Best Running Boards: Get an Extra Step Up on Your Truck

Running boards for nearly all trucks and SUVs

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Trucks can present a challenge if the cabin is too high to get in. Running boards make it easier since they offer a basic step to assist you in getting up. For some lifted trucks, the right pair of running boards is mandatory if you want to use the vehicle at all. Whether you need the extra lift or just like the looks of the steps running along the side of the truck, here are some of the best running boards you should check out.

  • Best Overall
    AMP Research 76151-01A Black Running Board
    Summary
    Summary
    The best high-end running board setup that boasts an automatic, electric-powered retracting design.
    Pros
    Pros
    Basic plug-and-play installation process that's compatible with many different trucks makes and models. Good look and design.
    Cons
    Cons
    Installation can be somewhat difficult with instructions that don't accommodate different truck designs.
  • Best Value
    TAC Running Boards
    Summary
    Summary
    A good set of budget running boards that come in many designs for different models, including some SUVs.
    Pros
    Pros
    The good design resists bad weather and driving conditions. Fairly easy-to-follow installation instructions.
    Cons
    Cons
    Compatibility with some model years of certain vehicles is inaccurate. Installation can be difficult on curved vehicle designs.
  • Honorable Mention
    Tyger Auto TG-RS2C40018 Riser
    Summary
    Summary
    A heavy-duty set of running boards that work particularly well on midsize trucks and SUVs with a shorter cabin.
    Pros
    Pros
    Fairly clear and easy-to-follow instructions. Good packaging that protects the boards during delivery.
    Cons
    Cons
    Compatibility is somewhat more limited with larger SUVs and trucks with longer cabins and/or interiors.

Tips

  • Professional installation can make buying and using running boards easier if you don't have much DIY skill with vehicle maintenance and accessories.
  • Durable running boards are made of hard plastics or metals that won't rust.
  • Make sure you buy a pair of running boards that run all the way back to the rear passenger seats, if possible.

FAQs

Q. Are there universal running board designs?

A. Yes, some running boards at least claim they have a universal design. These tend to be shorter than custom-designed boards, but can be used on a variety of different vehicles.

Q. What are nerf bars?

A. These are technically just running boards. Nerf bars, in racing settings, can also protect the sides of the vehicle and keep the tires from rubbing together.

Q. How much weight should a good pair of running boards hold?

A. Anything below 250 pounds should be ignored. A running board rated for 300 pounds or more is better.

Final Thoughts

If you want it all, including an automatic retracting design, we recommend that you check out the AMP Research 76151-01A Black Running Board.

You don't have to spend a lot of money for a good set of running boards, especially with the TAC Running Boards.