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Are Bull Bars Recommended?

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2010, Explorer Eddie B.
Title says it all. I do extensive night driving on country roads. I see quite a few deer and have had a few close calls. Will a bull bar protect the vitals in the event of a deer collision? I looked online and it seems there are not many options for "real" bull bars that will actually protect the vehicle. Any suggestions?
 


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Explorer_PL

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Yes, it would. My father had it on his GMC Envoy and I always thought it was just decoration. Although he had the full brush guard covering the headlight as well.

One night he had a head on collision with a full size deer at 70 mph. the deer basically exploded. The guts and other matter was all over his truck. But besides destroyed brash guard, both fenders, hood and bumper, the windshield was saved and the radiator. He drove that car another 60 miles to my house without anything mechanical damaged. the total insurance quote was $ 9000 and they fixed the truck.
 




Mr. Alligator

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^^^^Agreed.

It would help protect your truck, and you. My truck has Westin Brushguard, which has coverage across the nose of the truck. Hit a deer six years ago, and am confident that it saved the truck. Last month, I hit a Chevy Suburban that ran a VERY red light. Lots of front clip sheet metal damage, but I am doing the repairs. The Westin Brushguard was smeared across the front end like butter, it obviously did exactly what is supposed to do.

As soon as all other repairs are done, I will add another Brushguard.

Good luck and be safe.
 




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Thanks for the responses. I will be ordering one soon and will upload pictures after I install it.
 




MakinJeepsWeep!

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Saved my old man from hogs crossing the road one night, allowed them to be broken up before going under, saved the lower coolers.
 




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I finally got one installed. I did not attach the pieces for the headlights as I did not want to affect the headlight beam pattern. It feels pretty solid and I would think it would help with a low speed collision or a collision with an animal.
 




D Hook

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Only if you hit that deer right in the centerline of the vehicle. Usually, they get smashed into the fender/headlight area.
 




ThunderbirdSport

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Honestly, I'd run the headlight guards too. What good is the truck if you can't drive it after a deer hit if the lights are busted out?
 




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Honestly, I'd run the headlight guards too. What good is the truck if you can't drive it after a deer hit if the lights are busted out?
The headlight pieces that bolt on would not stand up to a deer impact. They would cause more damage as they would put more stress on the other components in the event of a collision.
 




Mr. Alligator

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I struck a Colorado mule deer (read: ”very large deer”) with the headlight piece. The force bounced the headlight guard against the fender causing a small dent on the fender, and then the metal of the headlight guard rebounded. The force caused some damage, but I am confident that the brush guard did save the truck from a worse result.
 




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I struck a Colorado mule deer (read: ”very large deer”) with the headlight piece. The force bounced the headlight guard against the fender causing a small dent on the fender, and then the metal of the headlight guard rebounded. The force caused some damage, but I am confident that the brush guard did save the truck from a worse result.
How significant was the impact on your headlight beam pattern with the headlight guards installed?
 




D Hook

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The headlight pieces that bolt on would not stand up to a deer impact. They would cause more damage as they would put more stress on the other components in the event of a collision.
Maybe you bought the wrong brush guard? It does look nice though.
 




Mr. Alligator

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How significant was the impact on your headlight beam pattern with the headlight guards installed?
I did not think it was significant. It is easy to install (and remove) the guards so you can check this.

Good luck and be safe.
 




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Does it have mounts to add auxiliary or fog lights to supplement your headlights?
 




Mbrooks420

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Depends on the bar. A generic (read inexpensive) single bar mounted to just the bottom will not hold up to a deer.
 








MakinJeepsWeep!

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If you really really wanted to save the lights you would have to add on the headlight cover parts then attach the end to some part on your fender there is to much length from the center mass to over the lights to be strong enough to do a whole lot of good, not saying it wont help but to really keep stuff in tact it would need the very end attached some place for strength. Either or your whole rig looks great!
 




ThunderbirdSport

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I've seen some full size trucks that have struck whitetail deer on the highways here...regardless of brush guard or not, all have had some damage. Usually if the deer is hit on the corner, it spins around down the length of the truck/car and causes damage there too.

Most of the ones I saw that had guards on the front drove away...none that didn't have them were drivable. Coolant loss, busted lights, etc..
 




96eb96

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View attachment 326699View attachment 326700
I finally got one installed. I did not attach the pieces for the headlights as I did not want to affect the headlight beam pattern. It feels pretty solid and I would think it would help with a low speed collision or a collision with an animal.
Nice truck! Your exact truck is for sale locally in a lot. Asking $7K w/v8 and 170k miles.
 


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DominicDee

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They also sell small stick-on “deer alert whistles” which you place on a horizontal exterior surface. Such as the bumper, hood, or roof. They actually work surprisingly well. They emit a high frequency whistle (too high for humans to hear) that practically freezes deer in place. They don’t work when driving under something like 40mph.

I had put them on my old explorer and completely forgotten about them. At the time I was living in a heavily populated area with very few deer. Eventually I moved into a much more rural town with a huge deer population. When driving I made a comment to my girlfriend “everytime I see deer they just stand still and stare at my car” she called me crazy. Then after about three days she said your right wtf. That’s when I remembered the stupid deer whistles I had stuck to my bumper. After 7-8 months they seemed to stop working completely, upon inspection they were choked full of bugs lol. I sprayed em out and they worked like new.

These are definitely not a replacement for a bull bar, but they will drastically reduce the likelihood of a deer impact at speed. Plus they’re cheap and they work.

writing this reminded me I have to put em on my new to me 08’ Eddie Bauer. Just remember to CLEAN EM OUT

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