(approx) 2 Hours
Light to Moderate mechanical skill required.
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Hey, guys. It's Joe from ExtremeTerrain. And today, we're gonna be taking a closer look at the Smittybilt XRC Gen2 Front Bumper, fitting all '18 and newer JLs. Now this is gonna be a great option for that JL owner that's looking for utility-focused stubby front bumper that doesn't sacrifice on looks, it also doesn't require any wiring as we're gonna be reusing the factory fog lights and it's backed with a nice warranty.So what do we have going on here with the XRC Gen2? First thing's first, let's talk a little bit about bill quality. This guy is made out of 3/16-inch cold rolled steel, suffice to say that is gonna hold up way better than that factory front bumper would. We're gonna get the two side by side for you in just a second to really point out the differences, but this guy is definitely going to be a lot tougher. It's finished in that awesome black powder coating, which is going to add perfectly to any blackout build, it's also going to provide a nice layer of corrosion resistance over top of that steel. This is designed with off-roading in mind. Obviously we have that stubby front bumper design language going on here and that is exactly what you want. If you plan on doing any off-roading, it's gonna help you in two ways. Number one, it gives you plenty of room to fit some larger tires under your JL, and number two, it's gonna help your approach angle overall, that's exactly what you want. If you plan on doing any off-roading, in order to go over something, you need to get your tire up on new it and having nothing in front of the tire is gonna help you with that immensely.Speaking about off-roading, we also have this overrider hoop right here. It's reinforced on the side, that's gonna give you a little bit of grille protection and it even features the ability to mount up to two 9-inch lights on top of it which is a nice feature. As you can see down here we are reusing the factory fog lights, which is a great feature of the XRC. You get to keep that function, it'll work with the factory switch. Obviously there's no wiring involved, we're just gonna be scavenging these lights off of our factory from bumper a little bit later on. We'll walk you through that process in every step that goes into it. However, if you do want to run some aftermarket lights, the brackets are included in the kit to run 3-inch cube lights, which is a really nice touch from Smittybilt.Next up, let's talk a little bit about some of the recovery options the XRC is bringing to the table for the front of your JL. This gives you the ability to drop in a winch right from the top. You can put in up to a 12,000-pound winch on that winch plate in there and that is going to be a great recovery option no matter what situation you plan on getting your JL into. Now also this is going to come with some D-ring mounts. There are no D-rings included in the kit but if you did have some, they drop right into these mounts right here and give you another nice little recovery feature. If you like to look at the XRC and you're to sort of tie the whole look of your JL together, keep in mind Smittybilt also offers the exact same rear bumper and some matching rock sliders as well to have your Jeep styled as one whole cohesive design language with this Smittybilt styling.Pricing for the XRC front bumper, it's gonna fall right around that $650 mark. Now in terms of stubby front bumpers that have the ability to mount up a winch have this overrider hoop here, features some lighting options as well as D-ring mounts, this is not going to be the most budget-friendly. There are definitely more bumpers out there that pack a lesser price tag, but give you a lot of the same features. What they don't have, however, is build quality. This is definitely a step above some of those more budget-friendly stubby front bumper options. And what really puts it over the top Smittybilt throws in a five-year finish warranty on this powder coat, which is a really, really nice piece of mind in terms of build quality.Now one thing I do want to make a quick note on is if you live in a state that requires the use of a front plate, there are no mounting options out of the box with the XRC, you're gonna have to do a little bit of extra work to get that mounted up. But with that said, install is going to be a really easy two out of three wrenches on our difficulty meter. The reason I give it a two, we're gonna have to scavenge the lights as I said, and also this thing is a little bit heavy, should take you at most two hours to get this thing done. So without any further ado, let me show you what tools you'll need and how it's done.Tools we used for this install will include an impact, U-joint, a socket set ranging from 19 millimeters all the way down to 7 millimeters, a T20 Torx bit, a couple extensions, a ratchet, 16-millimeter wrench, trim panel removal tool, these two silver Allen keys will come included in the kit, however you will need to bring along a 7/32 Allen key to finish the job. The first tool we're gonna need is a trim panel removal tool. We're gonna need to remove these two pushpins that attach this splash guard to the frame rail. Now we're gonna remove this plastic splash guard, it's held in with a bunch of pushpins up here and two 8-millimeter bolts down here. We're gonna go ahead and start with the push pins at the top. Then we're gonna come over here to hit the last two and then the two 8-mills. And then we can pull out that plastic splash guard.Now we're also gonna get this metal crossmember out of the way, it's held on with a 16-millimeter bolt on either side and you can see that this tab here locks it in place, so we're gonna push up to remove it. Now before we focus on our hardware, we're gonna come up here to our fog light harness and we're going to release that. Now we can focus on the 18-millimeter bolts that hold the bumper onto the frame rail. Now you might want to get this plastic trim piece out of the way using a 7-millimeter socket, you can remove all the bolts to do so, however, if you do have a U-joint and a small extension, you could really, really easily get at those with the impact. If we lose the extension, we could do the same thing really easily for the 18-millimeter nuts on the other side. Now we're gonna go over to the other frame rail and do the same thing. Now we're gonna go ahead and give this bumper a firm pull, should come right off the Jeep.Before we go and throw that stock JL bumper aside, there's a little bit of part scavenging we're gonna have to do on this thing. Mainly what we're gonna have to take off is that OE we wiring harness and both of the fog lights on here. And to do that, we have to get these splash cards out of the way, held on with a bunch of 7-millimeter bolts and then we're gonna come to the inside here and remove the four 13-millimeter bolts that hold this metal support on. I really, really recommend something electric to do this, these threads are really, really fine and the bolt is really, really long, so this electric ratchet really, really helps. This last one right here does have a coarser thread so it does pop right out. Now we can go ahead and remove that plastic piece and have a clear shot to the back of our fog light, we're gonna do the same thing for the other side.Now the passenger side piece does have this wiring harness Christmas tree clip right here, so we're just gonna pull that right out and then we can remove the plastic. We're gonna have to get the harness out and that is going to involve moving the metal actual bumper piece and separating that from the plastic. They're held together with four 13-millimeter bolts. There's one, and two, and, three, and number four. Now we're gonna push down on the release tab to disconnect our fog lights and then we can pry up all the Christmas tree clips holding down the wire. Moving right along here to the fog light itself, we're working on a sport and this bracket is gonna be specific to a sport. Yours might be a little bit different but the process for removal is going to be just about the same. You can see this is held in with three T20 Torx bolts, we're gonna go ahead and use hand tools to remove those. Not that this bumper is really worth saving but you could see why hand tools, plastic threads. And we can go ahead and remove the other side in the same way.So now we're gonna actually mount up our lights and there's three ways you could do that or you could run with no light at all and just leave this empty. The first way I'm gonna show you this is gonna be if you want to run a 3-inch cube light, you're gonna need these two brackets right here. They're gonna go together like so and that is basically going to sit on that stud and then install to the top of the bumper and it's just gonna take up that circular area around the square cube light. Now the second bracket, this is gonna be for every factory fog light except the sport fog light, which is what you see on the table right there. This is going to go on the other side there and it's just going to install to that stud and basically give you a flat area to install anything but the sport factory fog light. Now our Jeep today, it is a sport and you're not gonna need any sort of brackets for this, this is going to drop right on like so. Then we have a hole over here and then a stud over here. We're gonna bolt that down, get the wires installed and then we can move on.So to tighten our fog light to the bumper, we're gonna need these button head bolts that come in the kit as well as the 8-millimeter nuts to secure them too. So over on this side, we're gonna come in from behind with the bolt and thread on our 8-millimeter nut. And that all we have over on the other side is a stud right there, so we're just gonna put a nut on that. Then you just want center the light and we can tighten down those nuts. We're gonna do the same thing over on the other side as well. Now we're just gonna plug the lights in using the factory harness. What you have to remember is this is going to plug back in the Jeep on the passenger side, so you want to make sure that this grey plug is over on the correct side. The next thing we're gonna install for our prep work here, it's gonna be these mounting brackets. You can probably guess where these are going to go and they do give you some plastic washers in the kit to hold that in place.So we have our XRC front bumper completely prepped and ready to go onto our JL here. But before we do, I figured now it'd be the perfect time to sit it down next to that old factory bumper and point out some key differences between these two, basically what is gonna make this Smittybilt so much better. So the first and most obvious difference between these two bumpers, we're swapping over from that factory plastic over to some heavy-duty 3/16th-inch steel. Now that is gonna be way more durable for you, but in my opinion, it also looks way better with that black powder coating on there that's not gonna fade like that factory plastic might.Looks is one thing, however, this XRC front bumper does have a couple of other nice features. If you do plan off-roading your JL, again, this is a stubby front bumper, so that's gonna open up a little bit more clearance for you to go with some of the larger tires, it's also gonna help out with approach angle. You got this overrider hoop here at the top that is going to provide a nice little bit of protection for the grille. Again, you can mount up a light bar to that as well. On top of that, we also have great recovery options with this ability to fit up to a 12,000-pound winch, the winch plate in there is really nice. You have these D-ring mounts here, they're gonna serve as another recovery point if needed for the front of your JL. Last, but certainly not least, we have these factory fog lights. Now that will be a similarity between these two bumpers obviously, but in my opinion, it's a huge plus. Having the ability to transfer over the factory stuff means you don't have to do any wiring. However, again, they do give you those brackets to wire up some the aftermarket lights if you want to do so. So without any further ado, we're just about ready. We're gonna take this bumper, get it up on to the front of our JL and get it bolted to the frame.So what we're gonna do now is take the 19-millimeter hardware in the kit and get it started on our mounting brackets. You can see we already have that one at the top done. You can sort of reach down and in through the wheel well to get that started. But you want to make sure that all the hardware is on there finger tight before you crawl underneath and tighten this down because it is very, very heavy. And we're just gonna put the hardware on the other side as well and make sure you hit the inner hardware as well.We're gonna wait to tighten down those nuts. Here's why, there's also a lower mounting bracket that gets installed here for some support on the lower side of the bumper. We're gonna make sure that's started in the threads before we tighten anything down because if this is off-center, it is not gonna go together. Now up here I'm reinstalling the factory 16-millimeter nut and then at the bottom I'm going to drop on the nut plate which comes included in the kit and I'm just gonna make sure that stays still. And then there's some countersunk bolt holes on the front of the bumper, we're gonna thread up and through like that. And then those are gonna go into our nut plate like so.And again before we tighten anything, we're gonna hit the other side as well, can put our bracket down and then come in from the front here with that 16-mill. Now that we have that in, gonna go ahead and drop on our bolt plate and then we can come in from the front with our countersunk bolts and secure that lower bracket. Now, one thing to note about these countersunk bolts is they are different sizes and therefore the nut on the nut plate, it's a different size for each one. And it's gonna be a little bit smaller in the front and the bigger bolt is gonna go toward the rear.Now that we have all the hardware in place, we can start to align our bumper and tighten things down. We're gonna start with those bolts on the bottom here. Then we're gonna tighten the bolt on the frame. I'm just gonna use a wrench coming in from the outside. Now we're gonna hit the other side as well and we're gonna use the bigger Allen key for the larger bolt and the included Allen key for the smaller one. Now we can start to tighten down our frame rails, 19-millimeter hardware up here and a U-joint on the impact does help a lot for these. And then while we're over here on the outside as well, we might as well plug back in our fog lights. And then we can do the same thing on the other outside frame rail and then we can tighten down the inside.Guys, that's pretty much gonna do it for the install here. Just a few things to wrap up, if this is a little bit out of alignment, obviously you want to go back, loosen up some bolts, make sure this is aligned properly, you don't want to ruin the looks of the front of your JL. Secondly, if you have a winch, you can drop that in right now, same thing goes with the lighting up top. But that's gonna do it for my review and install of the Smittybilt XRC Gen2 Front Bumper, fitting all '18 and newer JLs. Thanks for watching. Keep it right here at ExtremeTerrain for all things Jeep.
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Features, Description, Reviews, Q&A, Specs & Installation
Better Front Bumper Protection. If you’re looking for reliable protection for your Wrangler’s front end, the Smittybilt XRC Gen2 Front Bumper is the upgrade for you. Designed to provide maximum clearance for rock crawling due to its high-degree approach angles and raised corners, this front bumper set is sure to provide decent protection for your Wrangler, whether you’re driving over hills, rocky terrain, sand dunes, or any other path that isn’t a paved road. If you’re serious about improving the quality of your off-road adventure experience, then you can’t go wrong with this bumper set.
Room for Add-Ons. Smittybilt designed the XRC Gen2 Front Bumper to suit the demands of your off-road excursions. Aside from having mount tabs for lights that are 9 inches in diameter, this front bumper also accommodates D-ring and jack point installation.
High-Durability Construction. This front bumper kit from Smittybilt is constructed from high-quality, high-strength 3/16-inch cold rolled steel. It is reinforced with PP+TPO slip strips that offer additional damage protection. To top it all off, the light textured black finish makes this bumper an aesthetically pleasing addition to your Wrangler.
Limited 5-Year Finish Warranty. Smittybilt offers a 5-year warranty for this front bumper’s black finish. You may check the manufacturer’s website or reach out to them directly for specific details on the warranty terms and conditions.
Application. The Smittybilt XRC Gen2 Front Bumper can be used on all 2018-2023 Jeep Wrangler JL models.
Freight Notes. Freight items can only be shipped within the continental 48 states, no expedited methods. What is freight shipping? Your Answers are Right Here!.
CA Residents: WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm - www.P65Warnings.ca.gov
(approx) 2 Hours
Light to Moderate mechanical skill required.
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