Original post by Travis Clayton of TrailTacoma
SUMOSPRINGS PROGRESSIVE MICRO-CELLULAR URETHANE REAR BUMP STOPS FOR 3RD GEN TACOMA – “THEY’RE SUPER!”
We all know that certain parts or modifications that we do to our Tacomas are out of necessity. And not just because they are flashy and look cool. Sometimes you don’t even get to see the parts unless you go crawling around under your rig. Things like skid plates, add-a-leaf kits, upper control arms, U-Bolt flip kits, and the topic of this article: rear bump stops. Specifically, we will be looking at SuperSprings International’s SumoSprings. They refer to them as a “bump stop replacement” but for simplicity, we’ll refer to them as bump stops.
They may not be a glamorous part of your truck, but they can make a significant improvement. Not just in ride quality, stability, and overall performance when compared to the factory Toyota bump stops. They also help supplement the load-carrying capacity of your 3rd Gen Tacoma. If you think of it like that, it’s hard to see why they so often get overlooked. Unless you tow pretty regularly or are looking into suspension lifts. Then you probably haven’t even thought about a bump stop upgrade for your Tacoma.
In this article, I’ll cover what bump stops are, what they do, and why you may need or want to upgrade yours.
I’ll also be giving you my thoughts on the blue SuperSprings SumoSprings rear bump stops. I’ve been running them on my 2019 TRD Off Road with fully stock suspension for a while now. And I feel confident in sharing my experience with their performance.
If you don’t have a 3rd Gen Tacoma, don’t sweat it. Just check the SuperSprings website to find your vehicle’s specific fitment. Also, if you’re wondering about an install guide, we’ve got you! Check out the step-by-step install and review by Chase.
Note: Although there are bump stops located on the front of the Tacoma, I’ll only cover the rear bump stops in this article.
WHO IS SUPERSPRINGS INTERNATIONAL?
SuperSprings International is the manufacturer of the product we are focusing on today: SumoSprings Rear Bump Stops. SuperSprings was formed in 1996. Based out of California, they have prided themselves on designing and manufacturing effective suspension solutions.
Their mission is to “change your driving experience,” whether it be for trucks, trailers, Jeeps, or RVs. Their suspension solutions are made in the USA and range from coil springs, to self-adjusting stabilization systems, to the SumoSprings we are looking at today.
WHAT ARE BUMP STOPS?
So what are bump stops?
Bump stops provide support and protection for the suspension and the frame of your Tacoma.
Located on top of the leaf springs and centered over the rear axle. Bump stops are what prevent your frame from slamming down onto your rear axle and leaf springs, causing damage. They also prevent shocks from bottoming out and/or failing completely. And since they are a suspension component, they also help dampen impact from large bumps and uneven terrain. This is what helps you feel more comfortable so you can enjoy your driving experience a little more.
SuperSprings compares their SumoSprings to something called a helper spring. Which they define as a suspension product – “engineered to enhance, support, and help various types of original equipment suspension.” Steel add-a-leaf kits and airbags are both considered helper springs.
An advantage of the SumoSprings is that they are easy to install, improve ride quality (unlike steel add-a-leafs), and are maintenance-free. SumoSprings are also quiet. Unlike add-a-leafs, they won’t trap dust and debris that can cause unwanted noise.
WHAT ARE BUMP STOPS MADE FROM?
Most bump stops are usually made from rubber or micro-cellular urethane foam. The SumoSprings we are looking at today are made of micro-cellular urethane. Well, what is micro-cellular urethane anyway? It is a urethane foam that captures air in millions of tiny bubbles. It’s really as simple as that.
SuperSprings has taken this proprietary material and formed it into one piece of dense foam. It is then threaded onto a bracket that mounts almost identically to the factory bump stop. This material allows for a progressive spring rate. An easy way to describe a progressive spring rate is to say that the SumoSprings become stiffer the more they are compressed.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT TO PAY FOR AFTERMARKET REAR BUMP STOPS?
The design and functionality is the biggest factor when it comes to the cost of aftermarket bump stops. They have such a broad price range because some units are a simple OEM replacement whereas others may require (or come with) a U-Bolt flip kit, and others like hydraulic bump stops are designed for more extreme use. Hydraulic bump stops will also require more tuning and maintenance.
So, depending on your specific needs and budget, you can expect to pay anywhere from around $140 to about $825 for an aftermarket set of rear bump stops.
WHAT DO BUMP STOPS DO & WHY DO I NEED THEM?
Why do you need bump stops?
To put it simply, bump stops are designed for support and protection for your truck and its suspension.
Think of them as the last line of defense against bottoming out or over-compressing your shocks. Without bump stops, that could potentially allow your frame to slam up into the body of your truck and cause damage to your suspension parts or even body panels. When you run a suspension lift with OEM bump stops, your odds of causing this type of damage or failure are highly increased.
For instance, if you have a lift installed with oversized tires and you tuck a tire when flexing over an obstacle without limiting your range of motion (by way of an extended bump stop), then your tire could cause body damage or even become cut. Something like the SumoSprings would prevent your shock or spring from compressing beyond its limits and causing premature failure. That type of compression is extreme, but it’s possible and worth mentioning.
Bump stops, such as SumoSprings, also provide support for trucks that are outfitted with additional gear such as camper shells, rooftop tents, full-size spare tires, recovery, and camping gear, etc. All of that extra weight can add up quickly and may leave you experiencing more rear-end squatting and body roll than you’d prefer. This can have a very negative impact when it comes to the drivability and safety of you and your Tacoma. The SumoSprings will help prevent that by helping support the rear end of the truck. They also come in extremely handy when you’re towing or hauling. By preventing the rear of the truck from squatting so much, you are improving the comfort of the ride as well as improving safety.
There are a couple of other things I would like to point out as well. First, it’s important to note that, although SumoSprings help enhance your load-carrying capacity, they do not increase it. All they do is provide a higher level of stability when you are adding extra weight. They are not actually allowing you to carry more weight, but rather they help with carrying the recommended weight in a safer, more stable manner.
Another cool thing about the SumoSprings is that they feature something called a progressive spring rate. SuperSprings explains it like this: “SumoSprings start off slowly, absorbing harsh bumps and movements, then as the spring compresses, they fight back with more and more resistance.” So, the more weight you carry, the harder your SumoSprings become. They also help absorb and dampen the impact of the terrain which allows for a more confident, comfortable driving experience.
WHEN SHOULD I UPGRADE MY BUMP STOPS?
So, now we know a little more about what bump stops are, what they’re made from, and what they do. It’s time to look at when you might actually need to think about upgrading your factory set. If you’re unhappy with how your truck performs with additional weight or when hauling, then it’s time for a bump stop upgrade.
Another good time to install improved bump stops is when you’re throwing on a new suspension lift. Adding a larger, taller set of bump stops can prevent excessive stress on your suspension which, like previously mentioned, could lead to substantial damage. Since the aftermarket bump stops are larger and sit closer to the frame, they help provide stability and absorption of impacts, improving drivability and comfort.
If you’re not off-road dealing with obstacles, flexing, or cruising washboard roads at high speeds, then you are probably fine without new bump stops or SumoSprings. The same goes for hauling and towing. If you aren’t carrying heavy loads very often, then you might be fine as well, but even with my stock suspension, there is a noticeable difference in the driving experience with the SumoSprings.
It should probably go without saying, but just remember when you are ready to lift your truck, you should go ahead and buy a set of upgraded bump stops or some SumoSprings. It’s an easy upgrade that will improve your overall driving experience and help prevent some headaches in the future.
PROS & CONS
As with many aftermarket parts, there are always good and not-so-good features.
These types of things are always subjective, and in this case, it’s important to remember that I’m basing the pros and cons of my experience with a stock Tacoma, not one that is lifted.
- Easy to install
- Simple, effective design (one-piece unit)
- Progressive spring rate
- Improved stability with less body roll (sway)
- Enhanced load-carrying ability
- Increased drivability and comfort
- Made in the USA
- Non-adjustable or tunable
- May cause the rear to buck (fairly rare – if unloaded AND on stock suspension)
Since my Tacoma is on a fully stock suspension, the frame just barely rests atop the SumoSprings even without additional weight. However, the ride is more stable and dampened than with factory bump stops. Daily driving and driving on uneven terrain allows me to feel the difference with the SumoSprings. Even on stock suspension, the SumoSprings are beneficial to your comfort, safety, and possibly the longevity of your truck’s suspension.
Even though it may not be as necessary to upgrade to aftermarket bump stops when you have stock suspension, it’s still worth it. My Tacoma feels like it’s more planted in the rear which makes me more confident about bumps and obstacles I may encounter whether in my daily commute, weekend work, or off-road driving. The only “issue” I’ve had is that sometimes at higher speeds (and depending on the road surface), I experience a little bit of what I would call “bucking.” This only happens when I’m completely unloaded and I believe it’s simply because I have no lift, and like I mentioned above, the frame rests just on top of the SumoSpring.
Like I said before, it may not be a glamorous upgrade, but it provides some peace of mind and can save you a lot of money and headaches in the future. Is it necessary to upgrade to SumoSprings? Well, if you haul or tow, definitely. If you’d like to feel a little more in control of your rear-end or have added a suspension lift to your Tacoma, then it’s no question.
Overall, I think the blue SumoSprings are a nice upgrade and would definitely recommend them to others.
Hopefully, I was able to clear up some information that you might have about bump stops in general, but especially for those who are curious about the SuperSprings SumoSprings bump stops.
Use our application guide to see what we have for your vehicle.