We wanted some of the best suspension hardware we could get our greedy little paws on, so naturally we turned to ICON and their Stage 2 Suspension System for the 2009 to 2014 4WD F150s for a little help. Our friends over at ICON were happy to help us out and a pair of front adjustable coilovers, uniball upper control arms, and a set of rear 2.0 Aluminum Body Shocks showed up at our door, ready to jump on our project truck. First up: the coilovers. ICON's performance coilovers consist of a 2.5" aluminum shock body wrapped up in an Eibach Performance Coilover Spring that provides excellent levels of response and articulation while still giving your truck a great ride on the street. The coilovers are actually pretty easy to get installed, though space is kind of an issue and having an extra pair of hands ended up helping a great deal.

Our first step was to head down to Extreme Performance down in Goodyear, to enlist the help of Kris, JD, and one of their lifts. Our truck was already up in the air thanks to our earlier install of ReadyLift's 3" Rear Lift Block, so JD and Kris went to work tearing at our truck's front suspension for the coilover installation.

The first real step of this install was one of the more tricky. Kris had to reach up on top of the shock mount and loosen all the nuts holding the factory shock assembly in place. Very little clearance and not a great view made it kind of difficult. It may hav been easier to go from above with a long extension, but our heavy truck was already close to maxing out their lift. After some feeling around, Kris got them all off and trudged onward.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

Next, Kris removed the bolt for the lower shock mount to prepare for the removal of the entire shock and spring assembly.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

Kris then removed the bolt holding the tie rod end to the steering knuckle and moved the whole tie rod assembly out of the way.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

After the tie rod bolt, Kris hit the bolt holding the upper control arm ball joint to the spindle. Once the bolt was removed, it took some penetrating oil and some hammering with a mallet to pop the ball joint stud loose.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

With the ball joint, tie rod, and strut mount free, Kris pulled the the wheel hub and rotor assembly out and down to give himself enough room to yank out the factory damper and spring.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

With the factory assembly out of the truck, Kris and JD could now slide the ICON coilovers into place and get ready to bolt them into their mounts.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

We did run into a slight issue with the fitment of ICON's top plate with our truck's strut mounts. Kris and JD, for the life of us, could not get the bolt holes lined up, and ICON's instructions were pretty adamant about the coilver's orientation. We gave ICON a call, and sure enough, all we had to due was rotate the coilovers 180° with the serial number facing the truck to get them to fit. Go figure.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

With the upper bolts in place and hand-tightened, Kris and JD moved onto another fairly tricky part of the install that looks easy on paper. ICON's coilovers have a smaller lower mount than the stock shock and use a set of metal spacers to compensate. Seems simple, right? Well, you need to push the lower control arm and hub assembly into an effective position while holding the spacers in place while pushing ICON's grade 8 bolt through the whole lower ring, spacers, and mount. Needless to say, an extra pair of hands came in...handy.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

After the lower bolt was secured, Kris torqued all the bolts back to their proper specs. We didn't reinstall the upper control arm ball joint or tie rod right away, because up next were our ICON Tubular Uniball Upper Control Arms, but you definitely should put those back nice and tight, assuming you want your truck to actually move where you want it.

ICON Front Coilover Install on Our 2012 FX4 5.0L Project Truck

2 Comments

Manuel Borunda

Date 5/6/2014

I am having problems I'm hearing a metal rattling noise almost like if the spring was loose over sharp bumps at even slow speeds. Shocks are set at the icon delivered 2" setting and the driver side the serial number facing out and on the passager side the 2.5 number are facing out

Jonathan Peak

Date 2/6/2017

Could you have reinstalled the old upper control arms, without having to worry about damage occuring?

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