Are Body Lifts Bad For Off Roading?

Off-road vehicles are purpose-built for conquering rugged terrain. One of the most important attributes for off-roading is the ride height of the vehicle, which is why many off-road enthusiasts find ways to increase the ride height of their vehicle. One method for achieving this is with a body lift, but are body lifts bad for off-roading?

Body lifts are bad for off-roading. A body lift causes many more issues than it solves for off-roading as it exposes internal components of the vehicle, puts strain on vital components, and does not offer much benefit for off-roading. Suspension lifts are a far better option for off-roading.

Two trucks with a high body lift

Lift kits can be valuable for off-roading, but body lifts come with their own set of pros and cons, especially regarding off-roading. Are body kits beneficial for off-roading, or are they a hindrance to this activity? Let’s find out!

Are Body Lifts Good For Off-Roading?

Body lifts are becoming very popular among truck and SUV owners, as they are regarded as stylish and add a unique look to an otherwise ordinary vehicle. Many off-road enthusiasts use body lifts for off-road vehicles, but are body lifts beneficial for off-roading?

The truth is, body lifts are not good for off-roading. A body lift raises the frame of the vehicle up and off of the frame or chassis of the vehicle, which does add some height, but not in the way that is beneficial for off-roading.

High ground clearance is vital for off-roading but using a body lift kit only increases the height of the body, not the overall ground clearance of the vehicle, as the height of the undercarriage of the vehicle remains unaltered.

Lifting the body of a vehicle may help to increase the possible approach and descent angles, as some body lift kits raise the height of the vehicle bumpers, but the ground clearance of the vehicle is unaffected by a body lift.

In this way, a body lift can be beneficial for off-roading, but the advantages are negligible. There are far better modifications for off-roading that will make the off-road vehicle more capable on the trail.

Without increasing the ground clearance of the vehicle, a body lift is only helpful for approaching steep inclines or exiting steep descents but has few other practical applications for off-roading.

The only other potential benefit of a body lift is the potential for larger tires. Larger tires can be beneficial for a certain type of off-roading, and raising the body makes more space for these bigger tires, but this can also lead to a host of issues for the vehicle.

A body lift is not good for off-roading, and it often causes more problems than it solves. For this reason, body lifts are not good for off-roading.

Are Lifted Trucks Better For Off-Road?

When discussing vehicle lifts, there are two types of lifts to consider: body lifts and suspension lifts. One type of lift does drastically improve an off-road vehicle’s ability, and the other is more of a stylistic choice than anything else.

A truck with a suspension lift is better off-road than a truck with a standard suspension if the kit is installed correctly and properly maintained. A suspension lift kit provides significantly more ground clearance than standard suspensions setups, which makes the vehicle much more capable off-road.

A raised suspension and greater ground clearance improve the approach angle, descent angle, ramp-over angles, and the river fording capabilities of a vehicle. Installing a suspension lift moves the vehicle higher off the ground, which also helps to protect the undercarriage of the vehicle and allows the vehicle to go where it otherwise would not be able to.

Rugged trails, rocky areas, steep climbs, deep mud, bogs, loose sand, steep climbs, and river crossing are all made easier by a suspension lift.

On the other hand, as we have already discussed, a truck with a body lift is not much better off-road than a truck with a standard body setup, as the truck is no higher from the ground than it would otherwise be. The raised body makes the bumpers less likely to snag, but there are few other off-roading benefits to this type of lift.

A body lift may provide the possibility of installing bigger tires, but this is only beneficial for certain types of off-roading, but at the end of it, a body lift does not make a truck better for off-roading in the same way that a suspension lift does.

Are Body Lifts Bad For Jeeps?

Body lifts are a common modification done to off-road vehicles. Jeeps are among the most popular vehicles of this type, which means that body lifts are not uncommon among jeep owners, but is this modification bad for a jeep?

A body lift is not worse for a Jeep than it is for any other vehicle. This modification does not cause any direct damage to the vehicle, but it may lead to indirect damage as a by-product of the modifications.

Body lifts are not bad for jeeps, but they are not a modification that is worth doing if you are serious about off-roading. Body lifts are not the best way to improve the abilities and capabilities of a Jeep, but they do not directly cause any damage if installed correctly.

Do Lift Kits Cause Problems?

The simple answer is yes; lift kits do cause problems. However, the issues caused by lift kits are not so bad as to deter the use of them entirely, and the only real problems caused by body lifts occur when off-roading.

Body lifts put unnecessary strain on components within the vehicle. Components such as wiring harnesses, the entire steering column, steering joints, and connectors. These components were made within the tolerances designed by the vehicle manufacturer with the standard body setup.

Raising the body and lifting it away from the frame stretches these components further than they are intended, and this can cause severe issues within the vehicle and may cause serious problems out on the trail that cannot be repaired with simple tools.

The gap left between the frame and the body of the vehicle after a body lift leaves many internal components susceptible to damage ad collection of dust, debris, and dirt while off-roading.

These internal components are meant to be shielded by the body of the vehicle, which means that exposing them is likely to cause damage to the components or reduce the use-life of these components.


At the end of it all, body lifts do not offer any real benefits for off-roading. The truth is, a body lift may cause more harm than good for off-roading, which means that in many circumstances, body lifts are bad for off-roading.

A suspension lift is a much better option for off-roaders and provides real benefits for driving off-road. This type of lift provides the same benefits that may come with a body lift without any of the associated issues. If you want to lift your off-roader, a suspension lift is a far better option than a body lift.

James with daughter on the trails

About James...

Hi, I’m James. If I’m not working on this site, you can often find me outdoors roaming the trails. I’m an avid hiker, mountain biker, and overlander. I’m excited to share my passion for the outdoors with you.