Pick up truck bed liners are almost a necessary option for your pickup. Why? Without a bed liner, your truck will get scratches in the bed paint which often lead to rust and an early grave for your once beautiful truck. An alternative is to be very careful when hauling with your truck and just don’t scratch the bed. That’s easier said than done and virtually impossible sometimes. Try hauling a few concrete blocks without scratching the paint from your truck bed.
What are the top options for a bed liner? Why choose one over the others?
Spray On Bed Liners
A very popular option is the professional spray on liner. There are several great reasons for the popularity. One reason is just plain good looks. A spray on liner can be had in several colors to complement the finish on your truck, but just plain old black looks great. Newer liners are UV resistant so no fading from the sun. Don’t forget the warranty with a pro liner. Also the liners are repairable too.
But beyond looks is real function. spray on bedliner on liners are tough and hard to damage. Plus the finishes are thick, up to 1/4 inch, and so there is much material that can be gouged and scratched before the damage reaches the metal underneath. Also the coating is skid proof and cushioning because the material contains rubber granules which provide texture.
The disadvantage of these liners is cost. The several hundred dollars is easier to justify on an expensive new truck that won’t be used for heavy duty work and messy loads.
Plastic Bed Liners
A custom fit plastic bed liner is another good option. These come in one piece drop in units or in multi-piece models. Not as sleek looking as the spray in liners these liners still look good and are very practical. Thick plastic liners are nearly indestructible. The roughest loads will rarely harm these liners plus protection from dents is especially good. So for tough hauling, a plastic liner is a superior choice. Plus these liners are considerably cheaper than a spray on liner.
Make sure the drainage in your bed is working and that water doesn’t stay trapped under your plastic liner since trapped water under the liner is a place for rust to start. Also a liner that is loose can move around and wear paint away under the liner. Each plastic liner is custom fit and often these liners are not available for older trucks.
Another liner option is a bed mat. A bed mat can be rubber or carpet and is a piece made to fit the bottom of the bed. Often matching side pieces and tailgate covers are part of the system. A thick rubber mat, as you would expect, is very durable and can stand up to most any abuse, plus a mat is easy to hose off and usually reversible. A carpet mat can be just the thing for many applications too. Carpet is better if the bed is covered or will not be constantly wet, though many carpet mats are very water resistant and long-lasting. Also some mats are carpet on one side and rubber on the other and reversible.