What's maximum weight on Lincoln Town Car rear air suspension?


#1

I have a 2002 Lincoln Town Car, which has air suspension instead of coil springs. I need to carry electric motorized scooter for my father. It weighs close to 300 pounds.

My quesitons are: 1. What is the safe maximum weight I can carry on the trailer hitch on the car. According to the hitch manufacturer, 300 pounds is O.K., but I would assume that is when the weight is on the trailer hitch ball not when there is a tray-like thing carrying the scooter. (The scooter would exert more force/weight on the hitch, because it would be extended out from the trailer hitch/ball.)

2. Will the air suspension be able to take that much weight without malfunctioning? I ask this because to maintain the same ride height, the car would try to put greater pressure into the air suspension bags, which will ultimately result in failure or premature wear. Does the system have maximum tolerable pressure, so that the car would begin to sag rather than over-inflate to maintain the ride height and go bust?

I see a lot of people in Lincoln Town Car carrying electric motor scooter for disabled persons, so I am assuming it's O.K., but I just want to make sure. Also, what happens if the air suspension bags go bust? does the car sink?


#2

Carry the scooter and don’t worry any more about it than you do with your day to day driving. The air suspension on your Towncar is about due to have problems anyway. It’s going on ten years old. You’ll get some warning from the dash display before they die completely. When they do, consider replacing them with coil springs. There is a kit for that purpose.


#3

The 300 pounds should be okay as long as a couple of 250 pound people don’t climb in the back seat and throw their golf-bags in the trunk…The system has a maximum air pressure cut-off to protect the bags from damage. The little compressor under the hood will be working hard as the scooter is loaded and unloaded and re-loaded…If an air-spring fails, the suspension drops down on the snubbers. The frame of the car drops down and rests on the axle with a rubber snubber or block preventing direct contact…

Considerable care in driving the car will be necessary with all that weight hanging on the back…


#4

Check the tow rating in the owner’s manual. The tongue weight to support the trailer is typically 10% of the tow rating. If the tow rating is 3500# to 5000#, the 300 lbs of scooter and ramp should not be a problem. Of course, as Caddyman mentioned, this will still cause the air suspension system to work harder, but it should be able to manage it.


#5

I don't see a problem with this. However, if the air ride ever goes south do not blame the scooter for this.

Unless they've been replaced, the air bags and ride solenoid O-rings are 10 years old. Rubber degrades with time and eventually dry rot sets in and they leak. The scooter will not be the cause of this problem.


#6

I should have added that the one problem you MAY have will be light steering due to the weight so I would pay attention to that particular hiccup, especially at higher speeds.