Post Installation Notes  
Be sure to remove the spring retaining clip on the driver side.
Although they are not necessary to remove your stock springs, a pair of spring compressors will help to make the job easier and will be needed to install your new taller springs.
You will need to drill a hole in your spring perch so that you can bolt on your bump stop extension.
Slip the bump stop extension on while installing your new springs and then affix it to the spring perch using the self-tapping bolt supplied.
This is a shot of what your front end should look like once everything is installed.
The arrow is pointing at the rear swaybar link.
Remove the plastic dust cover off of your trackbar mount using a screwdriver and discard. You will not be re-using it.
Install your trackbar relocation bracket using the hardware supplied. Some drilling may be required.
This is a shot of what your rear end should look like once everything is installed. Notice that I have a 3/4" spacer on top of the spring.
Install your new extended rear swaybar links.
The end product.
View from the back.
Mix-n-Match Jeep TJ 3" Budget Lift

Like most Jeep owners, I'm always on a tight budget and owning two Jeeps certainly doesn't help. Any extra cash I have usually ends up in maintenance so how's a guy like me ever gonna install a taller lift? Well, the key is to be patient and tenacious.

Fortunately for us, we live in the era of the internet where information is abundant and a good deal can always be found. It has taken me almost two years to do but a lot of the parts I needed, I actually got for FREE. The rest of the parts I found in the "Used" forums and a few I bought new.

Special thanks needs to go to JohnDF for giving me his old Rusty's 3" Springs, michaleturtle1 for his Teraflex front trackbar/rear relocation bracket and for all the people who sold me parts cheap. For the record, this lift cost me less than $150 to do :-)

What You Will Need
• 3" TJ Lift Coils Front/Rear or ZJ V8 Front Coils*
• Longer Shocks to fit a 3" Lift
• Bump stop Extensions Front/Rear
• Extended Front/Rear Swaybar Links
• Adjustable Rear Trackbar or Relocation Bracket
• Adjustable Front Trackbar
• Metric (13,15,17,18,19 mm) Socket & Wrench Set
• SAE (1/2,9/16) Socket & Wrench Set
• Torx T-55 Bit
• Standard Ratchet
• Torque Wrench
• Spring Compressors (Autozone Rents them for FREE)
• Metal Drill Bits
• Jack stands (2 minimum - 4 preferred)
• 2.5 Ton Floor Jack or Better (21" or higher preferred)
• Wheel Chocks
• PB Blaster
• White Lithium Grease
• Hammer

* For those of you doing a ZJ coil lift, you will need to use the OEM TJ front coils in the rear. This will yield you approximately 3" of lift total.


Before you start, if the bottom of your Jeep looks anything like mine does, take the time and give it a good hose down before you do anything. If you live in a state that salts their roads, it would be a good idea to do this a few days in advance and then spray all the bolts you will be working on (i.e. shocks mounts, swaybar links, etc.) with a good dose of PB Blaster. Also, be sure to park your Jeep on a flat, level surface like a driveway before you do anything. Make sure you're in gear and the e-brake has been applied.

I did get new rear coils but was told by the former owner that they sagged so, for the installation of this lift, I decided to start on front end just in case I decided to use the OEM coils in the rear. Having said all that, chock your rear wheels and then crack loose your front wheel lug nuts.

2. Completely remove your OEM swaybar links for this lift and eventually replace them with extended links or quick disconnects. I already had a set of adjustable JKS quick disconnects and just used them for this lift. To see how to remove your OEM links and install a set of JKS quick disconnects, CLICK HERE to see my write-up.

3. Jack up your Jeep from the axle, remove your wheels and then carefully lower it back down on to jack stands placed just behind the lower control arms.

4. Be sure to place your wheels behind your jack stands underneath the frame rails for added protection.

5. Remove your front shocks. This can be a bit tricky as the top of the shocks are studs fastened by two nuts. You will need a small open ended wrench to hold the lower nut as you unscrew the upper locking nut. Or you can to use a pair of pliers or small wrench to hold stud (to prevent the whole shock rod from spinning) while removing one nut at a time.

6. Remove the retainer holding down the spring on the driver side as shown on the pic to the right. Most TJ's will not have a retainer on the passenger side.... but I have heard of some 1997 and Canadian models do.

7. Start jacking up the axle from the driver side carefully until your can remove the spring on the passenger side. Be sure you pay close attention to your brake lines while doing this. If you have a budget boost already installed like I did, this may be a bit difficult to do and the assistance of spring compressors will help out a lot.

8. Now to address the bumpstops. After doing a lot of research, I decided to get front bump stop extensions from Rubicon Express that bolt to the bottom spring perches as opposed to extending the length of the factory bumpstops. The problem with extending the factory set is that they can get hung up in your springs while flexing. In hindsight, I think a couple of hockey puck could do the job just as well.

Anyway, start this part of the install buy drilling a hole through the center of the bottom spring perches using the appropriate size drill bit (a tiny bit smaller in diameter than the bolts you are using). The bolts supplied with the Rubicon Express kit were self-tapping and I would recommend you getting the same if you are going the hockey puck route.

9. Pre-thread the holes you just drilled by ratcheting on the self-tapping bolts. Make sure to do this slowly and back out often to create clean threads. Do not mount the bump stop extension at this time as it will make installing your new coils very difficult.

10. Using your spring compressors, compress your new coils enough to make it easier to install. Slip the bump stop extension and your new coils into place at the same time and then affix the bump stop extensions to the spring perch using the self-tapping bolt supplied as shown in the pic to the left.

11. Repeat steps 7-10 on the opposite side of your Jeep.

12. Install your new shocks (see step 12 under my RE Budget Boost Install for instruction on how to insert barpins), re-attach your wheels, remove the jack stands, lower your vehicle, torque down your lug nuts to 90 ft. lbs. and then install your new front swaybar links.


13. Chock your front wheels and then just crack loose your rear lug nuts so that it will be easier to remove once your Jeep is in the air.

14. Remove your rear swaybar links on both sides of your Jeep as indicated by the arrow in pic to the left.

15. Jack up the rear of your Jeep from the differential enough for you to remove your tires and then lower it back onto jack stands. Make sure your stands are placed underneath your frame rails just in front of your rear tires and leave your floor jack holding up your axle.

16. Again, place your wheels in front of the jack stands underneath the frame rails for added protection.

17. Remove your rear shocks and then lower your floor jack so that your axle hangs at a full droop.

18. Reposition your floor jack under the driverside of your axle and then carefully jack it up so that you can remove the coil on the opposite side. Again, spring compressors really come in handy here. Also, be sure to go slow and make sure none of your brake lines are put under too much stress.

19. Remove your spring and then the rubber bump stop by firmly grabbing it and then working it back and forth until it comes out.

20. For the rear, I just kept the bump stop extension I had from my old budget boost. However, if you are installing a new set, here's what you need to do: Inside the bump stop retaining cup, you will notice a bolt holding it in place. Remove this bolt and the replace it with the longer one supplied in the Rubicon Express kit. Place the new bump stop extension over the bolt, then the spacer over the extension. Re-attach everything to the upper spring perch.

21. Compress your new coil using your spring compressors and then slip it back into place. Lower your floor jack so that your axle is hanging again and then repeat steps 18-20.

22. Now it's time to install your new rear trackbar or relocation bracket. Contrary to what some may say, this is actually really easy to do if you just take your time. To start, jack up your axle from the differential as close to a point where it would be if your Jeep were on the ground with its tires on. The closer you are the easier everything will come apart.

23. Remove the nut and bolt holding the OEM trackbar to your frame (passenger side of your Jeep). If the bolt seems to be in really tight, try raise or lower your axle ever so slightly as is necessary until it begins moves easier. You may also need to give the bolt a slight tap with a hammer to get it out but you shouldn't have to bang on it.

24. Now go to the driverside of your Jeep and remove the plastic dust cover off of your trackbar mount using a screwdriver and discard. You will not be re-using it. Now remove the bolt attaching your trackbar to your axle.

25. Install your new adjustable trackbar or relocation bracket. I installed a Teraflex bracket which came with all the hardware necessary but I did need to drill a couple of holes wider in the axle flange to get a couple of the bolts through. Be sure to torque everything down to the manufactures specs. If the nuts supplied are not lock nuts, be sure to use some lock-tite on them. The main trackbar bolts should be torqued to 85 ft. lbs.

26. Your rear shocks should have come with two metal sleeves. Slide these into the bottom bushings and then install your new rear shocks. Re-attach your wheels, remove the jack stands, lower your vehicle, torque down your lug nuts to 90 ft. lbs. and then install your new extended rear swaybar links.

27. Follow the rear axle breather hose up to the gas filler hose, cut the zip tie holding it there and then re-zip tie it on at a slightly lower location to relieve any tension created from the lift. The front of my hose seemed to be okay so I just left it alone.

You will most likely experience driveline vibes now that you are 3" taller than stock. The cheap and easy way to fix this is to lower your transfercase skidplate an inch. However, I chose to get a 1" MORE Motor Mount Lift instead and you can see my installation write-up by clicking on this link:

Be sure to get a front end alignment after finishing this job.

Congratulations, you are now 3" higher!!

NOTE: Last but not least, I finally got a hold of a used TeraFlex adjustable front trackbar from michaelturtle1 a few weeks after installing this lift but it was in need of some real help. Click on this link to see my write-up:

Post Installation Notes:

One Month Later
Well, it's been about a month since I installed this lift and all I can tell you that it is awesome!! These coils did in fact give me about a 3" lift but I did have to use a pair of 1" coil spacers in the rear to compensate for sagging due to the weight of my roof rack.

The BDS shocks that I picked up for this lift offer one of the best rides I have experienced in a TJ and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a set. In my opinion, these ride far better than even my old DT3000's which I really liked a lot.

I have yet to take my TJ out on the trails since installing this lift but I will be sure to make a note of it once I do :-)

As luck would have it, even with the addition of 1" spacers, my rear coils sagged enough under the weight of my hardtop and roofrack that the shocks were practically sitting at its collapsed height on level ground.... not good. While on the road they experienced no problems, I'm quite confident that they would bottom out like crazy on the trail. Needless to say, I gonna have to replace them with a new pair of shorter shocks.

Well, I was only going to get a new pair of rear shocks but thought that a set of four would be easier to sell.... and it was. Once sold, I used the earinings plus a gift certificate I had with Q-tec to get a set of Doetsch Tech Pre-Runner DT8000 shocks. At $40 a pop, these were slightly cheaper than BDS shocks (which they unfortunatly do not sell) and a bit more than DT3000's but I was still able to get them for very little extra cash out of pocket. I went with the DT8000s this time around because they are supposed to be a little firmer then the DT3000s. After installing them I can tell you this, they are a lot firmer. Although the BDS shocks offered a much better ride in my opinion, I think the new DT8000 ride pretty good too and I really like the fact that they can be mounted can up (upside down). It's a good thing too cause the shock can is considerably wider in diameter than the BDS shocks and they would definetly make contact with the lower spring pearch at a full droop if I mounted them right side up. I will follow up on how things go once I've had a chance to take my Jeep out on the trails.

Finally rebuilts the adjustable front track bar I got from michaelturtle1 and installed it. Be sure to check out my write-up by clicking here:

To fix my saggy rear end, I added an Air Lift Suspension to my rear coils. This effectively gave me almost 4.5" of lift in the back so I added 1" coil spacers up front to help level things out. Needless to say, I now am sitting on a 4" lift :)
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