A cracked or otherwise damaged bumper is a serious safety hazard and an undeniable eyesore. Your bumper should never hang, drag, or flap in the wind; if any or all of the aforementioned conditions apply, it is time to address what you may have delayed for some time: bumper replacement. Luckily, installing a new bumper is not nearly as difficult as it may seem. Here are some tips for completing your bumper replacement DIY project in a couple of hours, as opposed to having it turn into an all-day and profanity-laden exercise that leaves you with a bruised ego (and perhaps a poorly installed bumper as well).
A spoon is great for many things:
But it is no substitute for a fork if spaghetti is what is on your plate. Likewise, when bumper replacement is what is on your plate, you will want to have proper bumper replacement tools on hand. Given that preparation is inversely related to frustration, you should definitely take the time to accumulate the items noted below. (An online search for, “bumper replacement near me”, can help you locate some of these items, not to mention the requisite new bumper.)
- A pair of gloves are always a good idea when working on your car. They will prevent unnecessary damage to your hands, and probably much of the afore-mentioned profanity.
- A pair of goggles. Popping off the fasteners could result in an eye injury, so it is advisable to wear goggles.
- Flathead screwdriver
- Phillips screwdriver
- A pair of ramps (to elevate your car).
- Optional: a helping hand. A friend who is willing to pitch in is a nice asset. Pro tip: invite them over to watch a game, then mention (just before the game is over) that you’re about to replace your bumper. Having just enjoyed your hospitality for a few hours, they’ll likely be that much more inclined to pitch in. If he says, “No, gotta go!”, feel free to “guilt trip” him mercilessly.
Having completed your “bumper replacement near me” search and prep, you can begin replacement by positioning the vehicle on the ramps (and putting it in “Park” or first gear). You will want to open the hood as it will help you to locate some of the relevant fasteners.
Use your flathead screwdriver:
Use it to pop out the most visible of the plastic fasteners, and your Phillips to remove similarly conspicuous screws. Positioning yourself beneath the car, you can then reach and remove any remaining fasteners/screws. The old bumper should come off fairly easily thereafter. However, if it does not, double check to confirm that you have in fact removed all fasteners and screws. (There are quite a few of them, so it is easy to overlook some.)
Be sure to collect all existing fasteners and screws. A second pro tip: while these items are certainly reusable, you may also want to have a few new fasteners/screws on hand in case some of the old ones are missing.
Next, maneuver your new bumper into place while ensuring that it lines up with the holes for the fasteners and screws; be sure to achieve a flush fit with no uneven gaps anywhere, then insert fasteners and screws. Confirm that all attachment points are accounted for and the new bumper is securely fastened. You are done!