(approx) 2 Hours
Light to Moderate mechanical skill required.
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Hey, guys. Adam here with AmericanTrucks.com. Today, we're taking a closer look at and installing the Barricade Extreme HD Front Bumper in the textured black finish available for the 2013 to 2018 RAM 1500. You should be checking this out if you're looking for a pretty cool off-road entry-level front bumper to give you a little bit more protection at the front end while leaving the possibilities open to add auxiliary lighting and some of the aftermarket mods onto it later on in the future.This bumper here from Barricade, again, being an entry-level option gives you a 5/32-inch steel plating. So it's a lot more durable than your factory bumper so it's going to protect against some of the on and off-road obstacles you might run into when you're hitting the trails or just on your daily work commute. Now, this also has a two-stage epoxy pre-coating and a black powder-coated finish on top to help with corrosion and rust resistance, and that finish on top is a textured black finish, but it's a little bit smoother than some of the other textured black options in the category. There are some that are really rough like sandpaper. This one is textured, but a little bit smoother than its competition.Now this bumper here is gonna give you a better ground clearance and better approach angles at the front end here, more so than your factory bumper, which does hang down pretty low. So if you're looking for an easier time getting over some of the smaller on an off-road obstacles, this is gonna be a good option without getting into the Baja styling, which gives you the best ground clearance. So you get a little bit of the best of both worlds here. It's a really nice daily driver bumper to give you the off-road appearance but still gives you some functionality when hitting the trails.When you're shopping in the category for an aftermarket front bumper, you might notice that there are a lot of similar designs out there that look a lot like this one in particular. There are some subtle differences between the ones that look a lot similar, and this one in particular, like I said, has a smoother textured black finish. It's got open-ended front-end tow hook options there. So the cutout is there, but the bottom is open-ended. Some of the other ones are closed off. And finally, this one is gonna be a little bit more modular than some of the others out there. It has this angular open cutout here for fog lights. Now it's not gonna transfer your factory fog lights over, but it leaves it open for two to three cube lights if you want it to pick up some aftermarket auxiliary lighting.Now, it's not included in the kit, but you do have the opportunity to pick them up. There are slots at the top of this here to help you mount them easily without having to drill any holes. There's also some airflow gaps there next to the fog light section and the center there has welded-on brackets on the back end and that big open slot for a light bar. You can mount a light bar there easily. Again, the brackets are gonna make it easier to bolt up, and it even comes with light bar brackets included in the kit.So this one's pretty modular. Again, it's entry-level, doesn't come with all the bells and whistles, but gives you the opportunity to add on in the future. There are some other options out there that have winch plates and D-ring mounts, and those get a little bit more into the recovery aspect of things. Being an entry-level, it's just going to give you that front-end protection and the off-road appearance.Now, the price tag for this guy comes in right around 950 bucks. Install is gonna get two out of three wrenches on our difficulty meter. Definitely at least a two-man job because it is bigger and it's a lot heavier than the factory front bumper. And that's a given because it is a steel plate construction, not like the factory plastic option, which is a little bit lighter and easy to manage by yourself. So keep that in mind.One thing I want to mention before jumping into the install is that your factory wheel-well liners will now be a little bit more visible due to the higher approach angles of your Barricade bumper. In which case, I recommend trimming them. That's something that's going to be required with a lot of the aftermarket front bumpers in the category because they're all pretty much better when it comes to ground clearance and approach angles so that factory liner is visible. Again, a box cutter will do the trick. Just trim it so it's not as visible. We're gonna be tucking ours back, not modifying the truck because it will be going back to stock. And I'll talk about that at the end of the install. With that said, I'll walk you through the entire process. Let's get started.Tools used the install include an impact gun, a ratchet, extensions, 8 and 10-millimeter deep sockets, 10-millimeter swivel socket is recommended, 16, 18 and 19-millimeter, deep sockets, 5/32 hex socket or Allen key, small swivel socket, Phillips head screwdriver, 16 and 18-millimeter wrenches.First step of the uninstall here is to go into your wheel wells. So you can start on the driver or passenger. I'm on the passenger side. I'm gonna grab my Phillips head screwdriver, a small one, and remove the three Phillips head screws in our wheel well. Now, some models may have 7 or 8-millimeter bolts instead, but either way, you're going to get these guys off and out of the way. With these guys out of the way, we can peel back our wheel well liner to expose the bolts holding the bumper to the fender. I'm just going to fold that behind the tire to gain access to the backend.Now the next step is extremely difficult to see, but there's basically a bolt on this bracket here, you can see the top of the stud bolt facing up, and then there's one directly here facing down. Now, you can get a ratchet and socket in there. There's just enough room for me to get my impact gun in though. And that's what we're gonna do here but you can grab your 10-millimeter socket, whether it be with a ratchet or an impact like this, I'm using a swivel socket, to get these guys off. So that's the one facing up like that. Now we can tackle the one facing down. I think we got that loosened up there, that one's tucked in this corner here just like that facing down. Now this comes off. All right. So now you can repeat this exact same process on the other side.All right. So we have our truck up in the air. If you're working in your driveway, of course, you're just going to crawl up under the front end there. We're gonna unplug the master harness for our fog lights. Now, if your vehicle doesn't have fog lights, you may not have this harness, but we do. So we're basically just gonna pinch this guy and disconnect. It's there on our driver's side. Now I'm showing you guys on the passenger side how to remove the bumper bolts connecting to the frame. There are three of them, 18-millimeter nuts. For this, I'm going to use my ratchet, a short extension for a couple of them, and my 18 deep socket to get those guys off. Once you crack it loose, you can most likely get it off by hand. And then repeat that for the third, not directly above this one here, in which case we'll have to take off our extension. Repeat that on the other side.So at this point, your bumper is loose. We can pop it off from the front end. You want to make sure you're cracking those both sides loose just like that, carefully pulling it off the truck and setting it aside. All right, not quite done with the uninstall just yet. We got to get our black trim pieces off that were underneath of the bumper. There are three of them. Two are the same, one in each corner and then the middle piece. The ones in the corners have three 10-millimeter bolts, 1 in each of these little divots there. Grab your 10 socket and extension and get these off. Okay. Repeat that same thing for the other side.Now, that middle trim piece has four bolts, two on each corner. Grab your 10 socket and extension, and get these 2 guys off on each side. Repeat that for the other side. All right. There are four Christmas tree clips in here. So basically what you're gonna do is pull straight back and disconnect those Christmas tree clips, they're just plastic. Right there, you can see all four of those. They snap right in. Set this guy aside.So we got our factory bumper off of our 2014 RAM and it's on this bumper rack here underneath our Barricade HD Extreme front bumper. Let's go through some similarities and differences between the two bumpers here. And I got to say from head to toe, this is going to be very different. The only thing that's going to be similar is the fit and finish. You're gonna have similar fitment head-to-toe, side-to-side. It's got that full-width design same as your factory one. This new guy though is made from a heavy-duty, 5/32 of an inch steel plating for strength and it's cold-formed into shape.This shape here is a lot more angular than your factory bumper, which is very rounded, not very jagged at all. This guy has angular curves, lots of blocky finishes. You can see each individual panel blocked out and it's got the angular cut out there for some aftermarket lighting if you want it to go that route. This bumper also went through a two-stage epoxy pre-coating, and then a high-quality black textured powder-coated finish on top of that for added corrosion and rust resistance.Now, in the category, like I said earlier, there's a lot of bumpers that look pretty similar to this. This one here has one of the smoother textured black finishes if that makes any sense. There are some textured black powder coating options out there with a similar back bumper style like this, but it is a lot rougher of a texture. This one's a bit smoother, more of a matte black design there.Now, this is gonna add that stealthy look to the front end and with the angular finish, it is super aggressive. The corners here do come up slightly higher than your factory bumper so you get a better approach angle, good for off-roading. Your tire is going to contact your obstacle before your front bumper would, which is not something you would typically say for the factory bumper, especially with the plastic lip underneath there. So better ground clearance at the front end here, better approach angles.Now, aside from the design differences there, the functionality side of things is definitely drastically different. Your factory bumper would take a beating a lot less than the new bumper here from Barricade. This one's susceptible to dings, scratches, and dents far more than the Barricade one ever is. And in terms of some of the added functionality, your factory bumper, if it did come with fog lights from the factory, has those in the corner. Very basic, not very upgraded, not optimized for off-roading. The cutouts here are perfect for some smaller cube lights. You can fit about two, maybe three of them in here depending on the size of them on both sides. So you have the opportunity to add that in the aftermarket if you want it to pick them up separately.Finally, they do have cutouts here for the parking sensors if your truck did come with them, ours did not. In which case you can plug them up using the plugs included in the kit. If yours did come with parking sensors, you want to transfer them over now before jumping over to the install. Last thing I want to talk about is the center section there. Similar to the lighting I mentioned here on the sides, you can fit a nice light bar in the center there. If you're looking for recovery opportunities, there are bumpers out there that have a winch plate in that center section. Not the case with this one in particular, but there are other options out there for that. This one's gonna be good for aftermarket light bars.With that said, we're going to start on the install with the brackets and then jump over to getting the bumper on. Next up, we're gonna install these little corner triangles. They're gonna go right into the top corner of the bumper where it's gonna hug the bumper and fender together. So you're gonna make sure you're grabbing them side-specific. They're labeled D and P for driver and passenger. Grab the hex screws included in the kit. You're gonna go up from the bottom with a split washer and a flat washer on the bolt head side and you're gonna thread them into that welded-on nut on the inside there. Just make sure that the good side of the triangle here is facing the outside of the bumper. From here, you can grab your 5/32 Allen key or heck socket and tighten that down. Repeat that on the other side.All right, next up we're going to install our brackets onto our frame here. Now, if you have factory tow hooks, you've got to pull those guys off. We do not so we're just going to move forward. Now the brackets are labeled P and D for passenger and driver. I'm gonna set it up just like that against the frame. Four bolts are gonna go into these bolt holes. You want to make sure you're grabbing the appropriate bolts here included in the kit. There are four for each side. You're gonna put a washer on the bolt head side, a washer, lock washer, and nut on the opposite side. Put that up against the frame and then put the washers on the back. Thread the nut on. I'm gonna loosely thread the nut on by hand until I get all four on and then go back and tighten them all down.Okay. Once you have all four of those on by hand, make sure that the bracket is as centered as can be and tighten down all four. Next up, grab a 16-millimeter deep socket and a 16 wrench and tighten these guys down. Repeat that same thing on the other side. All right. With the helping hand of a friend, we're gonna get this bumper onto the brackets. All right. So now you can do the same thing for all of the bolts, three on each side, and then tighten them down. All right. So we got the truck up in the air just to make it easier for you guys to see this. You're basically just going to repeat that for all three of the bolts. You may need to make some adjustments to the bumper to line it up properly.Now for this, we're gonna tighten them down, switch to an 18-millimeter deep socket, 18-millimeter wrench. Wrench is gonna go on the bolthead side. I'm using an impact gun on the inside. You might want to have a friend hold the bumper up in a position to align it properly and tighten these down. Repeat on the other side. Because our truck did not come with parking sensors for the front end, we skipped over that. But at this point, you can plug up these holes. There are some rubber grommets included in the kit that basically go from the inside out just like this, plug that guy up so it doesn't look incomplete. Repeat that for all of them.All right. From here, you're good to go. All right. So the last thing that you want to do is cut your wheel well liners. Because the front bumper here from Barricade has a better approach angle at the front end, your wheel well liner does hang below the front bumper and it's visible from the front end, which most guys will not like the look of. In which case I'd recommend grabbing a box cutter and a Sharpie or something similar to marking your line across the wheel well liner here lining it up with the front edge of the bumper there, and then cutting the extra wheel well liner off. That way, it's not visible below the bumper.Now, because we're not going to be cutting our truck, it will be going back to stock so we don't want to modify this, I'm just going to be tucking the wheel liner back so you guys can get a good look at what this bumper would look like complete if you did trim your wheel well liners. So keep that in mind. We're not cutting ours, but I recommend cutting yours straight across so it doesn't hang down below the bumper. That's gonna wrap up my review and install for the Barricade Extreme HD Front Bumper and the textured black finish for the '13 to '18 RAM 1500. Get yours right here at americantrucks.com.
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(approx) 2 Hours
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