This paper presents the effect of preload on static and dynamic performance characteristics of several gas-lubricated noncircular journal bearing configurations. The linearized system approach using finite element method is used to obtain both steady state and dynamic characteristics. The results of the investigation shows that preload has a significant effect on frictional power loss and the stability margin. It is observed that increased preload, lowers the stability margin while it will increase the amount of power loss in noncircular gas lubricated bearing systems. The results also show that the preload effect on stability margin is more pronounced at lower compressibility numbers.