You’ve seen them on pick up trucks everywhere: specially designed truck covers that are all the rage. In times past sporting a custom fitted cap over your truck’s bed was where it was the thing to do. Today, a truck tonneau cover is the way to go for many truck owners. The choices of covers are varied, the retailers who sell them are many. Selecting your tonneau truck cover isn’t rocket science but it pays to “go with what you know” when selecting yours. Let’s take a look at the different types of truck tonneau covers on the market.
The most popular selling trucks in the USA for nearly three straight decades are Ford’s “F” series line of full size pick up trucks. Selling twice as many trucks as the nearest car, which is the Toyota Camry, this sales level clearly shows us that pick up trucks remain an important and vital part of the automotive landscape. Indeed, trucks from Ford, Chevrolet, GMC, Dodge, Toyota, Honda, Nissan, and many other manufacturers have filled our roads. Unlike trucks in the past which exclusively emphasized their towing and hauling attributes, trucks of today incorporate a third factor, passenger comfort, in the mix. Still, if you ask mostly anyone exactly what they do with their truck bed you are likely to gain a variety of answers. Most truck beds are used expressly for hauling stuff and depending on what is being hauled that typically determines how the bed is protected and or covered.
I won’t get into two other products, bed liners and caps, as the focus of this article is on another popular product: tonneau covers. As with so many products the quality and durability varies widely depending on the type of tonneau cover selected and the material used to make the cover.
A snap-down cover is the least expensive of all tonneau covers, but you can have a hard time attaching it in place during cold weather. Imagine snow and ice settling into the snaps, frozen in place, as you try to attach your cover: it just isn’t going to happen without a copious amount of effort on your part. Who needs that? In addition, the material is subject to tearing meaning that your investment can be worthless in moments.
Alternately, a roll-up cover is so much easier to use and it fits better too. It is also more expensive! Still, the advantages of paying extra money for a roll up cover are many including: better materials are used, therefore you get a longer warranty; a roll up cover fits better, which means that everything in your truck bed is well protected; and a premium covers lasts longer and looks better.
Of course, the ultimate tonneau covers are those made from fiberglass, to give the cover a truly hard and durable shell. Much more resilient than all other types of tonneau covers, hard shell covers are also far and away the most expensive covers for your truck. However, as with everything in life you get what you pay for.
In the case of a hard shell tonneau cover you get a lot more too, including: a secure lock, overhanging sides, hinged at the front, hydraulic struts, automotive weather stripping, theft protection, and a water tight seal. Another advantage of hard shell tonneau covers is that many manufacturers produce them so that they can be painted to match your finish. Stick a spoiler on the back of your truck and it along with the shell will give you one hot looking truck!