Retractable Tonneau Covers - Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I get a retractable tonneau cover instead of another kind of tonneau cover?

One reason is the great look. Many types of tonneau covers sit above the rails and look bulky. This is not the case with retractable tonneau covers, which are installed within the rails for a low profile, sleek look. And they’re shiny, too.

It looks great, and the function is impressive as well. It slides with ease. Other tonneau covers aren’t near as easy to open and close: roll-up covers have to be, well, rolled up, and snap cover covers are even more cumbersome, as you have to go around your bed and unsnap every snap and struggle to collect a flimsy soft cover. Opening up a rolling or snap tonneau cover will help you really appreciate how easy it is to operate a retractable tonneau cover.

If you want to be really flashy, some retractable tonneau covers open and close with a remote. That’s right: it’s possible to open and close your retractable tonneau cover without even laying a finger on it. That’s luxury, my friend.

How does heavy snow and rain affect my retractable tonneau cover?

Be careful after a heavy snowfall. It seems obvious that if you open your retractable cover when it has a pile of snow on top the snow is going to fall into your bed, but it’s an easy mistake to make. You’ll want to sweep that snow off somehow before you open your retractable tonneau cover.

Depending on the material used in your retractable cover, frequent and heavy rains can do some damage. The water can get in the space between the planks and eventually wear down the material there. This is a problem with padded polymer materials, but powder-coated aluminum is completely immune to corrosion.

So if you’re living in a place prone to frequent rainfall (Seattle comes to mind), you best stick with the powder-coated aluminum.

Are all retractable tonneau covers the same?

Just as not all tonneau covers are the same, not all retractable covers are the same as well. From the material used to the type of locking mechanism to the number of latching points, there are many different options of retractable tonneau covers. Research each option to make sure you end up purchasing the tonneau cover that fits your needs.

How easy is it to haul tall cargo in my truck bed with a retractable tonneau cover?

There are concerns with some tonneau covers, namely hinged and folding covers, that they don’t allow 100% access to the bed when open and have to be removed completely in order to carry tall or awkwardly shaped cargo. This is not a problem with a retractable tonneau cover. The canister near the cab does take up a little room, but for the most part when your retractable cover is open you have complete access and are fully capable to haul whatever you want.

How much do retractable tonneau covers cost?

Again, they aren’t the cheapest option. They start at just under $1,000 for the BAK RollBAK and go up to $1,681 for a Retrax PRO or more for the electric version.