How To Set Pinion Angle on Lowered Truck

Many have asked, what is pinion angle? The pinion angle is the angle of the pinion gear in relation to the driveshaft. The pinion is the gear on the front of the driveshaft that meshes with the ring gear on the differential. The pinion angle is important for two reasons; driveline bind and proper U-joint operation. When you lower your truck, the pinion angle changes due to the change in the driveshaft angle, and it can cause vibration issues. You must set the pinion angle on your lowered truck to fix this. The pinion angle is the angle between the driveshaft and the rear axle. If the pinion angle is too high, it can cause vibration issues. If it’s too low, it can cause wheel hop. Here are the steps to set the pinion angle on your lowered truck:

1. Jack up the truck’s rear end and support it with jack stands.

2. Remove the driveshaft.

3. Measure the pinion angle and compare it to the factory settings. Make sure that you know how to measure pinion angle.

4. Once you’ve set the pinion angle, you can reinstall the driveshaft and lower the truck back down.

What Should Pinion Angle Be Set At?

The ideal pinion angle will depend on several factors, including the vehicle type, the tire size, and the suspension setup. A pinion angle between three and five degrees is ideal for most applications. However, it is always best to consult a qualified mechanic or engineer to ensure that your application’s pinion angle is set correctly.

How Is Pinion Angle Calculated?

To calculate the pinion angle, you need to know the length of the driveshaft and the height of the rear axle. The pinion angle equals the arc tan (driveshaft length/rear axle size). For example, if the driveshaft is 30 inches long and the rear axle is 20 inches high, the pinion angle would equal the arc tan (30/20) or approximately 14 degrees. No matter your vehicle type, it is essential to set the pinion angle correctly. This way, you can avoid vibration and other issues that can cause problems down the road.

How Do I Know if My Pinion Angle Is Off?

If the pinion angle is off, it can cause vibration and premature wear on both the drivetrain components and the tires. First, check for excessive vibration while driving to look for its signs. If you feel a strong vibration that seems to be coming from the rear of the vehicle, it could indicate that the pinion angle is off. Another sign to look for is unusual tire wear. If you notice that your tires are wearing unevenly or prematurely, it could be caused by an incorrect pinion angle. You can also search on how to adjust pinion angle, it’s pretty easy to do, and you’ll need an angle finder. Set your pinion at the appropriate angle, being sure to check your shop manual for the correct settings; they vary between cars.

What Does a Bad Pinion Angle Do?

A bad pinion angle can cause several problems with your vehicle. These include vibration and noise as the drivetrain components rub against each other. It can also cause the wheels to slip or skid when accelerating or turning, which can be extremely dangerous. Additionally, a lousy pinion angle can negatively affect your vehicle’s fuel economy, as the engine has to work harder to turn the wheels.

How Do You Set Pinion Angle Leaf Springs?

The pinion angle is the angle between the driveshaft and the differential. Setting the pinion angle when installing lift kits, superchargers, or any other suspension modification that changes the ride height is essential. The two ways to set the pinion angle are static and dynamic. The fixed setting is done with the vehicle on a lift or jack stand, and it doesn’t consider how the vehicle’s weight will affect the suspension. The dynamic setting is done with the vehicle on level ground, and it feels like the vehicle’s weight will affect the suspension. The best way to set the pinion angle is with a digital protractor, but you can also use a tape measure and a level. Here’s how to do it:

1. Measure from the center of the rear axle to the center of the front axle. This is your wheelbase.

2. Measure from the ground to the center of the rear axle. This is your ride height.

3. Calculate your pinion angle by subtracting your ride height from your wheelbase.

4. Once you know your desired pinion angle, you can adjust the suspension to achieve it.

5. If you’re using a tape measure and level, you’ll need to make small adjustments until the pinion angle is correct.

6. If you’re using a digital protractor, you can simply set it to the desired angle and be done.


Setting the pinion angle on a lowered truck is essential to ensure that the drivetrain components don’t experience excessive wear and tear. Selecting the pinion angle correctly is vital if you’re using a lift kit, supercharger, or any other type of suspension modification. In addition, the pinion angle can be set statically or dynamically, but the best way to do it is with a digital protractor. With a little effort, you can ensure that your lowered truck runs smoothly and safely.

About the author, Laurence Perkins