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HammerHead Pre-Runner Winch Front Bumper Jeep Wrangler

A Quick Guide to Installing Front & Rear Jeep Bumpers

Ah yes — the Jeep. Owning one of these bad boys is more than just owning a stout and sturdy machine to drive around in. It’s a workhorse, a relentless land trotter whose on-road performance is matched only by its in-garage maintenance demands.

While aftermarket support for the Jeep — be it the JK, Wrangler, JL, or the Gladiator — might vary across regions; when it comes to bumpers, more flexible cross-model options are available as time goes by. 

This is a good thing; because let’s be real — we’re crazy about our trucks; they’re pretty much status symbols, and the better tuned they are to serve both aesthetics and durability, the happier we are, right?

Today, we’ve created the perfect quick-and-dirty bumper installation guide for Jeep owners — and added in some important tips to think about before choosing or installing your Jeep bumper.

Price check

Jeep Bumpers: The Installation Process 

Jeep bumpers — both front and rear — use several tiny angular brackets, most of which are on the underside. This means that most of the installation hardware cannot be accessed once the entire job is done. 

For this reason, you must follow the steps below sequentially.

Bumper parts included: What you’ll need:
  • Your bumpers
  • Corner Tanks
  • A Tank Cap
  • Mounting Bracket
  • Non-Skid Duck Tape
  • Tailgate Bracket
  • Spindle Mount
  • Backing Plate
  • Drilling motor
  • 0.5-in drill bit
  • Mounting Bracket
  • 2.75-in Hole Saw
  • Reciprocating Air Saw or Cut-off Wheel
  • De-burring File
  • Ratcheting Wrench Set

Installing Jeep Front Bumpers 

Man fitting front bumper onto red car

  1. Using a flat screwdriver, pull out the (4) pins followed by the valance beneath. Next, using the 0.18-cm socket, pull out the (8) nuts that hold together the frame’s front to the bumper.
  2. After removing the bumper, remove the stock fog lights using the screwdriver and then increase the mounting holes’ diameter using a quarter-inch drill bit.
  3. Use a 0.1-cm wrench to pull out the vacuum pump and then turn it a ¼ of a revolution counter-clockwise.
  4. Next, you need to sandwich the bracket perfectly between the stock mounting holes. Fit in the bolts inside the stock brackets.
  5. Mark the following dimensions to be cut out: 1 and 0.25-in x 0.25-in on the left side (driver side) and 1-in x0.25-in on the right side; mark each frame before cutting.
  6. Near the center of the Jeep, begin to install the remaining hardware. (With the JK 2015, you might need to drill extra holes on the outer frame).
  7. Once installed and tightened, insert the flag tab and pull out the nuts from the bumper’s back.
  8. Next, with at least two people, begin to slide on the bumper unit onto the Jeep’s chassis. Use a 0.5-in bolt to loosely fit the side bolt.
  9. Insert the nuts, tighten them together with the 3/8-in bolts.

    Note: After thoroughly tightening the bumper, feel free to install the winch.
  10. After bolting down the winch, loosely fit the brackets, ensuring that the plates match the appropriate offset, then tighten the fairlead with a 0.25-in head and 0.5-inch wrench. 

Installing Jeep Rear Bumpers: A Two-step Process

Man fitting rear bumper onto grey car

Step #1: Preparing the Rear Bumper for Assembly

  1. Install the tank plugs. To fit in the complementary pump kit, use Teflon tape to insert the 90-degree fittings in each tank. (These helps prevent leaking.)
  2. With the aid of two other people, carefully insert the bumper, spindle housing (in place), rotation brackets, and corner tanks into the Jeep’s rear frame.
  3. Using M20x10 head bolts and washers, fit the tanks into the bumper, leaving it loose temporarily just in case you need to make some adjustments later.
  4. Insert the provided l-brackets into the tanks using the hex bolt and the larger washers for each.
  5. Insert the small diameter bolts to fasten the bumper onto the frame with the aid of some anti-seize lubricant with each of the bolts.

Step #2: Tightening & Adjustment of the Rear Bumper

  1. After fasting the bolts, confirm that the Jeep bumper is well-balanced and that the tire carrier is rotatable.
  2. Next, fasten the L-shaped bolts together with 0.5-in bolts. Then, using a marker, mark the jumper’s underside to indicate the allocation for spindle housing installation.
  3. Cut out the Spindle Tube template provided. Rotate the Jeep bumper to the right side such that it faces up and then, for the spindle sizing, find the template on the bumper’s top surface. After doing this, you will spot a pre-drawn parted boundary on the bumper’s forward tangent.
  4. Place the bumper’s template between the parted boundary and the upper tangent.
  5. Using masking tape or any other tough adhesive, fasten the bumper and mark its hole’s center with a drill and center punch with the aid of a 2.75-in hole saw.
  6. Clean the drilled edges with a deburring file, after which you can finally re-fit the Jeep bumper on the chassis. 

Picking Out & Installing Your Jeep Wrangler Bumpers: What to Remember

Bumper Size & Navigation — A Payoff?

Jeep front bumpers, unlike most other trucks’ bumpers and tires, come in various dimensions (width, length, height, weight) — and the variety extends across both OEM and aftermarket bumpers.

Generally, the narrower the bumper, the less protection you can expect for your Jeep’s chassis. Also, the thicker it is, the more careful you’re going to have to be with your approaching angle.

Sturdiness & Durability

It’s tempting to think that a larger bumper will be sturdier. On the contrary, a heavier bumper might exert undue strain on your chassis, bringing about irreparable denting in case of heavy impact.

Your bumper’s sturdiness really comes from its build — the specific alloys used. While being more expensive, a steel bumper will last more than aluminum bumpers, which are prone to bends and dents after regular off-road use.

Testimonial from Whitney T.

Recovery & Reinforcement

You must choose bumpers with inner gussets, which will help reinforce the bumper corners and increase bending resistance. 

At a minimum, you should opt for bumpers that come with pre-drilled recovery holes, D-rings, or bolt-in hooks. What these built-in installations do is ensure that your bumpers’ frame is easily re-enforceable in case you’re planning for a long off-road trip that you know is bound to do some damage.

Other Considerations: FAQs

Raptor Series RBM45JPN Magnum Rear Bumper Jeep JL, 2018-2021
Raptor Series RBM45JPN Magnum Rear Bumper Jeep JL, 2018-2021

Should I Finish My Installation by Adding Winches to My Bumpers?

Yes, it is a good idea to add lightweight built-in winch plates, but that’s not the end of it. Other installation you might want to add include:

  • Light tabs
  • Grille guards
  • Tubular hoops
  • Sunken light mounts

Why Aftermarket Bumpers and Not OEM?

Well, the reason here, while pretty straightforward, also happens to be something of a commandment that’s worth internalizing for all outdoor explorers: OEM products are not designed for off-road use. This applies just as much for bumpers as it does for rims, tires, transmissions, etc.

Should I Opt for Bumpers Made in the USA? 

Yes, as a rule, we advise our customers to opt for locally manufactured parts. While foreign-made bumpers may be cheaper, the little money saved simply cannot equal the immense drop-off in quality. Sadly, many Jeep owners have to learn this the hard way.

Soup Up Your Jeep Bumpers With Royal Truck Accessories! 

Here at Royal Truck Accessories, we understand how important your Jeep is; it's your way of getting to work to provide for your family. 

It helps you get your job done during the day; it’s the machine you entrust your family’s safety to when going anywhere. It gets you through those crazy and wild adventures. 

Your vehicle needs to be able to stand up to your lifestyle, which is why we are committed to providing you with the necessary equipment you'll need to help your ride match your lifestyle.

Our entire team here at Royal Truck Accessories is passionately committed to you. This is why we make sure that when you contact us, you'll be talking with a real person. 

Need expert advice

We pride ourselves on our customer service, and we will do our very best to meet your shopping needs. Yet you don’t need to take it from us. Here’s what one of our loyal customers had to say of our experience: 

“They dependable, work hard for you to get what you want as fast as possible, and are very friendly ❤”- Bonnie Jones, RTA Customer

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