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Protect Your 4WD with the Right Bull Bar

There is a great variety of bull bars on the market to suit a wide range of vehicles. So, how do you choose one? Or do you even need one? Here is our guide to help you with the buying decision.

While you might be drawn to certain looks, you should focus on maximum functionality first. You should also ensure compatibility with your vehicle make and model, as well as all your vehicle’s safety systems.

What is the purpose of a bull bar?

The primary function of a bull bar is protection. It serves as the first line of defence, protecting the front of the car and vital engine components from animal collision or hazards such as rocks, ruts and sticks. It helps decrease the amount of damage caused to your vehicle by debris and reduces the initial impact if you hit an animal.

Apart from the obvious safety features, a bull bar is also an excellent location to mount all your essential 4×4 accessories including driving lights, winches, and UHF antennas.

Another great feature of the bull bar is that it helps improve your approach angle. It can prevent hitting the terrain hard and negating any body damage. You might just get away with a couple of scuff marks on the bar, instead of cracking your front bumper.

Also, certain types of bull bars have recovery points built-in. Some can be added as an option, and others help expose the chassis so that points can be added. Without a bar, it may be difficult to fit recovery points.

With all this in mind, check our guide on how to choose the right bull bar focusing on its purpose:

1 Do you need the bull bar mainly for protection?

If you plan on going serious off-roading you definitely need a bull bar that is both functional and protective. 

Keep in mind that you don’t want to go all out on a heavy-duty full-hooped bar, as greater approach and departure angles take precedence. 

A lightweight bull bar, such as an Off-Road Animal, will not only look good but will provide extreme off-road capabilities, and is airbag and ADR compatible. Another feature is that the smart wing designs allow for fast and easy replacement while maintaining strength. They also come with built-in hi-lift jack points and mounting positions for winches, tow hooks, recovery points, aerials, driving lights and sand flags.

2  Do you need a bull bar mainly for mounting accessories?

Half the fun of owning a bull bar is modifying it to your liking. Driving lights, antennas and an electric winch are some of the most popular accessories. Most of these can be installed on any bull bar, but we recommend measuring the size of the winches and driving lights before purchasing them.

For the fitment of side rails and steps, make sure the bull bar has compatible outer tubes. And if you want to fit additional under vehicle protection such as a skid plate, bash plate or steering guard, make sure it will fit with the bar you choose.

You will need to make sure that the bar is ADR compliant and compatible with your vehicle’s airbag system. Also, manufacturers state which model bull bar is compatible with some additional safety features like parking sensors, cruise control, and emergency braking systems.

3 Are you just after aesthetics?

If your choice is all about looks, you will be looking for a bull bar that highlights and enhances the look of your vehicle. However, you will also make sure that it is made from high-quality materials and features perfect welds and bends.

As soon as the bull bar you choose is legal, ADR compliant and compatible with your vehicle’s airbag system, you’ll be spoilt for choice. There are so many great designs – Off-Road Animal, ARB or TJM to name a few.

Final Thoughts

Once you have narrowed down your selection, you should be confident that the bar you choose is able to protect you. Choose a top-quality bull bar from a trusted manufacturer that suits your lifestyle and meets your 4×4 needs. 

If in doubt, contact our friendly team. We can give you more information on the vehicle’s compatibility and make sure you get the best 4×4 upgrade.

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