

Similarly, these shocks also offer the same 24 months with unlimited miles warranty and might also include labor coverage for ACDelco shocks purchased on or after April 1, 2018.

These shocks provide better handling for temporary situations, such as when your vehicle, once in a while, tows a trailer or a boat or hauls a heavy load.

But it should not be a regular or continuous thing. These shocks have adjustable air pressure, of a range between 25 and 200 psi, and can carry up to 1,100 lbs per pair of load carrying capacity.

When your vehicle is loaded, these ACDelco shocks help maintain the level of your vehicle height through the increase or decrease of air as required.

They also assist in the stabilization of the alignment angles, minimize suspension component wear, improve vehicle handling, and minimizes the risk of bottoming out. It is almost the same as the 504-511, except for the price.

Will Adding Turbo Add to Towing Capacity?

Putting in a supercharger turbo would help with towing by easing it and increasing the maximum amount that could be towed.

But it’s important that your truck’s drive chain could handle the extra load as well as your brakes.

So it’s also important that you elevate the braking abilities of your truck so it could handle the extra load.

But remember, an added turbo charge would mean something was added to the truck which was not designed within its specifications.

So, everything that will be affected by the increased load should be checked, not only the drive chain and the brakes. One thing that could happen is your engine could heat up from too much added pressure.

Final Words- Our Opinion and Recommendation for Your Next Heavy Duty Shocks


This is hard. All the reviewed heavy duty shocks have their unique features. But it really depends on the brand and make of your truck because each of these shocks are not compatible with all brands. Take for example the 2 variants of ACDelco which are installed on almost all GM vehicles.

I like the fact that ACDelco advertises its 24 months, unlimited mile warranty. With this feature, it’s almost like advertising GM vehicles too.

I also admire those heavy duty shocks which could be inflated and deflated at will, depending on your requirements for your present load. All the brands, except for Bilstein are adjustable with air pressure in the heavy duty shocks. So choose among them.

Those shocks which have a distinctive difference between their collapsed length and full length have advantage over the other ones, because this would help a lot with heavy loads that the shocks won’t break because of the big allowance in compression. And Bilstein makes a big deal about this feature.

But what really stands out here is Rancho. It is a brand that doesn’t usually get recommended in regular size vehicles. But it gets a 5 star rating when it comes to heavy duty shocks.

Imagine, it’s the only nitrogen gas charged shocks in the group. And its piston is filled with Graphite Fluon. They are not only self adjusting shocks but they also have reserve tubes which the other brands don’t offer.

And its looks and its robustness (70 mm body diameter) makes it look perfect on any massive truck. And to boot, its metallic liquid finish also means longer life expectancy.

There’s also this 9 position tuning technology which offers 9 different levels of shocks performance. We believe no other brand of shocks in the group offers this versatility.

So, it’s Rancho for us, but check if it’s compatible with your vehicle, but if your truck is a GM, go with ACDelco, because they’re trusted, partners.

No matter what heavy duty shocks you choose, always load up your vehicle only up to 1/2 to 3/4 of capacity. Because no matter how good your heavy duty shocks are, they will complain in due time and break apart if your truck carries consistently maximum level loads.

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