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Thanks to the community here I have successfully fixed my overheat problem, so I'm moving on to another problem...lowering the 95 camry. The method I'm planning on using to lower it is by adjusting the torsion key. Any pros or cons to this method? And would like to know how the handling will be affected. Thanks!

Edit: The 1995 Toyota Camry does NOT have the torsion bar that are found on most pickups and SUVs. Sadly, I had misread a tutorial in a Camry forum on different ways you can drop your car, as this method only pertained to mentioned automobiles.

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    Are you sure your car has one? From what I can tell, only midsize to large trucks use torsion keys for suspension adjustments. For most cars, lowering is done by replacing (or cutting, if you like to live dangerously) the springs. – TMN Apr 15 '16 at 11:26
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    Cutting the springs is very hack. Get lowering spring. Lowering springs typically have a higher spring rate to make up for the lack of travel. If you cut them, you will bottom out on every pot hole and speed bump. – rpmerf Apr 15 '16 at 12:30
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    Best thing to do with a camry is to drive it till the wheels fall off. My father had a 95 camry wagon. Got it from a co worker with about 180k. Drove it until about 230k and gave it to my cousin. They passed 300k a few years ago. Still going solid on the original engine and transmission. – rpmerf Apr 15 '16 at 13:04
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    DO NOT cut the springs. While cutting will have the desired effect of lowing the ride height AND increasing the spring rate (shorter length of material = stiffer spring), it will also increase the stress on the material. As I'm sure everyone knows, the higher the stress, the higher probability a material will yield. After cutting the springs, you may find when you put the car on the ground that the stress is too high, the spring material yields, and your spring is now several inches shorter then after you cut it. – MooseLucifer Apr 15 '16 at 16:16
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    Check Camery forums, I'm sure you aren't the first to have this idea, and someone may have found a decent/affordable solution. For example, for $80 on CL I found two OEM sets of Infiniti G35 coupe and 350z springs that are 1/2" and 1" shorter (respectively) than the springs on my G35 sedan. Since I had the 'sports' package on my sedan, the spring rates were the same, and I was able to bolt them up to my OEM shocks for a cheap, subtle, OEM quality drop. – MooseLucifer Apr 15 '16 at 16:31
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Your Camry uses a coil over strut type suspension.

The proper method of lowering a vehicle like this involves replacing, at a minimum, the entire coil/strut assembly with springs designed to lower the car (which are both shorter and stiffer), and uprated struts that will handle the increased forces imparted by the springs.

Additionally, especially on higher mileage vehicles, it is a good idea to replace suspension components directly affected by the lowering, as the new suspension geometry and increased forces will wear out already worn parts even faster. Examples of these include upper and lower control arm bushings, trailing arm bushings, tie rod bushings, sway bar bushings/endlinks etc.

If your car came with various trims levels that offered a sport suspension package, you may be able to simply swap those parts over. This has the benefit of being able to use OEM components, which are guaranteed to fit and may be cheaper than aftermarket

Lastly, after any suspension modification, the car must be aligned! This is the step that many people skip and the cure for almost all of the negative handling characteristics people associate with lowering a car, like a steering wheel that tries to dive into ruts in the road. A proper alignment will put your steering geometry back (or at least much nearer) to factory settings.

Pros: Looks, improved handling, marginal improvement in fuel consumption

Cons: Ride quality will suffer in a direct relationship to how aggressive a drop/performance increase you want. Car may scrape over speed bumps/steep driveways. Increased crash damage, as bumper may be too low to be effective (Personally rear ended a car in a lowered Integra. The other car had almost entirely superficial damage, whereas the mine was totaled, with catastrophic damage to the radiator support and surrounding areas)

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For God's sake don't

I'm still to see a car that was lowered properly. From what I can remember now you will have these issues:

  • The car will jump at every small irregularity in the asphalt.
  • Wheels will scratch against the body when steered or when suspension works
  • In a collision, the car will damage more for being in a lower position.
  • More maintenance caused by the intense rattling that the car will suffer.

You will be much better off trading your Camry for a Celica or an Integra, if you really mind about driving a sportier car.

  • hmm i see...never thought about the damage i might take in the event of a crash, good point...but is there any pros to this? – Nathaniel Davidson Apr 15 '16 at 5:48
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    Oh yeah, the car will look damn gangsta! – Gabriel Diego Apr 15 '16 at 5:49
  • Seriously, the lower center of gravity will improve handling in very smooth tarmac, although in less smooth streets you are more likely to lose control due to the shaking. – Gabriel Diego Apr 15 '16 at 5:51
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    Can confirm on the more damage in an accident. Drive a lowered integra (bought it that way). Rear ended a civic about a year ago. Bumper went under, and destroyed the upper radiator support. If the car was stock height, it would had hit the bumper and done minimal damage. – rpmerf Apr 15 '16 at 12:28
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    Losing control from shaking? Jumping at anything less that smooth tarmac? I'm sorry, but this sounds like wild speculation from someone who has never put in the wrench time involved in lowering a car. Providing it is done correctly, adjusting the ride height can leave you with a car that both looks more aggressive and handles better at a marginal cost to comfort. I've driven and worked on 10+ cars with modified suspensions and other than the increased chances of damage in a crash (which I can personally attest to), most of this is hearsay. – thunder2709 Apr 15 '16 at 17:04
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Pros:

  • Looks (arguable)
  • Lower center of gravity, more stability, less chance of rolling.
  • Lower gas consumption

Cons: Stated above by @gabrieldiego

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    Lower gas consumption? Citation needed.... – JPhi1618 Apr 15 '16 at 14:20
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    @JPhi1618 lower air resistance – EChan42 Apr 15 '16 at 14:47
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    @JPhi1618 EChan42 is technically correct (the best kind of correct!), lowering will decrease the frontal area car (only because less tire will be exposed), thus decreasing the coefficient of drag. – MooseLucifer Apr 15 '16 at 16:10
  • Nice catch guys... After some googling , I found that turbulant air under the car acts to increase the total frontal area, or the size of the hole the vehicle must punch through the air. Lower the car = Reduce the <effective> frontal area – Nathaniel Davidson Apr 15 '16 at 17:11

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