Review & Install Video
I'm Ryan from ExtremeTerrain.com, and this is my review of the Rugged Ridge side steps available for all 2007 to 2016 JKs. There's a version of these steps available for your two-door or your four-door Unlimited JK, and they're available in three different finishes--either the textured black powder coat that you see here, a gloss black or even a polished finish. Today, we're going to talk about the features, the construction and of course the installation of these side steps.
These side steps are for those of you who want to make it a little bit easier to get in and out of your lifted or even stock height JK. These are not going to provide the same protection as side armor, and they are going to decrease your ground clearance a little bit. So if you're somebody who does a lot of hardcore off-roading, maybe you want to look into some armor that has a step built into it. However, if you're somebody who stays on the road or on the light trails and is just looking for a step and something to give them some protection in the parking lot from door dings, this is a nice option.
Now there are a couple of different versions of these side steps out there, and a lot of them are similar and in similar price ranges. So it really comes down to the style of what you like. As I mentioned, there are a lot of different versions of side steps out there. These are going to be a round side step that have a little bit of a curve to the end of them. In my opinion, I think they look pretty good. They're made of a steel material and they are available in those three different finishes that we mentioned before--either a textured black powder coat, a gloss black powder coat or a polished finish.
You have a couple of different options depending on what kind of style you're going for on your Jeep. No matter which finish you pick, they're all going to have this non-skid stepping pad on it, which does have the Rugged Ridge logo and name right on the top which, you know, isn't my favorite thing, and we do have a couple of brands on the website that are a similar design without the brand right on the step pad. If this doesn't bother you, there's nothing wrong with these steps, either.
One of the nice things about a side step that is of this design is they are designed to be completely bolt-on, which makes installation really easy. You don't have to drill any holes in your Jeep. Again, these are not going to provide a lot of protection for hardcore off-roading. But if you're somebody who's just looking for some protection against door dings and wants a good usable step, this is a nice option.
As I mentioned, this install is completely bolt on, and it's going to be really easy for most of you guys to get done in your driveway. No need to bring the Jeep to a shop for this one. As long as you have traditional hand tools and about an hour of time, you can get these bolted up with no problem. These are designed to work on any Jeep from 2007 all the way up through the current model year, but Jeep did change the tub a little bit. So in the box you're going to have all the hardware needed to install these on any Jeep, but for your Jeep specifically, you're going to have a couple of parts and pieces left over. Don't worry. Again, it's a very easy installation. Just follow the instructions.
If you have threader holes in the bottom of your Jeep, you may want to have a Tap & Die Set handy to clean those out because they can get a little bit of dirt and rust in there, and you want to make sure they're nice and clean before you run the bolts up in there. If you don't have the threaded holes, you'll have nut plates again included in the hardware package to get these installed.
The first step of the installation is to either install those nut plates or clean out the threaded holes and then install the brackets onto the Jeep. They'll install onto your pinch seam and onto the bottom of the tub. You'll want to leave all that hardware loose. Then, you'll bolt the side step onto your new bracket and go back and tighten everything down. Again, a really easy installation. It shouldn't take you more than an hour.
When it comes down to the price you pay for these side steps versus the value that you get, I think these are a great option. There are a lot of different side steps on the market that are very similar to these. To be honest with you, the ones from Smittybilt and the ones from Barricade, there aren't a lot of differentiating factors. They're all going to be right around the same price range and right around the same quality. But if you like these ones, if you like the Rugged Ridge brand or you just like the style and the look of these side steps, I have nothing bad to say about them. I think they're right where they should be price wise and they're a quality step.
If you're looking for a side step to make it easier to get in and out of your Jeep and you don't need the protection offered by full out side armor, I would say that these are a nice option. They're a well-built side step at an inexpensive price.
That's my review of the Rugged Ridge side steps fitting all 2007 to 2016 JKs that you can find right here at ExtremeTerrain.com.