Side Steps for Trucks - Good-looking and Practical

Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Side steps for trucks and running boards for trucks or SUVs are similar in function, but not in appearance. However, they essentially do the same thing: to provide a step up into a tall truck or SUV.

Most 4WD trucks and SUVs have relatively high entry points, which can make it difficult for some people to easily get in or out. This is especially true if your vehicle is lifted. Side steps and running boards solve this problem.



Side Steps for Trucks


They also provide some other practical benefits as well as a stylish appearance.

Enthuze offers three different styles of side step bars and side steps for trucks and SUVs. Before we take a closer look at these specific products, let's explore why running boards and truck side steps are a practical idea in general.

Side Steps vs. Running Boards

We mentioned earlier that side steps and running boards are not the same, even though they roughly serve the same purpose. Side steps are sometimes also called side step-ups, nerf bars, or side bars.

Side steps are tubular pieces of steel installed on the side of a vehicle just below the doors and usually stick out a bit from the vehicle.


Side Steps for Trucks


The main function is to provide an additional step up into the vehicle. Side steps usually also feature a grippy pad to help with traction. Side steps differ from running boards in the following ways:

  • They leave some space between the step and the vehicle body
  • They are generally narrower
  • They leave less ground clearance

Running boards are mounted flush against the vehicle's rocker panel with no gap. Running boards are wider than side steps and have a flat profile like a board.

Because they're closer to the vehicle body and not sticking out, they provide more ground clearance. Running boards are usually made of steel or molded plastic.


Side Steps for Trucks


Why Running Boards and Side Steps Are Important

The most obvious benefit of running boards or side steps is making it easier to step into a tall truck or SUV. If you've ever had to help kids, elderly people, or a woman in a dress step into a tall truck, you can probably see why these accessories are beneficial.

However, side steps and running boards have some other benefits as well. Running boards especially can block debris from kicking up under the wheels and hitting the rocker panels. Both running boards and side steps can be somewhat helpful off-road when they serve as rock guards.

It's better to have something like a running board catch on an obstacle vs. something more important on the underside of your truck or SUV. However, if you do a lot of extreme off-roading you may want to consider something more utilitarian like rocker bars.

Another benefit of running boards or side steps is that they can serve as a doormat of sorts. You and your passengers can easily knock the dirt off of your shoes before entering the vehicle.

Most running boards and side steps have a built-in traction surface to prevent slipping when stepping on them.

History of Running Boards and Side Steps

The history of side steps and running boards goes back to the very beginning of the automobile. Old cars sat higher off the ground vs. most modern cars of the last several decades. Most early vehicles were equipped with running boards by default.

As cars began to sit lower to the ground, the need for running boards was reduced. When trucks and SUVs exploded in popularity in the 1980s, running boards and side steps came back into use for purely practical reasons.

This is especially true in recent years as larger trucks that sit higher off the ground have become more popular.


Side Steps for Trucks


Enthuze Side Steps

Enthuze side steps are constructed from strong and durable materials that will last for many years. We offer several fitments and lengths for your cab and bed as well. The steps are easy to install with application-specific mounting brackets.

1. Enthuze Stainless Steel Series Side Bar


Side Steps for Trucks


This attractive side bar made of polished stainless steel features an oval tube shape and a black traction pad for non-slip entering and exiting your truck. These bars fit a variety of models and makes so be sure to check the dropdown selector for fitment.

See all Enthuze Stainless Steel Series Side Bars here.

2. Enthuze Blackout Series Side Bar


Side Steps for Trucks


The Blackout Series is also made from stainless steel, but it is e-coated and powder coated for a black matte finish. The step pads are made from custom polyethylene for an aggressive yet practical look.

See all Enthuze Blackout Series Side Bars here.

3. Enthuze 5" Blackout Series Step Bar


Side Steps for Trucks


These step bars are five inches instead of the usual four inches of our other products. They are also constructed of stainless steel and powder coated in a black matte finish.

See all Enthuze 5" Blackout Series Step Bars here.

All featured products come with a limited lifetime warranty and are constructed to resist rust and corrosion for many years.

Get the attractive look and practical function of Enthuze side steps. All Enthuze truck accessories are tested for the highest quality before using the Enthuze name.