Entertaining the idea of swapping out your factory bumper for a steel one? You’ve come to the right place.
Factory bumpers don’t usually offer the protection your truck needs for off-roading or heavy-duty use. Not to mention, it can be hard to install a winch or an LED light on a factory bumper. The solution? Upgrade that factory bumper with a heavy-duty aftermarket steel bumper.
Of course, like everything, there are pros and cons that come with adding a steel bumper to your truck. Here’s what you need to know.
Steel Bumper Pros
Steel bumpers can take heavy impacts much better than factory bumpers can. Bumping into a fence post, pushing another vehicle, or even striking an animal on the highway will have no measurable impact on your bumper. At TDK, our bumpers are made with heavy gauge steel that is damned difficult to puncture or bend.
And, if you somehow manage to hit your steel bumper hard enough to cause a dent, it won’t affect its strength. Steel can bend without breaking, and most of the time a bend isn’t a major issue.
Steel bumpers come with pre-cut holes to allow for additional accessories like winches and lights. This is a big improvement compared to factory bumpers, with usually don’t offer easy mounting options for accessories.
Also, at TDK, we offer bumpers that are compatible with factory parking sensors.
We offer a variety of steel bumper styles for Chevy, Dodge, Ford, GMC, and Toyota trucks
In addition to being tougher and easier to mount accessories to, steel bumpers are an upgrade from the stock bumper in appearance and style. Steel bumpers give trucks a rugged look, with most bumpers available in a powder-coated finish.
NOTE: At TDK, we offer both powder coated and paintable finish bumpers that are shrinkwrapped and shipped with a ready-to-paint surface. If you’re replacing a damaged factory bumper, a paintable steel bumper from TDK is a nice upgrade.
Steel Bumper Cons
Steel bumpers weigh more than aluminum and plastic bumpers and may change the handling of your truck. If you’re using your truck for off-roading, this can help you as it increases your truck’s center of gravity. However, you might need to upgrade your truck’s springs and/or shocks to accommodate the weight of the steel bumper.
The good news is that steel bumpers have come a long way over the past century. They used to be much thicker and heavier, but they still were not as sturdy as their modern counterparts. New technology has helped us figure out how to produce steel that’s both lighter and stronger.
An F-150 sporting one of our grille guards
If you decide to outfit your truck with a steel bumper, there are a few things to look for:
- Top-quality welding. The only thing that separates one steel bumper’s quality from another is welding. The least expensive steel bumpers usually have low-quality welds. If you’re unlucky enough to hit one of these bumpers hard enough, it’s going to require a major fix if the welding is inferior.
- Finish and feature options. Unlike factory bumpers, you don’t have to settle for the same exact look as everyone else when you buy a steel bumper. We offer custom grille guard options, mounting options for lights, and even a paintable finish.
- Made in the USA. Last but not least, beware of bumpers made overseas. The enforcement of steel quality standards is lacking, and the weld quality on these bumpers is sub-par. The savings is small, but the quality drop-off is big.
If you ask us, swapping your factory bumper for a rugged steel bumper is one of the best investments you can make into your truck. If you’re wondering which types of steel bumpers are on the market, check out Throttle Down Kustoms’ wide variety of steel bumpers here.
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