If you plan to take your 4×4 vehicle off-roading, the importance of a skid plate and its function should not be understated. They are your first line of defense from rocks and debris that can cause catastrophic damage to your vehicle’s undercarriage.
Be aware that belly pans are often mistaken for a skid plate. You will find belly pans on most vehicles; however, they are not a skid plate.
A belly pan is designed to increase aerodynamics and protect the vehicle’s underbelly from small rocks and debris. However, belly pans cannot rely upon the high demands of off-roading.
A skid plate is specially designed to protect vital undercarriage components such as the oil pan, fuel tank, transmission and transfer case, the rear differentials, suspension components, and other exposed parts prone to damage from rocks and debris.
They will be typically made from hard alloys such as steel or aluminum. They are durable and rigid enough to take heavy impacts from large debris. If you plan to go off-roading, a skid plate is a must!
Most 4×4 will likely come with skid plates from the factory; however, these skid plates may be made from a less rigid material such as hard plastics or fiberglass to help reduce costs and weight.
Advantages Of A Skid Plate
Significantly increases the resistance against all impacts such as rocks and debris.
Covers vital engine components from dust and dirt.
More durable than OEM skid plates that are constructed from less rigid materials such as plastic or fiberglass
Skid plates help mitigate damage from harsh conditions of off-roading.
Aluminum Plate Vs. Steel Plates
Aluminum skid plates
Aluminum plates are generally more expensive but weigh less than their steel counterparts. However, aluminum is significantly less durable and is more prone to severe damage from impact.
This could offset the benefits of less weight due to the repairs being more costly than steel plates. That said, aluminum skid plates still have value despite being less rigid than steel.
They provide adequate protection; unlike steel, aluminum is more impervious to rust. Although they can still corrode, they won’t be devoured when subjected to wet and salty roads the same way steel would.
Steel skid plates
Steel plates are significantly heavier than aluminum skid plates.
However, with the additional weight, you exponentially add strength and durability.
By definition, skid plates are designed to skid. In other words, they are meant to skid across obstacles when making contact. The strength of steel makes it less prone to getting caught or stuck on objects. This will help mitigate damage to the skid plate; even on hard impacts, chances are they are minimal compared to softer materials like aluminum.
Choosing the suitable material for your skid plate will depend on your specific needs and requirements.
For example, aluminum will be a more viable option for 4×4, specifically for dessert running or sand domes, as the weight will directly affect how the vehicle performs in the sand.
Steel skid plates are recommended which Hamer skid plate is also made from the steel if your main objective is extreme off-roading or rock crawling and have the horsepower to do so. Depending on the level of protection you need, steel plates are available from one-eighth of an inch up to about three-sixteenths of an inch thick.
Where To Install Skid Plates
A skid plate and the under protection plate‘s function is to cover vital components under your vehicle’s undercarriage.
Depending on your demands, Skid plates should be installed to cover your engine, transmission components, and suspension system.
As it may seem like a costly investment, protecting your vehicle’s vital components will pay you back in the long run.
Avid off-roaders know that damage from rocks and large debris is inevitable when pushing their vehicle to its limits.
Well-placed skid plates will help protect your vehicle and help mitigate future damage and repairs, saving your money over time.
To install the skid plate, you might need to consult with the professional companies to taking care of the installation and also the insurance or the service after you do. You can contact us here to get the location of the professional shops near you all over Thailand that guaranteed by Hamer4x4.
Avid off-roaders know the importance of a high-quality skid plate. Many reputable brands offer quality products that will meet your needs and expectations.
My personal recommendation for skid plates is Hamer. They offer a wide variety of products that focus on quality and aesthetics. So, no matter what angle your beloved 4×4 is being admired from, Hamer has you covered. Follow us on Facebook Hamer4x4 to see more photos of the skid plates on the 4WD vehicles