“Necessity is the mother of invention.” This proverb holds true for the mud flap.
It all started during World War II.
A man called Oscar Glenn March, Sr. was working at the Tinker Airforce Base in Oklahoma. He noticed that the tires of large trucks were throwing rocks, water, dirt, and other debris on sensitive cargo and passengers on other trucks. He found a way to prevent this.
Oscar put a piece of heavy canvas behind each wheel. It worked. Today, mud flaps are a standard accessory on most trucks.
But not all mud flaps are made equal. Some—like the WeatherTech brand mud flaps—offer your vehicle’s fenders and rocker panels better protection.
Luckily, WeatherTech has designed its mud flaps in a way that is fast and easy to install even without technical expertise. You won’t even need to remove your wheels.
We’ll cover why WeatherTech’s product is the best for quality and easy installation, and then go over the simple steps you can follow to install your mud flap.
Are WeatherTech Mud Flaps Any Good?
Yes, they are.
And there’s a good reason: WeatherTech No-Drill Mud Flaps fit perfectly to offer undeniable vehicle protection. This is because:
- They’re laser-measured custom mud flaps specific to the make and model of your vehicle.
- There’s no drilling required, meaning they’re an easy install. This is great because drilling holes through fragile painted metal surfaces may damage your vehicle.
- They’re molded from a proprietary thermoplastic resin that is flexible, long-lasting, and that can withstand extreme temperatures.
- The mud flaps feature the patented QuickTurn™ hardened stainless steel fastening system. This makes it fast to install them.
- They come with additional hardware such as screws, nuts, and washers to help you secure them in place.
If anything, WeatherTech’s ISO/TS 16949 Quality Standard certification is proof that this mud flap is of superior quality.
Steps to Install WeatherTech No-Drill Mud Flaps on Your Vehicle
Before you begin, read any model-specific instructions for your car.
If your new vehicle still has factory mud flaps, remove them before you proceed.
Caution: The no-drill WeatherTech mud flap fits vehicles with standard-sized tires. If your car has custom-sized tires, this may damage your mud flap—or vehicle—invalidating your warranty.
To install the mud flaps, you need one of the following tools:
- Ratchet and SAE socket set
- SAE hex head nut driver set
The mud flap kits come with some hardware including:
- Allen wrench
- Plastic push rivets
Having read the vehicle’s model-specific instructions, and with your tools ready, let’s begin:
Step 1: Thoroughly Clean Existing Vehicle Mounting Locations
Thoroughly clean all the dirt and debris from the fender area. Also, make sure that these areas are dry before installation.
This step is important in making installation easier, preventing any dirt from scratching the car’s surface, and stopping rust formation (corrosion).
Step 2: Park Your Car in a Safe Location and on Flat Ground
Even though the mud flap literally mounts in minutes, never attempt to install it near traffic. You risk your car being hit, or you getting injured. Choose a safe location, ideally an empty parking lot or a garage.
Another safety precaution is to park your car on flat ground. This will prevent it from rolling off if the brakes fail.
Step 3: Turn the Wheels to Create Enough Working Space
Depending on the side on which you’re installing, turn the wheels to that same side. This serves to expose the fender, making it easier for you to access the screws.
For example, if you start by installing the mud flap on the left side, the wheels should be fully turned to the left.
Step 4: Choose the Correct Mud Flap
Depending on your vehicle’s model, flaps can come as a front pair, rear pair, or a full kit. To help you identify the correct one, each one is labeled on the back: LH for the left side and RH for the right side.
Pick the mud flap corresponding to the side you’re installing on. Align it to the fender in which it will be installed. The pre-drilled holes on the mud flap should align with the factory screws in the wheel well.
If the vehicle doesn’t have holes, use the QuickTurn™ fastener and avoid drilling. See the next steps for how to do this.
Step 5: Remove the Screws/ Plastic Rivets in the Wheel Well
Remove the screws, or plastic rivets, in the wheel well which align with the pre-drilled holes on the mud flap. These will be the installation points. Depending on your car’s model, you can either use a screwdriver or ratchet to do this.
Save the screws/plastic rivets as you’ll need them later to complete the installation.
Step 6: If the Mud Flap Has a QuickTurn™ Fastener, Fully Unlock the Fastener
Note: If your flap does not have a QuickTurn™ fastener, skip this step.
Use the Allen wrench to unlock the fastener fully.
Note: The fully unlocked position is labeled with an open padlock.
Step 7: Place the Mud Flap Firmly Against the Fender
Align the mud flap holes with the corresponding holes in the vehicle. Place the smooth surfaced portion of the mud flap firmly against the fender to fit the contour.
Note: If your mud Flap has the QuickTurn™ fastener, it should remain fully unlocked in this step.
Step 8: Insert the Screws Removed in Step 5
While pressing the mud flap against the fender, reinstall the previously removed screws. They should fit loosely. Don’t fully tighten the screws
Step 9: If the Mud Flap Has a QuickTurn™ Fastener, Tighten It
Note: If your flap does not have a QuickTurn™ fastener, skip this step.
Pushing the mud flap up from the bottom against the fender, use the supplied Allen wrench to rotate the QuickTurn™ fastener into the fully locked position (side labeled with an open padlock). Continue turning until the mud flap is fully clamped on the fender.
Tip: Install the QuickTurn™ fastener behind the plastic fender mold to avoid gaps.
Step 10: Re-Install The Plastic Rivets Removed in Step 5
First, remove the pin from the base. Next, insert the base onto the mud flap top hole and through the existing hole in the vehicle. Last, insert the pin into the base and press it firmly to secure the rivet.
Step11: Tighten the Screws Inserted in Step 8
Press the mud flap against the fender and tighten the loosely fit screws in step 8. Be careful not to over-tighten the screws.
Step 12: Install Mud Flaps on the Other Sides
Install on the other sides by repeating steps 3–11.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do mud flaps work?
Your vehicle’s tires are always coming into contact with stones, mud, water, and other road grime. As the wheel rotates, it hurls these particles to the car’s exterior, chipping paint and causing corrosion.
Because they’re installed behind the wheels, the flaps act as a barrier between the particles and your car. They, therefore, keep your car in good condition while at the same time protecting other road users.
How wide is a WeatherTech Mud Flap?
Each is custom-fit for maximum protection of your vehicle. As such, the width varies by vehicle make, model, and year.
Here are some vehicles covered:
|Cadillac||Escalade, Escalade ESV, Escalade EXT|
|Ford||Edge, Escape, Excursion, Explorer, F-150, F-250, F-250 Super Duty, F-350 Super Duty, F-450 Super Duty, F-550 Super Duty, Transit Connect, Transit-150, Transit-250, Transit-350, Transit-350 HD|
|Jeep||Cherokee (KL), Grand Cherokee (WK2), Patriot, Renegade|
|Toyota||RAV4, Tacoma, Tundra|
Custom mud flaps also exist for Chevrolet, Dodge, GMC, Subaru, and Ram vehicle brands. To shop for your vehicle, select the car type and view the available products.
Another easy option is to contact us for guidance. Having been in business for 10+ years, you can trust that we know what we’re doing.
Why don’t my mud flaps have QuickTurn™ fasteners?
If your vehicle has pre-drilled holes in the mounting locations, then QuickTurn™ fasteners aren’t a necessity for installation. The presence of pre-drilled holes means that mounting it doesn’t require drilling.
Note that to install the mud flaps either use factory hardware, kit-provided hardware, or the QuickTurn™ System.
What is the difference between mud flaps and splash guards?
They both refer to the same thing: An accessory that offers protection for your vehicle’s most vulnerable areas, such as fenders and running boards, from dirt.
Besides protecting your vehicle, mud flaps also protect passengers, other vehicles, and pedestrians from dirt and debris that are flung into the air by your vehicle’s rotating tires.
Tossed-up debris can chip, dent, or corrode your vehicle. WeatherTech brand mud flaps install in minutes—and prevents you from drilling your vehicle’s fragile painted metal surface.
Contoured specifically for your vehicle, they’ll shield the exposed areas, protecting the fender and rocker panel from stone chips, slush, dirt, and debris.