Truck Covers Tips

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what precautions should i take before installing my tonneau cover

Prep Before Installing Your Tonneau Cover

There are a few precautionary steps to take before you install your new tonneau cover.

  • Make sure the trucks bed rails are clean and free from dirt or grime. This will allow the tonneau cover brackets, tracks or rails to adhere to the truck bed paint.
  • Make sure there is a barrier (foam tape or foam seal), between the tonneau covers tracks and the trucks bed rail. This will minimize the chance of scratching the trucks paint and /or clear coat and will also help seal the tonneau cover, keeping the elements out.
  • Make sure that the bed cover or tonneau cover is
    centered perfectly. Rear window clearance should be checked as well.
Although most vendors who sell the tonneau cover will also install it, (sometimes free of charge), it's always good to know how to prepare your truck for any changes or modifications made to the truck bed or bed rails.

how do i keep my truck bed cover looking good

Protecting Your Truck Bed Cover

You've spent the money and the time to give your truck bed the protection it needs, but how do you protect the truck bed cover? It does not matter whether your truck bed cover is made of canvas, leather, vinyl, fiberglass or metal; it needs to be protected.

  • If you have a fiberglass bed cover you can apply a coat of wax to the cover to help protect it. When your ready to apply a coat of wax to your truck, simply do the same to the bed cover.
  • With leather or vinyl bed covers use a water base dressing to clean. Use only water base dressing because silicone dressings will get on the painted surfaces of your truck, causing damage to the clear coat and paint.
  • For canvas covers, before you install a canvas bed cover, treat it with a water seal designed for canvas. This will help repel stains and/or dirt build up. When time to clean the canvas bed cover, use only water and a diluted degreaser to remove the stains. Reapply the water seal after you're finished. This should be done at least once every other month unless suggested differently my the manufacturer.

What is a truck cap?

Truck Caps

A Truck Cap is a more highly evolved truck bed cover. Unlike the Cover, Caps are raised and can be used for hauling and protecting larger cargo. You can have your Cap customized to satisfy your needs. Just let the dealer know size, height, doors, shelves, tool bins and material, you'll be all set.

Why cover up my pick-up?

Truck Cover Protection

Do you haul equipment and material with your pick-up? (Why else would you have one, right?) Does your bed ever fill up with snow or rain? (Your truck bed, that is.) Does stuff ever fly out of your truck bed while you're tooling down the highway? If you answered yes, then you may want to get yourself a Tonneau Cover or Truck Cap. These babies will protect your cargo and your truck, secure your valuables, increase your gas mileage and save you a lot of time shoveling snow out of your truck.

What are covers made from?

Truck Cover Materials

Soft Tonneau Covers are made of vinyl, like an Access Tonneau Cover, which can shrink in cold weather, (like many of us.) To compensate for this, some cover systems come with tension controls. Hard Tonneau Covers and Truck Caps are not affected by the weather. They are made of lightweight, durable fiberglass. Lightweight, of course, is a relative term. Your standard fiberglass Tonneau can weigh between 80 and 120 lbs., depending on the size of your truck bed. Some companies have patented their own material. One company has introduced a hard Tonneau Cover that weighs 58 lbs. for a full-sized truck that is as durable as fiberglass and less expensive. You may run across Truck Caps are made of aluminum. They are lightweight, easy to take off, cost less, but they dent more easily.

How do I choose the right cover?

So many covers, so little time

The first step in choosing a truck cover is to think how you use your truck. If you need storage space, height, insulation, lighting and window options for easy access, a Truck Cap is the ticket. If you only use your truck for carrying the occasional heavy load, you'll probably want a Tonneau. It is less expensive, provides good protection against the elements, (except Plutonium 238) and can be easily removed if you need to haul big stuff.

What about truck security?

Truck Covers and Security

When you cover your truck bed, you are in essence, making a trunk. Nobody can see what you got inside. This is a good thing, especially if you are carrying valuables you want to keep. Soft covers can conceal your valuables, of course, but if you want to be sure they stay secure, take the extra precaution of putting a secure locking system on your Truxedo Tonneau Cover or Truck Cap. Hard Tonneaus, (or is it Tonneaux?) come with locks and provide a stronger exterior against damage and theft. Soft Tonneaus don't. Even the most basic Truck Cap, though, will have a locking rear door above the tailgate. If your truck does not have a locking tailgate, have a full cap door installed in its place. Your truck will be more secure, and you'll sleep soundly ever after.

What's a Tonneau Cover?

Tonneau, or not Tonneau

A Tonneau Cover is a flat cover that can be secured to the top of the truck bed. Like a technologically advanced tarpaulin. A Tonneau protects your truck bed and smaller cargo from the ravages of weather. Most Tonneaus (or is it Tonneaux?) can be removed easily. Tonneau Covers come in several sizes to fit different truck beds and are closed by snaps, a hard cover or a roll cover. Soft Tonneau Covers are made of vinyl, which can shrink in cold weather. Be sure to ask about tension control, some covers have systems that compensate for weather conditions.

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