When it comes to off-roading, the Jeep Rubicon is one of the most iconic vehicles in the market. But when you’ve got a Jeep that can scale rocky terrains, you also want to make sure you can easily climb into it.
That’s where Rubicon Rock Rails come in. These factory-fitted or aftermarket accessories are designed to protect your vehicle’s lower body from damage while enhancing the rugged aesthetics of your Rubicon.
However, adding steps to your Rubicon without interfering with these rails can be a challenge.
This comprehensive guide offers insights into the types of steps that are compatible with Rubicon Rock Rails, ensuring a seamless integration for form and function.
Table of Contents
- Assessing Your Needs
- Types of Steps Compatible with Rubicon Rock Rails
- Key Features to Look For
- Installation Process
- Pros and Cons
- Recommended Brands
- Final Thoughts
Assessing Your Needs
Before you go shopping for steps to go with your Rubicon Rock Rails, consider the following:
- Ease of Access: How high is your Rubicon lifted? Will children or elderly people frequently use it?
- Style: Are you looking for something that matches the rugged aesthetics of your Rubicon?
- Budget: How much are you willing to invest?
Types of Steps Compatible with Rubicon Rock Rails
1. Drop-Down Steps
These are attached directly to the rock rails and drop down when you open the door.
- Compatibility: Most drop-down steps are designed to be compatible with factory-fitted Rubicon Rock Rails.
- Ease of Installation: Moderate
2. Fixed Steps
Also known as hoop steps, these are permanently fixed to the rock rails.
- Compatibility: High
- Ease of Installation: Easy to Moderate
3. Retractable Power Steps
These steps extend and retract automatically when the door is opened or closed.
- Compatibility: Moderate to High. Ensure the model you choose is compatible with Rubicon Rock Rails.
- Ease of Installation: Complex and often requires professional help
Key Features to Look For
- Material: Should be rust-resistant, such as powder-coated steel.
- Weight Capacity: At least 300 pounds for durability and safety.
- Installation Kit: Should come with all the necessary hardware and instructions.
- Wrench set
- Measuring tape
- Preliminary Fitting: Before drilling any holes, do a dry fit to make sure everything lines up.
- Marking: Use a marker to mark the points where the steps will attach to the rock rails.
- Drilling: Carefully drill holes into the rock rails based on your markings.
- Installation: Attach the steps using the provided bolts and nuts, making sure they are level and tightly secured.
Pros and Cons
|Enhanced accessibility||May compromise ground clearance|
|Added style||Can be costly|
|Extra layer of protection for the vehicle||Complex installation for some models|
- AMP Research
- Rough Country
- Can I install these steps myself?
- Depending on the complexity of the steps chosen, DIY installation is often possible.
- Do these steps affect my Jeep’s warranty?
- Always check with your vehicle’s manufacturer, but generally, the installation of steps does not affect the warranty.
Finding the right steps to pair with your Rubicon Rock Rails doesn’t have to be complicated. By understanding your needs and the various options available, you can make an informed choice that complements both the functionality and aesthetics of your Jeep Rubicon.
Always consider factors like compatibility, ease of installation, and material quality when making your final decision.
ALSO SEE: J-Barr Hoist Reviews
40 FAQs on Steps Compatible with Rubicon Rock Rails
- What are Rubicon Rock Rails?
- Rubicon Rock Rails are protective side rails installed on Jeep Wranglers, specifically the Rubicon models, to protect the sides of the vehicle from damage during off-roading.
- Why would I need steps with my Rubicon Rock Rails?
- Steps can make it easier to enter and exit the lifted Jeep, especially for children or shorter adults.
- Do Rubicon Rock Rails come standard on all Jeep Rubicons?
- Usually, they are a standard feature on Rubicon models but double-check with your specific model and trim level.
- Is it difficult to install steps on Rubicon Rock Rails?
- The level of difficulty varies depending on the type of steps you choose. Some may require professional installation.
Types of Steps
- What types of steps are compatible with Rubicon Rock Rails?
- Drop-down steps, fixed steps, and retractable power steps are commonly compatible.
- What are drop-down steps?
- These are steps that drop down from the rock rail when you open the Jeep door.
- What are fixed steps?
- These are permanently fixed steps that attach directly to the rock rails.
- What are retractable power steps?
- These are steps that automatically extend when the door is opened and retract when the door is closed.
Features and Materials
- What material is best for these steps?
- Powder-coated steel is generally the most rust-resistant and durable.
- What is the weight capacity for these steps?
- The weight capacity is generally around 300 pounds but can vary by model.
- Do steps come with their own installation kits?
- Most steps come with all the necessary hardware for installation.
- Can I install these steps myself?
- Most fixed and drop-down steps can be installed DIY, but retractable power steps often require professional installation.
- What tools will I need for installation?
- Common tools include a wrench set, drill, level, and measuring tape.
- Do I need to drill holes in my rock rails for installation?
- Some models require drilling, while others may use existing holes or brackets.
Pros and Cons
- Will adding steps reduce my ground clearance?
- Yes, adding steps can potentially reduce ground clearance, especially with fixed or drop-down steps.
- Will steps enhance the look of my Jeep?
- Yes, they can add a rugged, functional aesthetic.
- What are the downsides of adding steps?
- Reduced ground clearance, potential for damage during extreme off-roading, and additional cost are some downsides.
Brands and Budget
- What brands do you recommend?
- AMP Research, Rough Country, and Smittybilt are reputable brands.
- How much should I expect to pay?
- Prices can vary widely from $100 to $500 or more depending on the type and brand.
- Can I buy used steps?
- Yes, but ensure they are in good condition and are specifically compatible with Rubicon Rock Rails.
Warranty and Legalities
- Will adding steps void my Jeep’s warranty?
- Generally, no. However, always check with your vehicle’s manufacturer.
- Are there any legal restrictions on adding steps?
- Laws can vary by jurisdiction. Always check local regulations.
Maintenance and Care
- How do I maintain these steps?
- Regular cleaning and periodic inspections for rust and damage are generally sufficient.
- Can these steps be replaced individually if damaged?
- In most cases, yes, individual replacement is possible.
- Are these steps slippery when wet?
- Most steps feature a non-slip surface, but caution should still be exercised.
- Are these steps safe for children and the elderly?
- Generally, yes. Steps make it easier for children and the elderly to enter and exit the Jeep.
- Do these steps rattle or make noise when driving?
- Quality steps should not make noise, but check reviews and tighten all bolts to minimize the possibility.
- Can I customize the color of the steps?
- Most come in standard colors like black, but they can be painted to match your vehicle.
- Can I use these steps on non-Rubicon Jeep models?
- Steps made specifically for Rubicon Rock Rails may not be compatible with other models.
- Do I need to remove the steps before going off-roading?
- It depends on the severity of the off-road conditions. For extreme terrains, removal may be advisable.
- Do these steps provide additional protection like the rock rails do?
- While they offer some protection, their primary function is to aid in entering and exiting the vehicle.
- Are there any weight-saving options?
- Aluminum steps are lighter but may not offer the same durability as steel.
- Can these steps be installed on both two-door and four-door models?
- Yes, but make sure the steps you choose are designed for your specific model.
- Do these steps come in pairs?
- Yes, steps are generally sold in pairs.
- How long does it usually take to install the steps?
- The time can vary but expect to spend between 1 to 4 hours.
- Can I add additional grip tape to the steps?
- Yes, grip tape can be added to most types of steps.
- Is it easy to remove the steps if I don’t like them?
- Most steps can be easily removed with basic tools.
- Can I transfer these steps to another Jeep Rubicon if I sell my current one?
- Generally, yes, if the new Rubicon has compatible rock rails.
- Do the steps interfere with the doors?
- Properly installed steps should not interfere with door function.
- Where can I purchase steps for my Rubicon Rock Rails?
- Most auto parts stores, as well as online platforms like Amazon and specialized Jeep accessory sites, offer a variety of options.