WHAT IS THE FENDER?
A fender is the curved part of your car, truck, or SUV that stretches and sits over the wheels and considered part of your vehicle’s body. A fender is not the same as a bumper. See our used auto parts directory article on bumpers to understand the difference between bumpers and fenders if you are unsure.
WHAT DOES THE FENDER DO?
The fender is designed to prevent debris from being thrown around from the tires and aside from that, is generally a decorative part of your vehicle’s body. A fender does have a purpose though, as it prevents damage to the sides of the vehicle and it makes the overall driving experience safer for the driver of the vehicle and for other vehicles around the road. What does a fender look like?
The fender is a body panel with a curved shape. The size of the part is somewhat larger than the wheel that it will house.
WHERE ARE FENDERS LOCATED ON THE VEHICLE?
The fender is located over the wheels of the vehicle. As such, there are four fenders on a typical vehicle: front right, front left, rear right and rear left.
WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR IN A USED FENDER?
The first thing that you should look for in a used fender is the condition of the body panel. You want to make sure that the fender does not have any dents, cracks, or other cosmetic damage on it. Also, you want to check for any damage to the exterior paintwork. Finally, you will want to check for any signs of rust or paint corrosion. These are the most common types of damage found on fenders.
WHAT ELSE SHOULD I KNOW ABOUT A FENDER BEFORE I PURCHASE ONE?
Many used fenders may have dents in them. However, it is not a big deal in order to repair this type of damage. You can go to an auto parts store and get a dent repair kit. The dent repair kit will have suction cups that will allow you to restore the original shape of the fender. If you aren’t experienced in any sort of body work, with a little effort on your part, you should be able to easily find a fender at a salvage yard that is in good enough shape that you won’t need to do any repairs.
WHAT OTHER PARTS ARE CONNECTED OR THAT I MAY NEED FOR THIS PART?
The fender will connect to either the front corner or the rear corner of the vehicle. You may need the following parts in order to complete an installation of a fender:
- Fender seal
- Fender moldings and trim
- Inner fenders
- Fender braces
WHAT SIGNS OF WEAR SHOULD I LOOK AT WHEN BUYING A USED FENDER?
When you are shopping for a used fender, you should accept the fact that you will find some dents and paint wear. However, those issues can be easily fixed. The things that you have to look for in a used fender is rust and corrosion. That’s because a corroded fender is not as easy to fix and may not be worth the repair time and cost.
WHAT IS THE AVERAGE LIFESPAN OF A FENDER?
A fender should last about 15 to 20 years from the time that it is new. This is contingent on the fact that the fender is properly maintained and treated against rust and corrosion. Obviously, vehicles that are exposed to snow, ice, and the road salt that come with them will degrade faster than fenders on vehicles in areas with more favorable weather conditions.
WHEN SHOULD YOUR FENDER BE REPLACED?
You should consider replacing your vehicle’s fender if it has been in an accident and the damage is so extreme that it can not be repaired with basic body work. Also, if the fender has extensive rust and corrosion, then it should be replaced as this damage will likely continue to get worse over time. Beyond that, while a fender does help to protect from debris being cast off from your tires, it is considered a body part and generally a cosmetic versus mechanical part of your vehicle. If you’re fine with a little rust or a few dings or dents here and there, it may not be necessary for you to replace your fender.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT FENDERS
WHAT ARE THE PARTS OF A FENDER?
The parts of the fender include the fender molding, fender trim, inner fender and fender brace.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FENDERS AND BUMPERS?
Bumpers are body panels that go on the front and the rear of the vehicle. The fenders are located over the wheels of the vehicle – two in the front right and left, and two in the rear right and left of your vehicle.
HOW MUCH CAN IT COST TO HAVE A FENDER INSTALLED?
The average cost of a fender is about $100 to $1,000 with installation costing anywhere from $200 to $600. Pull-A-Part sells used fenders for approximately $41, though additional fender-related parts may be sold separately. For example, a fender flare or skirt is considered a separate part and sells for about $11 at most Pull-A-Part locations, regardless of vehicle year, make or model. You can search used auto part pricing for fenders and fender-related parts on the Pull-A-Part website.
WHAT TOOLS DO I NEED TO REMOVE A FENDER?
Before you head out to a salvage yard to remove a fender, make sure you have the right tools with you. The best way to know what tools you will need is to check out the fender on your current vehicle.
You may also want to search YouTube for a video on how to remove a fender from your specific year, make or model vehicle, which typically includes recommendations for the tools you will need. For example, Pull-A-Part has a video for “How to Remove a Front Fender From a Toyota Camry” and similar used auto parts Part-Pulling Guides in our Video Library.
In general, the parts you will need to remove a fender from most vehicles are a Phillips Head Screwdriver, Flathead Screwdriver, 10mm Socket and Ratchet, Plastic Trim Tools, Pliers, and a Ratchet Extension.