If you travel at night or in low-light locations frequently, you might consider installing a brush guard on your vehicle. A brush guard is a significant purchase, so you should understand what is a brush guard on a truck and the benefits and drawbacks.
What Is a Brush Guard on A Truck?
A brush guard, also known as a grille guard or a bullbar, is a piece of hardware that protects the front end of a vehicle from harm in certain types of crashes. Some designs only cover the bumper, while others go to the grille or the headlights.
Although the word ‘brush guard’ strictly refers to designs that protect the headlights, grille, and bumper while driving through dense foliage, it is commonly referred to as bullbars/grille guards. I’ll use the phrases interchangeably in the future.
Grille guards are typically composed of steel or aluminum alloy; however, modern models use polycarbonate and polyethylene. Steel grille guards are the heaviest of these materials.
Grille guards are most commonly utilized to protect the vehicle against minor or low-impact crashes. They’re more common in rural settings, where they’re more prone to collide with wild animals, cattle, or dense foliage. Many police enforcement vehicles also include these for protection against intentional collisions, such as shoving disabled automobiles off the road.
Benefits of Using a Brush Guard
Some car owners wish to install a brush shield for the following reasons:
1. Additional protection for the front
If someone carelessly backs into you in a parking lot or your kid hits a fire hydrant while you’re teaching them to drive, the brush guard will take the worst of the damage and leave your vehicle undamaged. This is a relatively basic application of the brush guard.
On the other hand, a brush guard is perhaps more beneficial outside of the city when driving on the highway, negotiating back roads, dirt roads, or straying off the beaten path. The protection against dings and scrapes produced by scratchy bushes or other debris is a huge plus. However, collision protection against small and medium animals is considerably better.
It can be practically hard to dodge an animal leaping across the road, particularly at night, and such an incident can be fatal even at low speeds. However, a grille guard can assist prevent major car damage.
2. Aesthetic appearance
Brush guards also have the advantage of giving any vehicle a rigid and hefty appearance. But, again, this isn’t exactly a universal or objective benefit. Still, it’s worth it for individuals who want to add extra robustness and style to their car, truck, or SUV – especially since they come in a wide selection of designs and are infinitely adjustable.
It’s also possible that having a brush guard will encourage other drivers to keep a safe distance or be more cautious around you. It’s not uncommon for people to mistake any car with a grille guard for a police enforcement car, especially if it has a light bar.
The Drawbacks of Using a Brush Guard on Your Car
Even though a well-built brush guard will protect the front of your car to some extent, you will encounter other problems. For example:
High repair cost
The brush guard may reduce damage, but it may not reduce repair costs. For example, replacing a cracked headlight is the same price as replacing a damaged headlight.
Increased pedestrian risk
Using a grille shield can dramatically increase the risk of severe injury and death in pedestrian crashes. This is because grille guards are robust and inflexible, transferring the force of the hit to the pedestrian rather than absorbing it.
In some circumstances, there is a greater risk of collision damage.
While a brush guard can help avoid car damage in low-speed crashes, it can inflict far more damage in higher-speed collisions. This is due to two key factors.
- The brush guard may disperse the impact force over a larger region, resulting in more extensive damage.
- The brush guard can directly transfer the impact force to the vehicle frame.
Many truck and SUV owners choose to have a brush guard fitted since it safeguards their vehicle’s sensitive components.
Whether or not to install a brush guard on your car isn’t a simple option. You’ll have to consider your options and decide if it’s the best solution for your unique circumstances, goals, and driving conditions.