Taking care of your pick-up truck can be a very hard thing to do, especially if what you have is an old model. However, if you plan to make it last longer and probably sell it in the future, you need to spend time, money and effort.
Using a bed liner is a helpful way of reducing scratches that eventually lead to rust. If you plan to install your own pick-up truck bed liner, here are the steps you need to take:
Identify the type of bed liner to use. There are different types of bed liners from which to choose, depending on your need and your budget. You can use spray-on bed liners or drop-in liners like carpet rugs, drop-in bed mats, and plastic bed liners. Spray-on beds liners are more expensive than others since it provides a permanent film of coating to your pick-up truck and dries easily. Since mistakes with spray-on liners are not easily undone, you can opt to get professional help to install it. Drop-in bed liners are less expensive and you can even buy second-hand liners if you don’t have a ready budget in hand.
Buy the bed liner to install. Make sure that you buy the bed liner from a sure source, particularly for drop-in bed liners. The presence of cracks, holes or slits in the liner renders it useless since it will make it easier for gravel, small rocks and sand to get under and cause paint scratches.
Clean the truck. Clean the area of the pick-up truck that you wish to install the bed liner on. Use a broom to remove dirt and dust, and use water to take off debris and other types of dirt that may have stuck to the original paint. If you plan to use a spray-on bed liner, make sure that you put a tape on the area that you don’t wish to apply a bed liner to. Once the spray dries, you won’t be able to remove it without damaging the truck.
Apply the liner to the truck bed. Make sure that the truck bed is completely dry before installing a drop-in liner. Place the wheel flares right over the wheel wells. Make sure that the bed liner holes are adjacent to the holes of the pick-up truck’s bed side rails. Screw the fitting caps on after making sure that the plastic fittings are firmly in place. Use a soft rubber mallet for this so you don’t damage the truck. If using a spray-on liner, start applying the liner to places not easily reached with a roller, like the side walls and corners. Afterward, use a roller to completely apply the liner. Apply four coats of the spray-on liner. Make sure that each coating has dried first before applying the next one.
Test the bed liner. If you’re using a drop-in bed liner, test it by pulling it forward then pushing it backward, or by shaking it horizontally. This ensures that the liner fittings are firmly placed to your pick-up truck’s bed side rails. For spray-on bed liners, leave the truck to dry for about a day before testing it. Put in different items of varying weights to ensure that all the coats have dried and huge weights don’t add dents to the paint.
Installing a bed liner for your pick-up truck is easy. If installed properly, you can be assured that your truck is protected for a long time, and the bed liner lasts as well.