Up to now we have never been a fan of steps on the side of a Jeep. Primarily because they hang down and can become caught on an obstacle. Possibly damaging the steps or the Jeep. A stout set of rocker guards have always been the preference. But…
The JL is an evolution in the Wrangler like none before it. Adding 37” tires with a two inch lift has almost become a starter size. Doing so makes the Jeep rather high and leaping in and falling out is a bit hard on the body and the seams in your clothing.
We wanted to add some functional steps to the jeepfan.com JL but wanted to keep a good look and keep them as high as possible. Most steps will require removal of the factory Rubicon Rock Rails if your Jeep is equipped.
N-Fab’s Podium Side Steps for the JL we picked up from Quadratec maintain the look of the JL while providing functional steps to the front and rear doors. The flat steel surface of the step allows good foot contact and the metal tabs make good traction.
This install is on the easy side and can be done in about an hour. If you don’t have factory rock rails it’s even quicker. Since our Jeep has rock rails they are removed by removing the six pinch seam nuts and the three under body bolts. Remove the rock rails.
With the rails removed position the new N-Fab steps into place and inserts the bolts into the middle pinch seam to keep the steps in place while the other bolts are installed. Install all of the pinch seam bolts lightly tight followed by the under body bolts. Keeping the pinch seam bolts lightly tight will allow the pinch seam bracket to reposition when the under bolt is tightened. With all the bolts in and the step in position tighten everything.
It takes a little practice to get used to entering and exiting the Jeep with the step. The integrated handle on the front part of the roll bar is extra useful.