Best Bumper Guards For Your Ride: Bumper Cars

Top 8 Best Bumper Guards

best bumper guards for your ride bumper cars

It’s not your driving habits or parking skills that are in question here — it’s the other guy’s capabilities (or lack thereof) from which we need to guard ourselves. The cynical amongst us will say these types of bumper guards also fortify your own bumper to inflict maximum damage on others. Verticalscope’s bedwetting lawyers are reminding me not endorse that activity.

We’ve not limited ourselves to a single make or model in this post when selecting contenders for this list, so please be certain your bumper guard of choice fits your vehicle before ordering. Most of the ones shown here are of the “universal” variety. However, a lifetime of installing (and then removing and re-installing) vehicle accessories has taught your author that “universal fit” doesn’t always mean exactly what you think it does.

Not all of us are fortunate enough to have a garage, or even off street parking, so there is a measure of usefulness to these items. In fact, there must be a fairly big market for this type of car protection if the array of available options is any indication. Your author used to be proponent of the phrase “bumpers are for bumping,” but today’s styling decisions often render that belief more obsolete than a Commodore 64. Note well: the non-adhesive versions of these things should only be deployed when the car is parked.

And don’t worry, in addition to the best bumper guards, we’ll have a list of off-road bumper guards coming up soon.

Table of Contents

1. Editor’s Pick: Gold Edition Bumper Bully Extreme

If forced to slap one of these things on my car, this is the one I’d choose. Solid and durable, this bumper guard measures as one of the largest on this list at an expansive 46” x 12”. The straps from which it hangs are reinforced with steel, meaning that nefarious ne’er-do-wells will need more than a stout knife to swipe this thing.

High intensity reflectors make the thing stand out and remove any “I didn’t see your car!” protests from the offending motorist, an exclamations which was likely a fib anyway. They also make the thing look like an industrial tool from Fallout 4. A couple of stabilizer bars keep this thing on the straight and level.

This is our pick from a lineup of the best bumper guards.

Pros

  • Steel reinforced straps, large size

Cons

  • Brand logo placement is most unfortunate

If forced to slap one of these things on my car, this is the one I’d choose. Solid and durable, this bumper guard measures as one of the largest on this list at an expansive 46” x 12”. The straps from which it hangs are reinforced with steel, meaning that nefarious ne’er-do-wells will need more than a stout knife to swipe this thing.

High intensity reflectors make the thing stand out and remove any “I didn’t see your car!” protests from the offending motorist, an exclamations which was likely a fib anyway. They also make the thing look like an industrial tool from Fallout 4. A couple of stabilizer bars keep this thing on the straight and level.

This is our pick from a lineup of the best bumper guards.

2. Most Aggro: BumperBadger HD Edition

Sometimes, simply scaring your fellow motorist into submission is enough to keep them from inflicting wanton destruction on your car with their bumper during parking maneuvers. This black and red bumper guard from BumperBadger (snicker) stands like a tombstone and looks ready to absorb the most careless of parking taps.

Features on this bad boy include raised ribbing that extends from the surface to provide a flexible impact zone to cushion minor parking bumps. A set of top stabilizer bars keep the guard flat and stable for maximum protection. Those trunk straps are triple-stitched if not steel threaded and its extra wide surface covers lot of the bumper.

Pros

  • Aggro appearance, ribbed for your pleasure

Cons

  • All the style of a frying pan

Sometimes, simply scaring your fellow motorist into submission is enough to keep them from inflicting wanton destruction on your car with their bumper during parking maneuvers. This black and red bumper guard from BumperBadger (snicker) stands like a tombstone and looks ready to absorb the most careless of parking taps.

Features on this bad boy include raised ribbing that extends from the surface to provide a flexible impact zone to cushion minor parking bumps. A set of top stabilizer bars keep the guard flat and stable for maximum protection. Those trunk straps are triple-stitched if not steel threaded and its extra wide surface covers lot of the bumper.

3. Affordable Option: T-Rex Bumper Protector for Cars

If your car is not yet a beat-up hooptie but is also not worth enough to worry about sticking things on the exterior of it, then this may be a solution for you. Made of quarter-inch thick material, it is essentially one enormous bumper sticker. Attached with the magic of 3M double-sided tape, the T-Rex curves around to the side of your car, one of the only guards on this list capable of that party trick.

It’s only about four inches high but should do the trick if someone nudges your car with their own bumper. The offender will likely make contact with the guard instead of the bumper. It alleges to “keep the elegant look of your car” but I’m not too sure about that. In the days of full length body cladding (RIP, Pontiac), maybe. For those simply looking for a quick hit against quick hits, this will likely work just fine.

Pros

  • Many leagues cheaper than a new bumper cover

Cons

  • Only ¼ inch thick, held on with adhesive

If your car is not yet a beat-up hooptie but is also not worth enough to worry about sticking things on the exterior of it, then this may be a solution for you. Made of quarter-inch thick material, it is essentially one enormous bumper sticker. Attached with the magic of 3M double-sided tape, the T-Rex curves around to the side of your car, one of the only guards on this list capable of that party trick.

It’s only about four inches high but should do the trick if someone nudges your car with their own bumper. The offender will likely make contact with the guard instead of the bumper. It alleges to “keep the elegant look of your car” but I’m not too sure about that. In the days of full length body cladding (RIP, Pontiac), maybe. For those simply looking for a quick hit against quick hits, this will likely work just fine.

4. BumperX Bumper Protection & Guard

Here’s another from the "peel and stick" files. This guard adheres to your car’s bumper just like the one listed above. This time, the protector is six inches high. Spanning 62 inches wide, it does not cover the corners. Its seller advises that this is not recommended for cars without a perfectly flat bumper and, alarmingly, should not be purchased by anyone who’s not a “DIY type”. Okay, then. It’s a sticker. How hard can it be?

Not hard, surely, as trimming can be accomplished with a simple set of scissors. Interestingly, its creators say this guard was modeled to fit a 1997-2015 Prius, explaining the whole ‘flat bumper’ thing. It adheres to the car with 3M adhesive designed to stick to paint or metal. In a fit of creative marketing, the seller notes that Uber/Lyft drivers can use this to spruce up their car if they already have a beat-up bumper.

Pros

  • Great if you have an old Prius, allegedly sticks like glue, resistant to bad weather

Cons

  • Only the thickness of a quarter

Here’s another from the "peel and stick" files. This guard adheres to your car’s bumper just like the one listed above. This time, the protector is six inches high. Spanning 62 inches wide, it does not cover the corners. Its seller advises that this is not recommended for cars without a perfectly flat bumper and, alarmingly, should not be purchased by anyone who’s not a “DIY type”. Okay, then. It’s a sticker. How hard can it be?

Not hard, surely, as trimming can be accomplished with a simple set of scissors. Interestingly, its creators say this guard was modeled to fit a 1997-2015 Prius, explaining the whole ‘flat bumper’ thing. It adheres to the car with 3M adhesive designed to stick to paint or metal. In a fit of creative marketing, the seller notes that Uber/Lyft drivers can use this to spruce up their car if they already have a beat-up bumper.

5. BumperSafe - Bumper Protector for Cars

This decidedly unattractive option is made from foam covered in all-weather material, explaining its odd protuberance. Fully adjustable straps which not only go into the trunk but also hooking onto the bumper’s leading edge by the wheelwell are the epitome of function over form.

It measures a good six feet wide, meaning it should span pretty much the width of any car. It is also nearly ten inches tall, providing good bash protection vertically as well as horizontally. There are a few safety reflectors to make the thing stand out on a black car and the material from which it is made is alleged not to burnish the car’s paint.

Pros

  • Functional, durable, good reviews

Cons

  • Ugly as sin

This decidedly unattractive option is made from foam covered in all-weather material, explaining its odd protuberance. Fully adjustable straps which not only go into the trunk but also hooking onto the bumper’s leading edge by the wheelwell are the epitome of function over form.

It measures a good six feet wide, meaning it should span pretty much the width of any car. It is also nearly ten inches tall, providing good bash protection vertically as well as horizontally. There are a few safety reflectors to make the thing stand out on a black car and the material from which it is made is alleged not to burnish the car’s paint.

6. Bumper Thumper Ultimate Complete Coverage Front Bumper Guard

What? You live in an area of town where the front of your car needs parking protection? Well, at least this $50 accessory is cheaper than moving. If you don’t mind your car looking like a grade-school kid with an unfortunate mouth retainer, this product lashes to the front bumper to provide protection for the nose of your car.

The Bumper Thumper (chuckle) attaches to the bumper’s leading edges, just like the rear unit described above, then goes hooked to the front license plate. Drive in a location that doesn’t require front plates? Good for you. The company recommends a separate license plate protector upon which a person can hook the Bumper Thumper. That particular unit gives the car an unfortunate overbite, but hey – you’re already required to mount a front plate so you might as well go 10/10 on the ugly factor.

Pros

  • Protects the front of your car, scares those pesky kids into brushing their teeth

Cons

  • Plate frame bumper sold separately

What? You live in an area of town where the front of your car needs parking protection? Well, at least this $50 accessory is cheaper than moving. If you don’t mind your car looking like a grade-school kid with an unfortunate mouth retainer, this product lashes to the front bumper to provide protection for the nose of your car.

The Bumper Thumper (chuckle) attaches to the bumper’s leading edges, just like the rear unit described above, then goes hooked to the front license plate. Drive in a location that doesn’t require front plates? Good for you. The company recommends a separate license plate protector upon which a person can hook the Bumper Thumper. That particular unit gives the car an unfortunate overbite, but hey – you’re already required to mount a front plate so you might as well go 10/10 on the ugly factor.

7. Parking Armor Ultimate Rear Bumper Protector

This is the only bumper guard on our list whose sellers don’t show it deployed on a, y’know, actual car. Nevertheless, this rectangular accessory measures about four feet wide by a foot tall, so it won’t protect the corners of your ride but you should be covered in terms of height. Its straps are reinforced with steel to prevent theft and also have anti-skid foam pads on their anterior side to protect your car’s paint and keep the thing in place.

A foam core is apparently a good two inches thick, meaning it should be able to handle impacts that would flummox other bumper guards. It is weather protected, meaning it should hold up well in snow and rain. Nearly 90 percent of buyers from a good sample size give it four stars or higher, which is a pretty good endorsement.

Pros

  • Straps are reinforced with steel, flexible construction to absorb parking whacks

Cons

  • More costly than some other options

This is the only bumper guard on our list whose sellers don’t show it deployed on a, y’know, actual car. Nevertheless, this rectangular accessory measures about four feet wide by a foot tall, so it won’t protect the corners of your ride but you should be covered in terms of height. Its straps are reinforced with steel to prevent theft and also have anti-skid foam pads on their anterior side to protect your car’s paint and keep the thing in place.

A foam core is apparently a good two inches thick, meaning it should be able to handle impacts that would flummox other bumper guards. It is weather protected, meaning it should hold up well in snow and rain. Nearly 90 percent of buyers from a good sample size give it four stars or higher, which is a pretty good endorsement.

8. Luv-Tap Universal Fit Rear Bumper Guard

Our final entrant in this series is advertised to attach via bungee cords or suction cups. Those of you who remember the enormous uprights on the front bumpers of square-body GM trucks will recognize that styling feature immediately. Offered in different sizes and with or without a cutout for license plates, the Luv-Tap (comedic opportunities abound) should have enough options to fit just about any car.

By the way, those suction cups are apparently lined with a “washable/renewable” no-residue gel which create a temporary year-round bond. Just how temporary is not mentioned. Drivers could also use the supplied bungee cords should they so choose. There are up to six points of attachment.

Pros

  • Protects the entire bumper, strangely machine washable

Cons

  • Eye-searing styling choices

Our final entrant in this series is advertised to attach via bungee cords or suction cups. Those of you who remember the enormous uprights on the front bumpers of square-body GM trucks will recognize that styling feature immediately. Offered in different sizes and with or without a cutout for license plates, the Luv-Tap (comedic opportunities abound) should have enough options to fit just about any car.

By the way, those suction cups are apparently lined with a “washable/renewable” no-residue gel which create a temporary year-round bond. Just how temporary is not mentioned. Drivers could also use the supplied bungee cords should they so choose. There are up to six points of attachment.

FAQs

Do bumper guards actually work?

A quick and short answer would be, yes, they do work. However, as with everything else, even bumper guards have their pros and cons, which are discussed below:

Cosmetic Protection

If you park your car in a crowded area or a garage that is overly populated with many other vehicles, the chances are that yours may suffer from some collisions. Also, even if you are an expert driver, you may end up having your car collide with another automotive or barrier while parking in or out if there is not enough space.

When you install a bumper guard to the front or rear of your car, the impact of any such collision is reduced and your vehicle doesn’t get as severely damaged as it would be if the case was otherwise.

Easy on Finances

Because bumper guards reduce the impact of physical damages to your vehicle, you don’t have to shed a huge amount to get the body repaired.

Repulsion for Tailgaters

When you install a bumper guard at the rear of your car, it may cause more damage to the vehicles that hit yours from the back. Every driver is aware of this fact and therefore if they see that your automotive has a guard, they naturally maintain a safe distance to avoid such mishaps, of course for their safety.

Adverse Appearance

While some people find bumper guards attractive when installed on a car, many don’t. This makes sense because an expensive vehicle is a beauty in itself and adding any additional external accessory may affect the appearance of the automotive.

More Damage than Protection

Although bumper guards can protect your car from minor scratches that may cause due to slight collisions, they may damage the chassis of your vehicle if the impact is severe. In other words, in a case of an extreme collision, bumper guards may cause more damage to your automotive than protection.

Obstruct Safety Measures

When you install bumper guards, many safety features like parking assist, reverse sensors, proximity sensors, etc. may not function correctly. This can make your car vulnerable to mishaps.

Which bumper bully is best?

Honestly, there are several out there in the market and all of them serve the purpose well. Nevertheless, some with a decent number of positive reviews on Amazon are listed below:

FH Group F16408 ( Buy here!)

This universal fit product is made of rubber and comes in various colors.

BumperX 6” Width Bumper Protector & Guard ( Buy here!)

Yet another universal fit made of rubber and is designed to be installed at the rear of your car.

Although the above list suggests some good quality bumper protectors, before buying, you must check if they (or any other guard that you’re planning to buy) are compatible with your car.

How do I protect my front bumper from scraping?

In most cases, it is the front of the car that is prone to scraping and must be protected. With that said, this question can have two answers namely:

While Driving

Sudden bumps that your vehicle may experience could be due to curbs or speed breakers that your car abruptly stumbles upon. In such a case, because you may not have enough space and time to apply the brakes, you can cross those obstructions by driving diagonally over them. This would reduce the impact of the bulge or pit and protect your automotive from scraping. In addition, you can also do some research and install a good-quality bumper scrape guard for more protection.

While Parking Taking Out

If your garage or office parking is somewhere near a curb, your car might be prone to scraping. The best solution to overcome this is to invest in a pair of quality curb ramps that can serve as a bridge and protect the lower part of your automotive from hitting the ground.

Can you drive with a bumper bully?

Although you can as it’s not illegal in many countries, you are strongly advised not to do so to avoid any damage to the bumper bully or the vehicle itself, especially if the road is uneven or has a lot of speed bumps and/or curbs.

From time to time, TTAC will highlight automotive products we think may be of interest to our community. Plus, posts like this help to keep the lights on around here. Learn more about how this works.

(Editor’s note: This post is meant to both help you be an informed shopper for automotive products but also to pay for our ‘90s sedan shopping habits operating expenses. Some of you don’t find these posts fun, but they help pay for Junkyard Finds, Rare Rides, Piston Slaps, and whatever else. Thanks for reading.)

[Product images provided by the manufacturer.]

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  • Dal20402 Dal20402 on May 31, 2022

    No need to mess up your car with these things. In the front, get a foam frame for your front plate. In the back, get a hitch, if your car allows. I park in the city, and who knows how many dings the factory hitch on my Highlander has prevented.

    • See 2 previous
    • 28-Cars-Later 28-Cars-Later on Jun 01, 2022

      Agreed but what about the rear? I ordered small strips from a company called BumpTek on Amazon for my 'Rolla, they also make a product similar to #3 which I was going to order for my C70 - save #3 the rest of the above look hideous IMO.

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