Taking care of your car can cause you to look into dozens of other purchases over your vehicle’s lifespan. One piece of equipment that is often underlooked and majorly misunderstood is the vehicular bumper bar also sometimes called a hitch bumper guard. During a low-speed rear-end accident, a hitch bumper guard, in some cases, can save your vehicle from damage. Let’s look at what a bumper bar is, what styles are available to choose from, and which ones you should look into buying.
- 1 Top 9 Best Hitch Steps Reviewed
- 1.1 1. Bully BBS-1102 Hitch Step
- 1.2 2. Go Rhino 360T Universal Hitch Step
- 1.3 3. TAC STHT-U01 Aluminum Hitch Step
- 1.4 4. Westin 56-10015 Drop Hitch Step
- 1.5 5. Go Rhino! – HS1012T HS-10 Hitch Skid Step
- 1.6 6. APS iStep Universal
- 1.7 7. Black Horse 4” HS36OVSS Oval Hitch Step
- 1.8 8. Bully CR-605 Receiver Hitch Mount Step (Chrome)
- 1.9 9. APS Hammer Forged Carbon Steel Hitch Step
- 2 What is a hitch bumper bar?
- 3 Choosing a Tow Hitch Step
- 4 Receiver Size
- 5 Hitch-Mounted Step Features
Top 9 Best Hitch Steps Reviewed
1. Bully BBS-1102 Hitch Step…click image to see more on Amazon The Bully BBS-1102 Hitch Step is undoubtedly the best on this list; it’s got great specs and excellent build quality, as well as the most useful features. But the price tag is warranted thanks to some advanced features Bully BBS-1102 Black Bull Series. Get ready to experience a heavy-duty hitch step. It also doubles as a bumper protector as it can help protect against damage from low-impact rear-end collisions. The sturdy hitch step is manufactured using 16-gauge steel to withstand extreme compressions. The non-slip high-impact rubber step pad adds to the overall strength of the access step. With a plug-and-play setup, it helps with effortless installation. Once installed, the rubber pad of the multi-purpose utility step ensures users get a secure, comfortable footing at all times. A universal fit utility bumper guard is designed to fit standard 2-inch hitch mounts. This bumper guard is suitable for the most common-sized hitch receivers. The access step measures 18i-inch wide, with a tube diameter of 3in. Heavy-duty construction makes the hitch step perfect for sports trucks and SUVs. For under $148.00, though, it’s a tough price and quality ratio to beat. See more on Amazon…
2. Go Rhino 360T Universal Hitch Step…click image to see more on Amazon We get it-you’re on a budget, and you want the best hitch step under $100.00 to make the most of your money. It fits two-inch receivers and provides easy access to a truck bed, SUV, and/or roof rack; Easily installed within minutes. No tools required; Offers protection to vulnerable, molded bumpers in the event of a collision; Includes a convenient storage bag and anti-rattle device; Textured black powder coat finish with a five-year warranty The Go Rhino! is extremely hard to argue against. See more on Amazon…
3. TAC STHT-U01 Aluminum Hitch Step…click image to see more on Amazon This hitch step looked so nice. It was hard to believe it was so inexpensive. It adds a unique, outstanding, and functional appearance to your vehicle. The wide step area is a massive 7.3″wide and 26″ length solid step area with safe, comfortable, and non-skid footing to access your camper, roof rack, and truck bed. Matte light texture coating offers rust and corrosion and UV resistance. Universal design fits any 2″ hitch receivers. Hitch Pin and Clip included. This super-fast hitch step delivers high-quality results. See more on Amazon…
4. Westin 56-10015 Drop Hitch Step…click image to see more on Amazon I always appreciate a hitch step that performs well as the others and stands up to wear and tear/heavy use. Fits all 34 step for 2″ receivers. Provides easy access to the truck bed or roof rack; Step area dimensions are 15-1/4 x 3-1/2. Folks, you really can’t go wrong with this hitch step. See more on Amazon…
5. Go Rhino! – HS1012T HS-10 Hitch Skid Step…click image to see more on Amazon As a relatively affordable unit, it focuses on a solid performance, not fancy functions. Universal design fits all 2″ hitch receivers. An exclusive hex formed tread pattern provides a non-slip step. The 3/16 thick poly skid plate protects the vehicle on & off-road; Small, light-weight, easy to quickly remove and store; Hitch pin & anti-rattle device sold separately. The Westin is an excellent choice for a tough, general-purpose hitch step. See more on Amazon…
6. APS iStep Universal…click image to see more on Amazon APS iStep entered the hitch step market, and ever since then, they have become well known for their quality of design and workmanship. Innovative patented iBoard design inspired by iPhone style delivers a unique, outstanding, functional appearance to your vehicle. Massive 5 inches wide solid one-piece iStep, provides an extra wider step area for secure footing. Polished 6061 aircraft aluminum boards with matte black powder coating, best rusting, and corrosion resistance on the market. iStep surface covered with full-length, premium quality UV resistant non-slip top. Universal fit all class 3,4,5, 2 hitch receivers. Three different sizes to choose 14in, 24in 36in. After using it for a while, I doubted that the APS iStep hitch step could run with the big boys. See more on Amazon…
7. Black Horse 4” HS36OVSS Oval Hitch Step…click image to see more on Amazon Black Horse entered the hitch step market, and ever since then, they have become well known for their quality of design and workmanship. 100% Brand New; T-304 Stainless Steel; 36 Long, 4 Oval Tube; Fits 2 Standard Hitch Receiver; Easy installation. No drilling or welding. After using it for a while, I doubted that the Black Horse hitch step could run with the big boys. See more on Amazon…
8. Bully CR-605 Receiver Hitch Mount Step (Chrome)…click image to see more on Amazon One of the best-constructed hitch steps on the market today designed to provide easy accessibility into the vehicle; Includes a removable adaptor; 350 lbs maximum load; Fits 1-1/4 and 2 receivers; Requires use of a 5/8 hitch pin; Overall Dimensions: 3.75(H) x 19(W) x 11.25(L) All in all, this is a really nice hitch step to own that is definitely worth the cost. See more on Amazon…
9. APS Hammer Forged Carbon Steel Hitch Step…click image to see more on Amazon We can assure you that the leading brands will get the job done, and the APS Hammer is no exception. The heavy-duty steel hitch step acts as a bumper guard for maximum protection against rear-end collisions. Has a heavy-duty powder coating for long-lasting, high-visibility corrosion protection. Offers an extremely wide step area (12 wide) with non-slip treads. Fits both receiver hitches, 10,000 lbs. Has multiple strap points for towing capacity. The package includes the hitch step only. So, what are you waiting for?See more on Amazon…
What is a hitch bumper bar?
A hitch bumper bar or hitch-mounted step inserts into your existing hitch receiver and is designed to make climbing in and out of the back of your vehicle easier. These particular bumpers can also help protect your car in rear-end collisions by absorbing some of the energy transferred, typically of the low-speed. So, a hitch bar can save you money and make your life easier.
A bumper bar isn’t a complex piece of equipment. Bumper bars are typically just steel tubing, either chromed, powered coated, or coated with plastic with various styles available. Other types of bumper bars include fiberglass composite, aluminum, and straight-up plastic.
Some of these bars are made with the primary focus being a step, and others focus more on loss prevention from accidents. There is no wrong answer when picking out a bumper bar. Just make sure that you understand what you are getting.
Choosing a Tow Hitch Step
Need a boost? Receiver hitch steps are excellent ways to provide vertical access to the back of your vehicle. Most automobiles have a receiver hitch on their back end, allowing for the flexibility and installation of various add-ons, including the tow hitch step. Let’s look at the different styles of hitch steps available before checking out which ones YOU should be looking to buy.
First off, you will want to take stock of the hitch receiver size on your vehicle. The most typical hitch step receivers will be matched up for 2″ receivers. This is likely what your car/SUV/truck is fitted for, but it is worth double-checking.
If you frequently find yourself climbing up the back of your truck or SUV like some spider monkey, a hitch-mounted step is what you need. Going from the ground up to the bumper in one motion is hard on your knees, legs, and back. Having a hitch step on your vehicle makes the task safer, more convenient, and less strenuous. Many of them include a flat upper surface with a nonslip rubber pad for safety reasons. While they are not designed for this purpose, they can often help protect the back of your vehicle from damage from the jerk tailgating you or from the person that can’t seem to parallel park without hitting your truck.
You would think that receiver step bars wouldn’t vary much from one to another, but there is a diverse selection of different styles and features to choose from. So let’s go through your options, and when you know what’s most important to you, the best tow hitch step for you and your truck will become evident.
Hitch-Mounted Step Features
Folding Steps– Usually found on smaller steps. These steps tend to be for someone looking for a minimalist solution. They usually look more like a cap on your receiver than a step when closed and are designed to be used by a single foot when opened.
- LED Illumination Lighting – These steps help
- LED Brake Lights – Some hitch steps help prevent rear-end collisions by complimenting your existing brake lights.
- Hitch PIN – Some hitch bar steps include them, while most do not. If you don’t have one and your hitch step does not come with one. They only run a few dollars, but the best choice may be to buy a hitch lock to protect your investment.
- Multiple Hitch Pin Holes – Some of the better hitch bumper bars have many holes on the receiver shaft so that you can choose how far the step extends beyond the back of the vehicle.
- Anti-wobble – One of the number one complaints across all hitch steps is that they often wobble. While some models are engineered with an anti-wobble design, you can easily take the wiggle out of your step or hitch using a hitch tightener.
- Dual-Step – These are great for pickups with slide-in campers and Sprinter vans where you need a set of stairs to enter the rear of the vehicle. Some people also use these for pets.