Torsion versus Spring Axles

July 16, 2019

Are you buying a trailer but do not know which type of axle to choose? Trailers either have torsion or spring axles. If you are not sure what the difference is, please read further to understand the features and benefits of both.

Torsion Axles

Torsion axles utilize the force of the ground pushing back up against the axle arm that is connected to a steel rod inside the beam of the axle. The steel rod is encompassed by high-density rubber. This rubber is used to cushion the axle while impacting on uneven road terrain.

Advantages of Torsion Axles:

  • Not as bouncy or bumpy of a ride as a lighter weight or unloaded trailer
  • Fewer moving parts resulting in less maintenance
  • Longer warranty periods
  • Range of arm articulation to allow raising or lowering the clearance of the trailer potentially without having to block the axles
  • Removable spindles in case of bearing blow outs, potentially saving thousands on repair costs due to not having to replace the entire axle

Disadvantages of Torsion Axles:

  • Most repair facilities don’t stock torsion axles
  • Higher initial cost
  • Trailer must be level when towing to prevent overloading the front or rear axle due to being welded directly to the frame and axles not connected together to transfer weight like spring axles
  • Colder weather stiffens the rubber inside the axle creating less cushion

Spring Axles

Spring axles are likely the axles you have on your current trailer and are the type of suspension that most people know about for trailers. The axles are bolted together to help transfer weight between axles when encountering uneven road terrain or an unlevel surface. Spring axles use the leaf springs to push back against the force of the trailer to provide cushion when impacting on uneven road terrain, bumps, and potholes. On top of that, Interstate features the Dexter E-Z Flex heavy duty rubber equalization system on all LoadRunner trailers. This system provides up to an 80% reduction in force on the trailer’s frame to give a smoother, more protective ride.

Advantages of Spring Axles:

  • Parts are found at many repair facilities and usually don't need to be special ordered
  • Spring axles come in a straight axle beam for higher road clearance or a 4" drop axle to help with getting in and out of the trailer. The 4” drop axle will adjust the pitch of rear ramp trailers, and are typically found on car haulers to allow lower profile vehicles to be loaded without bottoming out.
  • Lower initial cost
  • Interlinked axle system helps prevent load spikes (overloading) on an axle by assisting in distributing the weight from either front-to-back or back-to-front with the equalizer.
  • Easier to repair when encountering issues

Disadvantages of Spring Axles:

  • Trailer will have a little more bounce when riding empty when compared to a torsion axle
  • More moving parts that will require additional maintenance with time and use
  • Shorter warranty periods

Here at TrailersPlus, we want to help you understand exactly what you are buying. We are happy to answer any questions you may have on a trailer, and we have factory-trained technicians that handle all repairs and installs at stores. We are here to help you understand the ins and outs of your trailer.

Do you have any trailer questions?

Please call us at 877-850-7587 to discuss!


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