10 Best Running Boards of 2021

Jerry Wilson
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Running boards are a relatively new invention which has taken the sports and outdoor community by storm. Essentially, these are mini ramps attached to a vehicle which allows you to perform various cool stunts like skating, snowboarding, and riding.

As you can imagine, there are some pretty cool running boards out there that work best on each vehicle.

To make things easier for you, I’ve chosen the top 10 best running boards to consider buying if you’re looking to find something that matches your needs.

Here are my recommendations of the best running boards:

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NameCategoryProduct
Mopar Jeep Wrangler Side Steps Running Boards MoldedBest OverallMopar Jeep Wrangler Side Steps Running Boards Molded
MaxMate CompatibleBudget PickMaxMate Compatible
Genuine Toyota Accessories PT938-89100 Running BoardUpgrade PickGenuine Toyota Accessories PT938-89100 Running Board

1. Mopar Jeep Wrangler Side Steps Running Boards Molded

Our rating: 9 / 10

Mopar Jeep Wrangler Side Steps Running Boards Molded

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Pros:

  • Comes with mounting brackets
  • Brackets are custom
  • Durable construction
  • Easy to install

The customized semi-universal running boards are one of the most common aftermarket upgrades you’ve seen on Jeep wranglers. They’re some of the best running boards for Jeep Wranglers that you can find right now.

2. MaxMate Compatible

Our rating: 9 / 10

MaxMate Compatible

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Pros:

  • Superb construction
  • Universal compatibility
  • Priced fantastically

Cons:

  • The steel is solid but heavy
  • On the hotter side

This MaxMate product is designed to improve and protect the side of your car, regardless of what truck it looks like. The MaxMate product is compatible with a wide variety of trucks, from 1999 to 2018 models, despite the design differences. You can worry a bit less about this product not fitting, as it is nearly universal in its compatibility.

This product is designed for durability and strength, making it the right choice for a rugged person who needs to protect their precious passengers. The design is far from plain, with a ring that will complement your car’s style. The gradient finish is also well-suited to complement any vehicle’s style you might have. The MaxMate Nerf Bars are steps with length of 12 inches and height of 7.2 inches. It functions as a runner board as well as a Nerf board if you need extra protection when parking next to another vehicle.

The product is also affordability-priced, making it the best deal for your money.

3. Tyger Auto TG-JA2J2239B Star Armor Kit

Our rating: 9 / 10

Tyger Auto TG-JA2J2239B Star Armor Kit

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Pros:

  • Versatile Kit
  • Won’t Fall Off Residue
  • Supports up to a 48 Inch Tire
  • Extremely Durable
  • Strong & Secure
  • Helps Prevent Damage to the Chassis

Cons:

  • More expensive than other models
  • Straps can rattle

This running board from Tyger Auto is my top pick for 2020 for a number of reasons. Besides being jam-packed with impressive features that make your driving experience convenient and comfortable, it is also easy to install. Whether you have mechanical experience or are using these running boards with the help of professional car designers, you can acquire all the benefits with very little effort.

This is an excellent package that helps you reach difficult areas and perform routine tasks in the car efficiently. When you shop for the right set of running boards, you must look closely at the product specifications and check the compatible models. While some vehicle owners spend years performing the job on their own, others wait for the right time to hire the services of professional designers.

4. Tyger Auto TG-RS2D40078 RISER

Our rating: 9 / 10

Tyger Auto TG-RS2D40078 RISER

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Pros:

  • Not too difficult to install
  • Relatively easy to clean (especially with hot water
  • Has a nice-looking finish

Cons:

  • Only as sturdy as your truck’s chassis
  • Some signs of rust after a few years

From the start and still, this was an amazing product. This part went in easily and the quality of the running board is great. Yes, the finish wears a little bit, but that’s to be expected. The part is made of aluminum and time will wear on it as it does on all products of aluminum. Granted, in the past 6 years we have seen signs of rust in a few spots, but that’s to be expected.

It’s not too hard or too soft. The running board is just right and can really get the job done. It has a simple cutout to help with cleaning. We use this part mostly for hauling trash out of the back of the truck and to fill it with yard stuff when we go to the dump, and it gets the job done.

One thing that I didn’t mention before is that the running board is VERY sturdy. I mean, it’s not going to do much for you if you are going off-road and get stuck. But if you have a stable truck structure, then this product is one you should consider.

5. APS Premium 4in iBoard Running Boards Custom Fit 07-18 Silverado Sierra Double Cab

Our rating: 8 / 10

APS Premium 4in iBoard Running Boards Custom Fit 07-18 Silverado Sierra Double Cab

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We picked the APS 4in custom-fit iBoard Running Boards as our top pick for 2020. With its easy-to-install design, you can get your new running boards installed in less than an hour with only simple hand tools.

The pair of running boards we’ve picked comes with a heavy-duty construction with stainless steel hardware that comes with a 5-year warranty. The APS iBoard run- ning boards will work with both your 5th-wheel and gooseneck hitch.

Plus, their 10in drop is a nice advantage as this allows you to get in and out of your truck easily, as well as get items from the bed of the truck without inconvenience.

6. Dee Zee DZ16201 NXc Black Running Boards

Our rating: 8 / 10

Dee Zee DZ16201 NXc Black Running Boards

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Pros:

  • Molded to fit all trucks
  • Easy installation
  • One-year limited warranty
  • Black powder-coated

The Dee Zee DZ168 is a pair of black running boards for trucks made by Dee Zee. The pair of running boards has an approximate weight of 40 pounds, including the packaging.

The pair of running boards comes with a one-year limited warranty. The set comes with mounting hardware for easy installation. Running boards add style to your car and can also enhance safety by improving visibility and foot space, particularly during winter. It comes with a little bit of an edge over the competition due to the fact that the running boards fit perfectly to all GM and Ford trucks. This feature makes them truly universal. The edges are smoothed to avoid injury and the running boards have a wider stance.

The related part is manufactured by Skybodysourcing company. It is made of aluminum with class and feature. It is sold in sets of two and with each pair, you will receive a two year warranty to get in your vehicle safely and stylishly.

7. APS iBoard Running Boards 5" Black Custom Fit 2007-2018 Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra Crew Cab

Our rating: 8 / 10

APS iBoard Running Boards 5" Black Custom Fit 2007-2018 Chevy Silverado/GMC Sierra Crew Cab

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Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Easy installation
  • Matches painted surfaces well

Cons:

  • Bulky
  • Not wide enough for larger tires

I took advantage of a Memorial Day sale and purchased a set of 4 from APS on Amazon and I absolutely love them. They look much better than the factory running boards that come on the Silverado 2500 HD. I can actually fit my size 14EE work boots between the running boards and the tires. Installation was a snap with automotive grade Phd (plastic hardened durometer) adhesives with H2O waterline-styrene component. The underside of each board as well as all the mounting brackets are an exact match to the Silverado cabin. I chose the 4 inch black custom length which are 22 inches long (and 101 inches wide). I am so glad I did not get the 3 inch boards, as they would have looked goofy. I can see myself adding another set to my F150 post haste.

8. Westin 27-6620 Brite Aluminum Step Board

Our rating: 8 / 10

Westin 27-6620 Brite Aluminum Step Board

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Pros:

  • Vibrant, modern design
  • Smooth and sturdy step board

If you’re looking for a stylish accent for your car, this might be the one for you. You might not be able to tell from the picture, but this step board is bright and stylish. It’s designed with a brushed aluminum top and dark gray accents. You can’t go wrong with this one if you’re looking to add some pizzazz to your vehicle’s exterior.

It’s also a great step board. With the bright design and a little bit of extra confidence from the style, you’re guaranteed to have a smoother step without worrying about slipping.

The Westin is well-built, and it’s designed to last a long time underfoot. Even though some of the other boards on this list have a higher weight limit than this one, the Westin is tough and sturdy.

9. Lund 291120 TrailRunner Multi-Fit 70" Black Extruded Aluminum Running Boards

Our rating: 7 / 10

Lund 291120 TrailRunner Multi-Fit 70" Black Extruded Aluminum Running Boards

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Pros:

  • It's easy to drill
  • It's extremely easy to install
  • Built tough and strong

If you're looking for well-made boards that provide maximum security and stability, look no further than the Lind 291120. Newer and more up-to-date than many on this list, this is one of the best selling drop in molded side steps that you can buy.

These boards are made from thick .050" heavy-duty aluminum extrusion that is guaranteed to last. This can be a great way for entry-level buyers to give their trucks a little boost in appeal, while also adding some easier functionality. The thickness of this material makes this one of the more durable products we've seen.

This product features a three-step process. First, the Ford buyers have to make sure that their trucks are a 91-06 model, then all they have to do is determine which size is right for them, finally, vacum up the dirt, and drill the holes that are necessary.

10. Genuine Toyota Accessories PT938-89100 Running Board

Our rating: 6 / 10

Genuine Toyota Accessories PT938-89100 Running Board

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Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • Rated four of five stars in reviews
  • Designed to make it easier to get in and out of the car

The Genuine Toyota accessories running board is one of the most reviewed products on Amazon and receives mostly positive feedback. It’s a set of two running boards that come with the required mounting hardware.

The running boards provide a safer way of getting in and out of your vehicle compared to the traditional side-step. Instead of having to step up and then into the car, you can simply rest your foot on the running board and climb up and then into your ride. The running board measures 23 inches by 7 inches, which is large enough to keep both your feet on at once.

The mounting kit is quite easy to install. It doesn’t take much time, and you’ll be ready to enjoy the benefits of the running boards in the comfort of your car. These running boards are designed mainly for use with trucks, but they’ve been known to fit quite well with SUVs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are running boards universal?

No, unfortunately, they're not. They certainly try their hardest, but you need to buy the right running board for your car's make and model. Thankfully, most of the leading manufacturers also sell universal running boards, and the lesser-known companies tend to have models that are custom-made for the specific car. If you want a running board that will absolutely, positively fit your car, we would recommend buying a model that is designed specifically for your vehicle.

However, if you're not that picky, or you value price over ease of installation, then the universal running boards are a good choice. These models are designed to fit a wide variety of trucks and SUVs, so they're a great choice if you don't know exactly which model you're getting or you want to be compatible with any future vehicles.

Which is better nerf bars or running boards?

The nerf bars are a good protection tool for your car. It is also a great accessory to have. It would also be a great addition to your car if you go off roading.

The nerf bars are good because they extend your wheel base of your car. The reason being is because they wrap around the vehicle and are available in many different lengths. They also can be covered in carpeting or polished aluminum depending on your vehicle's color.

The running boards or side guards are one of the most common aftermarket accessories that truckers use. It is the most safe way to get in your truck from the side without having to get in the middle of the truck.

Running boards protect you from scraping your leg when getting into your truck. They make a very handy step for your closest entry into your truck. They are also a good way to protect your paint job.

Can you install running boards yourself?

This is not as simple as shaving some trim off a door hinge like some people may want you to think. Running boards require drilling holes and attaching several pieces, including the running board itself, rubber stripping, mounting brackets, bolts, and more. You also have to position the running board exactly on the right spot. If you're planning on installing them yourself, it helps to have a helper.

We highly recommend you consult a mechanic and/or a friend who is handy with tools before attempting to install running boards yourself. It can be a lot of work. For example, installing running boards on a Chevy Silverado is not too difficult. However, on a Chevy Silverado, there's a lot of complicated trim to be removed and precise measurements to be made.

Don't do it yourself, unless you're sure you can do it yourself.

How much are truck running boards?

If you’re in the market for some truck running boards, you’re probably on the fence about the price tag.

The price of replacement truck running boards will depend largely on how they’re made. It will also reflect the fact that they’re a modern accessory rather than an essential one.

Runners who are just looking for some extra storage space won’t spend as much as those who are looking for a better way to protect their feet from the exhaust and get a more comfortable driving experience.

The best truck floor runners have several options for contouring to the width of the wheel well ports, not to mention multiple holes for attaching them to your truck. They may also add door protection, mud guards and even exhaust deflectors.

Conclusion

Running boards are popular add-ons for vehicles that are either older, exclusively private-classified, or those with heavy wheel setups. But just how do you know which running board you should choose? The sheer amount of options can make it tough to pick a winner, which is why we are dedicated to doing the legwork for you and determining the best running boards for your particular needs and price point.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Mopar Jeep Wrangler Side Steps Running Boards MoldedBest OverallMopar Jeep Wrangler Side Steps Running Boards Molded
MaxMate CompatibleBudget PickMaxMate Compatible
Genuine Toyota Accessories PT938-89100 Running BoardUpgrade PickGenuine Toyota Accessories PT938-89100 Running Board