If you own a pickup truck or an SUV, a tailgate light bar is a great way to add an extra layer of safety and functionality to your vehicle. These products are added onto your tailgate to provide additional lighting, whether it serves as a running light, brake lighting, reverse light, or turn signal. Most of these products are easy to install, using adhesive tape on the back, allowing you to simply peel and stick the light bar onto your tailgate. A plug-and-play connector is also typically included, which attaches to your trailer plug.
When shopping for a tailgate light bar, you’ll have to determine just how bright of a product you need. These products can feature anywhere from one to four rows of LED lights and vary in length, from 48 to 60 inches. Most of them are also universal, which means you won’t have to shop for a vehicle-specific application, although that also means sometimes a product won’t work as well on your vehicle as others.
In this article, we’ll take a look at five of the most popular tailgate light bars and what you should look out for when shopping for one. For more information on tailgate light bars, refer to our table of contents.
Table of contents
For the most part, many tailgate light bars are similar, so our recommendation is the OPT7 Redline LED light bar for its overwhelming number of positive reviews, variety of sizes, and the fact that the company offers a two-year warranty on its products.
1. Editor's Pick: OPT7 Redline LED Tailgate Light Bar
The OPT7 Redline LED Tailgate Light Bar is available in 48- and 60-inch lengths, featuring bigger LED lights, a durable weatherproof design, and 3M automotive adhesive tape rated at 45 pounds. According to OPT7, this light bar is equipped with 72 (48-inch model) or 90 (60-inch model) “Alpha” LEDs, which are large triple-core LED lights that shine 35 percent brighter than a standard LED. These light bars are manufactured with a rust-resistant aluminum body that uses IP67 waterproof silicone, so it’s designed to protect against sand, dirt, dust, snow, and water.
Like other tailgate light bars, this one plugs directly into your trailer adapter for quick install, although some vehicles will require wiring for the reverse light. This light is also cold-weather capable, able to take on temperatures as low as -20 degrees Fahrenheit.
OPT7 gives its Redline LED Tailgate Bar a two-year warranty and 30,000-hour lifespan.
With an overwhelming number of positive reviews on Amazon, the OPT7 Redline LED Tailgate Light Bar is a favorite among owners. Users find the light bar to be nice and bright, nicely packaged, and easy to install. Some owners did complain that the wiring with the four-pin plug is a bit thin. In fact, most of the complaints about this project involve its wiring. A small number of owners did complain about failure after just a few months of use.
2. Partsam LED Tailgate Light Bar
One of the more affordable tailgate light bars is Partsam’s LED unit, a universal product that fits on various pickup trucks and SUVs from Chevrolet, Dodge, Ford, GMC, Jeep, Ram, Toyota, and more. This light is available 48- and 60-inch sizing, with the smaller unit featuring 48 red LEDs and 24 white LEDs. The longer light boasts 60 red LEDs and 30 white LEDs.
Partsam claims its LEDs shine 30 percent brighter than standard ones and the tailgate light bar is constructed from top-grade flexible material that is durable and longer lasting. The durable, rust-resistant flexible strip has been filled with IP67 watertight silicone, so it’s ready to take on all types of weather conditions and cold temperatures as low as -20 degrees Fahrenheit.
It’s a universal product that will fit various makes and models and can serve as a red turn signal, parking brake, tail light, and white reverse light. This product uses genuine 3M tape on the back, but also includes four screws and two clips if you want a more secure installation.
Overall, most owners are satisfied and happy with this product, particularly with its price and easy installation process. They find the light bar to be bright and the adhesive holds up well. Some owners did complain that the hardware it comes with for a more secure installation is low quality, while others experienced some light failure after a few months of ownership.
3. MICTUNING LED Tailgate Light Bar
This light bar from MICTUNING is a 60-inch double LED bar, featuring 120 red LEDs and 60 white LEDs, resulting in a 30 percent brighter shine than single-row LED light strips. It’s also a universal product that will work on most pickup trucks, trailers, cars, SUVs, RVs, and vans. Like other tailgate light bars, this one can serve as a running light, brake light, reverse light, and turn signals.
This product features an IP67 waterproof silicone housing to protect it from water, sand, dirt, and snow, along with an inline fuse for short circuit protection. MICTUNING says it has an impressive 100,000-hour running life.
This unit comes with a standard four-pin flat plug and 3M tape for easy installation.
A good number of owners are satisfied with this product, but there are a number of complaints that the product doesn’t last very long. Some owners also experienced moisture and condensation inside the light housing, adding that they’re not confident the light bar is waterproof. Others did say the product is very easy to install and is very bright.
4. DJI 4x4 Tailgate Light Bar
If you’re looking for a real bright tailgate light bar, DJI 4×4 offers a quad row 60-inch product with 624 LEDs (312 red and 312 white). This light bar claims to offer lumens output that is 400 percent brighter than a normal tailgate light. It can fully function as a running light, brake light, turn signal, reverse light, and even a hazard light with all red LEDs flashing.
Offering optimal protection with a fully sealed flexible silicone housing, this light bar is also IP67 waterproof and has inline fuse short circuit protection. DJI 4×4 claims it will work for over 50,000 hours.
Industrial strength 3M tape makes for easy installation, along with a standard four-pin connector. Mounting hardware is also included if you want a more secure install. It’s a universal tailgate light bar, designed to fit on various makes and models including the Chevrolet Silverado, Ford F-150, Dodge Ram, GMC Sierra, Toyota Tundra, as well as Jeep SUVs, RVs, vans, and trailers.
DJI 4×4 backs up its tailgate light bar with a two-year warranty.
There aren’t a large number of reviews specifically for the tailgate light bar, but other DJI 4×4 products have mostly positive reviews. Owners did however say the light bar is very bright and easy to install, although the adhesive doesn’t hold up well.
5. Nilight Tailgate Light Bar
One of the most popular and highest-rated products on Amazon in this category comes from Nilight. This 60-inch tailgate light bar is available as a single, double, or triple, providing you the option of how much light coverage you want. All three products are multifunctional, providing either a running lamp, solid white reverse lamp, a red left turn lamp, a red right turn lamp, and a red brake lamp.
Every variant is easy to install, with no drilling involved. This product uses heavy-duty double-sided tape, allowing you to easily stick it in the desired place on your truck. Nilight does include mounting hardware however, if you want a more secure installation. Also included is a four-pin flat connector, which plugs directly into your trailer adapter for an easy plug-and-play install.
These tailgate light bars are IP67 waterproof, manufactured with a fully sealed, flexible silicone housing. They are universal and the company says they’re compatible with models of the Chevrolet Silverado, Dodge Ram, Ford F-Series, GMC Sierra, Toyota Tundra, and more.
The double light bar features 264 LEDs, while the triple has 504 LEDs.
Although the tailgate light bar doesn’t have very many reviews on Amazon, Nilight’s other LED lights have an overwhelming number of positive reviews.
What to Look for When Shopping for a Tailgate Light Bar
As you may be able to tell, many of these tailgate light bars are very similar and picking a product mostly comes down to how many LEDs and how bright of a light bar you want stuck to the back of your truck. But before you do that, make sure to check user reviews and see which products offer an actual warranty. Since most of these are likely manufactured overseas, there’s always a possibility that you’ll receive a product that isn’t up to quality standards, which means it may fail right out of the box or in a short period of time. Pick a brand that has a good reputation for customer service, so you can get a replacement easily if you need one.
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