Best Tonneau Cover 2018 – Top Rated Truck Bed Cover Reviews & Buying Guide

The need for cargo protection as well as storage efficiency makes tonneau covers a necessary addition to your truck. For any truck owner, choosing the best tonneau cover makes your driving experience even better by reducing the lag for efficient fuel consumption and improving your vehicle’s appearance. A good tonneau cover converts your cargo haul into a durable storage unit that can carry almost anything efficiently.

Whether you choose a soft or hard bed cover, a tonneau cover needs to fit conveniently into your bed rails and give you an easy time when loading and offloading cargo. The market has a variety of options some of which are overpriced for no reason as well as some outright poor-quality bed covers that cannot handle your basic cargo haul needs.

Top 3 Best Tonneau Covers: Editor’s Pick 

Tonneau Covers
Tonneau Covers Model
Editor's Rating
Price
Tyger Auto Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover
MaxMate Tonneau Tri-Fold Cover
Truxedo TruXport Roll-up Truck Bed Cover

This is a tonneau cover review containing everything you need to know before paying for a bed cover. It reviews the market’s best truck bed cover alternatives for any truck and cargo specifications. You will avoid unnecessary spending and make the best of your truck after going through this guide.

Best Tonneau Cover Review:

1. The Tyger Auto Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover

Tyger manufactures some of the best soft tonneau covers in the market. This one is the strongest heavy duty cover of the Tyger T series which includes T1/T2 fold bed covers and T3/T5 tri-fold covers. They are well designed to fit under the bed rails on a Ram 1500 fleetside truck bed. They are for a 5.8ft cargo haul without a Ram Box. The cover is heavily strengthened with 24oz military grade vinyl and supported with aluminum coated iron frames that fit directly onto your rails using a strong fore clamp, up bowing crossbars and flip rear latches. It has classy slanting edges that fit perfectly onto your cargo haul preventing penetration of water and snow.

The Tri-fold is held to the front of the rail by leather buckles when folded to allow you access your whole truck bed. The whole cover is generally light and extremely easy to install. You only need to strengthen the font clamps in place, there is no need for drilling your rails which keeps your truck in original shape. The covers work perfectly with a bed liner but you will need to cut small holes to access the rails for a firm grip of the clamps. However, they are not your best option if you have a ram box. Tiger offers a limited lifetime warranty on their products, all you have to do is measure your truck bed size and give them an order.

Highlighted Features:

  • The extra strengthened vinyl cover and steel bars are weatherproof and can hold off a great weight of snow build up.
  • The tri-fold can lay vertically against the cab at maximum fold offering you access to the whole truck bed.
  • The horizontal bars are coated with an aircraft grade aluminum alloy making them very resistant to water.
  • The covers have adjustable tension control allowing you to cover some bulky cargo too.

2. The MaxMate Tonneau Tri-Fold Cover

This is probably the best roll-up tonneau cover for 02-08 Ram 1500 with extended service to 03-08 Ram 2500 and 3500 truck beds. MaxMate has an extended warranty up to 10 years for this top-rated roll-up tonneau cover with a free return policy. It is made of the same military-grade vinyl and stainless steel pre-assembled crossbars as the Tyger Auto covers. It is the US designed with no drilling needed except small holes if you have a bed liner to install the clamps.

MaxMate uses the same design and material to manufacture their tri-fold and fold bed covers. However, this MaxMate cover one has an added advantage to the 6.5ft bed covering your Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500 comfortably. It is one of the top-rated soft Tonneau covers for fleetside cargo hauls without a Ram box. It is a simple clamp cover that doesn’t need any drilling. You can easily install it without the manual. After fixing the front clamps, you may have to shift the screws for the rear latches depending on their positioning on the truck but you will be done in less than 20 minutes.

Highlighted Features:

  • Easy to clamp and unclasp allowing you to load any type of cargo quickly.
  • The standard pricing and extended 10-year warranty are also very attractive to budget customers.
  • The Aluminum alloy sidebars and crossbars can hold up to 0.5 tones in overhead weight.
  • The sleek design with slanted edges complements your truck’s look as well as drip off precipitation for durability.

3. The Truxedo TruXport Roll-up Truck Bed Cover

This is your best roll up Tonneau cover if you are looking for a space economical bed cover. It clamps on top of your bed rails. The roll-up Tonneau cover has a complementary black finish and gives your truck a flat top mount design to complement the appearance. It has fastening buckles that keep it close to the cab you will hardly notice it. It is also very simple to install and remove, basically 15 to 20 minutes considering its light nature at 24 pounds and an integrated dual latching. The clamps are dually adjustable latching integrates nicely with the preset adjustable tension control making it easy to close and role back.

Truxedo used an adjustable extension leather grain fabric that keeps it tight when closed. It also has a shiny black finish with straight tubes and a top mountain design to complement your vehicle’s look. The standard pricing and a 5-year warranty provided by Truxedo is also very attractive. The bed cover is offered for 5.5ft truck beds with the company offering up to 8ft extensions which makes it suitable for any cargo haul size. You can combine it well with your bed liner without any modification.

Highlighted Features:

  • It is very light and streamlined reducing the lag from your truck which is good for fuel mileage saving.
  • It has a dual latch which makes your cargo secure from harsh weather and prying eyes.
  • You have full access to your truck bed when rolled back making it very economical on space.
  • The dual clutches are accessible from every side of the truck making it easy to roll the cover open and closed from any side of the truck.

4. The Tonno Pro Tri-Fold Truck Bed Cover

Tonno has very versatile tonneau covers.  These particular truck bed cover reviews cover their 3 best pickup bed covers. Tonno Pro uses a double-sided vinyl material in their covers making them some of the best pickup bed covers for harsh weather. This particular Tri-Fold cover is clamped in place using a strong but simple EZ clamp that makes it very secure and easy to install. The three sections are hinged together and can be easily dismantled to create more room for different types of cargo.

All Tonno Pro covers come completely assembled with only 10 minute installation time required. The trifold and the snap covers eat up a little room of your cargo haul but they are made of strong aluminum coated bars that can hold a great deal of weight. The covers fit under your bed rails making it easy for you to mount more cargo on top of the covers without ruining delicate cargo inside the truck bed. The Top vinyl cover is very smooth making it easy to clean with a simple wipe. Their famous Q seal also offers extra protection for the truck bed combined with an extended front flap to allow water, snow, and ice to flow off easily.

Tonno Pro also attaches lots of complementary customer gifts with their Tonneau covers. You will get a free Detachable LED light for loading and offloading your cargo in the dark, a cover cleaner and sometimes a pair of gloves alongside the standard priced tonneau covers. The dent-proof support bars fit naturally in 5.5ft to 6.6ft truck beds with bed liners and they need no modification.

Highlighted Features:

  • A versatile range of covers covering many truck bed sizes.
  • The packages come with lots of complementary packages that complement cargo carrying and cover maintenance.
  • The double-sided vinyl covers are more resistant to tear and can hold off huge amounts of snow without caving in or denting.
  • The E-Z clamp holds the cover firmly to the truck and is easy to remove and adjust for extra bulky cargo.
  • The smooth finish prevents dust accumulation making your cover retain a shiny appearance for a long time.

5. The Gator Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover

Gator is famous for top rated hard Tonneau covers designed and manufactured in America. However, this soft tri-fold cover is near airtight and one of the best truck bed cover options. They use an airtight tailgate seal which prevents entry of any water or dust into the cargo haul making them the best Tonneau covers for water sensitive cargo. Aluminum framed bars fit on top of your bed rails combining more seals that secure the cargo from weather elements. Gator Tonneau Covers adopt the same simple clutch installation that can be installed and adjusted by hand within 20 minutes.

The Vinyl is double thickened with smooth fabric that provides a durable tear-resistant easy to clean cover for your truck. The three sections of the Gator Tri-Fold cover are bolted and can be rolled to one fold which leaves a large space for loading cargo. Gator offers a range of soft Tri-Fold Tonneau covers including Gator FX and Gator Trax which are fitted inside the rails and they are both hardcovers. The soft Tri-Fold cover is still the best tonneau cover from the company’s large collection.

Gator offers different warranty terms for your purchase with 10 years on the vinyl and limited lifetime cover on the aluminum frame. The tailgate seal is the most admirable extension of the Gator customer service. The tri-fold cover is limited to 5.5ft truck beds suited for ’15 -’19 Ford F150, this makes the cover quite lacking for long truck bed pickups. It can fit on your rails if you have a bed liner and a ram box but it limits you to standard and small size of cargo.

Highlighted Features:

  • A strong set of airtight seals that offer the best weatherproof protection for your cargo.
  • Gator is a famous brand with reliable American made Vinyl and Aluminum coated cross bars and frame.
  • The strong buckles are multipurpose to hold the cover to the cab as well as tighten it when driving.

6. The Bestop Fold Tonneau Cover

If you own a Jeep Wrangler or a Chevy, you probably bought your truck with the Bestop Textured Leather fold Tonneau cover. These are basically three stacks of a 25-pound cover that you latch onto your trucked frame and lock as it is designed to fit perfectly onto Chevy Silverado frames with bed management style bodies. It doesn’t fit onto classic style bodies. It is light and structured to stack evenly to provide maximum access to your truck bed. Strapping and pushing is all you do to install meaning you will use 5 minutes or less to install or remove. The lock and latch design do not need drilling or bed rails to fit.

Bestop has a weatherproof textured leather/vinyl cover for this pickup bed cover to remain flexible even when hit with rain. It also retains its original color under intense heat due to the smooth vinyl fish. The cover is an all-weather Tonneau cover suited for the harshest summers or winters. The aircraft grade aluminum frames are very light but strong to withstand heavy overloads and hold them over the rails cover water tightly on your truck. The leather latches should not worry you, maximum stability is offered by reinforced corners designed with a hinge to fit into the truck bed rail frame with a simple push. The latches hold the cover to the front side of the truck rails and you can as easily unlatch it if you need to use the whole truck bed.

Bestop offers a limited lifetime warranty for this fold cover for both the frame and the leather cover. The vinyl fabric is also served with the Bestop anti UV ray protection that protects your cargo from intense heat even if the truck stays in the hot sun for a long time. Bestop also offers high-quality customer support with a free return policy within the warranty period. The folding cover is designed for a 5.8ft truck bed.

Highlighted Features:

  • All weather resistant fabric that is durable through any season of the year.
  • The simplest installation process for any fold truck bed cover.
  • Adjustable clamps that can be moved from one point of the truck to another to suit different heights of cargo.
  • The covers are specifically designed for the specific trucks ensuring a perfect compatibility.
  • The EZ fold style achieves a perfect stack when you open the folding cover making it easy to lift off and onto the truck.
  • The extra strengthened corners with integrated buckle straps offer extra protection from weather elements.

7. The BAK Premium Fold Tonneau Cover

This is the highest priced fold pick up tonneau cover of the best truck bed cover reviews in this guide. It is a four-set Tailgate cover that folds under your truck rails. Its main advantage is that you can lock the tailgate on either side of the cover. The bed cover is made of aircraft grade sandwich aluminum panels. The metals are quite heavy, 71 pounds, but thy stack backward evenly offering you maximum access to your truck bed. You can also close the tailgate without lifting the Tonneau Cover.

This hardcover is actually suited for the multipurpose role, it works as a bed cover and can still hold a substantial weight on tops such as motorbikes or tires without bending an inch. The tailgate seal is also water and dust proof with a smooth black shiny finish that can be cleaned with a simple wipe. It has four sandwich sections which are joined by adjustable screws that you can use to fit the cover perfectly onto our truck bed. The design is suited for ’15-’16 Chevy Colorado 5ft short bed and it stands out as one of the best hard tonneau covers for your heavy-duty cargo needs.

Highlighted Features:

  • The extra strengthened vinyl cover is totally scratch and dent proof for maximum durability.
  • Improved Tailgate seal functionality. You can access the seal from the top or underneath the cover.
  • Heavy duty focus for carrying extra cargo on top of the bed cover as the cover is fitted under the rails.
  • Sandwiched EZ folds that fold back easily, imitating a retractable bed cover.
  • Heavy material that holds firmly onto the track offering the best dynamics when driving even at high speed.

8. The Lund Genesis Elite Roll Up Tonneau Cover

Lund makes great aftermarket car accessories and their annually updated roll-up covers are one of the best pickup truck bed covers you can buy. Their twill weave design supported by an adjustable set of straps on both sides holds tightly to the aluminum frames. The weave is quite flexible and water-resistant, you can drive around the whole day in heavy rains without water touching the truck bed. Lund uses a Rubber seal on both sides of the front and rear rail to keep the Cover water resistant. The Velcro sealing also fits perfectly with any truck from 1500 to 35oo Silverado and Siera with 6.5ft truck beds. It doesn’t fit on 5.8ft and 8ft truck beds.

Maximum access to your truck bed by this truck bed cover is fully allowed as the cover rolls all the way back and sticks in place with nylon straps. The cover is also water and UV resistant which makes it retain its bright appearance under harsh sunlight. It is pre-assembled, all you have to do is put the clamps in place.

Lund also employs tapered corners and a smooth finish which makes cleaning quite easy and complimentary to truck appearance. This Tonneau cover employs an Automatic tension control allowing you to tighten it maximally for safe strapping. The Frames fit perfectly over the truck bed rails. The whole cover weighs 30 pounds and doesn’t increase the lag on your truck. Lund manufactures in the USA and offers a limited lifetime warranty on their truck bed covers.

Highlighted Features:

  • The Tear resistant, UV protection, and waterproof twill weave material are durable.
  • After rolling back, the cover recoils far back onto the cab leaving full access to your truck bed.
  • An automatic adjustable extension makes it easy to open and close your truck bed from a single point.
  • Tapered frames fit perfectly onto the rail frames and allow water to flow off smoothly.

9. The Extang Solid Fold Tonneau Cover

This is simply the ultimate description of heavy duty. This cover is one of the best high range heavy duty fold covers in the market. The material is a double fold set of 1 inch TPO panels strengthened with aluminum powder. The extra strengthening allows you to carry heavy loads on top of the bed cover without a dent. The front panels are held in place with strong Jaw Grip clamps at the front Truck rails which hold directly onto your truck bed rails. The other panels are locked with EZ latch clamps under the rails that can be opened easily with a simple flip.

The cover is made of a heavy automotive grade thermoplastic skin suited with a textured matte finish for all weather service. It also offers maximum security with a tailgate seal that can only be accessed by lifting the Rear latches and panel. Extang employed a shiny OEM Matte finish that compliments appearance and remains cool even with the hottest summer sun. It is fully assembled for you to simply lock clamps in place unaided in less than 20 minutes. The folding cover is suitable for 5.8ft to 8ft truck bed sizes.

Highlighted Features:

  • Shiny rectangular frames that hold strongly onto the truck rails with a matte texture that has a classy appearance.
  • The strong panels cover the top of the truck firmly with a secure Tailgated allowing you to load bulky cargo on top with no tear or dent risk.
  • A versatile bed cover with a complimentary finish that can fit on almost any truck bed.

10. The Retrax 80467 Pro MX Retractable Bed Cover

This is frankly one of the best retractable Tonneau Covers in the market. The high range pricing is completely worth the service if you need a hassle-free Tonneau cover for your 8ft truck bed. This retractable cover can literally last as long as your car with the high-density aluminum plated frames and crossbars that are hinged together for durability. The low profile mate finish can withstand any bulky cargo without a scratch or a dent. The overhead carrying capacity of over 500 pounds allows you to strap heavy cargo such as a bike on your cover without affecting its shape.

Operating this retractable cover is simplified. Once installed, you can lock your tonneau cover by latching it in place with the dual rear latches or simply lock it with a key. It,s hinged joinery makes it fit at almost any position on your truck bed allowing you to carry both sensitive an bulky cargo at the same time. Retrax uses a powerful rolling system made of sealed ball bearings that prevent the retractable cover from locking when you open or close it. The OE covers fit well with any OE bed covers and appear like an original part of your bed cover.

Highlighted Features:

  • A strong extra strengthened top cover that can support up to 500 pounds in overhead weight.
  • A simple automatic roll and lock system that does not require pulling or rolling to fit.
  • A dual latch system that secures safely. You can also lock with a key for extra security.
  • The design is literally designed to last your car’s lifetime removing the cost of buying another Tonneau cover.

Buying Guide: Things to Consider When Choose Tonneau Cover

The market has a versatile range of choices for any truck owner. The choice of the right truck will highly depend on your car model, truck bed size, type of cargo you carry regularly on your truck and the amount of time you intend to keep your truck.

So what should you look for when buying a Tonneau Cover for your pickup truck?

  • Durability

The best tonneau cover should last at least five years which means it will be part of your driving experience for a very long time. For a cover to last that long, the strengthening of the cover needs to be done with the resistant material, preferably aluminum which is both weatherproof and resistant to fading under the hot sun. If the manufacturer offers a warranty that will cover your cost if the material does not meet these specifications, then you are still covered. This guide contains the best truck bed cover reviews with material that will last the time.

  • Compatibility and ease of installation

You have to check the truck bed style supported by the Tonneau cover before paying for it. Some other accessories such as bed liners may require modification upon purchase of Tonneau covers that fit under the bed rails. The easier to install the better for you, however, if the quality of the material is strong enough, you can still install the cover even if it takes a lot of time. This applies to most Retractable covers which may need more time to install but it is a one time task.

  • Flexibility and access to the truck bed space

The best Tonneau cover should fold or roll evenly in any weather. Some roll up and fold cover material stiffen in cold weather or stick to the frame making it very difficult to open and close the cover. Vinyl is the best material for all kinds of weather due to its tolerance for cold and heat. The tonneau cover should be able to roll all the way back and allow space for loading and offloading any cargo size or shape.

  • Drainage and dust resistance

Drainage is important in keeping the truck bed dry as well as the durability of the pickup bed cover. Some soft tonneau covers cave inwards creating a crater that holds water which drains into your truck bed when you open the latch. Some tonneau covers will require you to drill your bed rail for drainage tubes which is an extra hassle. These truck bed cover reviews are for preset full drainage efficient tonneau covers that won’t make water a problem. Smooth finishes do not attract much dust and they are easy to clean and maintain making the cover retain a new look for a long time.

  • Firm Rear latches and clamp grip

Some weak latches or clamps may go loose while driving if the cargo bounces especially when offroading. You need to ensure that the latch holds firmly onto the rails to withstand intense pressure and keep your cargo intact.

Types of Tonneau Covers:

1. Roll Up Tonneau Covers

These are the lightest tonneau covers and easy to operate. They roll into round rings and recede to the front of the truck bed giving full access to the truck bed. In most cases, you will never have to remove them for more space. When buying these ones, ensure the material is UV ray resistant to avoid fading and also tear resistant.

2. Fold Tonneau Covers

These are the most common tonneau covers in the market. They are generally more pricey than roll up covers but they are stronger. They will be made of three or four panels that stack together when folded to give access to the truck bed.

3. Retractable Tonneau Covers

As the name suggests, these covers recede automatically to the front of your truck bed rolling into rings in a compartment at the front of your cargo haul. They are easy to operate as most of them are remotely controlled with no need for pulling. They are pricey but durable.

4. Zip/Snap Tonneau Covers.

This is a whole tonneau cover held in place by a zipper or a set of aluminum buttons that lock with a snap sound. They are also standardly priced and have an advantage of exposing only a section of the truck bed when carrying sensitive cargo.

5. Hinged Tonneau Covers

These are a full panel of the tonneau cover that can be fully lifted to the front to allow full access to the truck bed. The literally resemble opening your car bonnet. Some fold covers also combine as hinged covers if you don’t want to unhook every panel before accessing your cargo.

6 Soft Tonneau Covers

These are the most common cover in the market. They are classified as soft due to their ability to fold evenly backward when you open the cargo haul. They have a major advantage of allowing you more extension room for high cargo. They are used roll up and some fold tonneau covers.

7. Hard Tonneau Covers

These are the best tonneau covers for long lasting heavy durt service. They are mostly aluminum strengthened panels that won’t roll when folded used in some fold tonneau covers and retractable tonneau covers.

Benefits of Tonneau covers:

  • Security

Tonneau covers offer extra security for your cargo especially when parking in a street or insecure public parking. With a tonneau cover, are protected from environmental elements. You can carry dust and water sensitive items inside the cargo haul without fear of losing their value to the weather.

  • Economical fuel consumption

Tonneau covers reduce the lag and improve aerodynamics which can improve your fuel mileage up to 15%. Your vehicle is more streamlined with a firm hold on the cargo in the cargo haul achieves the reduced lag.

  • Boosts your car’s lifespan

Resistance to weather elements such as strong heat and water increases the lifetime of your cargo haul.

  • Preventing cargo damage from bumpy rides

Tonneau covers hold cargo in place firmly reducing extra movement through bouncing which can lead to breakage or damage. A stable hold on the cargo also makes driving easy and smooth.

  • Improves The appearance of your truck

The best tonneau cover for your car will fit perfectly and even complement the appearance of your car.

  • Increased Cargo haul capacity

Hard heavy duty tonneau covers allow your truck to hold more cargo and even bulkier items such as bikes and golf clubs with carriage both under and on top of the tonneau cover.

 

How to install a Tonneau cover on your Pick up truck:

When buying a tonneau cover, you should check out the installation manual for any specific directions for your particular truck. Bed liners and ram boxes may need special skills when installing your tonneau cover.

For any Tonneau cover, these are the steps you will have to perform before using your tonneau cover.

  • 1. Take the pre-assembled Tonneau cover and place it at the front part of your truck bed rails.
  • 2. Release the rear latches and spread the tonneau cover over the truck bed to check if it fits the full length of your truck bed.
  • 3. Fold or roll it back to close at the front again. For roll-up tonneau covers, simply roll back the cover leaving the frames attached to the truck bed rails.
  • 4. Fasten the Front clamps to hold firmly against the bed rail. Avoid over tightening as it scratches your bed rail and it may tear a soft cover.
  • 5. Proceed to fasten the mid-region lamps if any and the rear clamps the same way while the cover is still open at the front area of the truck bed.
  • 6. Release the rear latches and pull the tonneau cover to close and determine if it opens and closes smoothly against the frame.

These six steps will take 5 to 10 minutes for all the tonneau covers in this review making your first experience on a new tonneau cover stress-free. Removing the tonneau cover will simply involve opening the top cover and unfastening the clamps the same way you install them.

Frequently Asked Questions About Tonneau Covers: 

1. Can I use my Tonneau cover with a bed liner?

  • Actually, the best pickup bed cover is one that combines perfectly with your bed liner. This guide mentions how to integrate top-rated hard tonneau covers with a bed liner. The installation will require a slight cut on the liner to fit the clamps under the rails but it holds the liner even more firmly and protects it from the water.

2. How much security will my tonneau provide?

  • Basically, the security of a tonneau cover is as good as the tailgate seal, rear latches and the grip on the frame. The most secure Tonneau covers are the hard tonneau covers most of which once latched cannot be opened unless you open the tailgate at the back with your key. Tonneau covers that fit under the rails are also more secure as they cannot be cut or ripped open easily. Over the rail covers, however, offer better water resistance.

3. Will my tonneau cover protect my cargo from snow and rain?

  • Absolutely. Tonneau covers are built to prevent water from sipping into the truck bed. When buying a tonneau cover, check whether you will need to drill drainage tubes or the cover will automatically drain water over the rails. The best hard tonneau covers can actually hold off a great amount of snow without caving in to affect your cargo.

4. Is a tonneau cover waterproof?

  • Some low-quality leather grain soft covers may allow water to partially enter the cargo compartment. Vinyl soft covers and all the hardcovers are well strengthened to prevent any passage of moisture. They are totally waterproof and you can drive around in a heavy downpour without water touching the truck bed.

5. How do you open a roll and lock?

  • Release the seal by unlocking with your key. While turning the key clockwise hold the latch with one hand.
  • After the latch detaches from the tailgate, slowly allow the cover to slide into the housing to the front of the gate.
  • Locking a roll n lock involves pulling the cover towards the tailgate until you hear the click when the cover reaches the tailgate. You can then secure it by locking with the key.

Final Note: 

Whether you are seeking to upgrade your tonneau cover or buying one for the first time, you have all it takes to buy the best tonneau cover here. You need to get the right measurements of your truck bed`s length to get the best fitting truck bed cover for your truck. These are the best truck bed covers reviews for any truck size from 5.5ft to 8ft. Once you choose your best tonneau, check whether the warranty covers both the frame and the cover. The best warranty should cover at least 2 years of your tonneau cover’s lifespan. Some brands offer used pickup bed covers but they may not serve you for long, it is best to buy a brand new tonneau cover.

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