Are you considering adding a heavy duty bumper or off-road bumper to your truck or Jeep? If you are, there are lots of things to consider before you buy. There are literally hundreds of types, styles and most importantly, quality levels of replacement bumpers and heavy duty (off road) bumpers on the market. So it’s best if you know what to be on the lookout for before you make that all important choice and lay out the bucks.
We all want to save a few bucks, but these aren’t the old $99 bumpers you used to find at the Cheapo Depot. These are built for extreme duty. The manufacturer’s web site is a good place to start your search. Fab Fours, Ranch Hand, and Thunderstruck are three of the most popular brands for trucks and Jeeps.
Things to consider:
- What style do you want?
- Do you want a Texas or “ranch look” with a grille guard or screen, or are you going for that all-business, off road appearance?
- What cutouts and options do you want?
- Will you be adding off-road lights?
- Square or Round?
- How about a winch?
- Tow hooks?
- Glossy, matte, textured or diamond plate?
- A heavy duty bumper might interfere with tire clearance depending on the make and model of your truck. Especially if you mount some monster off road tires, so be sure to check that out as well
- Most of the replacement bumper manufacturers cut their logo into the bumper somewhere. Are you going to be okay with that or would rather not have a logo?
- Matching rear bumper
- Even if you are only in the market for a front bumper right now, check out the matching rear bumper for your truck too. Not all rears may look as good as the front and you need to know that now before you buy
- Also think about the amount of drop for the rear bumper. If you have a lift kit and huge tires on your truck, a lot of off road bumpers have an 8” to 10” drop the get the tow hitch at the right height. Also ask if it will hold a hi-lift jack, and does it have tow hooks?
- Jeep Guys
- Check out if the rear bumper has a built in tire carrier for that heavy, oversized, off road tire and wheel combination
- How easy is it to open the rear glass and gate with that spare tire carrier in place?
- Most manufacturer’s make both of these, but some work MUCH better than others
- See if the rear bumper mounts with an an OEM mounting system, or does it actually bolt to the body (some do)?
- These things are heavy! The front end of your vehicle will most likely drop a little due to the weight. You should consider adding a leveling kit (ReadyLift is an excellent brand) to restore the ride height