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About Bumper Styling

Those who love to keep their car looking terrific and up to date with the trends are not big fans of the stock bumpers on their cars. But you can change all that and completely transform the appearance of your car with a bit of bumper styling.

Most car designers prioritise cost-cutting and ease of manufacturing when designing car bumpers. That’s why they are plain and bland unless it is an expensive supercar. But if you want more than that vanilla look of the stock bumpers, you can always get a good aftermarket bumper kit and replace the original. Also, bumpers affect the overall look of the car to a great extent. Although they seem smaller compared to other body parts, installing the right kind of bumper can do wonders to your car. Not only will it change the look, but it can also improve the handling and performance when done right.

Different types of car bumpers

When it comes to choosing a bumper, there is a slew of options. The main difference between bumpers is the material used for the construction. Each of them has pros and cons that make them suitable for different requirements. They vary in durability, impact resistance, corrosion resistance, etc. Here is a quick guide to help you understand the difference between the most common types of bumpers. This will help you choose the right material for your car bumper. In this article, you will also find some awesome tips that you can follow while shopping for custom car bumpers.

Thermoplastic bumpers

This is the default material used by the original manufacturers or OMEs. The benefit of thermoplastic bumpers is that they are cheaper to manufacture compared to other materials. But they do have decent impact absorption and durability. Thermoplastic, in fact, is a group of plastics rather than a single material. Out of these, polycarbonate is more popular. The advantages of thermoplastic are many. They can be heated and reheated numerous times and will retain their flexibility. Because the most important requirement of a car bumper is not style, manufacturers prefer this low-cost material over their expensive counterparts.

Carbon fibre bumpers

Carbon fibre is a relatively new material. They had not been around a few decades ago. They are basically carbon that is treated to form microscopic fibres. The manufacturing process of these fibres is expensive and often slow. But if you do not mind the extra bit of cost, carbon fibre bumpers are the best option. They also have a distinctive texture. Carbon fibres have a coveted place in the racing world for their lightweight and incredible strength. One obvious advantage of carbon fibre bumper is the increase in fuel efficiency and collision protection.

Polyurethane bumper

Although polyurethane bumper looks and feels like plastic, they are different in many ways. They stretch much more than plastic and are more resistant to impact. An added benefit of polyurethane is, therefore, durability. However, they are not as popular as polycarbonate bumpers because of the cost. Even though they have all these benefits, the fact that they are heavier than other materials makes them unpopular for performance cars. The weight of the body parts greatly reduces the performance of any car. So, most of those who install this type of bumper are car enthusiasts looking for good quality aftermarket bumpers.

ABS plastic

Even though this is a thermoplastic material, they are always considered a separate category. ABS plastic is a composite of a variety of plastics. They are resistant to corrosive chemicals and weather. When talking about the price, they are cheaper than carbon fibre but cost more than polyurethane bumpers. These factors make them the perfect choice for high-end cars. They have a superior texture and come in more designs and finishes than other types of bumpers, and are very durable. They are worth the extra bit of money you have to pay.

Bumper covers

In the early days of cars bumpers, they were simply cold-drawn metal bars that went in the front and rear ends of the car. They were supposed to protect the car and also the passengers. But, as time went by, they turned out to be a safety hazard rather than a safety feature. In modern cars, bumpers consist of two parts. An impact bar that absorbs the energy from bigger collisions and a bumper cover that absorbs minor bumps. When you look at any car, it is the bumper cover that you see. The impact bar is hidden behind it. The front bumper cover and rear bumper cover are very different from each other. The front cover has a more complex shape to accommodate headlamps and grills, while the rear bumper cover is just a fitter plastic case.

Tips on buying a Car Bumper

Car bumpers are an important part of customising the look of your car. You can make any car look much more premium and classier than it is with a good pair of aftermarket bumpers. Now that you have finally decided to change the stock bumpers, here are a few tips to help you choose an aftermarket bumper with the right style, features and material.

  • Choose the one with the best protective coating – When you are spending a lot of money on something, you want it to last for a long time. A good quality bumper coating will prevent corrosion and also protects the paint from chipping off. If the bumper does not come with a good coating, you can always add one. But that will add to the cost.
  • Choose the perfect look – Different types of bumpers offer different finishing to the car. Before you start looking for the bumper, you should decide on the kind of look you are going for. There are numerous options, whether you are going for a sporty look or a sleek, business-like look.
  • Size of the bumper and weight – Larger bumper adds more weight to the car. Although they will definitely give better protection, they can take a toll on your fuel efficiency. Not only that, but the size of the bumper will also affect the handling and aerodynamics of the car. But if you really want both larger sizes and less weight, you can go for carbon fibre bumpers.
  • Consider the compatibility – If you plan on adding more accessories to your car, this is one more thing to consider when choosing the bumper. Not every bumper will support all the accessories. If you want to add something like a searchlight or off-roading gears, later on, make sure that the bumper has provisions for these.

So now that you have all the basic knowledge of different bumper styles, you will be able to choose one that is right for you. Because bumpers are not cheap, it is important to get them right the first time. Also, after installing the bumper, you can use bumper guards to protect them from dents and nicks. Finally, don’t forget to check out all the other amazing products in the car supplies category. Whatever auto-tuning accessories you’re looking for, you can find them all here on our superfast shopping search engine. Among the top brands, you can consider Rieger, Bushwacker, Road Armor, Tough Country, and Iron Bull Bumpers.

Question & Answer

Are fibreglass bumpers good?

Fibreglass bumpers have a lot of benefits. They offer great finishing and are lightweight. Even if they are exposed to extreme weather, they won’t show ageing. They are less prone to damage from corrosive chemicals like brake oil and other kinds of liquids that go into the car. But all that being said, they have one big disadvantage. They fail big time in the matter of absorbing impacts. That doesn’t mean it will break with the slightest of bumps. But if you get in fender benders a lot, you should opt for something like ABS plastic or polyurethane ones. And finally, fibreglass bumpers are expensive.

What is car bumper styling?

Car bumper styling means replacing the factory-installed bumpers of a car with aftermarket bumpers. Every part of the car body is customisable, and there are different reasons why people go for bumper styling. Some just want to improve the look of the car. Like fitting a regular car with a beefier bumper gives it a sporty look. And when some graphics also goes on top of it, the looks are complete. Some replace bumpers in order to improve performance. This is common in the racing community. Racers want bumpers that are lightweight and offer more protection.

Which is the best material for car bumpers?

The answer depends on what you want to achieve with a bumper replacement. There are a few things you have to think about when you consider different car bumper styles to buy. If you want the best looks on a budget, fibreglass bumpers are the way to go. If you want good looks, also durability and protection, there are ABS plastic, thermoplastics, and polyurethane materials to choose from. But if you want all the above benefits and are also lightweight, the best choice is a carbon fibre bumper. Go for it if you don’t mind splurging a bit.