Best Fender Flares: Keep Your Vehicle Clean When Off-Roading
Protect the sides of your vehicle from dirt and wear with these high-quality fender flares
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PUBLISHED ON October 9, 2019
If you love off-roading or find yourself often driving in rainy weather, then you should accessorize your vehicle with fender flares. Fender flares are typically fitted right at the wheel well and help guard your vehicle’s body against dirt, mud, and any other form of debris flung at your vehicle by the tires. Our buying guide offers a few fender flare options that will help you preserve the look of your vehicle in harsh driving conditions.
- Best OverallTrim-Lok Fender FlareSummarySummaryOne universal design fender flare strip that bonds to most cars and trucks with 3M tape.ProsProsMaximum tire coverage. Offers a decorative finish to your vehicle. Protects your vehicle from dirt and damage. Easy, no drilling or cutting installation. Bonds strongly to the body of the car. Includes a UV-resistant rubber. It can be easily resized.ConsConsYou may experience fitting issues with some car models. The adhesive tape gets weak in extreme heat conditions. Only one fender flare per package.
- Best ValueRuien Universal Fender FlaresSummarySummaryA four-piece, affordable fender flare set that improves off-roading performance on cars with a wide-body wheel arch.ProsProsFour pieces for the price of one. Universal fit. Made of heavy-duty plastic. Sturdy material. Compatible with most wide tires. Keeps your tires clean. Protects your car’s body and windows from damage. Complements the appearance of your car.ConsConsCheap quality. May need to be customized for a perfect fit. Not a great fit for trucks and Jeeps.
- Honorable MentionTyger Auto TG Fender FlaresSummarySummaryFour rugged-looking fender flares that decorate and protect your car from dust and debris.ProsProsThick and stylish design. 100 percent UV-resistant. Rust-resistant rivets. High-quality plastic. Flexible. Easy no-drill installation. Protected against warping, cracking, and chalking. Includes a protective edge trim. Compatible with aftermarket bumpers.ConsConsExpensive. Vague installation instructions. Not a snug fit on all recommended vehicle models.
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- Clean the fender before attaching a fender flare with double-sided or 3M tape to ensure that it sticks firmly on the wheel well. Ensure that it's dry and smooth before attaching the tape.
- Consider purchasing a rust protector/lubricant for the wheel wells and fender flares. The wheel well is frequently exposed to water, rain, mud, and other road elements that may corrode the material.
- Some cars are initially designed without fender flares. If that's the case with your vehicle, consider hiring a professional to drill the holes for your new fender flares for a perfect fit.
- Be sure to follow the manufacturer's recommendations on how to clean your flares. You can use a plastic cleaner on paint-coated fender flares or wipe it down with a wet rag. Do not use chemical cleaning products as they may corrode your flares.
Q: Do fender flares hide rust?
A: Yes. Fender flares hide the rust in the fender and also decorates it. It gives your car a new rugged look, and looks even better on a newly painted car. However, you should note that the rust could spread to the fender flares if left unchecked for a long time. If there’s no way to salvage your rusty fenders, consider buying factory painted fender flares that are more resistant to rust.
Q: Are fender flares compatible with mud flaps?
A: Most fender flares are incompatible with mud flaps. You have to remove your mud flaps if you choose to install fender flares, but fender flares work just as well (if not better) than mud flaps. They offer a wider coverage against debris flung from your tires to the body of your vehicle. Mudflaps mostly protect your undercarriage.
Q: Can I install tires larger than my fender flares?
A: The fender flares will lose their functionality if the tires don’t fit within their “protection space.” Fender flares work best when they form a shelter over your tires to protect your vehicle and other vehicles around you from flying debris. If you buy larger tires, also consider upgrading to larger and wider fender flares that fully cover the tires.
Our top pick is the Trim-Lok Fender Flare. It’s a customizable, 25-inch flare that adds extra coverage to your wheel to prevent debris from damaging the paintwork on the sides of your vehicle.
If you want something that can fit in your tight budget, we recommend the Ruien Universal Fender Flares. These are affordable fender flares that are compatible with almost all wide tire vehicles.