Just what is a truck bed cover? Well a truck bed cover, also known as a tonneau cover, is exactly that: a cover that covers an open truck bed. There are many different types of truck bed covers on the market today. Some are made of vinyl that look like leather but hold up fairly well under different weather conditions as well as the ultra violet rays of the sun. Some truck bed covers are made of plastic, fiberglass and aluminum. Many of the soft vinyl covers have aluminum frames and aluminum bows which give the covers a slight arch for strength against snow load and also allow water to run off.
Some truck bed covers close up along the edges with snaps and others close up with rugged velcro tape. There are truck bed covers that open on hinges. Just lift up from the back of the pickup truck much like a trunk cover. These are known as a hinged truck bed covers. Several manufacturers make such a soft cover such as Extang with their Full-Tilt Tonneau and Lund Genesis with there Hinged Tonneau. Tonneau Masters make a hinged truck bed cover aptly called the Hinged Slantside. Gaylords Lids makes a couple variations of hinged truck bed covers made of fiberglass, called the "Traditional" and the "X2000". Both of these models are available with an optional Speedsturr Wing. One other hinged truck bed cover I should mention is the UnderCover hinged tonneau made of an ABS plastic composite.
We’ve touched on soft truck bed covers made of vinyl that close with snaps or Velcro and hinged tonneau covers that are soft vinyl, hard plastic, or fiberglass. There are also truck bed tonneau covers that fold up giving you quick and easy access to your complete truck bed. BAK Industries produces a hard folding cover called the BakFlip made of an industrial plastic-like material. Lund Genesis make a soft 3-section tonneau that folds named the Tri-Fold and Extang makes a soft folding truck bed cover called the Trifecta. Reds Beds also produces a folding lid made of diamond tread plate - a real heavy-duty work. The Reds Beds aluminum tonneau comes in polished aluminum or painted. They even offer two tool box editions; one that comes with a tool box and one that requires the truck owner to furnish a tool box.
There is yet another type of tonneau cover called a retractable truck bed cover or also called a rolling tonneau that retracts into a canister mounted at the front of the truck bed under the rear window of the cab. There are a few manufacturers of this type of tonneau cover with Pace Edwards offering the most different models. They feature the Roll Top, the JackRabbit, The Full Metal JackRabbit and even one model, the BedLocker, that opens electrically with a hand-held remote control. Some other retractable truck cover manufacturers are BAK with its RollBak tonneau and Truck Covers USA with its American Roll retractable tonneau cover.
If you are actively looking for a truck bed cover cover, whichever one you choose, collectively truck bed covers will conserve fuel while protecting your cargo from different weather conditions, including swirling winds caused by driving at or above highway speeds. Also, by concealing your cargo, a truck bed tonneau cover reduces the risk of theft.