Bumper Filler Buyer's Guide
- A bumper filler is responsible for filling the gap between the bumper and the vehicle's body.
- Aside from that, it is also considered a second layer of protection against debris since it seals the gap between the bumper and the body.
- Bumper fillers also add highlights to your vehicle, giving it a clean and finished look.
- There are two types of bumper fillers according to location: front bumper fillers and rear bumper fillers.
- A front bumper filler seals the gap between the grille assembly and the bumper itself.
- A rear bumper filler, on the other hand, seals the gap between your rear bumper and the vehicle body.
- A bumper filler is usually priced around $50 to $250. Make sure to check for compatibility before buying one for your vehicle.
Aside from the vehicle’s engine components, one important aspect of a vehicle is its aesthetic appeal. A vehicle can be compared to a human being in this sense. We try our best to be healthy to keep our bodies going. However, most of us also care about how we look and how others perceive and value us. In the same way, a vehicle’s aesthetic appeal is also one of the factors to consider when talking about market value.
Many car components contribute to aesthetic appeal. A lot of times, these parts are not only there for aesthetic purposes. Each vehicle part is placed and fitted at the right spot to perform a certain function. A bumper, for example, is strategically placed in the front and rear end of a vehicle to absorb impact during collisions.
Did you ever notice a gap between your vehicle’s grille and the bumper itself? You would probably say no. Gaps between the bumper and the body are aesthetically unacceptable. Aside from that, it may also pose a risk to the components installed inside. Gaps between these parts are sealed by bumper fillers.
What is a bumper filler and what does it do?
A bumper filler, sometimes called a bumper filler panel, is responsible for filling the gap between the bumper and the vehicle's body. Since it seals the gap, it also serves as an extra layer of protection from road debris. It also prevents the bumper from making noise when it collides with another object. Moreover, bumper fillers also add highlights to your vehicle, giving it a clean and finished look. The size and design of your bumper filler will greatly depend on your vehicle’s year, make, and model.
Bumper fillers vs Body Fillers
When you go and search for bumper fillers on the internet, you will find that the term is often confused with body fillers. Body fillers refer to a polyester resin-based material that is used to even out dents and cover up scratches and blemishes. A bumper filler panel, on the other hand, is an actual vehicle panel. Be careful not to confuse the two. Body fillers are often widely used during bumper repair.
What are the types of bumper fillers?
A bumper filler can be classified based on its location. A vehicle is typically installed with front and rear bumpers. This means bumper fillers are also needed for both. How different is a front bumper filler to a rear bumper filler?
Front and Rear Bumper Fillers
Typically, a front bumper filler panel seals the gap between the grille assembly and the bumper itself. Depending on the design of your vehicle, these fillers are usually rectangular in shape. Bumper fillers can either be made of one whole panel or different rectangular sheets that let you avoid changing the whole assembly once it gets damaged or worn out. A rear bumper filler, on the other hand, seals the gap between your rear bumper and the vehicle body. Usually, it is a long panel located in between the tail lights and the bumper itself. The exact specification of your bumper fillers will greatly depend on the type of vehicle you own.
What are bumper fillers made of?
Usually, bumper fillers are made of the same material used for creating your bumper. If you’re looking for a bumper filler replacement, it is also recommended to buy a replacement with the same material. Most bumper fillers are made of plastic like acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) plastic, steel, aluminum, or fiberglass.
Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages. A plastic bumper filler, for example, can be properly held into place due to its lighter weight but can get damaged easily compared to steel or aluminum. One can also opt for a fiberglass filler. However, be careful as fiberglass can be weak and brittle if manufactured incorrectly. Some bumper fillers are chrome plated if you are aiming for a more stylish and shiny look. Make sure to consider these things when buying a bumper filler replacement for your car.
Bumper fillers can also be classified in terms of the type of finish used. Here are the two most common ones you can find:
Bumper fillers with primed finish are ready for final coating which makes it perfect for those who are aiming for customization. If you would like to have your bumper filler painted with the same color as your bumper, this may be the perfect fit for you.
Painted and/or Textured
Painted and/or textured variants are also one of the common ones you can find. They come in either a black or grey painted finish. If you’re looking for something different, the textured variants may also be a good option.
How much does a typical bumper filler replacement cost?
A bumper filler usually costs around $50 to $250. Of course, the price will greatly depend on the brand and materials used, as well as your vehicle’s year, make, and model. A bumper filler can be sold individually or in sets of two or three. Some are also sold as part of the bumper or valance kits.
Make sure to check all these specifications before buying one. It is best to enter the correct details of your vehicle in our search engine to ensure that you are getting the right fit.
Why should I replace a damaged bumper filler?
Just like any other car part, your bumper filler can get damaged over time. Although it does not get damaged as much as the bumper itself, it is still exposed to the outside environment leaving it vulnerable for cracks and dents.
Gaps in between the bumper and the body may provide entry points for road debris, dust, and dirt to enter and damage other car components. Fillers also play a big role in your car’s overall aesthetics.
Whether you’re aiming for customization or just a regular bumper filler replacement, there are a lot of variants available for you to choose from. Just make sure to check for compatibility when buying one for your vehicle. Although there are self-help videos on how to install a bumper filler, it is best to contact your trusted mechanic. This will ensure that the bumper fillers are fitted and installed correctly.
How to Replace or Install a New Bumper Filler
Whether you've got a damaged bumper filler or you're about to install a new one, here is a simple installation guide that you can follow:
Difficulty level: Easy to Moderate
Bumper fillers install easily without special tools.
Tools that you'll need:
- jack and jack stands
- floor jack
- wrench set
- ratchet and log extension
- new or replacement bumper filler
As with every DIY project, you're going to want to practice basic safety precautions. So, for starters, be sure that you're parked on a level surface and in a well lit area. Also, wear gloves and goggles before getting started.
To have an easier installation of your bumper filler, you must elevate the position of your vehicle by jacking the front of your ride up and propping it with jack stands. This way, you can have better access to the areas where the bolts of your bumper filler should be attached.
Removing the Damaged Filler
Use the appropriate tools like a wrench, ratchet, and log extension and locate all the fastening materials for easier removal.
With the ratchet and log extension, loosen the nut located at the inner fender area; but there's no need to completely remove it. From there, remove the clip holding the bracket and the end of the rubber extension. Afterwards, remove the two hidden bolts found under the front bumper. Use your wrench for this. In the same location, you'll see another hidden bold; remove this one as well. If the bolts and clips of the old bumper filler are too tight for removal, you can use a penetrating spray in order to loosen them up.
Now that the bracket is loose, you'll be able to easily take the bumper filler off by sliding it toward the driver side.
Installing the New Bumper Filler
The installation of the bumper filler is fairly easy. All you need to do is put it in the same way you took the damaged one out. Make sure that it fits snugly on its mounting frame in between the bracket of the front bumper and the vehicle's body.
Reattach all the fastening materials to ensure that your new bumper filler will be attached securely. Make sure that the fasteners that you will reattach are still in good condition and that all the bolts are returned securely before finishing up.
Remove the jack stands that support your vehicle, and carefully lower it after the installation process.