Great Ford Truck Bumper Debate: Painted or Chrome?

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Ford Truck Bumpers

Many folks love their Ford truck’s painted bumpers. But the greater potential for damage is slowly driving them back!

In the world of Ford trucks, there are several topics that will never fail to ignite a debate. Things like gas versus diesel, two-wheel drive versus four-wheel drive, and black wheels versus any other color or finish. One of the newest debates in the truck world, however, is whether or not chrome is still cool. Many prefer painted bumpers these days, but Ford Truck Enthusiasts member stufarmer‘s experience with them started quite the debate here in the forums.

“I don’t like painted bumpers. This is what my front bumper now looks like after a quick trip from Tampa to Houston and back. I could never find the time to get a clear bra applied. Now I have the added expense of having to get it repainted before getting the clear bra done.”

Ford Truck Bumpers

Proponents of chrome bumpers would be quick to point out this sort of thing wouldn’t happen to plated pieces. And that’s exactly what FastTaurusSHO does.

“This is why I got the chrome package. More resistant to damage, though not perfect. I really don’t like the painted mirrors and bumper look. I also drove my truck from the dealer to the clear bra place, on the feeder road about 10 miles. Truck had less than 20 miles on it when the bra was put on. Thanks for making me feel better about my choices, hope you get yours all fixed up soon!”

The OP isn’t the only one facing these problems, either. BK39 learned the hard way that protection is necessary for his Ford pickup.

“I’m having my front bumper painted right now due to rock chips. I was shocked at how many it had considering the truck only has 13,000 miles. I’ll be looking in to a protective film before it hits the highway again.”
Ford Truck Bumpers
And even though folks like fordman19762003 might like the painted bumper look, real life experience was enough to entice them to make the switch to chrome.
“My last truck had painted bumpers and I was always fixing chips. The truck I now have has chrome bumpers. I think painted looks better, but it’s high maintenance. My wife’s last two F-150s have had painted bumpers. The ’12 held up pretty good, but on her ’18 I’ve already fixed more chips in the 9k miles it has than the entire 85k we put on the old one.”
It’s pretty obvious that while many folks love painted bumpers, they’re also proving quite a pain to maintain. But we want to know what you think. Do you have painted bumpers on your Ford truck? If so, have you suffered an inordinate amount of damage, or did you take the steps to protect them? Either way, head over here and tell us about it!


Brett Foote has been covering the automotive industry for over five years and is a longtime contributor to Internet Brands’ Auto Group sites, including Chevrolet Forum, Rennlist, and Ford Truck Enthusiasts, among other popular sites.

He has been an automotive enthusiast since the day he came into this world and rode home from the hospital in a first-gen Mustang, and he's been wrenching on them nearly as long.

In addition to his expertise writing about cars, trucks, motorcycles, and every other type of automobile, Brett had spent several years running parts for local auto dealerships.

You can follow along with his builds and various automotive shenanigans on Instagram: @bfoote.

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