Truck Bed Tonneau Covers
What’s the best soft folding tonneau cover? In our opinion, the Extang Trifecta 2.0 Signature Series soft folding truck bed cover is the best, for a lot of reasons. We’d even go as far as saying this is our store favorite. And in the 27+ years that we’ve been in business, we’ve pretty much installed them all.
So what makes this one stand out? Here are 15 reasons:
- It has a heavier duty aluminum rail construction than many of the competitors, especially when compared to the entry-level (read that as “cheap”) covers.
- Any folding cover is only as good as the hinges and seals they use. Extang uses “WeatherTuff seals on theirs that exceed OEM standards. And, hinges are a water entry point. The Trifecta 2.0 covers seal at all contact points to help keep the bed drier than cheaper knockoff covers.
- The hinges are called “MaxHinges” and the name pretty much says it all
- Installation is very straightforward, with no tools required.
- Their patented EZ Lock clamps take very little effort to use and they lock in place.
- For the corer brackets, instead of using a cheap plastic like the wanna-be competitors, Extang uses a 45-degree steel corner bracket for strength and stiffness.
- The rails are a heavier gauge aluminum than most and the crossbows are what they call “monster bows” which give you unmatched strength for holding weight on top (snow can get really heavy, really fast).
- The front clamps are called “Jaw=grip” clamps and they hook under the inside lip of your truck bed, without causing any damage to your truck.
- The clamps are self-storing inside the rails so they don’t flop around when your cover is folded up.
- Hold tight straps (think of them as the straps on a backpack) keep the cover in place when folded and stacked up behind the rear window.
- You can remove the entire cover for full bed access in about 60 seconds
- Best of all, the Signature Series takes a big step up from the standard Trifecta 2.0 by swapping in a premium canvas tarp that looks like a convertible top fabric. It’s show-truck worthy and always turns heads.
- It’s available for almost every truck built in the last 15 years.
- They have a toolbox version. It’s one of the only tonneau covers that work with a toolbox in your truck.
- It has a lifetime warranty. Yup. Lifetime. It covers almost everything except Mother Nature, Acts of God and vandalism. It covers defective materials or workmanship on all truck bed cover rails, aluminum components, clamps, bows, hardware and covering.
If you want to learn more about this cover or any truck bed tonno cover, give one of our experts a call and we’ll help you find the one that fits your needs the best. We stock many of these at our 3 stores, located in Kansas City, Mo., Independence, Mo. and Olathe, KS.
If you’re reading this then it’s safe to assume you are trying to find out what the best hard tonno cover is for your truck bed and for your needs. We’ll try to help you out. We’ve been selling and installing truck bed covers for over 27 years and we’ve tried almost every brand in the USA at some point or another.
The Extang Solid Fold 2.0 is just what the name implies. It’s the updated version of their original hard folding cover (1.0) and designed to out-perform all of its competitors. The original version was a solid performer. But after many manufacturers came out with their version of it (copycats), Extang decided to re-engineer it and make it better still.
When it comes to hard folding truck bed covers, there are 2 designs you can start with. One that sits on top of the bed and uses the bed rails for support, or a flush fit model that is lower profile, but you have to install rails in order for it to have some place to “sit”.
For the flush fit models, they do look cleaner since they don’t stand any taller than the top of your truck bed, with the exception of the thickness of the rubber (EPDM) weather stripping or weather seal. Flush fit models use rails that clamp on to your truck bed, usually 3 clamps to a side unless you have a long bed, which would get 4 per side. With the cover firmly in place and sitting on the rails, these 6 clamps are what is supporting the rails (which is supporting the cover) and whatever weight you put on there (such as 200+ lbs. of snow), coolers or whatever you would throw up there. There isn’t anything wrong with this design. They look great and perform really well for the most part. And none of these are meant to be stood on; they are for keeping your cargo secure and for the most part, dry.
With the top-mount covers like Extang’s Solid Fold 2.0, these sit on top of the truck bed and use the trucks OEM bed rails for support. This distributes weight over the entire truck bed and tailgate. Yes, that’s all 4 sides, not just down the driver and passenger side like a flush fit cover. So as long as a top mount cover is built as a heavy-duty unit, these will hold a ton (not literally) of weight. For years, Extang marketed this with a 4-wheeler / ATV / Quad parked on top of it. They don’t recommend putting that weight on there, but it’s that strong. In fact, Extang claims it will hold 750 lbs. if it's evenly distributed over the cover.
Another thing that makes this cover incredibly strong is the 1” thick Endurashield panels. What’s Endurasheild? Beats the hell out of me! Just kidding. It’s an automotive grade polymer that is incredibly tough, resists UV fading better than fiberglass reinforced panels (FRP) or aluminum. It’s also scratch and dent resistant so it holds up better to harsh elements like hail, sleet, etc. Did we mention this is a heavy-duty tonneau cover?
While we’re talking about the panels, the Solid Fold 2.0 has aluminum rails built into the panels and a honeycomb construction which is where it gets its weight capacity. On top of that, they have a clean, matte black textured finish to compliment that factory bed caps and tailgate caps on today’s late model pickups.
Other benefits are their Jaw-Grip front clamps that secure it to the front of the truck bed along with the EZ Lock clamps in the rear that let you open/close it in just a few seconds. No tools required. It’s basically just a big wing nut up front and a spring-loaded, pull down clamp in the rear that is adjustable and snaps into place. And when you stack/fold the cover up or remove it completely, both the rear EZ lock clamps and the front Jaw-Grip clamps are self-storing inside the underside body of the cover. Sweet!
Extang Solid Fold 2.0 Front Clamp Extang Solid Fold 2.0 Rear Clamp Extang Solid Fold 2.0 Clamp Self Storing
The cover uses a hard, polymer rubber in the corners and on the ends of the hinges along with snap-on (replaceable) weather seals to help keep moisture out. The most common question we get is, “Is the Extang Solid Fold waterproof”? The short answer is “No”. No tonneau cover is waterproof. But you can make adjustments, add tailgate seals, and do a few other things to get it pretty close.
Truck beds are built by Ford, Chevy, Ram and all the other OE’s to haul stuff. For people that want a perfectly dry cargo area, these guys build SUV’s with decent sized storage areas that keep water out (think Tahoe, Suburban, Expedition, etc.). We always tell people that every truck is built differently. Tonneau cover manufacturers design these to fit over a completely stock (empty) truck bed. When you put a plastic drop-in liner in a truck, it changes things. Plus, no 2 trucks, even of the same make and model, are exactly alike. Tolerances around the tailgate vary. Bed caps that stick up slightly higher on one side more than the other get things out of kilter, etc.
The Extang Solid Fold 2.0 will keep out 98% of the rain for most trucks. It has seals on all 4 sides and will keep most of the rain out from these areas. But depending on the make and model of your truck, you may get some water in, especially in the front corners. Please also notice that we said rain, not water. Water from an automatic car wash or one where you wash it yourself with a wand is shooting water at a ridiculously high pressure from 12” away, is going to force water into the bed. Maybe even a LOT. High-pressure water + close distance vs. small rubber and foam seals = water in the bed of your truck. Also, rain mostly comes straight down from the sky, not in horizontal streams like a fire hose. So you don’t get a lot of rainwater in but plan on an automatic car wash pushing some through the seals.
And speaking of the seals, Extang uses a triple “fin” style seal. If you look at this photo, you’ll see that water has to get past not 1, but 3 different seals to get into the bed. So while no cover is waterproof, the Solid Fold 2.0 has lots of obstacles in the way to help keep more water out than those cheap tonneau covers claiming to be the best.
On many trucks, the bulkhead rail (front of the bed, up on top) isn’t the same height as the side rails. It’s shorter. On some trucks, such as newer Toyota Tacoma’s, it’s a big difference. So water can get in here. It isn’t the cover’s fault. It’s just the way Toyota designed the bed. You can add foam or rubber seals to build this up more and that definitely helps. A good quality tailgate seal will further help keep the elements and car wash on the outside of the truck. Don't buy the cheapest thing you can find or that's what you'll get. And when you add a tailgate seal, there's always some left over. You can cut a small piece and use it to plug the gap in the front corner of the bed or wherever water is coming in! Bonus.
And what about security? Does this cover lock? No. At least not on its own. But is your cargo secure? Absolutely. Just make sure you lock your tailgate and your cargo is protected. You can’t open a Solid Fold 2.0 cover without opening the tailgate. So if you lock your tailgate, then you are secure.
Does this allow for full bed access? Yes! You can completely remove this cover in about 2 minutes. Maybe even 60 seconds after you’ve done it a time or two.
Can you drive with the bed open and the cover still installed? Yup. Just make sure you use the attached straps to secure the “stack” to the front clips that are built into the front rail. As long as these are secure, drive away.
We also have people asking if the Extang Solid Fold 2.0 will work if the user has a toolbox mounted on top of their bed. You bet! Extang makes a toolbox edition of the Solid Fold 2.0 to work with standard size (19-20”) toolboxes. The only thing that is different (besides the length) is that you mount a front rail that connects to the driver and passenger side. On the standard model Solid Fold, the cover sits on top of the front bed rail. But if there is a toolbox in the bed, you have to mount this cross rail to give the cover something firm to sit on for support.
And with all the hullabaloo about tariffs, cheap Chinese knock-off products and everything else, you should know that Extang is American Made! Ann Arbor, Michigan to be exact. Built by Americans and backed by Americans with a full 3-year warranty to protect you from manufacturing defects.
If you think this is the right cover for you, or you have more questions, contact any of our 3 Kansas City area Chux Trux stores located in Independence, Mo., Olathe, KS and Kansas City, Mo.
If you live anywhere near Olathe, Kansas and are looking for a truck bed cover, you need to get to Chux Trux. We’ve got more truck bed tonno covers on display than anyone in the Midwest, not just in Kansas City!
Our Olathe, Ks. store just doubled the number of tonneau covers we have to choose from at this store, bringing our in-store display total to over 22 tonneau covers! Yup, roughly 2 dozen manufacturer’s working truck bed tonno cover models are now on display inside this store! You can see them, touch them, feel them and see how they all operate before you shell out your hard earned cash.
Don’t know what you need? That’s why we’re here and have been since 1991 (that’s over 27 years if you didn’t stop to do the math). Want the best tonneau cover for keeping stuff dry? Our guys will show you. Want a hard tonneau that’s easy to remove? We’ve got them. Need a tonno with show-quality looks? Yup, we’ve got ‘em. How about someone needed a truck bed cover with an entry-level price point? (I didn’t want to say “cheap tonneau cover” because even our entry level ones are pretty good). Regardless, Chux Trux has this model also.
What do we have to show you? Here’s a breakdown, by category, of all the best covers, in every price range that we offer. And if you already did some research and don’t see the one you thought you wanted, give us a call. We probably have it in our warehouse! Here’s what we have on display at our Olathe, KS store:
- Hard Folding Tonneau Covers
- Undercover Ultra Flex
- Extang Solid Fold 2.0
- Access LoMax
- A.R.E. Fusion (painted)
- Advantage Hard Hat
- BAK MX4
- Hard Roll Up Tonneau Covers
- Truxedo Sentry
- BAK Revolver X4
- Painted Tonneau Covers
- ARE LS2 / LSII
- ARE Fusion
- Undercover LUX
- Undercover Elite
- Hard Retractable Tonneau Covers
- Retrax One MX
- Retrax Pro MX
- Roll n Lock M-series
- Pace Edwards JackRabbit / Full Metal Jackrabbit
- Pace Edwards Switchblade
- Truck Covers USA
- A.R.E. Double Cover
- Hard Hinged Covers
- A.R.E. Double Cover
- Undercover Ridgelander
- ARE LS2 / LSII
- Undercover LUX
- Soft Folding Tonneau Covers
- Extang Trifecta 2.0 Signature Series
- Extang E-Max
- Soft Roll Up Tonneau Covers
- Truxedo ProX15
- Truxedo LoPro QT
- Truxedo Deuce
- Truxedo Truxport
- Access Vanish
- Access Limited
As you can see, we’ve got a truckload of tonneau covers to choose from. And our highly-trained sales team can help you choose the one that best suits how you use YOUR truck. One size does not fit all, which is why we rounded up the best quality tonneau covers on the market.
Give our crew a call today at 913-829-8789 or email us below and we’ll get you covered!
Why Are They Called Tonneau Covers? Or Tonnow Covers? Tonto Cover? Or Tonno?
The word tonneau is French, meaning 'cask' or a large barrel like container made of wood, metal, or plastic, used for storing liquids, typically alcoholic drinks.
A tonneau (US: /t??no?/ or UK: /?t?no?/) - that is how it is spelled - is traditionally an auto term for the area of a truck or car behind the driver that is open at the top. A tonneau can be used to store cargo or people.
The term was originally used to describe an open passenger compartment behind the driver. It was rounded and open - manufacturers back in the day incorporated the tonneau into the designs.
A tonneau cover describes the device to cover up and protect whatever is stored in the tonneau - passengers in a car or cargo in a truck or pickup truck.
Today, the term is primarily used to describe the cover of the back of a pickup truck. Tonneau covers come in a variety of styles, materials and covers.
If you are looking for a pickup truck tonneau cover in Kansas City, give Chux a call. Our experts can get you what you need with a money-back and price-match guarantee.
Factors to Consider When Buying a Tonneau Cover
Choosing the right tonneau cover for your truck can be a daunting process, especially given the vast number of styles, options, and prices to consider. Luckily, the team at Chux can leverage our in-depth knowledge and decades of experience to make the selection process as easy as possible, and ensure that you end up with the right product to keep your truck protected and secure.
If you need a refresher about what a tonneau cover is or why you should purchase one, check out our previous blog posts.
When choosing a tonneau cover, it is important to consider the following to ensure you get a tonneau cover that meets your needs:
Tonneau Cover Functions
Tonneau covers are a great way to protect cargo in your trucks bed from theft and adverse weather conditions, but different types of tonneau covers offer different unique advantages. Here are a few common uses of tonneau covers:
Security: The good news is that almost all high-quality tonneau covers on the market today offer a high level of security - they will all keep your cargo safe from wandering eyes and potential thieves. While hard tonneau covers are the most secure, the only way to get into a locked high-quality soft cover is with a sharp knife.
Access: Traditionally, soft tonneau covers have provided the easiest access to your truck bed. Today however, hard tonneau covers come in several folding and even roll-up styles that are as easy to manipulate as a soft tonneau cover.
Are you going to need to access your truck bed with your hands full multiple times a day? Consider a roll-up soft folding cover, which takes less than 10 seconds to roll back. If you often need to haul cargo taller than the side (depth) of the bed, consider a roll-up or retractable cover, which saves you the effort of completely removing a cover every time you need to load or unload.
Water Resistance: All tonneau covers offer some protection against water damage, but no tonneau covers are truly water-tight. If you are looking for the best solution to keep water out, look at a hard tonneau cover with edges that roll over the side of the bed, which will keep almost all water out. This means a 1-piece, hard tonneau cover.
Strength and Stability: Do you need to be able to stand on your tonneau cover? If so, make sure you look at hard tonneau covers designed to hold weight. There are only a few choices if this is important to you.
Every truck is different, and some aspects of your truck bed might restrict the style of tonneau cover you can have. For instance, most 8-foot truck beds are used primarily for professional, rather than personal, use, so manufacturers do not make many covers for these longer truck beds.
If you have a tool box on your truck, you will need to select a tonneau cover specifically designed to work with your specific tool box.
If you have a 5th wheel or gooseneck hitch in your truck bed, consider a retractable or folding tonneau cover. This will allow you to choose how much of the truck bed is covered, and also helps with gas mileage.
Tonneau Cover Appearances
Many truck owners want their tonneau cover to both work great and look great, which is why appearance can be an important consideration when choosing a truck bed cover. Painted covers can help add a stylistic flair to your truck bed (although they are often more expensive).
Another style feature to consider is whether you want flush fit or top-of-the-bed-mount covers. Flush fit covers sit inside the edges of the truck bed, while top mount models will usually cover up most or all of your stake pocket holes. While most truck owners agree that flush fit covers look better, top mount models give you extra clearance and hold more weight.
Top mount covers also limit you on adding other accessories like truck ladder racks, bed rails, sport bars and more. Make sure you let your salesperson know if these other accessories are in your future customizing plans.
Tonneau Cover Manufacturing Time and Installation
Customized built-to-order, painted, and fiberglass covers can take anywhere from 2 to 8 weeks to manufacture, while popular covers are immediately available in most stores or take less than a week to ship.. Once your new cover has arrived, it’s important that it be installed correctly so they fit properly, operate properly, and protect your truck bed and it’s cargo. We recommend hiring a professional to install your tonneau cover so it is correctly adjusted and fits your truck.
Some tonneau covers require holes to be drilled in the truck for installation and drain tubes. While these covers often do a better job of keeping the truck bed dry, some truck owners don’t want to drill holes in their vehicle. Before purchasing, make sure you understand how the tonneau cover will be installed and, if you choose to,stay away from covers that require holes.
Tonneau Cover Costs
For many truck owners, price is one of the biggest factors to consider when choosing a tonneau cover. Like most facets of vehicle accessories, you get what you pay for. Generally speaking, the cheaper soft tonneau covers range between $245-$300 with the top quality soft, roll-up tonneau covers running $350-$500. While the more expensive hardcovers can reach up to $3,000, there are hard tonneau covers that cost as little as $499. But keep in mind, you do get what you pay for. If you’re just looking for basic protection, soft covers are the most budget-friendly solution.. On the other hand, if you need extra protection and security, a more expensive hard cover is recommended. Also, note that American-made covers generally cost more but offer better fit, better components and hold up better long-term. Chux Trux carries 2 import brands and 12 domestic brands.
Your new tonneau cover will undoubtedly be exposed to many different weather conditions, along with normal wear-and-tear. So along with the cost of the cover itself, consider what kind of warranty you want for your tonneau cover. When you buy products from Chux Trux, we offer a lifetime guarantee, which covers manufacturing defects and wear.
Tonneau Cover Accessories
When buying a tonneau cover, it is crucial to notify the salesperson if you are planning on adding accessories to your truck in the future. These accessories can include (but are not limited to) bed rails, tie downs, sport bars, headache racks, light bars, and bike racks. The salesperson will be able to help you pick a cover that is compatible with these accessories.
Your truck bed liner can also impact your choice of tonneau cover. If you have or plan to install a plastic drop-in bed liner, for instance, you should avoid purchasing a retractable tonneau cover, which will require the bed liner to be cut and modified heavily and leave gaps and potentially lead to water damage. Make sure to consult with a Chux expert about your bed liner before purchasing a tonneau cover.
Tonneau Cover Add-on's
Reaching sticks are helpful for grabbing cargo that has slid to the front of your bed. Trucks are tall and it's hard to reach over the side of the bed and grab things, and nobody wants to crawl into the bed on their hands and knees (it's sort of like walking on Lego's barefoot). These handy tools let you reach about 2/3's of the way into the bed using a steel rod with an "L" shaped hook on the end to drag it back toward the tail gate. Convenient, pain free, affordable, and you'll want one.
And don't forget to ask about cleaners and protectants. Depending on the material yours is made of you'll need specific cleaners. Vinyl covers need a UV protectant, painted covers need detail cleaner and wax, rubber seals need 303 (awesome stuff) plus a whole lot of other options, depending on what cover you buy.
Given the many factors to consider, it is easy to see how choosing the right tonneau cover for your truck bed can be a big decision. It is important to take into account functionality, cost, accessibility, style, and installation before investing your time and money into a tonneau cover. Let the team at Chux help you find the perfect cover to customize and protect your vehicle.
Why Chux Trux for Tonneau Covers in Kansas City
Finding the perfect tonneau cover in Kansas City for your pickup or truck can be a confusing process. There are literally hundreds of options and dozens of brands. Do you want a hard tonneau cover or a soft tonneau cover? Do you need a trifold tonneau cover? A rollup tonneau cover? A locking tonneau cover? How about a fiberglass tonneau cover… or is a plastic tonneau cover or aluminum tonneau cover better?
The good news is that you do not have to figure it out yourself. You just need to stop by your local Kansas City Chux location and talk to our experts - they know trucks and they know tonneau covers. It doesn’t matter if you need a tonneau cover for a F150, Silverado, Ram, Tundra or Tacoma, we have you (and your truck) covered.
At Chux, we provide a wide variety of high-quality tonneau covers, services and great customer service...
At Chux, we are all truck guys - we own them, we work on them, we drive them and we take them off-road. When you come into our stores, you talk to a truck guy… not a sales guy.
Numerous industry magazines have labelled Chux an industry leader and trailblazer when it comes to supporting truck owners with the best products in the industry. We offer hundreds of different tonneau covers - we can get you exactly what you need. We probably sell more tonneau covers than anyone else in the Midwest - all from our 3 locations in Kansas City.
...at the best price guaranteed
We treat our customers like family, which means that we provide the highest-quality service at the best price. We offer all our customers a best price guarantee--so if you love our team but found something cheaper somewhere else, we’ll match that price, no matter how low it is.
Plus, even if you find a lower price somewhere else after you’ve already purchased our product, we’ve still got your back. If you find a cheaper price on something within one year of your purchase date with us, we’ll refund the difference! For more information on our best price guarantee policy, click here.
...with lifetime warranty
Chux now offers a lifetime warranty on just about everything we sell. Buy with confidence knowing that if something goes wrong we will repair it or replace it for the original purchaser. If we installed it the first time, we will do it again. No charge. There are some limitations, see store for details.
Let us help you outfit your truck with a high quality tonneau cover in Kansas City. For more information about how we can help you, contact us.
So you want a soft truck bed cover but aren’t quite sure what type you need? The two most popular soft covers are roll-up and tri-fold tonneau covers. There are snap covers, but those are kind of a pain compared to these other two. Walking around the whole truck bed snapping or unsnapping the cover isn’t so bad, unless it’s raining, snowing, really cold or really hot outside. The others take less than half the time a snap cover takes. That’s why most tonneau cover manufacturer’s don’t even make them anymore.
What’s The Difference Between Folding Tonneau Covers and Roll Up Tonneau Covers?
Both of these bed covers are installed on rails. The rails are attached to your bed with easy to use clamps. Full installation doesn’t take more than 20 minutes for either style.
A roll up tonneau cover sits either inside the edges or on top of the bed. Top mount models will cover your stake pocket holes. So will all soft folding truck bed covers. With the flush fit, roll up covers, you can still use bed accessories (tie downs, ladder racks, etc.) that need the stake holes and it won’t affect the roll up cover operation at all.
The tri-fold tonneau cover sits on top of the bed and covers all of the stake pocket holes. You can’t use this bed cover with any other bed accessories without taking it off.
A roll up bed cover can stay on your truck bed at all times. When you don’t need it, it rolls up snug against the cab and can be secured there completely out of the way. A tri-fold cover either has to be removed and stored somewhere safe while you aren’t using it, or it “stacks” up covering roughly the front 1/3 of your truck bed. You can still haul cargo under it, but a motorcycle/quad/ATV is out of the question without removing it.
How To Use A Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover
A Tri-Fold tonneau cover uses built-in clamps and rails for the initial installation. The clamps are easy to put on your truck and will hold for years.
For daily use, the roll up tonneau cover is easy to use in most situations. Unlatch the cover at the tailgate and fold the cover towards the cab. Once you reach the cab, unlatch the cover from the bed and pick it up. You’ll need a safe place to store it while you aren’t using it. Depending on what you are hauling in the bed, you may have room to store it in the bed with your cargo, just make sure it’s secured from blowing out while driving. This cover takes a few minutes longer to use than a roll up cover.
To use the cover again, sit it back near the cab, secure it underneath the cover to the rails and unfold it towards the tailgate. Reclamp the rear and you’re ready to go.
How To Use A Roll-Up Tonneau Cover
Installation for a roll-up tonneau cover consists of some clamps for the rails. They’re easy to install and just as easy to take off. Once your roll-up bed cover is installed the first time, you won’t need to remove any of the clamps unless you want to completely uninstall the cover.
Daily use of a roll-up bed cover is simple. If you want to use your open truck bed, just unlatch the cover near the tailgate and roll the cover towards your cab as you walk down the side of the truck. Secure the roll up cover at the cab with the built in straps and you’re done. The cover sits on the front edge of your truck bed and is out of the way of anything in the bed.
If you want to cover the bed again, just roll the cover back over the bed as you walk towards the tailgate and secure the latch. Then walk down both sides of the truck sealing the Velcro with the heel of your hand. You’re done.
What Kind Of Truck Bed Cover Do You Need?
Think about what you use your truck for on a daily basis. If you want a bed cover that’ll keep your cargo safe and secure, but you also need to use your entire bed a lot, go for a roll-up tonneau cover. It’ll be easier to work with than a tri-fold. If you want to secure your cargo under a bed cover and you hardly ever need to use your whole bed, a tri-fold tonneau cover can work perfectly.
If you have any questions or need to know more about these tonneau covers, give us a call, send an email, comment or come by one of our Chux Trux locations in Kansas City. We’ll help you figure out what’s best for you and your truck.
There are some pretty damn awesome tonneau covers on the market today, but if you’re looking for something unique or different you’ll have to really search around. Yeah, there are great ones, but there are also some pretty junky bed covers out there.
We aren’t opening that can today.
But if you’re looking for a really awesome tonneau cover that’s unique, works even better than the “good” covers and is a change of pace from “normal” covers, check out the Pace Edwards Switchblade bed cover.
Sometimes you just want something different.
Doesn’t matter that the thing you’ve got works just fine. You want something that works just as good or better, but you don’t want it to look like anything anyone else has. The Switchblade tonneau cover is exactly what you’re looking for.
What’s So Different About It?
Technically, it works like other high quality tonneau covers in that it covers your truck bed, contains your cargo and keeps it all safe and sound. But that’s where the similarities end. The differences between the Switchblade tonneau cover and all the others will show you how this one stands out.
It’s fully retractable.
Yep, you read it right. This truck bed cover retracts with the flick of your wrist. It quickly and smoothly slides up towards the cab and rolls into the canister like a garage door. It slides back just as easily. You won’t worry about folding or flipping it open or snapping or using Velcro down the sides. The cover sits on the tracks on each side, slides into and out of the canister in the front without blocking any vision at all.
What else is different?
Pace’s ArmorTek construction.
Weather-resistant padded polymer is specially bonded to tough aluminum panels that make up the actual cover. This stuff is super strong and like nothing you’ve ever seen. No other truck bed cover around has these aluminum panels, much less aluminum panels coated in weather-resistant material. The coating is black and gives it that “soft cover” look, but a second glance will let everyone know this isn’t your average bed cover.
It’s simple, fast and easy to completely install and remove.
Make the cover retract into the canister by the easy pull strap, remove the canister out of the truck, pull the tracks along the sides of the bed out and it’s gone. No truck bed cover to be seen. Completely remove it from the truck for 100% access in less than 5 minutes. That's faster than a lot of soft covers.
Want it back?
Put the side tracks in place, use a screwdriver and a wrench to tighten the four screws to hold the canister in place and pull the cover out. You’re good to go. Again, less than 5 minutes!
What else is so great about the Switchblade Tonneau cover?
The continuous Tension Spring lets the cover retract as smooth as butter in just seconds.
There’s a full width handle along the rear so you can open it from standing on either side.
It's incredibly low profile. It stands less than 1" above the bed rails.
You don’t need to climb into the bed to open the cover – there’s a pull strap for that.
The side rails clamp in, no need for drilling.
You need a Phillips screwdriver and a 7/16” wrench for installation. That’s it.
The canister sits low so there’s nothing to block your visibility.
There’s really nothing that’s been left out on this tonneau cover except that it won’t load your cargo for you.
If you’re looking for the most awesome looking and probably the most unique, cool looking tonneau cover out there, check out the Pace Edwards Switchblade tonneau cover here at Chux Trux.
Like it? Hate it? Let us know what you think about this cover and why. Give us a call, send us an email or comment below to get us really excited.
Snap VS. Roll Up (Velcro) Tonneau Covers
So you’re looking for a tonneau cover and need to know which is better – a snap tonneau cover or a roll up tonneau cover. You’re in the right place because we definitely know tonneau covers here at Chux.
Let’s dive right in and start with the major differences.
Both snap bed covers and Velcro bed covers are considered to be “roll up” covers. When you want to buy one or the other, make sure the roll up cover you get is the type you really want. There are big differences in the snap and Velcro types.
Snap covers are the old school roll up covers and not many people like them anymore, but for some reason they’re still being made. Kind of like CD players. Snap covers are also the cheapest type of tonneau cover you can buy. Velcro covers have pretty much replaced the snap covers because they’re better in most ways.
Roll up tonneau covers are pretty fast and easy to install, but there is a difference in the snap and Velcro types. Velcro will take you about 20 minutes or less to install and use. Snap covers take up to an hour.
Rolling Up and Rolling Down
When it comes to actually using your roll up tonneau cover, Velcro covers roll up and out of your way in about 10 seconds. Snap covers take a few minutes to unsnap and roll up. Not a big deal, really, unless it’s raining and you’re getting soaked. Or if it’s freezing cold outside. Think about the coldest, wettest day in winter and picture yourself standing outside and unsnapping about 30 snaps on each side of the bed. And another 20 across the back.
With a snap cover, once you roll the cover up, you’ve got to remove the cross. You’ve got to find a place to store them or just let them flop around in your truck bed. That doesn’t sound annoying, does it? You’ve also got to take off the back rail and store it somewhere too. With a Velcro cover, the bows are attached to the cover itself so they roll up together with the cover itself. So does the back rail. Easy and not annoying. All self contained with nothing to store
And when you want to put the cover back, Velcro pretty much seals itself when you roll the cover down in place. Just run your hand over the Velcro and you’re done. With the snap cover you’ve got to walk around to every snap (about 70 snaps on a cover), line them up and press them into place. Again, not a huge deal unless it’s raining or cold or you’re in a hurry. At that point, you’ll wish you went with Velcro every time you push a snap into place.
And if it’s cold outside, then nature comes into play. Most things contract in the cold and a vinyl tarp is no exception. When you are rolling a snap cover back into place in cold weather, you almost always have to start at the rear corners and “stretch” the cover to get the first snaps to attach to the rail. This can take some effort to “cam it over” and onto the rail. Not so with a Velcro cover. On a Velcro cover, since the tarp is attached to the back rail, you simply set the back rain into its set position on the side rails and push down. No fuss, no muss and you are out of the cold in 15 seconds.
Another item you should be aware of is when it comes to sealing the sides, Velcro seals all the way down the rail of your truck. The snaps obviously only seal where each snap is located, leaving little gaps between each one for water to sneak in. And for many of you, this is the reason you are buying a cover in the first place…to keep water out.
When it comes to what your roll up tonneau cover looks like there are a few differences between Velcro and snap tonneau covers. Snap covers always sit on top of your truck bed. Velcro covers have different versions so you can find some that sit on top and others that sit flush inside the bed rails so you get that clean, low-profile look.
Another thing keeping the snap covers from having the low-pro look is the arched bows. They arch in the center of the cover and make it stand taller instead of flat and straight across the top. The arch gives your truck a slight hunchback look and doesn’t look as clean as the Velcro covers. Velcro bed covers usually use a spring or tension control system to keep the cover tight. No hunchbacks needed.
Last But Not Least
Some snap bed covers use plastic snaps. That’s great if you don’t want to worry about rust on metal snaps, but not so great when the plastic loses its shape and you can’t snap it together anymore. Velcro doesn’t lose its Velcro – it just works. Same thing happens in very cold weather. Snaps can lose their shape and not be able to stay snapped. Velcro still works.
Velcro truck bed covers come in a few different styles, like roll up and folding. Snap bed covers don’t give you many choices. Snap covers start somewhere around $219. Velcro covers are about $40 more, but you can see the benefits are worth it. Another win for Velcro bed covers is they usually come with a lifetime warranty. Snap covers usually don’t.
Now that you’ve decided which roll up tonneau cover to get for your truck, you can come to us with any questions you still have or to get your cover on its way to you. Let us know which type of roll up truck bed cover you prefer and why. Give us a call, send an email or let us know in the comment section below.
The answer is plain and simple: It depends. We offer two different brands of covers that come painted. If you want the best of the best that you can customize any way you want, with all of the bells and whistles, you’re gonna have to wait around a week to 10 days. If you want a great truck bed cover that’s painted to match but don’t care as much about being able to add goodies to it the we might have it in stock or be able to get from our warehouse in 1-2 days. It’s up to you. If you go for more options and styling it’ll take a little longer. If you’re impatient, then we can get on quick.
Take a look at the painted tonneau covers we offer. The first brand of truck bed cover we offer is from A.R.E. You get four different styles of these fiberglass tonneau covers to choose from. And then you have to think about the options. You want carpeted headliner? How about lights under your new truck lid? Or you can order it with remote locks if you want to keep your stuff locked up tight with the push of a button. Add a spoiler if you like that kind of thing – it’ll be painted to match too.
With the A.R.E. painted tonneau cover, we help you decide what style you want and add or take away the different options and accessories. Then you choose your color, the truck it’s going on, the size of the bed and we place the order. It’ll take about 10 days for your truck bed cover to be custom built, painted and delivered. It can vary. Their busy season is from April-September, which can cause a little longer delay. The reason for this is they are delivered an custom 18-wheelers that have space for 60-80 units. During the busy season, that truck gets filled more quickly so an order may get pushed back to the next availabe truck which will come the following week.
This process isn’t made to give you a headache, it’s meant to get you the tonneau cover of your dreams. Who wants to go through all this picking and choosing and not end up with the perfect tonneau cover? We sure don’t. Sometimes it's worth the wait.
But now you can see why we don’t keep painted tonneau covers in stock. We could have 1000 of them sitting around and not one would be the exact thing you wanted. We could have over 100 of them with the options you want, but they might not fit your specific truck bed. This way you get the tonneau cover you want and a factory fresh paint job all delivered in less than 2 weeks.
And if you don’t mind going with one that has a few basic options, like a dome light and a pull strap, then we’ve got Undercover LUX painted tonneau covers. These are lightweight ABS covers, not fiberglass like A.R.E. There is only one style available and no features to add like carpet, fishing rod holders, etc. You choose the color, what truck it fits on and you’re done. We actually keep some of these in stock in popular colors so you may not have to wait at all.
What are the differences in these two painted tonneau covers? For starters, A.R.E. bed covers flow with the body lines of your truck. The top of these covers mimic the lines on the hood of your truck so it looks like it was made from the factory to fit. The top of an F150 cover looks like the top of an F150 hood…get it? Undercover bed covers all look the same, no matter what truck you’ve got. They’re sporty and stylish, but they’re all the same design.
There are some great pros and cons to both covers. But make no mistake, these are both top-of-the-line brands. Besides the lack of options or styling with the Undercover LUX, it’s only got a 3 year warranty. A.R.E. comes with a lifetime warranty. However, the Undercover is lightweight enough (about 68lbs.) that it’s easy to take on and off. And it’s has built in holders so you can hang it on the wall of your garage when not in use. Pricing for these truck bed covers are similar and you’ll get an excellent fit with both of them. The difference in the beginning is of course the wait time for an A.R.E. being 1-2 weeks, versus the 1-2 day wait on the Undercover covers.
So again, it’s up to you and what you really want out of a tonneau cover. If you just need one that’ll cover your be with an excellent fit, maybe you only need to wait a day or two. If you’re in this for the long haul and want a truck bed cover that’ll last and be as useful as possible, 1 or 2 weeks really isn’t that long.
Let us know your thoughts right here. If you’re thinking about getting a painted tonneau cover just give us a call, send us an email or comment below. We’d love to hear from you.
A tonneau cover is not a miracle worker. It’s a great addition to your truck if you frequently carry cargo that needs to be safely contained. It keeps your gear out of the weather, and under lock and key, and out of sight from petty thieves. But a tonneau cover doesn’t make your truck bed completely waterproof, no matter what anyone tells you. That’s crazy talk.
Water creeps in though places you didn’t even know were there. Like across the front of the bed. If you’ve never noticed, the corner where the front of the bed meets the sides of the bed in the corners has a little space. Just a teeny tiny little space that may even look level to the naked eye, but water can and will get through here, including under your tonneau cover.
Another place that’s great for water but bad for you is around the tailgate. The seams along the sides of the tailgate are pretty wide when it comes to allowing water and dust pass through. The great thing about that is we’ve got tailgate seal kits from Access, Extang and TruXedo. These kits act like a gasket around your tailgate to seal it up really good, blocking the water and dust from sneaking it. And there is usually a little extra material left over that you can use to plug areas in other spots
There is a BIG difference between water PROOF and water RESISTANT.
Water proof means water won’t penetrate. Water resistant means it resists water, but won’t totally block all water. If you want a complete water proof truck bed you’ll have to get a large metal plate and weld your bed and tailgate shut. No water is getting into that, but the only downside is you can’t get into it either. So if you want a tonneau cover, the best thing to do is, first, figure out what you’ll be using your bed for, and second, find a tonneau that’ll fit those needs.
A tonneau cover WILL keep water out of your bed…
…About 98-99 percent of the time, in normal conditions. But nothing in life is perfect, right? And the better suited your tonneau cover is to fit your needs, the more likely it will live up to your expectations. What we’re saying is, if you haul old lumber around and don’t really care if it gets damp on occasion, get whatever truck bed cover you want. If you have stuff in your truck bed that’ll melt or explode or otherwise be ruined if it gets wet, then you may need to look into a hard tonneau that wraps over the edge and tailgate of your truck bed. Unless you like living on the edge, of course.
The thing is, most tonneau covers will keep your cargo dry most of the time. Decent covers that seal along the edges of your truck bed will deflect most water, even rain, from getting inside. Heavy torrential rains, driving down the highway in the rain and washing your truck will put your cargo in danger of getting wet. The best thing is realizing your truck bed is full of water even though you’ve got a tonneau cover and realizing you just washed it at the car wash, holding that 150psi pressure washer just a few inches from where the cover meets the bed of the truck. Common sense will tell you that type of pressure behind the water is going to win over any foam or rubber seal. Of course that’s going to force water through the cracks like wind through a screen door. But tonneau covers were designed to handle the basic elements like rain falling down vertically, not water being forced in under 150psi from a few inches away. Use your truck bed cover like it was designed, don’t expect miracles when you only pay a couple hundred dollars, and you’ll live worry a lot less about the tiny amount that may seep in.
The best part about a truck bed cover of any kind is…
It’ll still protect your gear from bad stuff other than rain. We’ve still got snow, ice, sleet, dust and harmful UV rays on this earth that’ll beat your cargo up every chance it gets. Any truck bed cover we’ve got here at Chux will keep those things out of your truck bed. Fiberglass covers, hard covers and even soft roll up covers will work if that’s all you’re worried about.
If you want even more protection from possible water or even dust getting in underneath the tonneau cover, we sell tailgate and bed seal kits that seal up the seams like a gasket. This helps keep a lot of that junk out without you worrying at all. Again, these tailgate seal kits are made by awesome tonneau companies like Access, TruXedo and Extang, so they’re fully informed of how tonneau covers work.
And then there are the gas savings.
All truck bed covers can save fuel when it comes to highway mileage. Why? Because of the way the wind blows. When driving down the highway the wind goes over the top of your cab and dips down into the bed. It’s blocked by the tailgate (like a small parachute) and that slows you down ever so slightly, making your truck work just a little harder and drink more gas. With a truck bed cover that wind glides right off the cover without slowing anything. You’re welcome.
What kind of tonneau cover do you need?
There are several different types of truck bed covers, all made for different purposes. Choose what best fits your needs. Don’t settle for a cheap tonneau cover that doesn’t fit your needs! Most cheap tonneau covers are cheap for a reason (common sense, right?). The reason they are less expensive is they either are missing some important or desirable features, they use lighter weight components that may not hold up as well over time (like the seals), or both! Focus on your needs, and then find the cover that fills that need. Most soft tonneaus are great if you’re looking for a sturdy, water resistant way to lock your bed and keep your gear dry and safe. Then again, if you’re only looking for a way to keep the sun off of the stack of firewood you haul around, you won’t need to go for the expensive hard locking tops.
Soft tonneau covers roll up, fold up on frames, snap, peel or Velcro closed and some are hinged to open in one piece. These are usually easy to install, easy to remove and are more affordable than hard covers. Most of these require you to drop your tailgate to open, so if you have a lock on your tailgate, you have a reasonable amount of security.
Hard covers keep water and thieves out more than soft covers do. Hard covers fold or flip up on hinges. They can be painted to match your truck and look like a higher end product than the soft covers. Some are lightweight and can be installed easily while others are more permanent, require more tools and time to do a complete install and adjust them properly to keep them from rubbing on your paint.
We carry a ton of different styles and brands of tonneau covers right here at Chux. If you have any questions about truck bed covers don’t be scared to give us a call or send us an email. We can even give you more tips on how to best seal your truck bed to get it close to being water proof.
We’d love to hear from you in the comment section. Drop us a line, hit us up, give us a ring (or a type?) and give us your thoughts and opinions.