When you’re planning to take your 4×4 off-road, you’ll need to outfit it with all the right equipment and gear to give you the best performance and the most enjoyment every time. If your travels include rocky areas or off-road tracks that are full of ruts and bumps, you’ll want to make sure that you have rock sliders in place. These are designed specifically to offer a pivot point and protect your rocker panels from a variety of stumps, rocks, and other obstacles. Keep reading to learn more about rock sliders and why your 4×4 needs them.
Think About Your Needs
Just like any 4×4 mod, rock sliders and guards are going to be something that you choose based on the cost, fit, durability, weight, and features of the setup. Of course, you’ll also have to consider your own intended use of your 4×4, including things like:
- The type of 4×4 you have (not all rock sliders will fit all vehicles)
- The type of terrain you enjoy or plan to explore
- How often you find yourself stuck in various areas or types of terrain
- How you get unstuck prior to adding rock sliders
Nerf Bars Aren’t Rock Sliders
Although they look similar, rock sliders and nerf bars are completely different items. Nerf bars are great for looks and might prevent other drivers from banging their car door into yours, and they can also be used as a step for those who need it. However, they’re not designed to take the constant beating of the vehicle’s entire body weight like rock sliders will be. They’re made out of thin, lower-grade materials and will only cost about half as much as rock sliders, which should give you a solid indication that they’re not what you need.
Rock Sliders Offer Protection and More
Aside from adding a unique style to your truck protect your 4×4, rock sliders have a lot of benefits, as mentioned previously. They protect the body of your 4×4 from dents, tears, and other damage. Plus, they can offer a pivot point for tight turns or when you’re getting stuck. Select models even include a kick out that will keep your rear tire from getting stuck in whatever obstacle you’re facing and help push your rig away from it.
Another benefit of rock sliders is that they can provide a stabilizing point for rollover recovery. Since they’re designed to handle the vehicle weight, they offer a built-in attachment point to flip your rig back on its tires with ease. Unlike side steps or nerf bars, rock sliders are also a much better stepping option for off-road adventures. Their wider design offers enough room for most people to use them to jump from the vehicle to solid ground or shimmy along the side of the rig when you’re stuck in deep mud and need to get out without getting covered yourself.
The Bottom Line
Off-roading is going to be a lot more fun when you’re not worried about whether your vehicle is protected and equipped with the best parts and attachments. Instead of asking whether you need rock sliders, you should be asking which ones are best for your 4×4.