How To Choose Side Steps For Your Chevy Silverado – Buyer’s Guide

How to choose your silverado side steps

Chevy Silverado owners use side steps to climb in and out more conveniently and safely, by lowering the distance from the cab to the ground.

The Chevy Silverado is one of my favorite pickup trucks, but 1/2 ton pickups from Chevy are high off the ground and difficult to climb in and out of.

Things are even more difficult for children, or when the truck has a lift kit installed. This is exactly why so many truck owners consider side steps, running boards or a nerf bar setup for their ride.

It is true that you will find a ton of products from different brands. But the question is, which is the best side steps for your need? It is a tough and time-consuming question to answer.

I made your life easier and listed in the below infographic some key points to keep in mind when selecting the nerf bars for your chevy.

Tips For Choosing Side Steps For Your Chevy Silverado
Tips For Choosing Your Chevy Silverado Side Steps

You will find later in this post a more detailed explanation of each of them in our buyer’s guide section, as well as some frequently asked questions and finally a review of the major brands available.

If you are already curious about the models available, I have selected and reviewed for you the best side steps for chevy Silverado in my selection of the best side steps for chevy silverado article.

Make sure to read it before making your final choice!

Side Steps For Chevy Silverado – Buyer’s Guide

Adding any pair of running boards to the sides of your Chevy Silverado truck will make it more functional and stylish, but some products are better than others.

Unfortunately, it’s not obvious which product is best for most buyers just looking at their options. That’s why I’ve created this simple Buyer’s Guide section.

Read through it for a look at the key considerations you should make when choosing a pair of running boards.


One key consideration that any truck owner should think about before purchasing aftermarket running boards is their width. Standard running boards are between 3″ and 4″ in width, but there are wider and more narrow options depending on the manufacturer that you deal with.

Wide running boards offer more surface to grip as you step up or climb down from your ride. Wide boards also create a more comfortable and dependable step for you. Most buyers search for wide options whenever possible, though they are often more expensive and heavier than narrow running boards are. Wide running boards also offer more protection when off-roading, though they are more prone to snagging when driving through tight spaces.

Slip Resistance

Truck running boards are designed to be as slip-resistant as possible, but some have a better texture for gripping your shoes when you climb up or down. In order to achieve a grippy surface that you can rely on when climbing, running board manufacturers coat the surface with rubber, or give the boards a rough diamond texture.

It’s important to look for running boards that are non-slip for safety purposes. These products are more dependable and will help keep you and your passengers safer while you use the truck. Consider how much of the surface is coated for slip resistance, and think about where you’ll step on your side step or nerf bar when using it for the right product match.

No Drilling Installation

Most of the leading running boards for Chevy Silverado trucks are designed to be simple to install. This means they utilize built-in mounting points for installation and don’t require drilling or modifications to install. For this reason, installing most modern running boards is simple to do. With that said, some running boards are easier to install than others.

Always review the installation steps for a specific set of running boards before making the purchase. This step is especially important if you will be doing the installation yourself. Even if you plan to have an expert install your running boards buying products that go on more easily could save you in labor costs.

Wheel to Wheel Board

Some running boards stretch from the front wheel of your pickup all the way to the back. While these elongated running boards might seem unnecessary, they are helpful to have and worth the extra cost compared to more standard running boards for the right sort of truck owner.

The extended running boards make loading and unloading the back of your pickup truck easier to do. Some buyers also prefer the look of these running boards over the products that end before the wheels. Always consider the length of the running boards, nerf bar, or steps before making a purchase.

Build Material

The last consideration for you to make, and arguably one of the most important, is what are your running boards made of? The most cost-effective running boards are made from a thick ABS plastic that’s sturdy enough for everyday use, but not as durable as a product made from metal would be.

The most heavy-duty running boards are made from coated steel or stainless steel, and they’re rigid enough to withstand bangs, impacts, and hard use. Vehicles that will be used for off-roading, or for driving through rough terrain benefit from steel and stainless steel running boards.

It’s also possible to get aftermarket running boards in aluminum. Aluminum running boards are lightweight and corrosion-resistant. They are easier to damage and unlikely to remain in perfect condition over time, especially if they’re used in off-roading situations or for driving through rough terrain.

Hopefully, with these key factors in mind, you’ll have an easier time selecting the most appropriate running boards for your 2020 Chevy Silverado, or for the model year you own.

You can now make sure to review our selection of the best side steps for chevy silverado before making your final choice!

Not ready yet to make a selection? No problem, read further our Frequently asked questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Chevy Silverado owners should use side steps or a nerf bar setup to climb in and out more conveniently and safely. The right accessories, like running boards, add a step in between the cab floor and the ground, creating a comfortable intermediate platform to stand on.
  1. Take running boards and brackets from box, verify all parts are there locate four installation points on the underside of the truck body
  2. Drill out factory nuts with 3/8 inch drill bit
  3. Twist off welded nuts with 17mm wrench
  4. Remove the rubber plug covers over the factory mount hole locations inside of the truck body up above the lower mount holes you already prepared for installation.
  5. Slide the bracket clips into position on both of the lower and upper mounting locations on the truck.
  6. Mount the running board brackets using bolts at the top and bottom factory mounting locations.
  7. Torque the bolts down to the manufacturer's specifications.
  8. Place each running board in position over top of the brackets, taking care to line up the mounting holes to the holes on the brackets.
  9. Fasten the running boards to the brackets using the included mounting hardware and torque the bolts to lock the boards firmly in place.
  10. Your new running boards are now locked into position. Maintain the running boards by checking the mounting bolts periodically to ensure the bolts are still snug.

Side Steps – Major Brands

  • TAC – TAC or Truck Accessories Company is one of the top online aftermarket car and truck accessories suppliers in North America. The company is home to a wide range of aftermarket parts known for their performance and durability.
  • AMP research – Amp Research is a leading provider of bed extenders and truck steps parts and accessories. The company is home to the PowerStep and other unique nerf bar and running board solutions.
  • APS – APS or Auto Parts Specialist Inc. is a Canadian grill manufacturer that offers truck armor, Jeep accessories, body kits, bull bars, running boards and other truck accessories.
  • Tyger Auto – Tyger Auto is one of the top truck parts and accessories providers for customers in North America. The company is known for its bumpers and grills, trim and its side steps and running boards.
  • MaxMate – MaxMate is a well-known truck accessory provider offering running boards, bumper guards and tonneau covers specifically. The company makes tough products and offers kits for different cab length trucks.
  • Yitamotor – Yita Motor is an aftermarket LED lighting specialist for cars and trucks. The company offers a range of interior and exterior parts, including running boards, steps and nerf bars.
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My passion in life is education, travel, making connections with people and... my chevy Silverado truck ! My truck is like my second home and I know a lot about it. I live out in the country and my truck has been turned into a second home and a tool for me. I've owned Silverados my whole life of different years and variants. I started out with a 1986 chevy wrangler, I upgraded to a 1998 chevy Silverado, and now I have a 2016 chevy Silverado high country with a few modifications to make it a little more fun and practical for being out in the country.


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