In just about every place on Earth, you’re sure to find the common truck: the pick-up type which lets you put stuff in the back and is the go-to vehicle for when you’re going on fishing trips and other places where you’ll carry a lot of stuff. It’s also the vehicle that many beer drinkers go for because when it comes to enjoying a bottle of happiness, there’s nothing like chilling in the back.
So it may be a surprise when you find that these trucks have bed liners. You may assume that with the word alone, it already means it’s a liner for beds that you sleep on. But actually, the bed liner is something you already see on the truck. In fact, it’s already been there since you first laid your eyes on one. Surprised? Read on and find out more about what they are and how they can be of help to you, to make sure you find the best truck bed liner for your purpose, whether it’s spray, roll-on, paint or rubberized.
What Is A Bed liner?
So what is it anyway? It’s what you apply on a truck bed (or the back part of your truck) to protect it. Just like how you’d do a sort of coating on materials to strengthen tools, a bed liner gives that extra protection to make sure that in the long run, they can let truck beds last longer than ever.
It may not look obvious since there are many trucks that have their own back parts, but you’ll be surprised that a lot of them already have these things installed.
Why Do You Need One?
This next question is what you’ll ask as you ponder upon it and the answer is yes, you’ll need one. Why? For starters, they can protect the bed from a lot of hazards such as impact from items that you put, weather troubles, and other things. Another reason you’ll need one is the common thing most owners dread: the rust. With a bed liner, you can make sure the rust never comes along.
Finally, the other reason you’ll need one is everything that can harm your truck bed that you’d never even think about. Dog bites, bird poop, water spilling, freezing tendencies…. there are other hazards you’d think are nothing but without bed liners, you’re letting your bed get harmed in the process.
So, do you need one? Absolutely. It’s no different from you wanting to protect your garage floor with the use of epoxy, or any other type of protective coating.
Are They Bad?
Now the next question: are they bad? As long as you know how to apply them correctly, they’re good. They’re only bad if you apply them incorrectly. How so? Depending on the type you’ll get, it may be more harmful in the long run if you slip up. You need to make sure you know what you’re doing because one mistake and it’s going to bite you back. So be aware of what your truck bed is and take note of the type you feel is right for you. Once you get everything, apply accordingly and you’re good to go.
Your next move from here is to know the types that are out there. Not to worry, there are only 2 main types of them.
The drop-in type is the one that’s been seen on truck beds before the second type came along. As the name suggests, it’s simply the type you put on top of what’s currently there. To make it simpler, it’s like putting a cloth on a dinner table. But for this type, it’s the kind that you put on the existing truck bed without fuss.
Many of the items you’ll see that stem from this type come in different forms. Some are offered as kits with their parts neatly arranged so you’ll know which part you’ll put them on. Some already have the full set ready for you just put on without having to think anymore.
The downside to this? You need to make sure you get the one that matches what you have on your truck. Much like how you have to make sure you have a matching cover for storage, you need to make sure the type you have matches the one you have. Otherwise, it’s going to be a headache knowing you came such a long way only to find it doesn’t fit as you wanted it.
Another downside is that this type isn’t a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. You may find that some parts will come separately and will only let you cover some parts of the truck bed. If certain areas need to be covered, this shouldn’t be an issue but if you need to cover it all, you’re going to be doing a lot of shopping to even find the parts that will suit your needs.
The spray-on type has its name giving you its function: it’s the one you spray on. Unlike the drop-in type, this one is where you’ll be able to do coating on your truck bed to give it the much-needed protection you never knew it needed and customize it to your liking. In short: it’s the DIY thing that can be adjusted in any way you wish. It’s the go-to product because it’s the one that defines modernization in the world of trucks.
It may surprise you but unlike the other type, this one can be used with stuff that aren’t trucks. Need to protect a floorboard? Spray! Got something that needs extra hardening such as a boat? Spray away! These types can come in handy in other areas you may never have thought of. Thanks to the materials that they’re made of, they offer protection for everything.
The downsides? There are a few of them. One is the material. It’s a long-running debate on which material is better but for this downside, getting the one that’s got materials that does more harm than good will cost you more than what you bought it for. The other downside is authenticity. Some items of this type claim to have great benefits that outshine all the others, but you’ll be deceived because they’re nothing more than empty promises. So it pays to really know who you’re buying from and how well they are effective for other users. Never be fooled by the praises: do your research and make sure they’re from trusted sources.
So, when you’re wondering the type to go with, you now know of the various options, as well as the fact that they come in different materials and textures, such as roll-on, paint and rubberized ones.
How Much Does A Spray-On Type Cost?
When it comes to assessing the cost, you may find they’ll be a bit more expensive at the start depending on what you’re going for. Some of the cheap ones may be money-savers but in the long run, you’ll find they won’t last whereas with the pricier items, you’ll have something to last you for a long time.
Add to that, you’ll do a lot of spraying in a DIY scenario but as you’ve learned earlier, a slip up will cost you a lot, so it pays to research how it’s done. You can also delegate and have someone who’s familiar with this type to do the work for you.
Then there’s the tools you’ll be using. You can go with the default spraying cans but to make the most of this type, you have to get the hardware that are specialized with it. If you’re up for it, expect to pay a little more than the usual fare to get what you’ll need.
So how much will it cost when using this one? It will depend on the type you’re using along with the quality, area, and other factors that will come in handy. You’ll also want to wager in on how much you compensate if you’re going to ask someone to help you with the task.
Rhino vs Line-X
As you explore the world of bed liners, you’ll come across a rivalry that echoes the rivalry between iOS and Android in the phone world: Rhino VS Line-X. So what is this all about? These names are attributed to two manufacturers that give the best of the best.
For Rhino, their items have soft textures which may make it look like it’s going to break but is actually durable. It can be quite a deception but when you have a feel for it, you’ll be surprised. They’re also famous for having the best anti-slip functions, so you won’t have to worry about things slipping around the back.
As for Line-X, their items are generally known to have thin-looking types but are laid with rough texture. This can be problematic because it may be a hazard to some items you carry especially when you want them to be intact and without scratches on them. But on the plus side, their stableness proves useful in absorbing sound and when applied correctly will prove handy in the long run.
But if you’re eyeing to get your hands on their items, you’ll be a bit out of luck because they don’t offer DIY kits. As you’ll see on their websites, they describe their benefits with their product but you have to call up their store and schedule up a time to let them spray the material on your truck bed themselves.
So which will you go for? It depends on you. If you’re the driver who like its thin and rough, Line-X has you covered but you’ll need to ask for assistance. If you’re the one who wants some extra protection while going with a smoother texture and handling some other downsides, then Rhino is for you because they offer assistance and do-it-yourself items which makes it a win-win.
In the end, it’s your call. But a good tip to always remember here: make sure it’s the right fit. Otherwise, you’re going to be wasting a lot of money.
Now it all comes to this: what are the best products to go for? Whether you’re on one side or the other, you’ve got a list down below to help you choose.
- U-Pol Products RAPTOR Tintable Kit
Eyeing for something that can protect and tint at the end? This item is for you. This type stands out from the many similar ones because just as the name shows, it’s got the tint. So when you apply it well, you’ll see just how beautiful it can be.
But don’t worry, the item lets you do a variety of finishes that can suit. You can forgo the tint and go for the simple or go for something that spells rough and practical. Whichever style you choose, this one gives you the power to make it happen.
This one can also be applied on other materials that need protection such as wood and metal, so feel free to style up the other essentials in life that make it easy for you.
The downside to this? Depending on how much you use, you’ll likely need to buy a lot of it if you’re not using it exclusively for just the truck. Another thing to consider is that you have to make sure you have some knowledge on applying this one because one wrong move and it’s goin to cost you a lot. You may also need some additional equipment to get what you want out of it.
Have that desire to make your truck bed really look comfy and cozy? You can go with this one. Unlike the other items you’ll find, this one lives up to its name. Yes, it may indeed look like it has the materials for a mattress but surprisingly enough, it’s durable and protective.
Thanks to its texture, this is ideal for carrying the rough stuff such as crates. You can even have pets ride on the back and they won’t ruin the item because it’s made that way. You won’t even have to worry about scratches on your skin because just the moment of lying down on it, you can feel like you’re really on a bed.
Another upside is that it’s resistant to the common hazards such as liquid and weather, so you can bet this item will protect your truck bed with gusto.
The downside to this one is that you have to be sure you have it right with your truck bed because if you don’t get it right, you may end up with the item that doesn’t fight rightly at all.
- Dee Zee Heavyweight Bed Mat
Most of the items you see out there can be a burden when you’re in the mood for simplicity. That’s why this one will be made for you. As its name shows, it’s pretty much a mat so it’s the matter of applying it. Thankfully, it can be customized to fit the type of truck bed you have. You can even trim it if you want to make sure measurements are in order.
This one is made for the heavy cargos you have in mind. Thanks to the well-known benefit of this type, you won’t have to worry about slips, cracks, rusts, and other hazards. So it’s as simple as it can be.
The downside to this one is that because it’s simply a mat, it doesn’t have the parts that cover the upper sides of your truck bed. This means the floor of your truck bed will only be covered, so you may see some scratches on the sides. It’s simple but it can cost you.
Another downside to consider is that while it can be customized and trimmed, you have to be 100% sure you know what you’re doing because you cut this mat wrongfully, and it’s going to haunt you back. So make sure you have the right tools when making the cut on this one when customizing it.
- Rhino TuffCoat
Aiming for the item that’s rough and is durable to protect the stuff on your truck bed? Look no further. This one will sure give you delight because it’s one of the company’s best and will surely come in handy in making sure all is good.
Everything that’s attributed to it from its durability to its appliance for other items, comes in handy. And it even absorbs the sound, so you’re sure to have a lot to save with this type.
The downsides to this one are that if you’re not sure what you’re doing, a mistake can cost you a lot and you’ll need to refill every now and then if you’re using this item a lot of times, so it’s best to have extra supply if you see yourself using it more times than you expected. You’ll also need to make sure you have the right equipment as well.
All in all, truck bed liners are a godsend. You think you won’t need them but the great benefits you get out of them will ensure yours is safe and protected from the many hazards as you go about your day. There may be only 2 types but they both have their unique traits and depending on how you apply them, it’ll give you insurance that can last a lifetime.
Of course, you can’t recklessly think you know all there is to know about them: you have to make sure you research, decide on what is best to apply, and other factors that can make sure your purchases are worth it.
So go for it and get yourself the item. You and your truck deserve it!