Power vs. Standard Running Boards: Which Should You Choose?

Running boards are an excellent alternative to nerf bars for trucks. Once you decide to swap out your OEM running boards or nerf bars, it’s time to consider whether you want power or standard boards. Explore the pros and cons of each as you look for the best way to personalize your ride.

Benefits of Running Boards

Standard running boards are affordable and effective means for getting in and out of your truck. They offer a flat, wide platform that’s rigidly secured to the side of your truck. Many trucks come with running boards, but aftermarket options can be more durable, stylish and convenient.

Some offer adjustable heights, while others are fixed in a single position. The installation process is fairly straightforward. Running boards can shield the sides of your truck from debris, but they can also be damaged during serious off-road rides.

Power running boards move up and out of the way when you don’t need them. These boards come in the same lengths, widths and designs as standard ones but use a small motor to swing in and out.

Power running boards, like AMP Research power steps, are convenient if you want a step that doesn’t reduce your clearance. They can be more of an investment, however, and won’t protect the doors and sides of your truck while you drive.

Both types of running boards can be more convenient than nerf bars. Compared to nerf bars, running boards are easier to step on. They typically have traction the entire way down, so wheel-to-wheel running boards help you access both the bed and cab of your truck.

New Powered Running Board Installation

Be sure to follow product-specific installation instructions for your new standard or powered running boards. Failure to install them correctly could damage your retractable running boards or truck.

Start by reviewing your options to find a set that fits your truck. Look at the length, width, and installation style to verify you’ve purchased the right type.

Next, remove any existing running boards or nerf bars. Most kits come with new brackets, particularly if you’ve purchased a retractable set.

Find the location for the brackets and install them using the included fasteners. Most kits require you to snug the hardware first, then fully tighten once all the brackets are connected.

Some power running board kits require you to trim the fender or perform other modifications. Follow these instructions carefully to make sure the brackets have enough clearance to swing in and out.

Connect the motor in the right position and align the brackets before connecting the running boards. You’ll typically need to run wires through the floor or under the sill plate in the front of your truck. Follow the wiring diagram carefully to avoid improper installation or electrical issues.

Shop for Running Boards Online

Create the personalized look your truck deserves with the latest running boards. From a convenient powered set to a rugged standard one, online shopping helps connect you with a highly-rated running board set for your specific vehicle and sense of adventure.

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