Tonneau covers have become the big craze these days, and for good reason. Truck bed covers give you the option of having the extra storage space your truck provides, while maintaining the look of a sharp truck. In addition, tonneau covers have actually been proven to increase gas mileage while protecting your possession from the elements. These features have made them among the most popular automotive products available today.
However, with increase in demand has come increase in production. There are now hundreds of available tonneau covers for all kinds of trucks. With so many options, it can be hard to find the right tonneau cover for your truck. When this situation arises, I normally recommend that a customer look at the different categories of tonneau covers available, and make a decision based on which category of tonneau cover will best fit their needs.
There are basically six categories of tonneau covers, ranging in price, ease of use and installation, protection capability and durability. These categories are hard top tonneaus, soft roll up tonneaus, hinged tonneaus, retractable or roll top tonneaus, tool box tonneaus, and cross bow tonneaus. Read the sections below to find out which is best for you and your truck.
Hard Top Tonneau Covers
Hard top tonneaus are secure and durable. They include a strong yet lightweight and flexible automotive grade vinyl top mounted into a rigid aluminum frame. This set up creates extra security while resisting scratching, chipping and fading. In addition, hard top tonneaus offer great accessibility, as they do not interfere with the tailgate so you can load small packages or equipment without opening the tonneau. Customer favorites include the HardTop 4-way Tonneau Cover, with a patented design that allows you to open it four ways, the Roll-N-Lock Tonneau Cover, which easily retracts into a canister at the front of the truck bed, and the Pace Edwards BedLocker Tonneau Cover, which has an electric motor and cargo light that can be operated by remote control. Hard top tonneaus start at $598.99.
Soft Roll Up Tonneau Covers
Soft roll up tonneaus offer the protection of a hard top tonneau with the versatility of the old-school soft variety of tonneau. Soft tonneau covers are made of a durable yet flexible tarp fabric designed for ease of installation and low weight requirements. Customer favorites include the Lund Genesis Tri-Fold Cover, with its unique folding design and simple 2 minute installation, the Extang Tuff Tonno III, which offers the world’s strongest tarp attachment and special “peel and seal” edging, and the Access Roll-Up Tonneau Cover, which includes a reliable side-sealing system designed to create cover tension from front to back for a tight, secure fit. Soft tonneaus are much more economical, and start as low as $169.99.
Hinged Tonneau Covers
Hinged tonneau covers offer an unchallenged ease of access to your truck bed space with minimal effort. They lift easily upward at an angle to allow you to quickly and easily access your truck bed. Hinged tonneaus include heavy-duty vinyl covers and tubular supports for one hand lifting. Customer favorites include the Undercover Tonneau Cover, with its easily installed VersaCover and strong patented GELOYTM plastic compound cover, the Lund Genesis Hinged Tonneau Cover, which includes heavy-duty gas struts for easy one-hand opening, and the Seductive Hard Top Tonneau, which displays an innovative 3-way rotary latch system for consistent latching every time. Hinged tonneau covers are also among the more affordable, starting as low as $279.99.
Retractable Roll-Top Tonneau Covers
Retractable roll-top tonneaus are great for those who want the hard cover type of tonneau, without the hassle of having to lift the top. Roll-top tonneaus feature a durable canister that mounts at the front of the truck bed allowing the tonneau cover to easily retract into it. Customer favorites include the Roll-N-Lock Tonneau, with its unique one piece clamp-on track system and integral bed rail gasket, the Bak RollBak Tonneau Cover, which lines the rails with ultra high density polyurethane for smooth gliding, and the Pace Edwards Roll-Top Tonneau Cover, which includes a convenient easy-to-install top. Retractable Roll-Top Tonneau Covers start as low as $589.99.
Tool Box Tonneau Covers
Tool box tonneau covers are specially designed to fit your truck with your toolbox installed. These tonneaus are a favorite among customers whose trucks are used as both street and work vehicles. Tool box tonneaus feature roll out bars, bows and cover to allow easy access to your tools. Customer favorites include the Extang Toolbox Tonno Cover, with its easy pull to disengage your tail rail for bulk hauling, and the Access Tool Box Edition Tonneau Cover, with protection capabilities perfect for contractors, construction, farms and other commercial uses. Tool Box Tonneau Covers start as low as $389.99.
Cross-Bow Tonneau Covers
Cross-Bow style tonneau covers create the older look of original tonneau covers with the support and durability of the new class. These tonneaus have bows that run down the bed to support the cover and retain that classic tonneau look. In addition, classic tonneau covers are perfect for the price-conscious customer. Customer favorites include the Lund Genesis Seal & Peel, with its specially-engineered cover and rails and unique adhesive seal, and the Lebra Glow Tonneau, which emits a high impact “Glacier Glow” color for maximum lighting. Cross-Bow tonneau covers are also the most affordable style, starting as low as $169.99.
As you can see, there is a lot to consider when purchasing the correct tonneau cover for your truck. However, this is necessary when taking into account the large number of quality tonneau covers on the market today. I always recommend taking time to compare and decide, as a tonneau cover is a purchase that can last a lifetime.