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Best Shocks for Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD

The Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD is one tough truck. It hauls trailers, heavy loads, and gets you there and back again regardless of road conditions. The best aftermarket shocks for your Silverado 2500HD can improve the ride quality, handling, and make towing or hauling more enjoyable. Picking the right shocks is a challenge because of the numerous products on the market.

Today, we are going to compare five aftermarket shock replacement kits for the Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD. Each of these shocks has features that make for a high-quality part to replace worn out or inadequate stock equipment. Our top pick is the Bilstein 5100 gas shock set, which beat out four other major brands as the ultimate upgrade to your truck.

Best Shocks for Silverado 2500HD – Top picks

 Bilstein 5100Bilstein 4600RANCHO RS9000XLRancho RS5000XFox 2.0
Manufacturer Part Number24-186735 / 24-18674224-060813 / 24-060820 RS999274 / RS999288RS55274 / RS55288980-24-664 / 980-24-963
Model Years1999-20102001-20102001-20102001-20102011-2015
ExteriorSmoothPaintedSmoothPaintedPainted
Item Weight (pounds)2519252525
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1.  Best Overall: Bilstein 5100 Monotube Gas Shock

Bilstein 5100

The Bilstein is our top pick for several reasons. It’s an absolutely beautiful product that enhances the appearance of your truck’s suspension and we think it looks tougher than anything else on the market. But, looks aren’t everything, your shocks need to perform, too. The Bilstein 5100 proves to be pliable on rough, washboard-type dirt roads and stable around town, particularly when you are hauling a trailer. We also like that this shock will fit on a stock truck and you won’t have to replace shocks if you decide to add up to a 2” lift in the future.

Key Features

  • Monotube gas shock set for all four wheels
  • 46mm piston for enhanced damping effect
  • Ideally suited for trucks with stock suspension or up to a 2” lift
  • Includes everything needed to install
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Pros

  • Attractive metal finish looks tough
  • Works on stock or lifted trucks
  • Excellent shock for work trucks and haulers

Cons

  • A little stiff for stock trucks that are primarily driven on pavement


2.  Runner-Up: Bilstein 4600 Monotube Gas Shock

Bilstein 4600

Our top pick is just a little more versatile than this high quality set of shocks from Bilstein. The 4600 series differs from the 5100 in several key ways. The 4600 series of shocks are a stock replacement part for non-modified trucks. If you decide to lift your truck later, these shocks would need to be replaced. We also think the 5100-series of shocks from Bilstein is more attractive than these shocks. Ride quality is excellent, particularly for trucks driven on the street, but ride quality isn’t as good off-road or when hauling a heavy load.

Key Features

  • Monotube gas shock set for all four wheels
  • Improved control and handling over stock shocks
  • Classic blue and yellow finish
  • Lifetime warranty

Pros

  • Big improvement in ride quality and handling over stock parts
  • Easy to install on a stock truck

Cons

  • Doesn’t include dust gaiters
  • A little soft for trucks that see lots of construction yards or off-road conditions


3.  Rancho RS9000XL Adjustable Shocks

RANCHO RS9000XL

These shocks from Rancho are an excellent upgrade over stock parts and offer some interesting features. Drivers can manually adjust the firmness of these shocks to any one of nine settings from very soft to very stiff. This is a useful feature when you typically use your truck on the street (firm) but also like to go four-wheeling on the weekends (soft). These are for a stock height truck and won’t work if the vehicle is lifted. We found the Bilstein 5100 shock to provide a better all-around ride than these shocks.

Key Features

  • 9-position adjustable gas tube shocks for all four wheels
  • Oversized piston rod for durability
  • Oversized reserve tube for cooler performance
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Pros

  • Adjustable settings is a neat feature
  • Improved ride quality over stock

Cons

  • Not as durable as the Bilstein shocks
  • Many users report issues dealing with warranty replacement


4.  Rancho RS5000X Shock Set

Rancho RS5000X

Rancho shocks are popular factory replacements, and the 5000X series is ideal for stock trucks that rarely get used off-road. These shocks provide cushy soft control and improve ride quality, particularly on highways. Progressive valving lets these shocks take impacts with ease giving the driver a better sense of control while driving. We found these to be a little too soft in comparison with the shocks above.

Key Features

  • Gas shocks for all four wheels
  • Progressive valving gives a soft ride
  • Affordable stock replacement part
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Smooths out the rough stock ride
  • Cons Easy to install
  • Smooths out the rough stock ride

Cons

  • Not as durable as Bilstein 5100
  • Some users report quality control and customer service issues


5.  Fox 2.0 IFP Shock

Fox 2.0

These shocks are almost as nice to look at as the Bilstein 5100 shocks, and we expected them to perform at least as well. They are a definite upgrade over the stock shocks and work great for smoothing out bumpy roads, especially at higher speeds. We expected to see a rather large difference between these and the 5100 considering the difference in cost. Perhaps, that was the biggest let down, as the Bilstein shock simply gave a better ride in all conditions at a lower price.

Key Features

  • Attractive aluminum body
  • Internal Floating Piston (IFP) technology prevents oil aeration
  • Fits stock trucks up to 1” lift
  • One-year warranty

Pros

  • Great looking shock with a cool logo
  • Excellent on-road ride quality
  • Increases stability, particularly in the rear

Cons

  • Not significantly better than other shocks, despite higher price


How Upgrading Shocks Changes the Ride

The shocks on your truck work by forcing hydraulic oil through ports in the shock at a specified pressure. This lets your suspension move and reduces the amount of vibration you feel. Your stock shocks are good quality, but they are not the best shocks you can buy. The reason is that the manufacturer selects a shock that meets the middle ground between ride comfort and handling performance.

When you upgrade your stock shocks to aftermarket units, you can select shocks that are the best for the type of driving you do. If you use your truck on construction yards, drive dirt roads, or haul your toys off-road, you will want a shock that provides more travel and damping on rough surfaces. A softer shock will give you better steering control and more predictable handling characteristics.

Firmer shocks are best suited for trucks that see lots of on-road driving. Firm aftermarket shock absorbers are particularly helpful when you use your truck to haul a trailer because they will improve the ride quality and make towing safer. Firm shocks can be harsh on rough roads and can make your truck feel jumpy at high speeds.


Conclusion

We selected the Bilstein 5100-series of shock absorbers as the best upgrade for the Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD truck because they offer the best balance between on- and off-road performance, looks, and long-term durability. (>>> Check the current price on Amazon) We particularly like that the shock works for stock trucks and up to a 2” lift which saves money if you decide to lift your truck in the future.

You don’t have to wait until the stock shocks on your truck are worn out to make an upgrade. Switching from stock shocks to the Bilstein 5100-series is an affordable way to transform the ride and handling of your three-quarter ton truck without spending a huge amount of money. It’s one of the easiest upgrades you can make to improve the safety and stability of your truck.

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