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Should You Put Mud Flaps on Your Pickup Truck?

Should You Put Mud Flaps on Your Pickup Truck?

Customizing your pickup truck can be a fun way to let your personality shine through. Some of the upgrades may be functional, while others are just for cosmetics. However, adding mud flaps to your truck can serve a purpose and help your truck stand out from the rest. Let’s take a look at whether you should start shopping for a set for your truck.

truck caked with mud

What is the Purpose of Mud Flaps?

They serve a wide range of purposes, but they ultimately have two purposes: to keep road debris off your truck, and to keep debris, dirt, and stones from flying around or behind you. The latter is important so as to not hit other vehicles, pedestrians, or anything else that could be damaged or injured. If you are towing a trailer, mud flaps can protect it from the same.

Mud flaps are typically attached to the underside of your pickup truck just behind the wheel to extend the wheel well downward. However, there are hitch-mounted mud flaps and other rock guards that are available for even more enhanced protection.

While driving, you’re likely going to be exposing your truck’s undercarriage to mud, dirt, rocks, salt, and water on the road surface. Over time these items can accelerate the wear and tear on your truck.

PROTECT YOUR RV FOR UNDER $40! Cheap, Easy DIY Mudflaps on RV, Bus, Camper, Car, or Truck

Should You Put Them on Your Truck? 

Many people may think that adding mud flaps to your truck is an optional and unnecessary step. This may be so if your travels are solely on clean, paved surfaces. But even on the pavement, dirt and grime can accumulate and be thrown up into your vehicle’s wheel well, undercarriage, up along the sides, outward, or backward.

Adding mud flaps to your truck is a great idea, especially if you drive in areas known for rain and snow, or you find yourself traveling dirt roads regularly.

The maintenance crews in snowy areas often use salt in winter to prevent ice buildup. Flaps reduce the amount of salt and other road grime from hitting the undercarriage of your truck, which can ruin sensitive electronics.

Without mud flaps, essential components on your truck could suffer damage and mean more frequent trips to the car wash or even body shop.

Those who intend to use their truck for off-roading should especially consider getting flaps. This type of driving often means exposing your truck to some pretty harsh conditions. Mud flaps will assist with keeping dirt, dust, and mud from spraying upward and back.

Pro Tip: Looking to buy a new truck for your future RVing adventures? Try out The Best Truck for a Truck Camper.

Truck camper with mud flaps installed.
Mud flaps keep your tires and undercarriage safe from road debris.

Do Any Laws Require Trucks to Have Mud Flaps? 

Because tossing rocks and other road debris into the air behind you can be unsafe for other drivers, some states require mud flaps in particular situations. These laws are mainly for semis and larger trucks, dually trucks included. If your truck is lifted or has modified fenders, you may be required to add mud flaps due to the extra tire exposure.

States that have laws requiring mud flaps include Alaska, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.

Laws vary from state to state and are constantly changing. Some states only govern commercial drivers or trucks with modified fenders. Ensure you’re up to date with your local laws and regulations.

Close up of mud flaps on truck that say back off.
Depending on the state you are in, there might be different regulations for your mud flaps.

Do They Affect Truck Performance?

If you decide to add mud flaps to your truck, you should not experience any additional drag or reduction in fuel mileage after adding mud flaps.

However, but the nature of them hanging lower on your vehicle you may bend, rub, or scrape them in situations where high clearance is needed. Overlanding, for example, may put your truck in a situation where the mud flap is bent or crushed. Depending on the material type of the flap, they could cause minor damage to the vehicle or, more likely, need to be replaced.

Will Mud Flaps Keep Your Truck and Trailer Cleaner? 

Yes, they keep mud and other road gunk from hitting your truck and flying backward onto the front of your trailer. Road debris can be dangerous for your truck and trailer’s finish. If you want that shine to last, you need to block some of that debris.

While mud flaps won’t prevent you from ever needing to visit the car wash, they will stop the build of up mud and snow. Without them, road elements can build up quickly on running boards, doors, trailer steps, and even door handles.

So not only with they keep your truck and trailer cleaner, but you as well!

truck covered with mud due to lack of mud flaps
Road debris can be dangerous for your truck and RV’s finish.

Will Mud Flaps Help Protect Your Towable RV? 

When you’re traveling down the highway, there’s a good chance your tires will kick up a rock or two. These rock chips can cause damage, but flaps can help prevent that. It’s a worthwhile and inexpensive investment to keep your paint from chipping.

To protect your RV even more, you can look into hitch-mounted mud flaps, rock guards, and splash stop brush shields.

Sale
BIC IBC 341011-3007299 Splash Stop Black, 11 inch
  • Package Dimensions: 2.032 cms (L) x 44.704 cms (W) x 2.032 cms...
  • Product Type: Auto Accessory
  • Package Quantity: 1

Pro Tip: Incorrectly using your truck can get costly, so before you tow make sure to read Can You Tow an RV with a Lifted Truck.

How To Purchase The Right Mud Flaps For Your Truck

There are a few ways to find mud flaps for your pickup truck. First, you can purchase a “universal” set that can be cut down to your truck size. Alternatively, you can search for your specific make, model, and year truck in Google or Amazon to find specialized flaps to fit.

There are mud flaps designed to be suited for different scenarios from mud, to rain, to off-roading. Anti-spray mud flaps, for instance, help control misting spray behind the vehicle in wet conditions.

MUD FLAPS - Husky vs Weathertech!

Is It Worth Putting Mud Flaps on Your Truck? 

With keeping your truck and trailer clean, preventing damage, and not throwing rocks at vehicles around you, the benefits of mud flaps are significant. For a relatively small investment, you become a safer and more responsible driver almost instantly. The savings in car wash visits alone will practically pay them off in a year.

Do you have mud flaps on your truck? Drop a comment below!

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Tom & Caitlin Morton of Mortons on the Move gave up the stationary life for one where they are constantly on the move. They are full-time travelers, television hosts, and digital media producers.
They left their jobs, sold their house and possessions, and hit the road in September 2015 in their full-time “home on wheels”. Since then they have traveled the US, Canada, and even internationally by RV.
Now, they are Discovery Channel & PBS TV Co-stars of The RVers, producers of “Go North” on Amazon Prime, co-founders and instructors of RV Masterclass, and contributing authors for Hwy.co and an Arizona travel guide.

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Jeff Ireland

Saturday 22nd of January 2022

your advertising content on the mobile devise is overwhelming. It makes reading your articles very difficult. I very much enjoy your posts and would like to continue but, it would be nice if someone would change how many ads are on the mobile devise screen at the same time or change the format.

Art Walton

Tuesday 26th of October 2021

Yes you should have Mud Flaps on your Truck, and (Anti Sail) flaps, ridge enough to stay down in the wind and do their Job. Yes they are more money but they save your Vehicle. As a Retired Highway Transport Office, that was my pet peave to have flaps doing their job and protect traffic ahead, and behind the Truck, and that is heavy enough to stay in Place, meaning stay down straight and not flat out behind the unit doing Nothing, to Protect other Vehicles. However the Law only says they must have Mud Flaps and they don't Speasify

Mortons on the Move

Tuesday 2nd of November 2021

Using heavy/sturdy mud flaps that won't fly up on the interstate is a good suggestion. Thanks for sharing your experience.

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