Better Bed Access With the Bedstep

BedStep 4 II

Story and photos by G.R. Whale

My neighbor’s newer Ford F-150 SuperCrew 4WD is about 3 feet high at the bumper and 5 feet at the bedside; that’s higher than an old Dodge 3/4-ton 4WD on the same size tires. That height makes getting anything in or out of the bed a real pain unless you drop the tailgate, and that only works for the back half, and it’s a higher step if climbing in.

A BedStep (made by Amp Research) on the back bumper or the BedStep2 for the side in front of the rear wheel (if the BedStep’s slight loss in departure angle at one corner will be an issue) gives a much easier two-foot high step, and it can handle 300 pounds of your weight and cargo.

Step on the leading edge to lock it down, toe tap it underneath and it retracts itself; it sticks out far enough that you can use it to step on lowered tailgate, but not so far out that anything driving by is likely to whack it.

BedSteps run from $212 and use simple hand tools -- an SAE hex and 17- and 21-mm sockets – to install on a new F-150. Here’s how to install it:

BedStep 1 II
First attach the step assembly to the mounting arm with the supplied hardware already coated with thread-locker. Be careful messing around with it; the lifting spring looks much like an HD big-block intake valve spring.


BedStep 2 II
Remove the top two nuts on the bumper mounting hardware, slide the BedStep mount over and attach the nuts to secure.


BedStep 3 II
The step’s horizontal location can be adjusted to using different mount holes. Once decided, insert the threaded tabs in the step sleeves and secure with the hex-head bolts supplied.


BedStep 4a II
Testing, PUTC style: No creaking or flexing of the BedStep at 300 pounds. Remove the “push” decal (shoes slide right off it) and the ribs on the step will show you where to push down. It won’t go down easily when pressing on the back edge. 


Don't need it on F-150s. They already thought of that.
Both tailgate and cab step.

Nice step BUT why are all new trucks so high. When I bought my 2010 silverado 1/2 ton I wanted a 3/4 ton but could not handle how high it was. Dealer said that everyone wanted them that high, in all my talking to normal every day truck users I have not found that guy. Henry J.

I'm with henry--I actually hate that the bedsides and tailgate are so damn tall on newer pickups, and not just because of lack of easy access.

On my old Ford, I had WAY better visibility backing up than with any new pickup.

They make bedsides higher to get a better payload. And it is annoying when your not tall or lack a step. Luckily my Ranger has a bed that was designed to be easily used.

I like the truck to be tall. But the actual bedsides seem to be getting bigger and bigger everyday. I can see why alot of us weekend warriors, lite duty haulers, truck tows more than hauls, hunters, off roaders etc. would like lower bed walls like back in the day but like someone else mentioned you can technically increase the amount you can put in safely with higher bed walls and its all number wars between the big 3/yota

This is the step that they use on the Nissan Titan... TOM BORDI......>>>>>>>>>

It must be just a numbers war. If I want to haul something taller, I just put racks on my bed. Also, many pickups that do a lot of hauling, convert to flat beds--obviously for a larger platform, but they often have no permanent bedsides at all.

only ford girls need tailgate steps and bed side steps

@ johnny doe , You have it right, the ford girlies are always under 5'6" with short mans complex like Lou, I mean short girlies complex. They can't handle the power and class of a Ram or Silveraldo and ford is the only truck maker that markets to girls with the f150.

Only thing I want is a good puddle light system for under my whole pickup. Hate walking around a pickup in a dark parking lot or back country roads.

Don't like crap like this hanging off the bottom of my truck, just looks tacky.

@ Johnny&TJ Now if chebby comes out with something like this on their new trucks it will be the best thing since sliced bread won't it. You guys are so ignorant till its pathetic.

@tj: the class and power of a Silverado?? WHAT?? I mean, the 6.2 Chevy does put out alot of power, but even it get's beat by Ford's outdated when released 6.2 and the Chevy needs premium. The 5.3? Decent, broad power band, not alot per inch. Class??? GM?? LMAO!

I don't get the complaining about these steps and the man step. Good practical options. We aren't all 25 years old right?

I hate fanboys.

The upside of having a deep bed is having a tall tailgate, IMO. You can carry longer items safely with the tailgate down. That's just me though, it's a double edged sword.

Johnny Doe and tj obviously do not like girls, that's why they go for the other team.

lmao you know it Alex cmere i make yah poop easier lmao hell yah to damn funny

Maybe a s useful feature in a dry climate but in most laces up north, its just another place for salt and snow to collect and destroy it. Would rather stand on my back tire like i do now to access the bed if required.

@Moparman- I think you have it backwards- casual users buy in when Howie or Mike or whomever tells them that taller bed-sides are cool. Guys who have to get stuff in and out all day long wouldn't complain much about the old 18" bed-sides. Never saw a bunch of guys sticking 2x6's to their bed-sides to make em taller. You can always make em taller, but it looks odd to make them shorter. I'm surprised trays with drop-sides aren't more popular.

Maybe now people will understand why I call new trucks "Road Whales." even my 1990 Ford makes it difficult to access the load from the side and I can at least get my arm in over the side, but when you're talking about a truck that 5 feet high at the side of the box? Who the HECK wants 'em that big?

I'm thinking about getting a running board to run from front wheel well to back wheel well so I can at least try to reach in under the hood and into the bed. There was a reason, after all, that they used to call "Flare sides" "Step Side" pickups. Now you can barely fit one toe onto that "Flare Side" step.

Wow, Vulpine, you must have a lifted F-150 with big tall tires? My 1500 TRX4 is 4'5" front of bed, about 4'8" back of bed. That's on 32" tires, not the 28 or 29" tires you had back in the day. Nothing says you don't need a so called road whale! There are used 6.5 bed, Dakotas, Rangers, Tacomas, Frontiers, and S-10s. They sit lower, and you coulda bought an older one of those. You bought a full size and come on here always belly aching about it! My short 5'6" arse aint griping,I can get in the bed, digenerative disc desease and F'd up knee, what's up? Yeah, these are fine options! Someday if I really need them, I am glad they are there! If they made very much less you wouldn't be able to put as much in. lower the truck and the trailer hitch can drag in rough areas. 2 inchs of the lift alone is prob because due to 28" being about the size on a 1500/F-150 back then, and thirty something up to 33" ram tires.

I never had a problem reaching over the side of my 1990 F250 4x4. The tires were a bit larger than stock too. I don't have a big problem with my 2010 F150 either even though 22 years have passed and like TRXTom, degenerative disc disease has set in and I ain't as tall as I used to be. Too many people have swallowed the Howie Long story of Ford trucks being too tall. There is less than 2 inches box height difference between mine and a comparable Chevy. Running boards, retractible side steps, and tailgate steps are good ideas. Not everyone wants them or needs them, but it is nice to have the choice. Baby boomers are aging (I'm in that group) and for the most part have the biggest disposable incomes of any age group. Making life easier for that group (age 45 - 65) is smart business sense. Like a few guys have pointed out - what would the fanboi's say if GMC came out with the tailgate step first?

The high bed sides on the F150 come in handy hauling tall stuff without wondering if it going to fall out going around a sharp corner or marking a quick lane change.

I use my tire to get what i need out of the bed, but I would like the steps if I had them.

x007... heres a thought, drive slower and be more careful/ pay attention when you're hauling tall heavy sh*t, lawyers are fat enough without the new wave of truck buyers who now no longer need any skill or experience to haul or hitch up the biggest thing they can find and go blasting down the highway at 70+

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