If you drive a car with a lowered height or if you are in the process of buying one, then you may have received some advice on finding a skid plate for lowered cars. There are quite a few reasons for that.
In the world of automobiles, skid plates are considered an underrated yet crucial part of a car. Due to the way they are built, they optimally cover a vehicle’s underbody and all the components that are installed within it. As a result, they protect your car’s undercarriage from impacts against the road or external objects. This saves your vehicle from unnecessary damage, and lets you steer clear from safety hazards.
While skid plates are important for any type of car, they are absolutely essential for lowered cars. It’s because lowered cars have a greater chance of sustaining impacts against the road. This lowered height can turn everyday instances into safety hazards for such vehicles and their base framework. Whenever your lowered car is running into speed bumps, driving over small boulders, or treading over branches, it brings about a certain sense of risk that can result in excessive damage to its essential parts.
Keeping these factors in mind, it is absolutely crucial to find a skid plate for lowered cars if you own or plan to buy such a vehicle. But in order to get the most out of your skid plate purchase, you need to keep a few important points in mind.
Cover Your Whole Undercarriage
Unlike a vehicle’s hood or its trunk, undercarriage skid plates usually don’t come within a single frame. Since a car’s underbody has multiple components within it, skid plates are designed in multiple segments to make maintenance and repairs easier in the long run. This is especially true for older cars, which need several skid plates in order to cover their whole underbody.
If you own a lowered car, you will be able to pick and choose which components or parts of your car’s underbody you need to cover with skid plates. For instance, most car owners make it a priority to cover the vehicle’s fuel tank with a skid plate for lowered cars. Whereas, others go with installing skid plates over their transmission instead.
This segmented approach is beneficial because it provides you with plenty of flexibility in choosing and installing skid plates. It is a great aspect if you are on a tight budget. But even if you can select which skid plates to install, it is important that you consider covering your vehicle’s whole underbody with them.
It’s because when you are on the road, the pavement or ground doesn’t differentiate between car components. A stray branch may not always go for your fuel tank, and a pothole won’t always hit your transmission. To make sure that you are making your car safe from all aspects, it’s essential that you leave no stone unturned and install skid plates throughout your undercarriage.
While skid plates usually come in separate pieces, it is not always the case. It is still easy to find a whole skid plate or underbody plate that fits onto the undercarriage at once. This is the most beneficial option if you don’t have budgetary constraints or want to ensure maximum protection for your lowered car from the get-go.
Choose a Customizable Skid Plate for Lowered Cars
Much like any other car component, skid plates for lowered cars are not made with the one-size-fits-all approach in mind. Even if your car follows a conventional design, it is not necessary that any generic skid plate for lowered cars will fit it perfectly.
Since skid plates are crucial for lowered cars, many vendors often sell generic skid plates for multiple components. But even as these skid plates seem to fit at the surface, they do not provide ample protection for impacts against the road. As these skid plates are not customized to your car’s structure, they often miss the mark in making your car’s undercarriage safe. In some cases, they are prone to damage themselves and can easily loosen up by a strong hit or two along the road.
Considering these reasons, it is essential that you choose the skid plates for your lowered car with a careful approach. Instead of going with generic options, make it a point to find skid plates that are right in line with your car’s make and model. This ensures that your undercarriage receives the protection that it needs and that you don’t put your car at risk even after spending additional funds to keep it safe.
In addition to finding customized parts that go under different components, you can also find complete sets or even a whole skid plate for lowered cars. Since skid plates are an important part of lowered cars, you can easily find a customized version for your specific car through renowned vendors. Some auto body experts who offer undercarriage detailing also go a step beyond and make underbody skid plates according to each car they work on.
Go for Sturdy Material
Given that lowered cars are at the most risk for impacts against the road, their skid plates need to be able to withstand repeated hits from unwanted obstructions such as potholes and stray stones. One way to make sure that your skid plates are up to this challenge is to go for options that are made out of sturdy material. Fortunately, most skid plates are made out of durable plastic or metal, which is where you can find an option that suits your budget.
Plastic Skid Plates
When it comes to plastic skid plates, high-density polyethylene (HDPE) stands tall as the most popular material of choice. It’s all due to its balance between durability and affordability. Since the material is highly accessible, you can easily find these plastic skid plates through a variety of vendors. But you should keep in mind that these skid plates can wear out quicker than other materials, especially when you drive your lowered car on uneven ground more often. With that being said, HDPE can be a great option if you are running tight on budget but still want your lowered car to be protected.
Pros: Affordable. Accessible.
Cons: Not as durable as other options.
Metal Skid Plates
When it comes to choosing sturdy metal skid plates, it is often a choice between aluminium or steel. However, with advanced automobile mechanisms and the demand for more dependable solutions, it is easy to find a titanium skid plate for lowered cars. All three options are stronger than plastic, but vary in terms of strength when they are compared to each other.
Within metal skid plates, aluminium is the most popular choice in sturdy materials. While it can give in to extensive usage, its accessibility makes it a popular choice among lowered car owners. The sturdiness of an aluminum skid plate depends just as much on the thickness of the plate as it does on the material itself.
Pros: Easily Available.
Cons: Prone to corrode. Not as durable as other metal options.
Steel is a heavier material for skid plates, but it provides you with stronger protection on the road. It is cheaper than aluminium, but its weight can slightly affect your lowered car speed and fuel efficiency. Despite heavy usage for the past few years, it is currently only used by select auto body or skid plate vendors. Steel skid plates can be found via specialized experts the most.
Pros: Affordable. Durable.
Cons: Prone to rust. Heavy material.
Titanium skid plates are considered the premium choice in skid plates. These plates are the epitome of strength and can ensure to get you through a few years of extensive usage. If you can afford the high prices of a titanium skid plate installation, then you should definitely go for it. These skid plates can be found only through specialized auto body experts and custom vendors. This is especially true if you have a lowered car that’s more than a decade old or if you want to create sparks.
Pros: Highly durable.
Cons: Difficult to find. Expensive.
While looking for a skid plate for lowered cars, it can seem difficult to choose between these materials. But even the lowest price point can get you a high level protection in the form of HDPE. From there, you can upgrade your selection based upon your budget.
How Can You Install Lowered Car Skid Plates?
Finding skid plates for your lowered car is not difficult when you know where to go, which in this case happens to be renowned skid plates vendors or specialists. In some instances, even your regular mechanic may be able to refer you to them. In other cases, you can learn about these experts through references from your friends or family. You can also go ahead and do online searches to discover a provider that specializes in installing skid plates on lowered cars.
Once you have found the right provider, you can discuss your specific needs with them and find an option that suits your usage, your budget, and most importantly, your car. Since skid plates make your car’s maintenance easier and save you from massive repairs, going through the process to find the perfect fit is definitely worth it.