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What are fender flares?

What are fender flares?

Fender flares are a popular and practical aftermarket addition to vehicles, known for their ability to enhance both the aesthetic appeal and functionality of a car or truck. These accessories are designed to extend and widen the wheel arches, providing additional coverage for oversized tires and wheels. In this article, we will delve into the world of fender flares, exploring their history, purpose, types, installation, and benefits.

History of Fender Flares

The concept of fender flares dates back to off-road racing in the 1960s. Off-road enthusiasts began using wider fenders to accommodate larger, more aggressive tires. As the popularity of off-roading grew, so did the demand for these fender flares. Over time, automotive manufacturers and aftermarket companies recognized the potential of fender flares to not only serve a functional purpose, but also contribute to the overall aesthetics of a vehicle.

Purpose of Fender Flares

Tire Coverage

One of the primary functions of fender flares is to provide additional coverage for oversized tires. This helps prevent mud, rocks and debris from being thrown onto the body of the vehicle, reducing the risk of damage and scratches.

Style enhancement

Fender flares can dramatically change the look of a vehicle. They add a rugged and aggressive look that makes a car or truck stand out from the crowd. Several styles and designs are available to suit different tastes, from sleek and subtle to bold and eye-catching.

Protection from rust and corrosion

By providing extra coverage, fender flares also help protect the body of the vehicle from rust and corrosion caused by road salt, gravel and other corrosive materials.

Types of Fender Flares

OEM Style Flares

These fender flares are designed to match the vehicle's original equipment manufacturer (OEM) styling. They seamlessly integrate with existing body lines for a factory-like appearance.

Pocket Style Flares

Featuring a distinctive pocket design, these flares add a bold and aggressive look to the vehicle. The pockets can be functional, providing additional space for mud and debris to collect without affecting the body.

Cut Out Flares

Popular with off-road enthusiasts, cut-out flares provide maximum tire clearance. They involve cutting into the existing fender to create a more open wheel well to accommodate even the largest tires.

Extended Flares

Extended flares provide additional coverage that extends further from the vehicle body. This type is especially useful for trucks and SUVs with lifted suspensions and larger tires.

Fender Flares Installation

Here are the general steps involved:

Prepare the vehicle

Clean the area where the fender flares will be installed to ensure proper adhesion. Remove any dirt, wax or grease from the surface.

Test Installing the Flares

Before permanently installing the flares, perform a test fit to ensure that they are properly aligned with the vehicle's body lines. Make any necessary adjustments to achieve the desired look.

Secure the flares

Use the hardware provided to secure the fender flares to the vehicle. This often involves drilling holes for bolts or using existing attachment points.

Sealing the Edges

To prevent water and debris from getting between the flare and the body, apply a sealant along the edges. This helps prevent rust and corrosion.

Benefits of Fender Flares

Improved aesthetics

From a rugged off-road look to a sportier look, these accessories allow owners to customize their vehicles to their liking.

Protection from damage

The extra coverage provided by fender flares acts as a shield against road debris, preventing scratches, dents and other forms of damage. This is especially important for off-road enthusiasts and those who drive in harsh conditions.


Fender flares are versatile accessories that fit a wide range of vehicles, including trucks, SUVs and off-road vehicles. They come in a variety of styles, allowing owners to choose the one that best fits their vehicle's design.

Increased resale value

A well-maintained vehicle with stylish and functional additions like fender flares can command a higher resale value. Customization can attract potential buyers and set a vehicle apart in a competitive market.


Fender flares have evolved from their utilitarian origins in off-road racing to become a popular aftermarket accessory that enhances both the style and functionality of vehicles. Whether protecting against road debris, creating a custom look or adding an extra layer of rust protection, these versatile accessories offer a number of benefits to automotive enthusiasts. As the automotive industry continues to embrace individuality and personalization, fender flares are likely to remain a sought-after addition for those looking to make a statement with their vehicles.

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