There are many truck accessories your vehicle must have, and one of them is a tonneau cover. It is only logical to get this accessory due to its practical and versatile nature. Though a bedliner can make sure your truck is scratch-free, these protective barriers make sure the cargo, or the inside of your pick-up truck remains protected from the elements.
Though some truck owners do not see this accessory as very essential, it is actually the first line of defense you have against rain, UV rays, and other factors that can encourage corrosion. To get a more detailed view of a tonneau cover, this link goes into detail, from its definition to the uses. It can also be used to ward off potential thieves.
Types of Tonneau Covers
After reading up the basics of this truck accessory, it is time to tackle the types it has. Knowing the varieties can help you decide which suits your truck better and prevents you from diving into it blind and relying on sales talk.
For now, these are the 3 most commonly used by truck-owners, so let’s delve a little deeper into each of them.
1. Roll-up Tonneau Covers
This type is the most inexpensive of the three, and reasonable for its quality. Out of the three, it is made of vinyl or a soft cloth, which is not as fancy as the next two, but it still reaches average standards, nonetheless. These types are perfect for a temporary solution while you are planning to invest in something more permanent and expensive.
It provides a sleek, simple appearance that every truck-owner wants for their brand-new or second-hand car. It is easy to install, easy to remove and roll away, and accessible for any cargo loading and unloading. Though take note if used for long-term, it is not as durable as its counterparts.
2. Retractable Tonneau Covers
This type serves as the middle ground between expensive and inexpensive. Though retractables are more durable than cloth or vinyl, there are still more durable, albeit more costly choices. It can be made from many different materials, just like the Retrax tonneau cover, ranging from vinyl, aluminum, polycarbonate, or a combination of two. This gives you a barrier that withstands the elements, malicious intent, and hard impact.
The installation of this type is not permanent, but not something you can easily remove either. It is typically mounted on the truck’s front and sides, which retracts into the canister found in the front of the truck head. If you want a durable, accessible, and professional-looking cover without burning through your wallet, retractable covers are for you.
3. Hard Cover Tonneau
Known as the most expensive tonneau cover out of the three, hard covers are a perfectly balanced quality and cost. It’s typically made of aluminum or/and fiberglass (link:https://www.encyclopedia.com/science-and-technology/technology/technology-terms-and-concepts/fiberglass), which offers you the best material for a pricey but durable. It depends on which suits your style and need.
But if you are looking for a less expensive choice, these are not the best choice. It can be considered a lux buy, but then again, if you are looking to secure your cargo better, especially when you are handling fragile, expensive, and valuable possessions, there is no reason not to get this type. Just take note the installation for this one is permanent, as it requires drilling into your car.
It is safe to say there is no best tonneau cover, only something that suits your need to a T. Each one has its own advantages and disadvantages, even the most expensive one in the bunch. So, the concept of being the costliest equals the most durable/usable/convenient, while the cheaper, the weaker, is null in this field. That is why choosing the middle ground is always the best way, mostly if you have not decided which of the extremes you want to get yet.
What You Need to Look for in a Retractable Tonneau Cover?
First of all, you need to search for a cover that uses good, authentic material. The purpose of this is to keep your valuables safe and withstand any environmental factors that can harm them. If you choose one that leans on the cheaper spectrum, you will lose the essence of getting a tonneau cover outright.
Make sure that this retractable cover is in line with its quality, meaning vinyl can be cheaper, but one made from aluminum can be considered more expensive and a lot more durable. Whichever you choose will depend on your assessment.
Second—and directly related to the one above—is its ability to fight off rain, sunshine, snow, and strong winds. Though vinyl can be considered durable, it is susceptible to cold, so if you live in a snowy area, better pass on using this material. On the other hand, aluminum can stand colder environments, which will be best in this case.
Also, check the opening and closing of the cover. Is it comfortable, sleek, and able to open and close without difficulty? Is it prone to cracking when used with a little too much force? Typically, these covers can last a long time even when you are handling them roughly, so if they appear fragile, it is best to avoid that product.
Perhaps the least important of the three but still worthy of mentioning, appearance can always be a dealbreaker when looking for the ideal cover. Naturally, everyone wants it nice-looking and classy, which is true, especially for new truck owners. Choose one that makes your truck look more polished and professional, even if you have to compromise for a more expensive one for it.
Tonneau covers are just as important as any other truck accessory. It needs equal care and special attention, especially when you are starting to choose between the most sued tonneau cover. If you cannot decide which one to get, the best bet is a retractable tonneau cover, both durable and accessible. When searching for one, remember to find a quality, durable, and professional-looking product.