I haven't really seen a review of these so here's my review:
The following is my install experience for MAXTERRA’s Rear Bumper. I placed this product on my 2010 Off Road. I placed the order with Dave, the MAXTERRA owner, in mid-March and he placed it in the build queue with a 50% deposit. In mid-May, Dave notified me by email that the bumper had been shipped. He sent a tracking number and I was able to monitor its journey from Utah to California.
I ordered the rear bumper with backup lights, a swing away tire carrier, standard receiver mount location, and silver vein powder coating. Dave has multiple setups on this bumper so you can get all sorts of add-ons like an antenna mount, gas can holder, and recessed receiver hitch. I chose the standard receiver hitch set up which allows me to keep the second spare under the truck. The standard Off Road spare (265/75R16) will just squeeze in.
Dave shipped the bumper in two packages, allowing Fedex to deliver it to my front door, thus saving me the added time of having to drive 60 miles to the nearest freight depot. The pieces are well wrapped and padded, and arrived without any dings or scratches.
All hardware, except for bolts that will be reused and a set of detailed instructions are included. All welds were excellent, as was the fit and finish. This bumper is SOLID! As always, I read the instructions cover to cover a couple of times, just to fully get familiar with the installation process.
Bumper Removal and Install
Now for the bad part. If you have a Nissan installed factory hitch, you WILL have a heck of a time getting the old bumper off. The Nissan bumper and hitch are held on by three 19mm and one 17mm bolts on each side. Nissan uses some type of nuclear/kryptonite based thread locker that will ensure you will spend at least four hours trying to loosen the eight bolts. An impact wrench did not work on all the bolts. I had a breaker bar extending from the bumper to the rear axle and I still could not get one of the bolts loose. I thought I had cracked bolt loose and the hit it with the impact wrench, only to find that I had just rounded the bolt head. I ended up breaking a ratchet wrench and impact wrench adaptor trying to get the thing off.
I had to take the Xterra to an auto shop, where they spent 25 minutes grinding and chiseling the bolt head off. Talking with Dave, he has seen similar issues with the Nissan thread locker. If you attempt this, try hitting it with PB Blaster a few days before hand; maybe that will help. Trying to drill the broken bolt out will cost you 2 hours that you will never get back.
The bumper install is really easy. The bolt holes lined up quite well and it took maybe half hour to bolt on. This can easily be done by one person. Test fitting the tire carrier and hi lift jack.
You will have to cut off and reuse the electrical plug for the license plate light. As the lights are LED, you have to use the correct polarity for the lights. You will have to test wiring to determine which wire is positive. It is recommended that you solder the connection. Dave includes heat shrink tubing for you to use. I ordered the back up light option. You will have to tap into the backup light wire on the driver’s side taillight housing. Here, I have tapped into the backup lights, with red/yellow being positive and black/white as negative. I soldered the wires, insulated them with heat shrink tubing, and encased the wires in plastic split loom to prevent shorting.
Dave also offers replacement LEDs for the backup lights. Since I was already pulling the tail light housing off, I decided to do the upgrade. Again, as these are LEDs, if they don’t work, flip the light 180 degrees in its socket.
If you are replacing the Nissan receiver hitch, the trailer electrical plug will screw right in once to remove some of the plastic with a dremel. This is needed to make it mount flush on the bumper.
Here’s a close up of the tire carrier latch. Notice the laser cut “X”.
Here’s a view out of the rear view window. All in all, you do not lose too much of the view.
And a view of the hi lift mount.
And a view of the tire carrier open. The pivot bolt has zerk fitting to grease the bolt and prevent rust.
All in all I was really pleased with my buying experience from MAXTERRA and his product is top notch. I can’t recommend this product enough.