Best Fender Flares

Dorian Smith-Garcia Profile image

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Updated January 24, 2023

To determine the best fender flares, we considered the following core features: vehicle compatibility, hardware, ease of installation, materials, and design. Vehicle compatibility should be the first factor you use to narrow your search as picking the wrong fender flare kit may create fit issues as you install them. We also prioritized brands that offered complete installation kits with all the hardware you need. You’ll also want to look for sturdy materials such as polypropylene or steel for added durability. And fender flaps that allow for paint customization can help you create a design aesthetic that speaks to your personality. Read our best car accessories guide when you’re ready for more interior car upgrades.

After considering all of the above we nominated the Smittybilt 76837 XRC Black Textured Fender Flare as our Top Pick. These modestly priced fender flares are ideal for Jeep owners and come with the complete installation kit and are also UV coated for improved durability. You’ll like that you can also customize the paint on them for a unique effect. Continue to read more about the rest of our top picks.

Top 5 Best Fender Flares

 #1  Smittybilt 76837 XRC Black Textured Fender Flare

Award: Top Pick

WHY WE LIKE IT: A complete set of fender flares that features a full installation kit is perfect for upgrading your Jeep’s current OE flares with a set that can be color customized.

  • Best for Jeep
  • Can be painted for customization
  • Includes installation kit
  • May prematurely rust

If you’re a Jeep owner, you’ll appreciate these XRC fender flares from Smittybilt. These fenders are designed from steel for a sturdy construction that holds up to whatever you put your truck through. We like that this set of fender flares comes with a complete installation kit that includes everything you need to properly mount them to the wheel wells on your vehicle.

Related: Learn more about our best cold air intake.

You’ll appreciate that the fender flares are black powder-coated. This means that you can either leave them as is or paint them to create a custom effect. And these flares are designed to increase suspension without impeding the overall look of your Jeep. Once you have your suspension all sorted out, you can install the best car subwoofer.

 #2  MaxMate Premium Fender Flares

Award: Honorable Mention

WHY WE LIKE IT: An affordable solution to improve the profile of your Dodge Ram truck while also providing added protection for the wheel wells thanks to UV protection and a matte black finish.

  • Best Budget
  • Best for Dodge Ram 1500 & 2500 Trucks
  • Installation kit included
  • Somewhat inconsistent fit

It’s important to note that these fender flares from MaxMate are specifically designed to fit the 2002 to 2009 Dodge Ram 1500 as well as the 2003 to 2009 Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500 trucks. We like that these budget-friendly fender flaps feature marine-grade stainless steel rivets to create a rugged yet sleek aesthetic that will catch everyone’s eye.

Related: Check out our best fifth wheel hitch guide.

These fender flares are also UV-protected polypropylene and feature a matte black finish too. You’ll like that you can easily install these flares without the need for a drill. However, expect to spend around two hours installing them. So just be aware that it is more involved than installing the best car alarm.

 #3  Hooke Road Jeep Wrangler JK Steel Fender Flares

Award: Best for Jeep Wranglers

WHY WE LIKE IT: A 100 percent steel construction fender flare set that’s perfectly suited for Jeep Wranglers and features a complete installation kit to give your vehicle a rugged look.

  • E-coated for improved durability
  • Off-road style look
  • Durable drill mount style
  • Inconsistent customer service

Jeep Wrangler owners are going to appreciate these fender flares from Hooke Road. If you own a Wrangler from the 2007 to 2018 model years, these flares are specifically designed for your trucks. You’ll get a rugged off-road style look from this complete kit that features all the necessary components for the installation process.

The fender flares are black powder-coated for corrosion resistance and are made from heavy-duty steel for the best durability you can find. Because the flares are e-coated, you can opt to customize them to the color of your choosing. You’ll like that these fender flares are also salt spray resistant with a five-year corrosion capacity. The best car jack will help with installation.

 #4  MaxMate Premium Fender Flares

Award: Best Quality

WHY WE LIKE IT: A low profile set of fender flares designed for select Dodge Ram 2500 and 3500 pickup trucks with decorative steel rivets for a bolder side profile.

  • Best for Dodge Ram 2500 & 3500
  • UV protected material
  • Drill-free installation
  • Inconsistent fit

It seems like the Dodge Ram has an endless selection of options when it comes to upgrading your truck’s aesthetic with aftermarket accessories. For Ram owners that have a 2010 to 1018 2500 or 3500 pickup truck, the MaxMate Premium Fender Flares are a smart choice. As with the other fender flares we featured from them, these feature UV-coated polypropylene construction and come with a matte black finish that gives you the freedom to customize with a paint job.

If you’re averse to more complicated installation systems, the MaxMate fender flares boast drill-free installation with a promise that it should take you roughly two hours to completely install them. We also like that you get the decorative stainless steel rivets which are meant to create visual interest in the design — not to be used for the installation process. Just park your vehicle in the best carport and two hours later you are done.

 #5  Tyger Auto Black TG-FF8D4078 Fender Flare

Award: Easiest to Install

WHY WE LIKE IT: An easy to install complete set for select Dodge Ram 1500 models that don’t require a drill and gives you the freedom to customize the color of your fender flares.

  • Best for Dodge Ram 2500 & 3500
  • No drill installation
  • Matte texture with UV resistant
  • Instructions may be difficult to follow

For owners of the Dodge Ram 1500 from the 2002 to 2008 model years, the Tyger Auto Black Fender Flares are a smart choice. This complete kit features a no-drill installation process which will be ideal for anyone looking for a quick and easy way to upgrade the look and functionality of their pickup truck. These fender flares come to you with a UV-resistant coating and polypropylene construction for an impact-resistant finish.

We like that this option also features an added protective rubber edge trim to help you also create a barrier between the fender flare and your vehicle. You’ll like that these fender flares are perfect for drivers who like to go off-road. Tiger Auto makes these good-looking fender flares available for other car models as well, like the TG-FF8C4108 Flares for the 2007-2013 Chevy Silverado models. The flares have a height of 6.75” in front and 7” in the back, along with tire coverage of 2” in both the front and rear. Note that you will have to remove the stock mud flaps on the Silverado to install these.

How We Decided

Fender flares can be a great aftermarket upgrade for vehicles designed to have a more rugged appearance. To help narrow down the field, we looked at the following features — vehicle compatibility, hardware, ease of installation, materials, and design.

We can’t stress enough that fender flares tend to be a very specialized product. So, much like with most products designed for vehicles, it’s important to always check the year, make, model, and even trim level of your vehicle against the compatible list for your fender flares. You’ll find as you browse through our top selections that even when select model years and makes are highlighted as compatible, select trims or even occasionally extended cab trucks might not be compatible with some of the fender flare styles we’ve shortlisted.

Next, we considered the hardware and ease of installation. All of the fender flare sets in our recommendations come with complete installation kits — which is extremely helpful. But if you don’t want to get out the power tools to install your fender flares, then we recommend focusing on our Honorable Mention as well as #4 and #5 selections. However, if you’re planning to use your vehicle for off-roading adventures, then you should look at our Top Pick and #3 choice as these both require drilling and will offer a more secure installation process.

We also considered the materials used to create the fender flaps. Where outlined, we’ve listed the composition. You’ll find that most of our recommendations feature UV-coating. But except for our Honorable Mention selection, the remainder can be customized with the paint color of your choosing. You’ll note that many of the products in our guide feature a polypropylene or steel construction which is ideal because of its durability.

And finally, we did note design aesthetics. In particular, you’ll note that our Honorable Mention, #4 and #5 selections feature decorative accent steel rivets to create contrast on the fender flares. Always keep in mind that those steel rivets aren’t meant for installation.

Fender Flare Buying Guide

Most Important Things to Consider

  1. Compatibility
    It shouldn’t be surprising that fender flares are often designed to accommodate specific makes and models of cars. Whether you drive a car, SUV, or truck, you should always confirm that the fender flare you’re considering buying is compatible with your car. This information is usually clearly indicated within the product details.
  2. Hardware
    Another consideration is whether or not the mounting hardware is included. If you don’t want to spend more time sourcing the appropriate materials, then look for all in one kits that include the mounting materials too. Sometimes, fender flares can be mounted easily with 3M adhesive. And in other cases, you may need to use traditional hardware such as bolts and brackets. While both have advantages, you should consider the terrain where you plan to drive. 3M adhesive is fine for traditional driving. But if you’re driving off-road or on bumpy terrains, brackets and bolts can provide more security.
  3. Ease of Use
    This feature goes along with the hardware. Along with considering which mounting options are compatible with where and how you drive, you need to determine which installation method is easiest for you to complete. Especially if you’ll be installing these fender flares by yourself, if you’re not as handy with tools, you should focus on fender flare kits that feature adhesive mounting options.
  4. Materials
    Fender flares are usually made from a range of materials and the one you select is going to depend on the type of protection you’re looking to achieve. A popular option is Dura-Flex 2000 which is best known for being abrasion resistant and providing the most protection for your car and tires. However, you can also find flares made from ABS plastic and UV treated polyurethane.
  5. Design
    This will be a personal choice that is entirely dependent upon your preferred aesthetic. Some people want their fender flares to look like it belongs to their vehicle. In this case, opt for more OEM style fender flares. Meanwhile others like a more custom approach. For these car owners, they should consider styles that are designed to be painted or further customized. In general, there are four core types of fender flares: pocket style, extended style, OE style, and street style. OE is ideal for those who want something that looks like it came with the original design of their car. Extended styles are preferable for off-roading as they offer enhanced protection.

Fender Flares FAQs

What are fender flares?

The simple answer is that fender flares are extensions that help to further cover oversized wheels. While they serve to meet safety standards, they also help to protect your wheels and undercarriage from rocks or debris that might otherwise kick up into the underbody of your car.

Which is a better installation method for fender flares, adhesive or bolts?

This is going to depend on where you do the bulk of your driving. If you only drive on paved streets and avoid driving for extended periods in bad weather, then 3M adhesive should be more than sufficient for securely holding your fender flares. However, if you frequently drive off-road you should focus on options that require more permanent installation and include brackets and bolts.

Besides protection, what other reasons would someone want fender flares?

Fender flares are a great way to hide any cosmetic damage that could normally accumulate around the wheel wells on your vehicle. Specifically, they’re great for hiding nicks in the paint or even rust spots.
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