Any info on Manik Grille/Brush Guards | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Any info on Manik Grille/Brush Guards


New Member
June 25, 2005
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City, State
Year, Model & Trim Level
'05 XLT
I'm in the market for an add on brush/grille guard. In other words I don't want to replace the entire bumper.

Can anyone comment on the quality of Manik brushguards?

I'll be putting this on an '05 XLT. I don't plan ony an major off roading but I do envision using this guard with a tow strap to pull trees out of the road, or other cars out of deep snow. Also, protection from deer is a concern. I've hit 4 deer and all have done major damage to my cars/trucks. Would this give me a better chance if I ran into Bambi?

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Manik makes good guards. Lots of folks here use them. You wouldn't, however be able to pull things with it. It's just not that strong. You could maybe pull smaller trees by gently moving them out of the way, but any kind of snatch or large amount of weight (big trees, cars) will bend it. They're strong, and can take a beating, but are not made for pulling.

It would be much stronger (if you plan to pull the trees out of the road) to hook the strap on the lower part where it mounts to the frame. It is stronger down here, and IMO wouldn't cause any bending. The better thing for doing this though would be to get a receiver shackle for your hitch in the rear. You can hook the strap through that and it will pull it easily (as long as it's not a HUGE tree). :)

Definitely. A hitch is much better for pulling ANYTHING than a brushguard. The main adavantages are protection against minor collisions and cosmetic purposes.

Thanks for the replies.

I've got a class IV hitch so I guess turning around and pulling something out of the road would be the logical solution.

The place I stopped by today quoted me around $500 for a black sportsmans grille guard. They also offer installation for $60.

Is the installation worth it? Or do these just bolt onto the frame?

How difficult would this be to install with a friend?

We installed my dad's fairly quickly on his Chevy truck. It depends on the guard though. Some require drilling, but most of them are bolt on. The $500 sounds about right since they are usually about 400+ for the other models, so on a new Explorer, that sounds right. It's a high price IMO, but it is what they are going for, for a nice strong one. ;)

$60 for installation of a brush guard is like paying someone to top off your winshield wiper fluid. :D It's not hard at all. Usually about 4 bolts that hold it to the frame. Super easy with help.

I had one on my Grand:

I liked it. Nice design, well built. Worked great for smacking shopping carts outta the way, mounting lights, moving small brush, standing on to get into the engine.
But nobody, no way no shape no how should hook anything on there to pull out someone. It can't handle it. I'd reccomend getting a front hitch, or like you said and turn around. That or Ford makes tow hooks.

Definitely never use a brush guard on a Jeep Cherokee to pull out a Jeep YJ! :D My friend got his YJ stuck (32s, ~5" lift) and a girl in a Cherokee on 31s offers to pull him out. She hooks the strap to the Cherokee brush guard, asks if it'll hold (my friend said yes, but he knew it wouldn't) and the hole entire brush guard/bumper/etc. ALL got ripped off and fell to the ground! :D When I saw it all I was LMAO!!! Just thought I'd mention this since it this is something similar to what you're wanting to do. :D

Go with a new Bumper!!!

I purchased a Go Rhino about 5 years ago. Its held up well...
But for the amount that I payed for it? Another $50- $100 bucks and I could of had a new custom bumper. I'm not positive of the prices but ARB, Road Armor, Trail Ready all make some. For the Explorer??? But having a Local Shop Fab one should still be cheaper.

My reasons..
If you hit a deer without either yes the deer will damage your truck,
with a brush guard the deer will not damage your truck as much but it will still get damaged then you've got to fix your truck & the guard,
with the after market bumpers your truck will be protected more and your the deer will be hosed off.

I've seen the effects of all 3 and the bumper is the way to go IMO. I've seen some nice Aftermarket Bumpers with the nice looks of the Brush Guards but the protection that can withstand hitting almost anything.

I got into a fight with a mailbox last night with mine. I won. :D

I've had mine for a year now. I like it, but I'm starting to get some pitting and small rust spots. I would imagine in a year or so having to sand and repaint it. However, it is high quality, and protected my front bumper well in a minor collision. I paid around $500 as well, but got a free bug guard and free install with it. I love the way it looks.


I have also been happy with mine... I've read that the one piece stands up to rust better than a modular one if that helps. Honestly, do some google searches on 'manik guards for discount' or manik for cheap or something similar... I got mine for $429 tax free with free shipping about a year and a half ago. I am not familiar with the installation on your frame and fascia but mine wasn't too hard to put on by myself... save the install $$ it's easy enough :)

Hey Parapoe is yours the one piece or the modular?