How do I remove and inspect my lift tubes?

This article will explain the sequence of removing the lift tube set and what to look for upon inspection.

Removing a lift tube set is a fairly simple process. You'll need something to set the pod down on and a 5mm allen key or 5mm hex bit and ratchet. 

We use our filled, new tent or mattress pad boxes as a temporary stand for the pod. Be sure the boxes you use are sturdy enough to hold the weight of the pod (roughly 200lbs). Raise the pod high enough for the boxes to fit under and place boxes centered and equally spaced on the folded bed frames. Lower the pod onto the boxes and be sure to turn the hand crank at least one more turn counterclockwise to ensure enough room to lower the lift tubes out of place.


If you can't find any sturdy boxes, an alternative is to set the pod down on two stacked 6ft wooden 2x4's across the folded bed frames front and rear, as shown in the picture below.


Next, we will detach all four lift tubes from the pod frame. To do so, with a twisting downward motion, pull the top tube out of the pod rack foot. Pull all tubes down far enough to clear the rack foot. You may need another full turn counterclockwise on the winch crank handle for clearance. 


At this point, we will rotate the pod and pod rack just a few degrees to facilitate the removal of the lift tube set vertically. Only rotate enough to clear the rack, being sure to keep the pod centered on the makeshift stand.


 To remove a lift tube set, you must first remove the pod rack locating pin.  It is attached with two M8 BHCS bolts, which can be removed with a 5mm hex key or a 5mm hex bit socket and ratchet. We use the latter in house. Remove the rack locator pin, then pull off the black top cap.



You are now able to remove the entire tube set vertically for inspection. There are 4 tubes that nest together. It's easiest to remove the tubes in order, smallest to biggest, vertically. Take care not to damage or drop the tubes.


Once the tube set is out of the side frame, give each of the tubes a look over. Look for corrosion on the wear shoulders of the tubes. A picture of the shoulders is below.

lift tube shoulders

Any external corrosion can be smoothed out with a general purpose scouring pad. Extend the lift tube set fully and ensure the tubes seat in the extended position without sticking. Tubes should be able to spin slightly on the shoulder in the extended position. Lubricate the tubes taking extra care to hit the shoulders. We use WD40 quick drying silicone spray.

WD40 pic

If any tube gets stuck in the extended position, the bigger tube it's telescoping out of is likely corroded inside or bent and should be replaced. Before reinstalling the lift tube set, take a flashlight and look into the side frame cavity to ensure it is free and clear of obstructions.


Reinstalling the lift tube set is the reverse of the removal. Be sure that the lift spring is fed into the tube set. Also be sure the locating tab on the biggest outside tube is positioned in the correct track on the side frame as shown below. Don't forget to replace the top cap and the rack locating pin before rotating the rack back into original position and connecting the four top tubes to the rack feet.




When reattaching the top lift tube to the rack, simply pull up and twist the tube until you hear a click. With all four lift tubes connected, raise the pod with the winch handle, remove your stand, and lower the pod.


Disclaimer of Liability.  SylvanSport assumes no liability whatsoever for any product damage or personal injury incurred while performing this work.  The taking of proper safety precautions, including but not limited to the use of personal protective equipment, are wholly the responsibility of the person(s) performing the work contained herein.