When driving your pickup truck, you want to ensure that whatever you’re hauling is safe and secure. But how do you make that happen?
The answer is simple: invest in the best tonneau cover for your truck bed.
You may have heard the term “tonneau cover” before, especially if you or someone you know owns a truck.
But, do you happen to know why its called a “tonneau cover”?
Tonneau is a French word that roughly translates into cask or barrel. The term goes back to the early 20th century when manufacturers introduced new configurations for their car models. The tonneau option was a rear passenger compartment that was open and rounded like a barrel. It was typically a soft leather cover that protected the compartment.
Today, it’s either a hard or soft cover that is used to protect the open area of a truck, jeep, or other vehicles. For jeeps, it would be used to protect the passenger seats not in use. For a pickup truck (Like my Toyota Tundra), it is used as a truck bed cover.
The benefits include protecting your cargo against theft, weather, UV rays, and accidental damage, and it can even improve gas mileage (to an extent).
A few facts about tonneau covers:
- The average cost of a tonneau cover is $600.
- The average weight of a tonneau cover is 30 pounds.
- The average lifespan of a tonneau cover is five years.
- The average warranty of a tonneau cover is three years.
But because these truck covers come in different styles, sizes, and prices, it can be hard to know which is the best tonneau cover for 2022. And while you could find these covers on your own…we took the liberty of creating a complete truck cover guide to help you find and easily choose the tonneau cover that fits your needs.
Below you’ll find the ultimate list of the 10 Top-Rated Tonneau Truck Covers that have been used and recommended by truck owners over the years.
Let’s get started!
- Fits 5.7 feet bed length
- US design patented
- Marine grade vinyl cover
- Easy, no-drilling installation
- Tyger limited lifetime warranty
Types of Truck Bed Covers
There are several different types of tonneau covers you can compare for your vehicle. But because they’re all different, check out a summary of the different types to see which selection work best for you.
Roll-Up : This is one of the most popular tonneau covers available today. It’s designed to be rolled all the way to your truck’s bulkhead or cab, allowing you partial access to your truck bed.
Folding : This is another highly popular tonneau cover design. It folds into 2-3 or more sections, offering you quick and easy access to your truck bed. Folding covers are an excellent option if you need only to access a small area of your truck bed and leave the rest of it covered.
Hinged : If you’re not carrying oversize cargo, a hinged lid cover could work for you. It’s hinged at the truck bulkhead and can lock open in position when you’re accessing the truck bed.
Retractable : This type of tonneau cover is similar to the roll-up model. It retracts to the truck bulkhead, but it uses a different retraction mechanism. It’s an ideal cover for carrying oversized or awkward-shaped cargo that still needs to be protected.
Snap : A snap tonneau cover is a vinyl cover that snaps into an aluminum frame attached to your truck bed. It allows you access to either a section or the entire truck bed. It’s suitable for accommodating cargo of all sizes.
Toolbox : This cover is perfect for truck owners with toolboxes. It is designed to integrate with existing bed toolboxes already mounted on the side of the pickup. If your truck has a toolkit or has plans to get one, you should consider a toolbox-compatible tonneau cover.
NOTE: Keep in mind that all the tonneau cover styles we mentioned above come in either a soft or hard option. Soft tonneau covers are typically the most affordable option, but they may not provide as much security as a hardcover. Hard tonneau covers are more expensive, but they offer better security and protection from the elements.
Our 2023 Review of the Best Tonneau Covers
1. Tyger Auto T3 Tri-Fold Truck Bed Tonneau Cover
Let’s kick off our list with the Tyger Auto T3. This is the perfect truck bed cover for pickup owners looking for a reasonably priced tri-fold style cover. It fits trucks with a bed length of 5.7 ft., including the 2009-2019 Dodge Ram Trucks.
The Tyger Auto Tri-Fold Truck Cover is a patent designed in the USA using marine-grade vinyl fabric exterior with aluminum frames, giving the cover exceptional durability and protection for the cargo being hauled. The clamps used to attach the cover come with stainless steel rods for added strength and secure locking for the truck bed.
Along with excellent securing features, the cover also keeps the cargo safe from various weather conditions. It forms a weathertight sealing around the truck bed, keeping out UV rays, snow, hail, or rain.
The installation process is also a breeze! It’s one of the easiest and quickest covers to install on the market. Unlike hardcovers, it has fewer parts for installment. Plus, there are no special tools required, not even a drill.
- Fits 5.7 feet bed length
- US design patented
- Marine-grade vinyl cover
- Easy, no-drilling installation
- Tyger limited lifetime warranty
2. MaxMate Tri-Fold Truck Bed Tonneau Cover
Next up in our tonneau cover reviews is another tri-fold cover model. Even though it’s from a different manufacturer than the Tyger Auto T3, it shares a similar set of features and is also similar in price.
The MaxMate Tri-Fold is an excellent fit for truck beds reaching 6.4 feet long. It comes with a marine-grade vinyl exterior surface, which does an excellent job of protecting your cargo against harsher weather elements. And because it’s tear-proof, it offers a good amount of protection against potential theft.
Like the Tyger Auto T3, the MaxMate Tri-Fold installation process is not complex. It also includes stainless steel clamps that allow you to install the cover to your truck bed easily. Accessing your cargo is also a breeze, as it is designed as a folding-style cover and has pre-assembled horizontal crossbars that conveniently fold up with the vinyl fabric. Giving you full access to the truck bed.
- Fits 6.4 ft. truck beds
- Marine grade vinyl exterior surface
- Stainless steel clamps for durability
- Problem-free, fast installation
- No-hassle 10-year warranty
3. TruXedo TruXport Soft Roll-Up Truck Bed Tonneau Cover
Third, on our list of tonneau cover reviews is the TruXedo Bed Cover. If you own a truck with a bed length of 5.8 feet, like a GMC Sierra or Chevy Silverado 1500, the TruXedo is an excellent choice for those wanting a roll-up bed cover.
The TruXedo mounts on top of the truck bed rails (sitting 1.5 inches above your bed), providing a distinctive look. It has a durable leather-grain fabric which does a great job of protecting your cargo from the elements. It features dual paddle latches that securely fasten the tail rail in a locked position. This is great for protecting against theft.
And like the Tyger Auto T3 and MaxMate Tri-Fold bed covers, installing this tonneau cover on your 5.8-foot pickup is quick and easy! Once you set it up, the pre-set tension control will help keep the cover tight for a professional and streamlined look. It’s a pretty cool-looking cover!
- Fits 5.8 ft. long truck beds
- Easy, clamp-on installation
- Adjustable tension control
- Dual paddle latches
- Leather grain fabric
- 5-year manufacturer warranty
4. Gator ETX Soft Tri-Fold Truck Bed Tonneau Cover
Coming in at number four is the Gator ETX. This is one of the best truck bed covers you find on the market today. It’s one of the top-rated tri-fold covers and comes at an affordable price.
Proudly designed in the USA, this is a great-looking tonneau cover that will custom-fit your Ford 150 truck bed (model 2015-2019) and a 5.5ft bed length. Just like the others on the, it’s incredibly fast and easy to install. All you need to do is clamp it onto your truck bed rails, and it should only take around 10 minutes.
Once it’s set up, the Gator ETX cover will protect your vehicle’s cargo and truck bed against hard weather elements like rain, snow, and dust. It’s made with a tear-proof vinyl fabric exterior, making it ideal for Ford truck owners braving the elements and hauling on rough terrain.
- Made in the USA
- Fast clamp-on installation
- Superior weathertight sealing
- Tear-resistant vinyl top
- Limited lifetime warranty
5. Tonno Pro Tonno Fold 42-108 TRI-FOLD Tonneau Cover
Tonno Pro is one of the big names in the industry, and it would be a crime not to include one of their best truck bed covers: the Tonno Fold 43-108 TRI-FOLD Tonneau Cover.
Like the Gator ETX, the Tonno Fold 43-108 comes at an affordable price. This model fits all truck beds with a total bed length of 6.6 feet.
It’s made from marine-grade vinyl fabric with a proprietary black finish, giving any truck an enhanced and stellar look. The material itself is superior in durability, with a watertight Q-seal gasket and front flap. This cover will keep your vehicles totally dry, no matter the climate conditions.
Because this is a tri-fold style cover, it has three sections hinged together to produce a hassle-free folding system. You can also easily remove this cover when you are hauling oversized cargo or simply lock it into place when carrying smaller loads.
And thanks to the straightforward clamping system, this cover is easy to install, taking less than 10 minutes. The slide lock design works with the clamping system to ensure that the bed cover stays on tight.
- Fits 6.6 ft. long truck beds
- Marine-grade vinyl fabric
- Patented slide lock design
- Weathertight Q-sea gasket
- Hassle-free clamping installation
- Limited lifetime warranty
6. BAKFlip MX4 Hard Folding Truck Bed Tonneau Cover
Are you looking for the best hard tonneau cover for your 2015-2019 Ford F150 truck? Then the BAKFlip MX4 Hard Folding might just be for you. It’s an excellent selection for Ford owners who have a 5.6-foot bed.
Installation on the BAKFlip MX4 Folding Bed Cover is easy. It comes with a secure clamping system that can easily be attached to your truck bed. That’s it! Once you’re done installing it, it’s ready to shield your cargo against exposure to the elements and theft.
It’s a heavy-duty and all-season truck bed cover, so you can trust this tonneau cover to perform even in extreme conditions. The heavy-duty aluminum panels have a premium matte finish that keeps off UV rays.
And you can easily fold this bed cover upright, so it offers you 100% full access to your truck bed and the items you need to get. It also comes in handy when you haul large cargo without having to remove the entire cover.
It’s an excellent choice for your Ford F150.
- Fits 5.6 feet long truck bed
- Proudly made in the USA
- Premium matte hard folding cover
- Aircraft-grade aluminum panels
- Easy clamp installation
- extended 3-year warranty
7. Bestop 16212-01 EZ Fold Truck Tonneau Cover
Bestop is another US-based manufacturer that is known for its line of top-rated tonneau covers. The Bestop 16212-01 bed cover has made for truck owners who want and need a reliable folding cover without breaking the bank.
This cover fits all trucks with a short bed length of 5.8 feet. It sits less than an inch above your truck bed rails, giving you a tight and clean appearance. When it comes to installation, there are no special skills or equipment needed. It includes heavy-duty clamps that enable you to install it firmly to your truck bed. The clamps are fully adjustable and release quickly with a one-hand operation. This allows you to remove the cover from your truck easily when it’s not required.
This Bestop 16212-01 EZ Ford truck tonneau cover is made from durable, leather-grain textured vinyl that is stretch, tear, and shrink-resistant. It is also known to hold up in harsh weather conditions and includes reinforced corner construction, taking its durability up a notch.
- Fits 5.8 feet truck beds
- 3-panel quick folding design
- Leather-grain vinyl/polyester fabric
- Automatic tensioning system
- Sectional aluminum frames for support
- Limited lifetime warranty
8. Lund 96893 Genesis Elite Roll Up Truck Bed Tonneau Cover
Lund International is another leading manufacturer of tonneau covers. The Lund 96893 Genesis Elite Roll-Up Truck Bed Cover is a roll-up style cover designed to fit 6.5 feet truck beds. Unlike similar models in this truck bed cover review lists, the Lund 96893 is made from luxurious twill weave fabric.
What makes this material special is that it’s 100% maintenance-free. To clean it, you simply use soap and water. Clean it, rinse it, and let it air dry. That’s it! Easy.
From a performance standpoint, this cover is top-notch. It’s weatherproof, and the twill fabric is tear resistant. Like many others on this list, the installation is quick and easy for this bed cover. It comes with the accessories and information you need, including some fasteners that make it easy to move the vehicle case into position and tighten down using only a wrench. And because the support requires minimal alignment, you can get the cover mounted in a matter of minutes. Online reviews praise the level of detail and information provided for installation without having to take it to the local car shop or tire store if issues come up.
- Proudly made in the USA
- Low-profile soft tonneau cover
- Durable twill weave material
- Patented latching system
- Heavy-duty aluminum rails, bows
- Hook and loop fasteners
- Backed by a lifetime warranty
9. Tonno Pro Tonno Fold 42-314 TRI-FOLD Tonneau Cover
Another one on our truck bed cover reviews also comes from Tonno Pro. Now, unlike the other Tonno Pro cover mentioned above, this model is designed to fit Ford F150 trucks that have a shorter truck bed size of 5.5 feet long.
The Tonno Pro Tonno Ford 42-314 cover comes assembled, and the EZ clamping system allows you to provide security and tension to your cover easily. And thanks to the 100% watertight gasket and front flap, this tonneau cover is sure to keep your truck bed dry and protect your cargo from other harsh weather conditions.
As we’ve seen in the other tri-fold covers, this Tonno Pro comes with three hinged sections that make it very easy to fold into a compact unit. The cover is easy to remove when it’s not in use and when it’s time to haul oversized cargo.
- Fits 5.5 truck beds
- Tear-resistant vinyl fabric
- Installs in less than 10mins
- Patented sidelock design
- Weathertight Q-gasket
- Limited lifetime warranty
10. Extang Solid Fold 2.0 Hard Folding Truck Bed Tonneau Cover
The last on the list for our best tonneau cover reviews is the Extang hard folding truck bed cover. This is suitable for trucks with a 5.7-foot-long bed. It comes professionally engineered for unprecedented strength and is known to withstand heavy use over many years.
The Exstang Hard Folding Cover is easy to install, as it comes with clamps that attach directly to your truck bed flanges without causing damage or altering the bed caps.
It also includes re-engineered EZ-lock clamps that are effortless to operate and self-lock into position when you attach them to the truck bed flanger for enhanced security. Not only that, but it features rubber corners, Snap-On seals, and hinge caps that work jointly to keep harsh elements out of your truck bed.
The last feature of this tonneau cover is that it’s highly versatile and can be used with any truck accessories of your choice. Be careful if you have bed rails, like the Toyota Tundra, Tacoma, or GMC Sierra diesel, as specific options are available to provide a better installation experience.
- Fits 5.7 feet truck beds
- Easily installs in seconds
- Weatherproof hard folding cover
- Auto-grade thermoplastic skin
- Spring-loaded rear latch
Things To Look For Before Buying A Truck Bed Cover
To save time and get close to the perfect tonneau cover, which meets your unique needs and requirements, pay close attention to these factors:
One of the critical things to look for in a tonneau cover is the material used to make it. The type of material directly affects the durability and longevity of your cover. The hardcovers are usually made from aluminum and fiberglass, whereas the softcovers are generally made from vinyl, making them more flexible.
When choosing a tonneau cover that meets your unique needs and requirements, we recommend paying close attention to these factors.
But whether you go with a hard or soft tonneau cover, make sure that the exterior surface is resistant to weather elements and conditions like rain, UV rays, snow, and scratches.
Typically, one of the main reasons you’re looking for a tonneau cover is to keep your valuables or cargo protected from weather elements. So, it would make sense that you would want a cover that is weatherproof and offers protection.
First, the cover material itself should be weather-resistant. This means it should not allow any moisture, water, UV rays, dust, etc., to get into your truck bed. Ideally, the truck cover should sit perfectly above the bed rails to lock out the elements.
Its sides and corners should be sealed with rubber or another suitable material to help close any cracks or openings where the rain, snow, or dirt might find their way into your truck bed.
There are even some high-end models that include their own drainage system, which helps direct water away from the bed. In our experience, water in the cargo area causes big problems.
Truck Bed Size
Another important thing you need to know before buying a tonneau cover is the size of your truck bed. Knowing your truck model and the bed size is going to help you choose the best cover for your pickup.
You probably noticed that in our list of top-rated tonneau cover reviews, we have different covers designed to fit different truck bed sizes. So, what works for a 1500 Silverado won’t work for a Ford F1150. If you purchase a tonneau cover that doesn’t fit your truck bed well, it’s not going to do the best job at protecting your cargo both from the elements or from theft.
Luckily, different manufacturers provide different versions of your tonneau covers to ensure that you get the size that works for your truck the best. But be sure to get the measurements for your truck bed before ordering a truck cover.
Another item you need to consider is the security features of your bed cover. If you’re concerned about your cargo getting stolen, you’ll need to find a cover with a reliable and secure locking system. Look for a tonneau cover that comes with a dedicated lock system or that keeps it in place until your truck tailgate is up.
Whatever cover you choose, it would be smart to ensure that the cover offers at least some basic protection against theft.
Ease of installation
No matter what bed cover you choose, you want one that can be easily installed. Make sure that whatever bed cover you pick has the features and tools to be installed simply and quickly.
That being said, keep in mind that soft covers are usually much easier to install than hard bed covers. Soft covers typically only require you to clamp them to your truck bed. They don’t require any special tools or drilling into your truck.
But for hard tonneau covers, that might pose a challenge for installation. This is because they are designed with a more complex structure and generally come with more parts. That said, even a hardcover with all the hardware and instructions will not be too hard to install.
When buying a tonneau cover for your truck, we recommend setting a budget. Cover prices can range from $100 to $1,000+.
Now, if you don’t have the money to go into the thousands, you can still get good deals for around $200. For $200, you can find a solid roll-up or folding soft cover that will still do a great job of protecting your bed from the elements. However, these covers might not add a lot of security when it comes to guarding against theft.
Now, if you want a high-end soft cover or an affordably priced hardcover, you need to set your budget between $200 and $1,000.
For a premium tonneau cover that delivers security and weatherproofing, you’re likely looking at around $1,000 for a bed cover. At this price point, you could even get a custom cover that matches your truck’s paint.
Pro TIP: Planning to carry accessories in your truck bed?
If you want to carry accessories in your truck bed, it’s crucial to note that not all covers will work for your pickup. For example, most of them cover up the hardware for mounting different accessories, like toolboxes.
So, pay close attention to both the design of the truck and the design of the cover you want to purchase because it’s likely it’ll block the features designed to hold accessories, particularly things like side rails, car jacks, and trailer hitches.
If you need a toolbox, we recommend finding a tonneau cover that already comes with a dedicated toolbox that sits on the truck bed.
Tonneau Cover Accessories and Parts
When it comes to tonneau cover accessories and parts, there are some aftermarket items for these bed covers that make them even more versatile and convenient to use. Below we’ve outlined some of the most popular aftermarket accessories that you might need to get for your truck to take it up a notch.
Tailgate Seal: As the name suggests, this is a tailgate sealant that helps close the smallest openings left by your tailgate. This ensures no moisture, UV rays, rain, or other elements get inside the truck bed through the tailgate.
UV Protectant: This formula is applied to your soft vinyl cover to protect it from getting damaged by harmful UV rays.
Cargo Cleats: These provide quick and easy tie-downs that can be used with hooks, ropes, ratchet straps, or stretch cords.
Lighting System: This comes in handy if you’re hauling cargo at night. It can help you easily access your cargo and other accessories in the truck after the sun goes down.
Bed Liners: A bed liner can be used together with a tonneau cover and can help protect the truck bed floor from getting damaged. The liner is especially helpful when you’re carrying rugged or rough cargo.
For proper cleaning and maintenance of your soft cover, you’ll also need some vinyl cleaner and a pair of gloves.
5 Top Brands Available On The Market
In the industry, some brands stand above the rest with their highly innovative, top-quality tonneau truck bed covers that provide for the needs of all pickup truck owners.
Here Are 5 Top Brands:
1. Gator Covers
Gater is one of the top brands in the truck cover world. The manufacturer is unique because that produces top-quality covers at an affordable price compared to its competition. Making them very popular among truck owners.
Gator believes that owning a truck says a lot about you. Whether you are transporting goods, construction equipment, golf clubs, dirt bikes, or anything in-between, all pickup owners have something worthy of protection.
Founded by a group of US and Canadian auto experts, Tyger prides itself on manufacturing premium-quality aftermarket auto parts that meet or exceed the OE standards. They are known for designing various cover styles, from roll-up to folding. All of which protect your cargo and give your truck a customized appearance.
In addition to top-quality covers, Tyger offers the owner a limited lifetime warranty, showing how much they trust their products.
TruXedo is another industry-leading truck bed cover manufacturer. It provides a line of brand-new, highly innovative pickup covers and accessories for all truck owners. And like other top-rated brands, TruXedo designs tonneau covers for all styles to meet the specific needs of all truck owners. TruXedo is committed to diversifying its product line to meet the everyday needs of old and new truck owners.
Plus, they stand behind their products with a 5-year warranty that covers almost everything.
4. Lund International
Lund International is a known innovator and industry leader with an extensive line of high-performing, functional, and stylish aftermarket auto accessories.
They provide various styles of tonneau covers designed with top-quality materials for maximum security and functionality. All their covers are 100% made in the USA to ensure they are produced with the highest quality production standards.
Plus, they back their products with a limited lifetime warranty that covers material and workmanship defects.
5. Tonno Pro
Also based in the US, Tonno Pro was born out of the necessity to satisfy truck owners who demanded high-quality tonneau covers at an affordable price.
The brand designs and engineers highly innovative truck bed covers made from quality and versatile materials. In addition, they are easy to install and operate.
And like the other leading brands, Tonno Pro also backs all their products with a Limited Lifetime Warranty to ensure every customer has a risk-free investment.
Other brands worth mentioning include Bestop and Extang. Both brands are based in the US and manufacture top-notch truck bed covers with various styles and designs.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why are they called tonneau covers?
Tonneau is a French-based word used in the traditional auto world to refer to the area of a car or truck behind the driver, which is open at the top. The tonneau can be used to accommodate people or cargo. A tonneau cover, hence, refers to a cover designed to protect passengers or cargo in the truck.
2. What is the best type of tonneau cover?
As we said at the beginning of this guide, there are various tonneau covers available. However, we can group them into two broad categories—soft and hard covers—to help you easily decide which type to purchase:
The soft covers usually come at budget-friendly prices. They’re also incredibly versatile and deliver in terms of weather protection. These covers can easily roll or fold to give you easy, fast access to your truck. Unfortunately, they don’t provide much protection against cargo theft.
If you want the maximum security for your valuables, a hard cover tonneau cover is hard to beat. These covers are usually made from metal and composite materials and form a rigid barrier around your truck. Most also easily fold or roll up to give you trunk bed access. However, they’re a bit pricier, heavier, and more challenging to install.
3. How much does a tonneau cover cost?
The cost of tonneau covers from model to model depends on many factors, such as the type of cover, manufacturer, quality of materials used, and so on. Generally, the cost runs from around $150 to $1000+.
The lower end of the price spectrum is going to get you basic soft covers with basic protection against weather and (to some degree) theft. At a higher budget, you’ll get high-end hardcovers that have quality features and maximum protection against harsh weather conditions and theft.
The majority of the products we’ve featured in our tonneau covers reviews above are soft covers and fall between $150 and $300.
4. Does having a truck bed cover improve gas mileage?
Yes, tonneau covers can help improve gas mileage. Because a tonneau cover covers your truck bed, it helps lower air resistance. The reduced air resistance/less air drag translates to faster driving, making your truck more power efficient. A tonneau cover improves your gas mileage by reducing drag on your truck.
And before you start questioning this benefit, a study was conducted in 2007 around this topic and found out that tonneau covers help save gas mileage by up to 8% (Source).
5. Do truck bed covers help keep water out?
Yes, all tonneau cover manufacturers design their products with this in mind—to protect your cargo from exposure to water and other elements.
The cover plays a significant role in keeping water out of your truck bed. Manufacturers also focus on all the small openings where the cover might leave gaps to ensure 100% weather sealing.
Some top-end models even come with their own drainage system, which helps direct water away from your truck bed.
While trying to find the best tonneau cover for your truck that protects from the elements and security from theft might not be the easiest task. This is largely due to the countless sizes, styles, designs, costs, and types of tonneau covers on the market.
But in this guide, we’ve walked you through some critical steps in finding the most suitable cover for your truck. Like making sure the cover is durable, easy to install, easy to operate, and has the ability to provide the necessary protection for your cargo.
The top 10 tonneau truck covers we have listed above meet that criteria and fit a number of different types of trucks. They’re highly reliable and durable and have the protection features to keep your cargo safe from both elements and theft.