Our Editors independently research, test, and rate what we feel are the best products. We use affiliate links and may receive a small commission on purchases.
Best Grille and Brush Guard Brands
|Westin Automotive Products||Steelcraft Automotive||ARIES Automotive|
|src="https://www.outsidepursuits.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/steelcraft-grille-brush-guards.jpg" alt="steelcraft grille brush guards" width="160" height="120" />|
|Metal Finishes||Stainless Steel / Black Powder Coat||Powder Coat / Stainless Steel (Bull Bar)||Powder Coat / Polished Stainless|
|Customer Ratings||4.8 / 5.0 Stars||4.6 / 5.0 Stars||5.0 / 5.0 Stars|
Quick Answer: The 5 Best-Rated Grille and Brush Guards
Grille and Brush Guards Reviews
Westin is easily one of the most popular brands today when it comes to the best bumper guards. The manufacturer is not only known for creating beautiful products, but well-made ones that are designed to last.
With top-notch construction, you can count on these lasting for years to come, no matter what obstacle you encounter.
Their premium truck accessories are listed at a competitive price but are backed by some of the best warranties you’ll find. These generous warranties have actually proven to save their customers money in the long run.
Westin grill guards all have to pass engineering testing, along with salt spray testing to make sure they never rust – making them perfect for any kind of environment or weather conditions.
Just about every product is mat with tubing, and comes available in either stainless steel or a black powder coat finish.
You’ll find 4 main product groups for Westin grill guards:
- 2” diameter steel tubing
- Easy installation
- One-piece construction
- Stainless steel or black powder coat
These grill guards come with 2-inch diameter tubing, complete with full wraparound wings, full punch plate grille, and tough 2 ¾” wide rubber strips for a clean/finished look.
The one-piece solid construction makes it extremely durable, ensuring there aren’t any weak spots upon impact.
Welds are hardly noticeable, and the guard comes in either 304 stainless steel or a black powder coat. The former features an impressive lifetime warranty, while the latter is unfortunately only covered for 3 years. Installation proves easy, as it simply bolts onto existing frame holes.
- One-piece construction
- 5” diameter steel tubing
- Black powder coat finish
- Can mount up to 4 auxiliary lights
Uprights include 1 ½” rubber strips for a finished look, and you can choose from a single or double hood bar setup. You’ll also find a removable headlight area cross bar section, and if you’d like, mount up to 4 auxiliary lights in the center channel.
The Sportsman only comes in one color: Textured Matte Black. However, this gives it a modern and expensive look that comes with a 3-year warranty.
Winch Sportsman and Winch HDX
As you can deduce from the titles, these are simply variations of the 2 previous products, that come with a winch tray with brackets that mount right onto your vehicle’s frame.
Each one has been rigorously tested to ensure they can pull at least 16,500 pounds in a straight line. These will suit the majority of medium frame 8,000 to 12,000 pound-winches up to 10.25” tall.
Here, you’ll find various models: the Contour 3.5, E-Series, Ultimate, Safari, Contour Safari, Off-Road, Ultimate LED, and Contour LED DRL.
Next up, we have Steelcraft Automotive, known for producing some of the best truck grill guards out there, at an affordable price. They equally value style and quality, producing an array of models that are made to suit your vehicle perfectly.
Each of their models is made with heavy-duty construction and are some of the easiest to install. If you’ve never used a grille guard before, then we recommend checking out Steelcraft, as you’ll receive a great product at a low price.
With Steelcraft, you’ll find a wide array of different grill guards. They’re all pretty similar (save the bull bars), with very small differences between them, such as the finish.
- One-piece construction
- 3-year warranty
- Contoured European design
- Easy installation
Durable one-piece construction is the norm here, designed to hold up for years upon years of heavy usage. Thanks to the conveniently pre-drilled holes, you can easily install the brush guard and attach auxiliary lights if you’d like.
You can visibly tell the difference between Steelcraft products, with their sophisticated, contoured European style. Resistant to corrosion and rust, you can be sure they’ll hold up well in moisture and come with a 3-year warranty.
Protective rubber stripping only aids in this regard, also giving it the appearance that it was custom-made just for your vehicle.
HD Grille Guards
- One-piece, fully welded design
- Punch plate grill
- E-coated, powder coated
- Supports front emblem cameras
Each of these support trucks with Front Emblem Cameras, with the inclusion of a handy front panel that can be taken off if needed. The punch plate grill is extremely tough, coming with an E coating and a powder coating.
You can choose either a Matte Black finish here or a Polished Stainless Steel finish – both of which will go perfectly with any existing accessories you have on your truck or SUV.
- Available in Black eCoat or T304 Polished Stainless Steel
- Integrated skid plate
- No Drill installation
- Limited Lifetime Warranty
Each one comes with pre-drilled holes for easy installation and optional off-road lighting/auxiliary lights.
The removable skid plate definitely makes a statement but is also there to protect your vehicle to the fullest from any potential obstacles or debris that come your way.
#3. ARIES Automotive
No one ever regrets an ARIES brush guard, especially if they are searching for an aftermarket product that will make their vehicle really stand out. With a passion for customization, their team consists of elite builders who create innovative products that last.
ARIES is often at the top of the list when it comes to the best grille guards for deer, and so much more. The heavy-duty grill guards require zero drilling to install and come in the two most common finish selections: polished stainless steel or semi-gloss black powder.
The ARIES grille guards come in 3 different selections:
- Two finish options
- One-piece design
- Included LED light mounting holes
- Vehicle-specific contours
- Mandrel-bent tubes
As is the case with all others we’ve covered up until this point, the ARIES grille guards also require no drilling for installation. Using the factory mounting points your vehicle already comes with, power and rigor are maximized.
On top of that, they come in 2 finish options, to ensure a perfect match with any other accessories your vehicle may be sporting.
However, while most may be made of stainless steel, you get the option between that or carbon steel which is the toughest/most durable selection out there. Sure, the pricing is more premium, but so is the product.
Using 1.5-inch, heavy-wall tubing, they actually look sleek and feature custom contouring, depending on the make and model of your ride.
Coming with a lifetime limited warranty, it’s well worth the price.
Pro Series Grille Guards
- 4 finish options
- Comes with single-row LED bar
- Interchangeable cover plate
- Limited lifetime warranty
For example, they feature a patented LED light bar housing, along with interchangeable plate options. The interchangeable cover plate works to provide protection for the light bar.
The 1.5-inch diameter tubing is made of high-strength steel and 4 different finishes: brushed stainless steel, polished stainless steel, semi-gloss black powder coat, and textured black powder coat.
A lifetime warranty on the tubing, 3-year on the finish, and 1-year on the parts is some of the best coverage out there, to boot.
ARIES also offers 3 bull bar options: AdvantEDGE, Big Horn, and 3-inch regular Bull Bars. The first is a 5.5” product made of rust-free and lightweight aluminum, yet still super strong.
To top it off, this unique and modern design even comes with integrated LED lights! The Big Horn is smaller, at 4 inches, with a more classic tube look that will look great on any vehicle, while the 3-inch model requires zero drilling and comes in 4 finish options.
#4- Warn Industries
Warn Industries has managed to produce some of the best grille guards consistently for the past years. The brand is known as the off-roader’s preference, combining passion, fun, and professional-level quality into each one of their products.
Having been around for more than 70 years, it goes without saying that they’ve had time to perfect their grille and brush guards! If you drive a Jeep Wrangler, chances are you’ve probably already heard of them and their excellent selection.
Made specifically with off-roading in mind, Warn has the toughest grille guards out there right now. Instead of making generic products that you have to work to adapt to your rig, Warn mounting systems are engineered so that each component can be adjusted to perfectly suit your needs.
You can customize them with an array of different modular components to serve functionally and your personal style.
There are a few different options we’ll take a look at here, though most are incredibly similar.
Low Grille Guard Tube
- Powder coat finish
- Drill-free installation
- 2” tubing
- Only for Rubicons
You can just skip on over this one if you don’t have a Jeep Wrangler Rubicon. These are commonly seen on these vehicles, offering extra protection for the bumper.
With tough, 2-inch tubing, you’ll get a ton of protection and can count on it lasting you for years to come. The black powder-coated finish not only looks modern and goes perfectly with the model, but protects against rust as well.
With the drill-free installation, you can even put the Jeep grille guard on yourself!
Trans4mer Grille Guard
- Black color or polished stainless
- Comes with 2 uprights and 2 crossbars
- No drilling needed
- Very versatile
Do you need a reliable, strong location to attach your winch? Perhaps you want a premium line system with headlamp guards, front receiver, and more?
If you answered “yes” to either one of those questions, then the Trans4mer guard is for you. It’s the base of their more versatile Trans4mer system, so your options are practically endless.
You get your choice of either Black or a Polished Stainless Steel finish, though both look amazing. While you’ll be paying more, the aesthetic appeal and increased performance of this model is more than worth it.
Gen II Trans4mer Grille Guard
- Simple and solid
- Works with WARN winches
- No drilling needed
The solid steel tubing is one piece, making it very durable and simple. Coming in a rugged black finish, it’s sure to turn some heads as well. It will withstand harsh conditions and varied climates with ease, always looking like new.
#5- OC Parts
OC Parts is a brand that’s not quite as big as some of the others on our guide, but is still worth mentioning. They represent durability and flexibility with what they offer. In fact, no matter what your truck or SUV is, chances are they have a brush guard that is made to fit it. Easy installation and good looks is the norm here, combining ruggedness with allure.
If you want quality but don’t have a large budget, then OC Parts will be the manufacturer to turn to.
There aren’t many options here: only their Brush/Grille Guards and their Bull Bars.
- Very affordable
- Drill-free installation
- Carbon Steel
For front end grille protection on a budget, the OC Parts Grille Guard is a nice choice. Despite being so affordable, it’s still incredibly sturdy, made from high-quality carbon steel.
To top it off, it comes with a chip-resistance black powder coat finish that looks classy and tough. Bolt-on installation is perfect if you’re not particularly handy, with no drilling needed. On top of that, the package comes with all necessary bolts and brackets.
- Carbon steel
- Bolt-on installation
- Full kit
Rough weather conditions, off-roading, it doesn’t matter – it’s affordable but heavy-duty!
Bolt-on installation is easy, even if you’re doing it yourself – no drilling is needed. Coming with fog light mounts and license plate relocation kit, you have everything you need to get started without having to pay extra for it.
Grille and Brush Guards Comparison Table
|Product Groups||Metal Finishes||Models Available||Customer Ratings|
|Westin Automotive Products||4||Stainless Steel / Black Powder Coat||194||4.8 / 5.0 Stars|
|Steelcraft Automotive||3||Powder Coat / Stainless Steel (Bull Bar)||165||4.6 / 5.0 Stars|
|ARIES Automotive||3||Powder Coat / Polished Stainless||173||5.0 / 5.0 Stars|
|Warn Industries||3||Powder Coat||93||4.7 / 5.0 Stars|
|OC Parts||2||Powder Coat / Stanless Steel (Bull Bar)||196||4.6 / 5.0 Stars|
Grille and Brush Guards – Buying Guide
We’ve all seen them before – the accessories are not only sought-after because they look cool (although they undoubtedly do).
They also add valuable protection against most front-end damage that could occur due to driving on off-road trails, in low-speed parking lot accidents, in collisions with large animals, and more.
However, it can be difficult to know which route to take when you encounter so many different grille guard manufacturers! It’s important to be aware of which manufacturers can be trusted, so you’re not buying a faulty or low-quality product.
On top of that, you should have an idea of what you’re looking for so we can provide you with the best grills and brush guards for your vehicle and particular needs.
Even if you’ve had experience with grille guards before, it can be confusing at times to select the right one. This goes double when you’re dealing with a bunch of attractive options!
Even though many look similar, they’re simply not the same. Out of the endless manufacturers today, we selected the 5 that we know produce supreme products.
To save your vehicle from damage, add some curb appeal, and personality, you need to choose the perfect grille guard for you. We’ve gone ahead and written up the user-friendly buying guide below to help you out.
This guide will take you through each consideration to ensure that by the time you’re finished reading, there will be no doubt which is right for you!
First off, let’s take a look at the materials truck grill guards will typically come in. The most popular are aluminum and steel, and occasionally carbon steel.
Aluminum: Aluminum is the most lightweight of the bunch and still quite resilient. However, it’s much less dense, so if we’re talking about making impact with tough obstacles, aluminum models are going to suffer more damage due to their lower tensile strength.
While it is resistant against rusting and generally more affordable, it loses its shine or “luster” quicker.
Steel: Steel is more dense, heavier, and overall tougher than aluminum. However, it’s also more expensive. With that being said, it’s probably going to end up saving you money in the long run if you opt for steel.
On top of that, you can count on it maintaining its luster and good looks for longer.
Carbon Steel: Expect all of the great qualities of steel, but add in extra durability and make it more lightweight! It has everything you could ever want, though it’s going to be the most expensive.
If your grille guard isn’t durable, then what’s the point? Sure, they enhance your truck’s or SUV’s appearance, but you want it to be strong enough to hold up for years in the future.
These come in an array of diameters/thickness with the smallest usually around 1.5 inches, to the largest being 3 inches in diameter.
The thicker models will better protect the radiator and the front of the car, and if you opt for a full front-end grille guard, it will protect your headlights, as well!
No matter how long your average route is, you need to consider airflow. You want to be able to settle on a nice balance of protection and adequate airflow.
That means the guard shouldn’t actually halt or greatly affect airflow, as you’ll have some serious overheating problems that can cost a pretty penny.
As you already read, there are a few different finishing options out there. You want it to be stylish, corrosion-resistant, and actually work with your vehicle.
The most common are going to be a black powder coat finish or a stainless steel polished finish. There’s really no “better” option between the two; simply what suits your ride and personal preferences most.
How much are you willing to spend on one of the best grille guards? There are so many options, that we’re positive there is at least one model to fit into your budget.
On our guide, they start at around $100 and work their way up from there. Just keep in mind that if you are okay with spending a bit more, it often pays off in the end due to the increased durability and longer warranties that come included with the guard.
Ease of Installation
First, make sure that the bar actually works with the make and model of your vehicle. Search for something that requires minimal or zero modifications of said vehicle.
On our guide, you’ll only find direct bolt-on installation options so you don’t have to do any drilling to the truck or SUV itself. Also, plan accordingly if you’re going to add in lights or a winch in the future – make sure the guard can accommodate them.
Why Use a Grille Guard?
What is the first thing you notice when you see a truck or SUV coming up to you? We’d be willing to bet that it’s the front end. The front end is kind of like the “face” of the vehicle.
That means if it’s damaged, you’ll also notice it easier. Unfortunately, it’s surprisingly easy to damage the front end – especially if you’re someone who loves hunting, camping, or off-roading in general.
High grass/brush, rocks getting kicked up, branches, and even animals can be hazards and can easily damage your vehicle.
Grille guards will protect it from this potential damage, and also look great as well. top of that, there are certain models which let you mount a winch or lights, if that’s something you’re interested in.
Q: Do grille guards protect against deer?
A; Yes, they do. They help to make sure the animal doesn’t roll over the hood and crash into the windshield. In low-impact accidents, they’re also incredibly helpful in preventing damage to the vehicle.
Q: What is the best brush guard?
A: Any of the ones on our guide are going to serve you well, with affordability, toughness, and good looks.
Q: Do grille guards affect gas mileage?
A: Though technically speaking it probably could slightly, it doesn’t affect MPG enough for anyone to take note.
Q: Are brush guards legal?
A: They are legal in the vast majority of the United States, and many other countries, but it’s best to check with your local laws and regulations to make sure.
Q: How do you mount a brush guard?
A: 1. First off, connect the lower brackets onto the grille guard with the hardware that came included. Hand-tighten these.
- If you can, have a buddy help you lift the bar to where it comes centered on the bumper.
- Keep the brush guard centered and have another person mark the bumper or cover, and on the outside of the brackets as well.
- Removed marked plastic away using a die grinder and cut-off wheel. Test-fit the guard again, and repeat the trim procedure until the bar mounts sit squarely on the frame. Mark the bolt holes.
- Drill out the bolt holes and slide a washer over each. Then, slide the guard into the holes. Slide another washer into place and attach the nuts.
- Slide the top mounting brackets through your grille, lining one side up with your brush bar mount and keeping the other against the radiator core support. Repeat the fitting, drilling and mounting procedure for each of the top mounts, hand-tightening each bolt.
- Torque all mount bolts in place.
Q: What is the difference between brush guards and bull bars?
A: Grille guards offer the most comprehensive front-end protection, and bull bars protect solely the middle of the front of your vehicle. They’re more minimal in appearance, and often more affordable, as well.
As you can see from the comprehensive guide above, there are many factors to consider before making your final decision on the best grille guard for you. Before anything else, you must make sure that the model is actually made to work with the make, model, and year of your car, truck, or SUV.
We hope that our guide has helped you select the best brush guard for your individual requirements and preferences. If you select a model from any of the 5 brands above, we know you’ll be happy with it for years to come. Thanks for tuning in, and we’ll see you again soon!
How We Researched
To come up with the top brush guard brands, we researched a variety of sources for reviews such as 4×4 Magazine and Outside Online Magazine along with our own personal experience.
We also consulted online magazines for product research and reviews to get as much unbiased information as we could. To help weed out fake reviews we used Fakespot.com to make sure we only looked at genuine reviews.
With so much quality gear available, we had to narrow it down based on what we felt were the best options were for the price. The staff authors have a wide and varied background in offroading, motorcycling, and auto mechanics. They are eager to share their knowledge with readers.
To help narrow down the selection we used personal experiences along with recommendations from fellow auto-enthusiasts and industry experts.
After extensive research, we came up with our list to help you choose the right one for you.