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OTHER ITA SITES:
Keep Your Truck Bed Clean
It was bound to happen. You lend your truck to a “friend” who says they have a couple of pieces of furniture to move and it comes back to you with scratches in the bed area of your truck. It wouldn’t have been so bad had they apologized, but now you have to deal with unsightly scratches that can only make your truck’s value deteriorate quicker. Had you thought about it, you would have stuck a bed liner in your truck ahead of time to prevent the problem from happening in the first place.
The above account actually happened to me as I was trying to help a young couple out with a good deed. I was warned in advance by a friend that the couple would take advantage of me and he was, unfortunately, correct. Let’s just say that it was a bitter lesson learned.
Twenty years have passed and I no longer have that old F-150. My current people mover is an SUV, so I have no open area to deal with. Yet, I likely will have a pickup truck again in the near future and I have looked closely at some of the products available to owners today, particularly bed liners.
Advances in technology have brought new products on the market that either did not exist a few years ago or were too expensive for the average driver. Some of the bed liners you can purchase include:
Spray on liners. That’s right; you can have super-thick polyurethane sprayed right into the bed of your truck. At one quarter inch thick, you can receive protection from scratches or fluid and it is completely air tight. One manufacturer says this about their product, “It's scratch-resistant, slip-resistant, and really easy to clean.”
Roll on liners. Similar to spray on liners, are roll on liners. Everything that I have read about roll on liners means a lot of work for the person who does the job, which typically is the truck’s owner. After sweeping and cleaning the bed free of all debris, you will then need to sand the entire truck bed as well as the sides before applying the rubberized coating. The sanding forces the coating to adhere to the bed area and I must tell you that between the sanding, masking tape, rubbing alcohol, newspapers, and particle masks, this is one smelly and messy job!
Installed liners. Okay, I am biased. If it were up to me, this is the product I would purchase. Option number one is too expensive; option number two is too messy; while the third option -– an installed liner -- makes the most sense to me. Still, you need to be careful in this area too as some bed liners are certainly better made than others. Look for those liners that are scratch and dent resistant, waterproof, chemical proof, stain resistant, and durable, i.e. not subject to cracking, chipping, or fading.
In all, a bed liner makes perfect sense for any truck, particularly if you can put one in that covers the sides and the wheel wells. All the decent ones I have seen are nicely padded and can easily be cleaned. Learn all about the product you want before making a decision to buy.
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