Trucks are amongst the most modified vehicles on the road. That’s the aftermarket truck industry is one of the biggest. From replacement bumpers to tonneau covers and anything in between. If you can think of it, it has probably been done.
What you want to do with your truck will determine what kind of aftermarket truck accessories you’ll put on. Some put on a big 12” lift that is purely for show, while others throw on aftermarket wheels and bumpers because they need to get over rough terrain.
No matter what your plan is for your truck, we have created a list of the 5 best aftermarket truck accessories for your tow rig or 4x4, trail conquesting monster. When combined, these accessories all add up to make a vehicle that is ready for anything.
First on the list are aftermarket truck bumpers. Without a doubt, a quality aftermarket bumper is a necessity for anyone who wants to take their truck off-road or is just simply looking for added protection. However, the sheer amount of choice available is bound to make anyone, no matter how experienced, a little anxious. Luckily, we can help make sense of all the different styles and what they are used for.
Low Profile Bumpers
Low profile bumpers are great for those who want the protection of an aftermarket bumper but still want to maintain a somewhat stock look. We have to admit, trucks come with boring bumpers from the factory. Not only that, but they provide less-than-adequate protection.
Bumpers with a low profile design are intended to give you enhanced safety, all while not having that in-your-face style that some other aftermarket bumpers models offer. It is the perfect compromise between safety and maintaining a factory look.
Bumpers with Pre-Runner Guard
For those who use their trucks as a battering ram(or just need added protection up front), a bumper with a push bar is exactly what’s needed. They are also referred to as a bash bar and bull bar, but no matter what you call it, a pre-runner bumper is ideal for tough work environments.
Companies like BumperStock.com have a wide variety of models for almost any truck, so choosing the right bumper for you has never been easier.
Bumpers with Full Grille Guard
This is the mack-daddy of them all. Full grille guard bumpers are designed to provide you with ultimate front-end protection. Think of it as having a force field around your truck.
No matter what you do or where you go, a full grille guard aftermarket bumper will help you get through anything. On top of having a shield over your grille, most models have built-in headlight surrounds to stop any incoming objects.
Rims and Tires
There is no doubt that a quality set of rims and tires will not only make your truck stand out more, but also allow you to conquer almost any terrain. From small 16” rims with huge mud tires to 24”x14” wide rims with stretched tires, the perfect setup is out there.
Initially, bigger rims were added to cars and trucks to accommodate bigger brakes. Nowadays, most do it as a fashion statement. The choices are endless, ranging from unlimited designs and wild color combinations.
To some, tires are just a necessity that helps get the power to the road. Some owners don’t even know the difference between tire, rim, and wheel. For enthusiasts, however, having the right tire means being able to get through any terrain and getting left behind.
Lifting your truck has become the new norm. If you got a 4X4 and don’t have a lift on it, it's like going to the gym and not working on your arms. This is what makes them one of the 5 best aftermarket truck accessories. There are two types of lifts out there, body and suspension. Knowing the difference between them and why use one of the other is critical if you want to get your ride looking just right.
A body lift is exactly what it sounds like. Unlike the other choices on this list, it’s known as the cheapest way of getting your truck that much closer to the sky. A body lift kit is typically made up of spacers that help lift the body of the truck up off the frame. It is one of the most popular ways of getting extra ground clearance if you are on a budget.
Suspension lifts are no doubt the best way to lift your truck. Why? Because you are upgrading you’re your entire suspension system(depending on the model you’ve bought). Springs, shocks, leaves, and even driveshafts are all replaced to get your bigger wheels to fit and give you more ground clearance for getting over obstacles.
Some owners will combine a suspension with a body lift to get their trucks as high up as possible. Sadly, vertically challenged people will need a step ladder to get into some of those trucks.
Being able to see the road ahead is very important, no matter if you have a truck, car, or SUV. Ask anyone who is into modifying their vehicle, and they will tell you that added lighting has made their nighttime visibility that much better.
Traditionally, auxiliary lights were those big, round, lights you would have seen on top of the grill of classic trucks back in the 80s and 90s. Since then, the technology has gotten better and the lightbar has taken over the aftermarket truck lighting industry. Although still used today, they are nowhere near as popular as they once were.
When modifying your truck, putting on a big light bar is almost mandatory. But, they have another purpose than just annoying oncoming drivers. On roads where there are street lights, that can be a godsend.
The bed of a truck is just a really big trunk if you think about it. So why have everything in your truck exposed to the world? A tonneau cover helps you secure anything you don’t other people to get access to. There are two primary types of tonneau covers that truck owners go for.
Soft Fabric Tonneau Covers
Soft tonneau covers are great for those who will be carrying objects bigger than the actual dimensions of the bed from time to time. On top of that, they can be retracted easily to cover anything up and protect your contents from bad weather. The only downside is that they can be easily damaged and a would-be thief would only need something sharp, like a knife to get into.
Hard Tonneau Covers
Some tonneau covers are made specifically as a theft deterrent. Often, they are made of durable fiberglass or light aluminum and cover the whole bed. On top of that, fiberglass options will lift similar to a trunk with the help of struts. Most aluminum tonneau will roll back just like window shutters.
So, there you have it. The top 5 best aftermarket truck accessories. No matter what you have planned for your rig, upgrading it is not only a necessity, but a labor of love. It takes time, money, and oftentimes many swear words to get your pride and joy exactly how you’ve envisioned it.
In the end, it is all worth it. But if you are anything like us, the work never stops. There is always something else to do, something new to put on, or a part that needs fixing.
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