Jumping in and out of your truck bed can be energy-sapping especially if you have plenty of items to load on it. When it gets to a point, you will start to look for a better way to get the job done more conveniently and comfortably. Is there a better way? Yes, there is. The easier way of climbing and disembarking from your truck bed is to make use of the tailgate step or tailgate ladder. In this article, we will tell you all about the use of tailgate ladder/steps and also review the best pickup truck tailgate steps.
With the step, you can walk into the truck’s bed safely. Your knees and joints will thank you later if you make use of this tool.
The benefits of having truck tailgate ladder/steps
- Easy Access to Truck Bed: If getting on and off the truck bed is your daily routine then you must have the tailgate ladder/steps installed. The hassle of access to the truck bed becomes tiresome and may interrupt your day-to-day work. With tailgate ladder/steps you get easy access to the truck bed and don’t have to think twice about maneuvering around it.
- Easy Loading and Offloading: Hauling of cargo requires lots of physical effort. It is not easy to get on and off the truck bed with a heavy load on your back. The tailgate ladder/steps make the loading and offloading of cargo easier with proper judgement and balance of your steps. It also helps in managing your cargo effortlessly.
- Knee-Protection: The waist, back and lower half of your body are most vulnerable to damage while hauling the cargo. The heavy load and long stretch to jump on and off the truck bed can put severe pressure on your knees and can cause premature wear and tear to the joints. The tailgate ladder/steps are helpful in eliminating the stretch and reduce the impact on your back and lower body.
- Avoid Falling/Slipping: Physical injury is unavoidable when you are involved in the handling of cargo. Small negligence while carrying the load may result in slipping or falling off the truck bed causing serious damage to your body. Measurable steps on the tailgate ladder/steps are helpful in providing the balance to avoid the fall/slip on the floor.
5 Best Pickup Truck Tailgate Steps (2021)
There are plenty of tailgate ladders/steps out there. This makes choosing one a difficult task. We have picked some of the best pickup truck tailgate steps after 72-hours of research. Let’s check them out.
#1 Traxion 5-100 Tailgate Ladder
Product Rating: 4.4 / 5
You need reliable and secure truck bed steps if you want to load cargo onto your truck bed. The Traxion 5-100 is tested and trusted for reliability and durability. The ladder’s heavy-duty construction guarantees its sturdiness and strength. It has an almost universal fit for most trucks. To install this truck climbing tool is no hassle.
When it is not in use, the tailgate step can be folded completely out of the way. It can either be installed on the left or right side of any truck’s tailgate. With the quick-release pins, you can easily remove it from the tailgate. It is not suitable for Cadillac Escalade, Chevrolet Avalanche, and Dodge RamBox trucks.
- Easy to use
- Heavy-duty construction
- Durable and long-lasting
- Secures perfectly beside the tailgate
- Quick to install
- A bit pricey
#2 Westin 10-3000 Truck-Pal Tailgate Ladder
Product Rating: 4.6 / 5
The Westin tailgate ladder provides you with quick and safe access in and out of your truck bed. Its universal application stands it out from the rest. This truck bed step is perfect for trucks that have a pickup bed cover. The installation is pretty easy with just four tapping screws.
It can be folded flat and stored conveniently in a safe place. Made from corrosion-resistant aluminum, the tailgate ladder is durable and long-lasting. It is also versatile as it works well with many kinds of trucks. This tailgate ladder has a 3-year warranty.
- Lightweight and compact
- Durable and flexible
- Made from quality aluminum
- Easy to install and store
#3 Bestop 75302-15 Rear Mount Step
Product Rating: 4.6 / 5
If you are looking for a truck bed ladder with a different style, the Bestop rear mount step will make a good choice. This is one of the best tailgate steps you can find in the market. It can withstand a load of up to 300 pounds. Its installation is under the rear bumper and it has to be installed on the driver’s side.
Its no-drill installation makes it the perfect choice. The step is designed for 2006 to 2014 Ford F150. Constructed from aluminum and stainless steel, the durability and robustness of this ladder are not in doubt. It has a 3-year warranty.
- 300 pounds weight capacity
- Tough construction
- Durable and robust
- Installation requires no drilling
- Very functional
- Not suitable for other models except Ford F150
#4 AMP Research 75402-01A Retractable Truck Bed Side Step for Ford F150
Product Rating: 4.6 / 5
There is no doubt AMP Research is a company known for making top-quality vehicle accessories. The 75402-01A retractable tailgate side step is not an exception. This is a non-slip step that can be installed on any side of the truck box. With the stepping of just a leg, the truck bed step retracts for comfortable climbing.
It is made for all-weather performance with self-lubricating bushings. The side step is constructed with high-strength aluminum alloy components for extreme durability and stability. It is perfect for 2009 to 2014 Ford F150 and Raptor.
- Holds 300 pounds weight capacity
- Robust construction
- Retractable and non-slip
- Made in the USA
- Comes with a 3-year limited warranty
- Too expensive
- Made for only Ford F150 models
#5 C.R. Brophy RHS2 Two-Step Receiver Hitch Stair
Product Rating: 4.5 / 5
The two-step tailgate step is uniquely designed. Apart from being used as a truck bed step, it can also be used as a camper entry. It is extremely strong and needs no assembly. The two-step stair has a weight capacity of 250 pounds. Its powder-coated black finish makes it very resistant to rust.
The construction is robust and easy to install. It is going to make a good fit for most trucks. With the heavy-duty construction, this tailgate step will last for a long time. It can withstand extreme weather conditions.
- Heavy-duty construction
- No assembly required
- Powder-coated black finish
- Holds a weight capacity of 250 pounds
- Extremely strong and durable
- Two steps are not enough, especially for older people
There are many considerations involved in purchasing a tailgate step. We have come up with 5 factors you must consider if you are looking for the best pickup truck tailgate steps.
- Installation – Installation of a tailgate ladder should not be complicated. If it takes a lot of time to install, then, it is not the right one for you. Installation should be a breeze. Look for a tailgate step with a simple and easy installation process.
- Ease of use – The truck tailgate step should be easy to use. You don’t want to get your legs strained while loading cargo into the truck bed. Choose a step that allows for easy access in and out of the truck bed.
- Compatibility – Is the tailgate step compatible with your truck’s model? This is a question you should be able to answer before purchasing a tailgate ladder. It must fit your tailgate like a hand in a glove. If it doesn’t fit, then, there is a problem. Check the model the step is made for to be sure.
- Material – The material used in the construction of the tailgate step will determine its durability and sturdiness. Choose one made from aluminum because of its tough nature.
- Resistance – A good tailgate ladder should be resistant to elements such as dust, water, and corrosion. Again, this is where aluminum comes in.
- Safety – Is the ladder safe to use? This is a question you will have to answer. Always look for a non-slip ladder. A slippery ladder could cause injury after a fall or cause damage to your cargo.
- Weight capacity – The tailgate ladder must not break down while in use. This usually occurs while carrying a heavy cargo to climb the step. Ensure that you choose a tailgate step with a 400 pounds weight capacity.
How to install the pickup truck tailgate steps
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. Should I choose a tailgate step made of stainless steel or aluminum?
Answer: When it comes to strength, the tailgate ladder made of stainless steel is stronger than aluminum. But aluminum is resistant to corrosion. It is also lightweight and easy to use.
2. Where can I mount the tailgate step?
Answer: For safety reasons, it makes sense to mount the tailgate step on the driver’s side.
3. How much does a tailgate step cost?
Answer: It depends on the product. A truck bed step can cost between $60 and $250.
Conclusion: Tailgate steps are helpful in providing
easy access to the truck bed and relief from physical pain
Not using a tailgate ladder or steps has got a lot of implications on your health. Jumping in and out of the truck bed could make you experience backache, knee, and joint pain. This could complicate your health especially if you have arthritis. But the installation of a tailgate step makes everything easy. It grants you quick access in and out of the truck bed. This makes a tailgate step a necessity.
Our review of the best pickup truck tailgate steps will help you to make a long-lasting and durable choice. We have selected these 5 best products based on functionality, durability, and sturdiness. Choose one and experience ease and convenience all year round.