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I'm hoping someone has some suggestions for me. I bought my Spectra new in 2002. It was a joy to drive it around the city. However, circumstances forced us into a rural area with lots of bad dirt roads and sandy washes to pass. I got stuck in a sandy wash last week and had to be pulled out. Yesterday, the sand pulled my bumper loose as I drove by. Most people around here have vehicles that are only a couple to a few inches higher than mine - and they have no problems navigating through the roads.

Noting the sand that fell from every crack and crevice of the car, my dealership scolded me when they fixed my bumper. They said that if I wanted a 4-wheel drive, to trade my Spectra in on a Sorento or Sportage. However, I can't afford to get into higher payments. The car is just too darn low to the ground! So, has anyone modified / raised their Spectra? How did you do it? How much did it cost?

I have to make a hard decision here. Run it into the ground, literally. Or potentially void the warranty by making modifications to raise it.
 

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Probably the quickest, cheapest, easiest, and most reversible boost you can give your car is to install spring lifter blocks. What I'm talking about is the rubber blocks that get inserted into the springs. If you have a good car parts store around you they can come out and look at your springs size and recommend lift blocks for you. I've used those blocks on an old SAAB that was dragging a little. Worked great.

You can also look at higher profile tires. (tyres if you are of the British persuasion.)
Ask a tire professional about getting one that will give you a little larger outer radius. Tell him/her that you want to get a little more ground clearance. Remember if you go this route that your odometer, and speedometer will read differently. You will be going faster for the same speedometer reading.
 
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