Fender vs. bumper: what’s the difference?

I was in a small accident the other day and wanted to take my car into the shop, but I’m not sure if my fender or bumper was damaged. What’s the difference between a fender vs. a bumper?

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Answer provided by
Lindsey Hoover
Answered on May 05, 2022
Sorry to hear about the car accident, but glad you’re safe. When it comes to a fender vs. a bumper, there are differences and similarities. Both are meant to protect your vehicle, but while a fender shields your tires from debris like rocks, a bumper protects the front and rear of your vehicle from collisions.
A fender is a metal structure that frames your vehicle’s wheel wells, while a bumper is usually made of plastic. Both keep you safe while driving.
Fender vs. bumper: the pros and cons of each listed below:
  • Pros of a bumper: protective function in a collision, absorbs most of the impact in a collision, enhances aesthetic appeal of vehicle, protects pedestrians from serious injury if hit.
  • Cons of a bumper: affects car weight and therefore handling capabilities, lowers aesthetic appeal of vehicle if installed wrong.
  • Pros of a fender: protects the body of vehicle from debris, shields vehicle from mud and dust sprayed by the tires, enhances aesthetic appeal.
  • Cons of a bumper: lowers aesthetic appeal if installed wrong, oversized fenders affect a vehicle’s aerodynamics and therefore leads to instability.
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