A mudflap or mudguard is used in combination with the vehicle fender to protect the vehicle from mud and other flying debris thrown into the air by the rotating tire.
Mudflaps are usually secured by using large vertical bars which are attached to a vehicle’s front or rear fenders in front of the wheel wells. Mudflaps are often attached by hooking a rope through a hitch or tire carrier assembly of the vehicle.
The rubber material used is not typically as slippery or as effective as a mudguard, which has its drawbacks as well. This is usually true when making decisions about the size, type or placement of the mudguard. On the flip side, mudflaps offer the potential for many more savings when compared to a mudguard. The added protection from flying debris that a mudguard provides is not possible without using tires that do not need to be replaced in the future
The shapes and surfaces of the mudflaps can vary greatly in their ability to retain water or debris from drifting and provide additional aerodynamic performance. The most common type of mudflap, which is used on modern vehicles, is the mud guard.
For all types of vehicles, mudflaps may be made by creating horizontal sections that are mounted behind the wheels and then attached to the outside surfaces of the tire. Each section includes a number of metal plates, called “sides,” that are attached through a system of rivets. Sides are then assembled on the outer rear side of the tire and on the top and bottom of the wheel wells, forming a “flap” that is used to protect vehicles by lowering aerodynamic drag.