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Old 08-02-2012, 06:27 PM   #1
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Air Bag Helper Springs replacement

I must replace the front air bag helper springs (bladders) in my front end. What should be the cost of this for parts and labor? I have been quoted $775. Is this reasonable? I have a Workhorse P32 chassis.
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Old 08-02-2012, 06:39 PM   #2
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The airbags should be under $100.00 It should take well under a hour to install each bag. I was 68 years old when I installed my last set. While not fun, it is not that difficult. If you are in decent health, you should be able to do yourself. The total cost, if you have someone else do it, should be under $300.00 The instructions come with the bags and are easy to follow. One last thing. DO NOT go back with chevy rubber bags. The polyeurethane bags last forever, if you keep the air up in them.
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Old 08-02-2012, 06:47 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Farmjudge View Post
I must replace the front air bag helper springs (bladders) in my front end. What should be the cost of this for parts and labor? I have been quoted $775. Is this reasonable? I have a Workhorse P32 chassis.
Way to much money. You can get the bags for around $100 and any decent mechanic can do the work in an hour or two. $300 would be a much better price for someone else to do the work.
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Old 08-02-2012, 08:04 PM   #4
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$775 is WAAAAAYYYYYY too much. A mentioned here, do make sure you get the poly bags.... and make sure that you have 2+ inches clearance between the a frame bumper and the bumper stop above it. If not, weight the front and rear of the coach, and order the Henderson springs for the actual weight of the front axle and eliminate the airbags all together. The reason I bring this up is, if the front coils are collapsed far enough, it will pinch holes in the new bags. Perhaps the $775 was new coils, bags and an alignment ? That would be pretty close to what the cost for that would be.....but not for bag replacement alone. And, again, if thats the case, eliminate the bags and just put the right springs on. The bags serve no purpose other than giving a bit of extra support and lift. Chevy and WH never knew if that P30/P32 would be a 20ft bread truck or a 37ft motorhome, and they installed the same spring on them all. Keep us posted... I'm getting ready to replace springs on mine... I'm down to about 1 1/4" clearance between the bumper and stop.
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Old 08-03-2012, 07:22 AM   #5
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Contrary to popular belief there never was a P30 chassis. The air assisted suspension was engineered to allow for adjustment of the suspension loading (weight to be carried).
Deflated airbags will upset the suspension geometry causing excessive wear to the inside tread.
The polyeurethane bags are a great inprovment over the old rubber ones and when properly installed will last many years, but pressure must maintained and not allowed to drop below #50. Firestone bags are warranted for life.
Firestone also developed a kit whereby the pressure can be monitored and adjusted from the drivers seat. Firestone SKU #2491
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Old 08-03-2012, 09:10 AM   #6
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Air Suspension Bag replacement

WOW! I've had two quotes; one for $775 and one for $740. The Workhorse Warranty shop quoted me $139 each for each bag. The $740 quote does include an alignment. I am guessing that both shops intend to drop the lower A frame to install rather than try to push them though the hole in the bottom. In any event, I'll keep you posted on what I do and the final cost. Thanx to all of you that left me feedback......

Like they say; "You can always get it back by working!"
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:41 AM   #7
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I just installed the Firestone Ride Rite air springs on my motorhome. Although I have an F53 chassis, I believe the installation is probably about the same. The kit was reasonably priced at around $280 out the door for both bags. I installed them myself in a few hours. The biggest hassle was drilling a hole in the frame. The directions have you putting the top plate on the bag first. Don't do it. Install the air nipple first, otherwise, you'll be taking that top plate off once you realize there isn't enough room to screw the nipple in with the plate installed.
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:51 AM   #8
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I just installed the Firestone Ride Rite air springs on my motorhome. Although I have an F53 chassis, I believe the installation is probably about the same. The kit was reasonably priced at around $280 out the door for both bags. I installed them myself in a few hours. The biggest hassle was drilling a hole in the frame. The directions have you putting the top plate on the bag first. Don't do it. Install the air nipple first, otherwise, you'll be taking that top plate off once you realize there isn't enough room to screw the nipple in with the plate installed.
The airbags for a ford are totaly different than GM/Workhorse, less than $100. for the kit.
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Old 08-03-2012, 12:12 PM   #9
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"Contrary to popular belief there never was a P30 chassis."................I never knew that. What's the correct name for a 16k Chevrolet chassis ? Why do we all call it a P30 ? Why are all the parts for this particular chassis listed as, and found as a P30. Chevrolet seems to call it a P30 and know it as such...WH called it a W18, I know.....give us some insight ? I'm not trying to be snarky, I'm just curious as I've never heard that before....
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Old 08-03-2012, 01:16 PM   #10
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A few years ago, I had the front bags replaced on my P-30 by Camping World. They used a hole saw and cut about an inch and half hole in the bottom of the arm. He sprayed bag with soap and rolled the old bag up with a long needle nose, twisted out. Reverse procedure on install. Less than a two hour job, possibly closer to one.
Your quotes are very high.
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Old 08-03-2012, 02:52 PM   #11
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"Contrary to popular belief there never was a P30 chassis."................I never knew that. What's the correct name for a 16k Chevrolet chassis ? Why do we all call it a P30 ? Why are all the parts for this particular chassis listed as, and found as a P30. Chevrolet seems to call it a P30 and know it as such...WH called it a W18, I know.....give us some insight ? I'm not trying to be snarky, I'm just curious as I've never heard that before....
The chassis was a P30 series. They designed a P30, a P31, and the final chassis was a P32. The P30 and P31 were never mass produced. The correct number is P32, but many parts houses have it listed under the series # P30. I was told this by the head engineer for chevy at the Louisville dealer show.
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Old 08-03-2012, 05:18 PM   #12
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"Contrary to popular belief there never was a P30 chassis."................I never knew that. What's the correct name for a 16k Chevrolet chassis ? Why do we all call it a P30 ? Why are all the parts for this particular chassis listed as, and found as a P30. Chevrolet seems to call it a P30 and know it as such...WH called it a W18, I know.....give us some insight ? I'm not trying to be snarky, I'm just curious as I've never heard that before....
P-series models explained
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:01 PM   #13
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Interesting... I never had heard that before...you learn something new everyday.... thanks guys !
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Old 08-05-2012, 07:50 AM   #14
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Interesting... I never had heard that before...you learn something new everyday.... thanks guys !
There is no need to do an alignment after replacing the bags. As long as the minimum ride hight is restored the geometry will return to its original configuration.
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