So you're getting an aftermarket truck bumper for your truck. Awesome! Now, what to do before installing it? There are a few crucial steps that should be followed before, during, and after the install to make sure everything goes according to plan.
This guide is intended to not only make things go easier but also ensure your aftermarket bumper goes and stays on for a long time. Sone of the steps listed below might be obvious while others may leave you wondering “why didn’t I think of that before?”
Get everything you need
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. You need the right tool for the right job. installing an aftermarket bumper is not rocket science. Just need to make sure you have everything on hand. Especially if your truck is the only mode of getting around. Come Monday morning, you need to get to work
For starters, make sure you have a common set of wrenches and sockets. Depending on how old and what condition your original bumper is, you might need several sockets and extensions to help get the old nuts and bolts off.
Secondly, a few different types of pliers and channel locks may come in handy if those stubborn bolts do not want to play by the rules. Pro tip: spray everything down with a penetrating oil such as WD 40 the night before.
Lastly, this is not a necessity, but having an impact drill can help you from working too hard. There is a reason why professional shops use them. Besides, getting bumpers on and off is not the only thing they are useful for. Once you have one, you'll find yourself using it more and more.
Disconnect all electrical equipment
The days of simply unbolting the old bumper on and putting a new one on are long gone. Nowadays, parking sensors, cameras, and even radar systems can all be integrated into your front and rear bumpers. The first thing that should be done is to cut the power.
Carefully remove each parking sensor by unclipping it. Some will be on there quite good. Although ripping them out may seem like a good idea at the time, resist the urge! Breaking those fragile plastic clips can cost you a pretty penny.
Some aftermarket bumpers will even allow you to reuse the factory fog lights. So be careful when removing them as well. If a special tool is needed, go out and buy it. Chances are that you will need it again.
Remove The Old Bumper
If you’ve made it this far, give yourself a high five. Now is where the real fun begins. Start by taking off the olf bolts. In certain situations, this can be easier said than done. Moisture, corrosion, and general wear and treat can make taking the old bolts almost impossible.
Sometimes, cutting them off with an angle grinder or Sawzall is the only option. Your new bumper should come with new mounting hardware. If you are unsure about it, Send the BumperStock team a message. They’ll be able to help you out.
Get some help
Even the strongest guys need to get a helping hand every once in a while. And let’s face it, bumpers are heavy. Even stock ones can be too much to handle for one person. Having a second set of hands can be crucial when removing and installing a new bumper.
Removing the old one can be easy if you don’t care about damaging it. Your old friend, the pry bar, will come in handy here. But installing the new one does require a bit of care if you want a half-decent result. More often than not, getting a friend over to help you will only cost a six-pack. That’s a small price to pay when comparing it to the rates that some shops charge.
Once the bumper is finally free, have a look around. How is the frame? Are the mounting tabs bent or rusted? Now is the time to take care of it. Most trucks will come with some sort of factory undercarriage protection, but that often isn’t enough.
Make sure you remove the corrosion by sanding it all down. Come to think of it, it is similar to a cavity. By not taking care of it now, it will show up in the future 10 times worse. Sand, prime, paint. Those should be the steps taken to ensure you’ll get years of trouble-free service from your truck’s bumpers
Gauge your time correctly
Keep in mind that this process can take as little as two hours or even an entire weekend. It all boils down to the level of experience and how much prep is involved. Clearly, having to paint or weld new brackets on will take up more time.
Unfortunately, you will not know until you get your hands dirty. Brackets can break, paint can chip off, and something as simple as removing an old bolt can end up taking hours. Make sure you have sufficient tools and time to get it done right the first time.
We understand that installing aftermarket truck bumpers can be challenging, especially if you are not familiar with the process. Luckily for you, we have put together a list of do’s and don’ts to help guide your installation. If needed, find someone who is experienced with custom bumper installations so they can help you out.
Our team works with some of the best names in the industry to ensure that you get a proper fitting bumper. This allows you to spend your time out on the open trials and not in the garage fiddling with getting a correct fitment.
Once all steps are completed successfully, go ahead and install your new bumper! Remember our team at BumperStock has everything an aftermarket truck bumper enthusiast needs including high-quality products made from durable materials like heavy-duty steel and aluminum. Check out our entire lineup now!