Read to better understand what a camber kit is, why you need one (or don't), and how to choose which brand to purchase.
This guide is meant to help those that are having a difficult time deciding on a certain type of camber kit or would just like to know what a camber kit is and why they need it. If you find this guide helpful, please click yes at the bottom of this guide.
Before I get into what camber is and why you need a camber kit, let me first stress the importance of quality when shopping for a camber kit. Most (if not all) camber kits install as an integral part of your suspension. If this part was to fail, it could be catastrophic! For instance, balljoint type camber kits hold your upper control arm to the knuckle assembly. If the balljoint failed, your wheel would go from the upright position | (like this) to a horizontal position __ like this. Obviously, this is not a good scenario. Therefore, do not shop this product based solely on price.
The following brands are very high quality:
- Specialty Products Company aka SPC: They have specialized in the alignment industry for over 35 years.
- Ingalls Engineering: They have specialized in the alignment industry for over 25 years.
- KMAC: They have specialized in the alignment industry for over 43 years.
If you purchase from one of these companies, you can be confident you are purchasing from a reputable company with a strong track record. Also, they have been around forever so you know they will stand behind their product if anything were to happen. Most companies outside of these three, have copied designs and manufactured them out of inferior materials with little to no R&D. For those of you that don't know, thats not a good thing!
Some different types of camber kits
So you drive up in a Honda that you just bought and want to purchase some eye catching 16"or 17" wheels with the low profile, pavement grabbing hi-pro tires and set of lowering springs from a popular aftermarket supplier. This will give you a good start on the look that you want to achieve.
Performance spring companies abound with choices of height changes for the Honda motorcars that have been produced for at least the past ten years. There are choices from a minor 1" lowering spring set for a modest look all the way to a radical 3" drop that slams a car scant inches above the road surface. One thing to consider when installing these new products on your customer's car is what effect it will have on the vehicle after these new components are installed.
Front Camber Changes Examples (definitely vary from vehicle to vehicle)
- If you lower your vehicle one inch front camber can change by approximately -.75 degree.
- By lowering a vehicle two inches your front camber change will be approximately -1.50 degrees.
- When you lower a vehicle three inches you will change front camber approximately -2.50 degrees.
The biggest impact of lowering a vehicle is the Camber change that occurs when a set of springs is installed. If you has just invested in a new set of 17" wheels and the low profile tires to match the last thing you want is a month later screaming about the inside of your high dollar tires being worn to the belts! I can't tell you how many times I have been asked (by an irate lowered car owner) "Why are my tires worn out already? I just bought them!" The problem is the average guy on the street that is striving to achieve that performance look isn't educated on the changes he induces into the suspension when lowering his car.
Rear Camber Changes Examples (definitely vary from vehicle to vehicle)
- If you lower your vehicle one inch rear camber can change by approximately -.50 degree.
- By lowering a vehicle two inches your rear camber change will be approximately -1.00 degrees.
- When you lower a vehicle three inches you will change rear camber approximately -2.00 degrees.
The high performance lowering springs effectively only differ in the height at which they allow the car to ride after being installed. When the springs are installed both the lower and upper control arms are moved "up" in their travel arc to a new position that is now higher in the normal travel than that which was design by the manufacturer. This places the suspension in the same condition as while cornering, it lowers the geometry of the suspension and also lowers the camber. The only difference is that now this is the normal ride height, the camber has changed and unless this is corrected there is going to be massive inside tire wear in a short period of time. For example, when a Honda is lowered 1 inch you can expect approximately a negative .80 degree camber change. At a two inch drop the Camber lowers about 1.50 degrees and three inches induces a whopping 2.60 degree negative camber change! Unless this is corrected you will be returning to your shop in a very unsavory mood in the very near future.
The answer to these problems is again found in the aftermarket. Most manufacturers do not provide any means of camber adjustment from the factory so installing camber kits is the only option.
Example of rear camber
Determine if you need a camber kit by:
- Finding excessive tire wear on the inside edge of your tires compared to the outer edge
- Taking your vehicle in for an alignment and asking the technician if you have excessive negative camber (and for a printout of the results). This is the only way to know exactly how excessive your camber is but definitely not necessary. Also, you will pay for this preliminary alignment and then pay for another alignment once you have purchased your camber kit. Double whammy.
- You have lowered your vehicle so you already know your alignment (camber) will be off and purchase a camber kit ahead of time.
Specialty Products Company, designing and manufacturing innovative automotive suspension parts and tools since 1972. Specialty Products features three product lines that that cover a variety of vehicle suspension needs, from traditional automotive alignment and heavy duty truck applications, to cutting edge off-road suspension systems, along with sport compact and rod/race suspension tuning solutions.
Part ID: 67525 (set of two)
Adjustment Range (Degrees): -1.5 to +1.5
Adjustment Range (Degrees):-1.0 to +3.0
Adjustment Range (Degrees):-2.5 to +3.5
Adjustment Range (Degrees):-2.0 to +2.0
For over 25 years, Ingalls Engineering has designed, engineered, developed and produced some of the most innovative components in the performance and OEM aftermarket segments.
Adjustment Range (Degrees):-4.0 to +4.0
Part ID:38920 (set of two)
Adjustment Range (Degrees):Up to 3.0
KMAC with some of the best suspension talent in the industry, has been thoroughly researching, designing, race testing and manufacturing. Bolt- on Camber, Caster and toe adjustment kits since the early 70’s. Being actual in-house manufacturers gives them total control over quality and design input/output.