How To Install Running Boards On Toyota Tacoma

At this point, you’re thinking about installing running boards for your Toyota Tacoma truck. But you’re also wondering how you can go through and complete the installation process. We researched this concern for your convenience and here’s what we found.

First, you need to select the right running boards for your Toyota Tacoma. That way, you shouldn’t worry about issues regarding the additional steps. Once you have these accessories, continue the process by following these steps:

  1. Find and remove the plastic caps underneath the Toyota Tacoma’s doors.
  2. Install the brackets to the Tacoma and slide the bolts into the running boards.
  3. Place and secure the running boards into their brackets.

Keep in mind that this installation process requires careful attention to its steps. So continue reading as we talk about this task in greater detail.

Toyota Tacoma display. Toyota offers the Tacoma in SR, SR5, How To Install Running Boards On Toyota Tacoma?

Are Running Boards Easy To Install?

Many running boards for trucks are reasonably easy to install. You only need a sufficient amount of automotive know-how to complete the setup without making significant mistakes. Plus, reliable running board manufacturers include easy-to-understand instructions for both DIY beginners and experts.

Are Running Boards Easy To Install? Close up of running boards on a truck

How Do You Install Running Boards On A Toyota Tacoma?

How Do You Install Running Boards On A Toyota Tacoma? Moab, Utah United States 10142019 Toyota Tacoma Exploring Near Canyonlands

Make sure to check all the materials and tools needed for installation before beginning this process. It's ideal not to start the procedure if you're lacking some necessary items. Otherwise, you might need to spend extra time and money searching and purchasing those products.

Once you have all the essential items, continue this process by following these steps:

What You’ll Need

  • Socket wrench with extension rod
  • Running board installation kit

Step-by-Step Guide

  1. Remove the plastic caps underneath each side of the Toyota Tacoma.
  2. Install the running boards’ brackets while paying attention to their correct placements.
  3. Flip each running board to expose its inside.
  4. Slide the bolts into the running boards’ internal track.
  5. Place the running boards into their respective brackets while ensuring the bolts go into the correct holes.
  6. Adjust the running boards before securing them with the nuts and washers.

Check out these Toyota Tacoma running boards on Amazon.

You can also watch the video below for a visual guide of the steps mentioned above:

How Much Does It Cost To Have Running Boards Installed On A Truck?

How Do You Install Running Boards On A Toyota Tacoma - Toyota Tacoma explores the backroads of Moab, Utah

Generally, you need to spend about $100 to $300 to purchase a good pair of running boards. Then, you might need to spend an extra $50 to $150 on the boards' installation using professional services.

How Do I Choose The Right Running Board?

Compatibility is, perhaps, your main concern in choosing the right running boards, especially for your Toyota Tacoma. If you don’t check the fit, the boards might not insert properly, causing risks and problems.

So take note of the following factors to ensure you’re purchasing and installing the correct running boards:


Perhaps the first element to look into is the design of the running boards. Inspect the shape, length, and step width of each board in the kit. Ensure that these traits fit your truck.

If the running boards are short, it might be challenging to use them as steps. On the other hand, running boards that are too long may interfere with your vehicle’s wheels and tires.


Running boards also often come with different finishes. These coatings help protect the materials, enhancing their durability and longevity. Some of the running board finishes to look out for are:

  • Chrome
  • Black powder coat
  • Textured powder coat
  • Anodized aluminum
  • Water-resistant or waterproof paint

Keep in mind that each type of finish will have its unique pros and cons. For instance, powder coating running boards help protect them from overheating without increasing development costs significantly.

On the other hand, running boards sporting anodized aluminum finishes offer sleek and contemporary appearances. However, the process of anodizing might also reduce the material’s resistance to corrosion and other kinds of chemical harm.

Another option is to get running boards painted with waterproof paint. Doing so should help extend the life of the board's material. But the paint is often expensive, which also means an increase in the product's price.

Additional Features

At its core, running boards should provide easier access and exit to and from your vehicle. However, some models may supply users with extra features to enhance their convenience factors. These extra elements may include UV-resistant step pads and anti-slip finishes.

Some running boards also come with electric-powered features. For example, a running board model may extend or retract when a user opens or closes the vehicle’s door.

Keep in mind that these additional features may also bump up the product’s costs. So think about your budget if you want standard running boards for your Toyota Tacoma or a variant with different bells and whistles.

What Are The Best Running Boards For Toyota Tacoma?

Keep in mind that there's not a single set of running boards that can provide every benefit to Toyota Tacoma users. Still, some models offer more benefits than others. Some of these ideal candidates are:

1. Tyger Auto TG-AM2T20048 Star Armor Running Boards

These Toyota Tacoma running boards stray from the standard running board design. Apart from having that distinct look, its appearance is also functional for it helps prevent the vehicle from side bumps.

Plus, the matte black finish offers enhanced traction, reducing the chances of slips and falls while stepping on it.

On the downside, these running boards aren’t resistant to rust. So it’s suggested to give the materials a deep clean after each exposure to mud and heavy rain. Also, this option is quite expensive, which may prevent it from becoming the first choice for budget-conscious Toyota Tacoma owners.

Check out this product on Amazon.

2. TAC FBATO0900PT Side Steps

On the other side of the price spectrum, these running boards can be good choices for interested buyers following strict budgets. Although the durability slightly suffers because of the reduced cost, it still offers suitable rust resistance to help extend its longevity.

Check out this product on Amazon.

3. APS ‎IB-T5058B iBoard Running Boards

This model sports the standard design for running boards. Although these boards may not turn heads immediately, it makes up for their typical appearance with durable construction.

Made with rubber-wrapped aluminum material, these running boards can resist more than the usual dents and dings that might otherwise cause cracks and deformations.

Check out this product on Amazon.

Are Running Boards Worth It?

Are Running Boards Worth It? Suv car stuck in sands off road during expedition

Installing running boards on a Toyota Tacoma or any other compatible vehicle is usually a good choice. These stepping boards provide multiple benefits, such as:

  • Children and other small passengers can enter and exit the vehicle with relative ease.
  • Protects the vehicle’s under chassis from different debris, such as gravel and stones.
  • Acts as a doormat to help maintain cleanliness in the truck’s cabin.

Although running boards are good, if not great investments, truck owners should still be wary about the possible shortcomings. For example, running boards often need frequent care for them to provide optimal advantages. Also, installing running boards mean reducing ground clearance.

Final Words

Installation procedures for running boards for Toyota Tacoma trucks are usually DIY-friendly, provided that you have some automotive know-how. The setup process shouldn't take more than a few hours to complete.

Still, you can rely on professional services if you have difficulty with the installation, although you may need to pay extra cash for expert assistance.

Also, check out these other great reads if you’re looking for answers to other Toyota Tacoma concerns:

How To Delete Call History On Toyota Tacoma

How To Mirror iPhone To Toyota Tacoma