Drivers who frequently go off the beaten track need to outfit their vehicle with mud flaps. These accessories are essential to avoid paint chips, dents, and other forms of damage caused by mud, loose stones, and other road debris that may be thrown by the tires to the vehicle's side panels. Like other vehicle accessories, mud flaps come in various sizes, colors, materials, and design. Here are some things you should consider to get the right mud flaps for your ride.
Materials: heavy-duty rubber vs. molded plastic
Some mud flaps made from heavy-duty rubber come straight; others have a slight curve to match the vehicle's frame and wheel well. Units that feature a straight design and rectangular shape are usually universal and can be used in just about any type of vehicle, but if you're going to install them on smaller vehicles, you may have to cut them shorter. Rubber mud flaps with contoured design are, most of the time, specific to a particular vehicle make and model. Before you shell out bucks for these, make sure they're really made to match the specifications of your ride.
Molded plastic mud flaps, on the other hand, are more vehicle specific, with a design that follows the contours of your vehicle's fenders and wheel wells. They can be painted to perfectly blend with your ride's paint. When purchasing this type of mud flaps, you should keep your vehicle's year, make, and model in mind or you'll just end up wasting your bucks.
Installation: No-drill vs. screw-on
Traditional mud flaps are held in place by screws, so you have to drill into your vehicle to install them. You're fortunate if your ride comes with factory-drilled holes because all you have to do is to screw the mud flaps on. This type of mud flaps is perfect for off-road vehicles because the screws secure the mud flap in place no matter how harsh the driving condition is. But if you want easy installation, no-drill mud flaps are for you. This type can be attached to the vehicle using a special snap or fastener.
Quantity sold: kit vs. set of two
Though some mud flaps are sold individually, it's wise that you get a kit or a set of two to enhance your vehicle's looks. Most mud flaps that are sold in a set of two include installation instructions and mounting hardware. Mud flap kits, on the other hand, may contain both and more. They may include anti-sail bars, hangers, quick pins, end caps, and other things that will make installation easier or the mud flaps more efficient.
No matter what type of mud flaps you'll get, make sure their bottom edge will not be more than 10 inches from the ground.