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Though truck bed covers are produced using some of the toughest materials, they nevertheless do get torn. When they do, we either repair or replace them which depends on the severity of the tear. If you wish to repair a ripped tonneau cover, how should you go about it? You will find the answer in the following steps.
Majority of tonneau covers are produced with vinyl, a material that is prone to tear when treated rashly, more so when it is poorly maintained which makes it dry and prone to cracks and tears.
To fix such injuries to your truck beds, you obviously need a vinyl repair kit, if the damage is minimal. Though it may not look exactly new after the repairs, that will make the damaged area less noticeable and also prevent it from becoming worse.
Expert Steps To Fixing A Ripped Tonneau Cover
Start the process by cleaning the area around the tear very well in order to remove any dirt and oil that may prevent the vinyl from properly bonding with the repair substance. With the use of water and soap wash the place first before swabbing with alcohol.
Any rough or jagged edges should be removed with either a pair of scissors, razor blade or scalpel. This will enable them to lie flat and respond to the repairs properly.
Now, insert a canvas backing from a vinyl and leather repair kit beneath the site of the tear with tweezers. You may be required to use glue with some kits between the vinyl and the canvas before you finally press them together to seal the bond, while with others, you will have to apply heat with either a pressing iron or any special tool.
At this stage, you should mix the pigments provided in the kit such that they will match the colour of the truck bed cover as closely as possible.
Mix the pigment with a filler material that is also provided in the repair kit too. Fill up the tear with the filler material by applying it in several layers instead of in one thick layer. Then, press the embossing stamp which resembles the grain of the bed cover as closely as possible to the final layer of the filler material.
What Are Tonneau Covers Made Of?
The soft type of tonneau covers are made from vinyl while the hard ones are made with fibreglass, polypropylene and some aluminium components to add to their strength.
What Do I Need To Keep In Mind Before Fixing A Ripped Tonneau Cover?
Obviously, you should not forget that, after all said and done, the site of the repair will look a little different from other parts of the truck bed cover, but this repair will at least prevent the tear from getting worse.
Furthermore, you should keep in mind the fact that the edges of the tear must be carefully trimmed so that a good bonding surface will be provided with the truck cover.
How Long Does It Take To Fix A Ripped Tonneau Cover?
Provided you have all the necessary tools handy and you are also conversant with how to go about the entire process, it should not take you more than fifteen minutes at the most to accomplish satisfactorily.
What Causes A Tonneau Cover To Rip?
Some tonneau covers definitely tear faster than others, though eventually, all of them may rip open whatever you do. Despite this fact, there are factors that predispose them to tear more quickly.
What are some of these factors? When you place very heavy objects on your tonneau covers, especially those that are beyond their capacities, they are prone to being torn.
Similarly, if you forcefully close your tonneau covers against a large cargo that has sharp edges or spikes. Furthermore, if you use harmful or non recommended cleaning chemical agents on your tonneau cover, you are exposing them to harm.
To prevent this from occurring, you should reach out to the manufacturers to find out about the best cleaning agents you can use on them. Finally, as much as possible, avoid parking your truck in the sun for prolonged periods.
How Long Should A Tonneau Cover Last Before It Begins To Rip Off?
A tonneau cover lasts for as long as possible particularly if you clean and maintain it properly and regularly. Though some are stronger than others, they all eventually tear in the end after prolonged use.
So, basically, your tonneau covers do not have a strict time frame or shelf life but will last for as long as possible, if you treat them right. However, all things being equal, they can serve you for upwards of five years.
Are There Tonneau Covers That Rip Faster Than Others?
Yes, there are. The hard types of tonneau cover made from fibreglass or aluminium last much longer than the soft types. However, for them to last as long as we want, we should endeavour to care for them regularly.
Are There Companies That Produce Tonneau Covers That Hardly Rip Off?
Yes, there are. For instance, all the companies that produce the hard types of tonneau covers made from aluminium or fibreglass do so with the objective of getting them to last for as long as possible.
In fact, these materials are so chosen to ensure that durability is guaranteed in their tonneau covers. So, yes, some companies produce tonneau covers that are more resistant to ripping easily than others.
How Do I Prevent My Tonneau Cover From Getting Ripped?
Use it properly by not closing it forcefully against large cargo and also by not placing on it heavy objects, especially those that are beyond its capacity.
Additionally, clean and maintain them by using only manufacturer certified chemical agents. Use them properly by making sure that you travel with your truck bed covers either fully closed or completely opened. This will safeguard them from getting torn prematurely by the wind.
Can Wind Cause My Tonneau Cover To Rip?
Yes, wind drag can quickly destroy your tonneau cover. As you drive along the highway, especially with your truck bed covers opened, the wind will continuously exert a force on your tonneau covers which may eventually cause them to rip open, more so if this habit happens regularly. It is therefore advised that you travel with your tonneau covers closed to prevent this occurrence.
Will Stitching A Ripped Cover Cause It To Rip Even More?
Certainly not because, if for nothing else, patching up your torn tonneau cover serves to prevent the tear from becoming any worse than it already is.
Stitching stops the tear from progressing by denying all the destructive forces (like the wind or sunlight) the nidus through which they can tear it up some more.
Does Parking My Truck In The Sun Cause My Cover To Rip?
Yes, it does. When you repeatedly park your vehicle in the sun, UV rays with gradually weaken and eat away at its fabric and if this continues, the truck bed cover will certainly begin to fade as well as show signs of cracks and tear.
To this end, always make sure that you park your truck in a shaded area such as under a tree or in a roofed garage. (Read Also: How Hot Does It Get Under A Tonneau Cover? Find Out)
What Is The Harm Of Driving With Open Tonneau Cover?
Even though the law permits you to travel with your tonneau cover either closed or opened as you wish in most places, you are still advised against doing so for many good reasons. Some of the issues you are likely going to face for doing this are:
Security Concerns: When you travel with an open tonneau cover, you are basically reducing the quality of security for your cargo, which is one major reason for buying and using it in the first place. (Read Also: Are Tonneau Covers Easy To Break Into? 3 Covers That Are Breakproof)
This is more so especially knowing that some goods are considered as precious and concealing them is therefore very important. Furthermore, some places are less secured than others, which means that at those places you stand the risk of getting stolen from than at others.
Non-Protection From The Weather: The weather is known to change quite often and without notice, this implies that with an opened truck bed cover, you are primarily exposing both your truck bed and its contents to the harsh elements of weather about which you have no control.
In this case, you have not only rain or snow or hail to worry about, but also strong and devastating winds too. Should this weather be strong enough, there is the risk of getting light cargo in the truck bed tossed out or blown away, right?
Loss Of Items: Driving with an open tonneau cover simply means that whatever items you store in your truck bed can get lost easily. This is particularly the case where you are driving on very tough and corrugated roads, on which your truck is bound to bounce up and down intermittently, thereby losing valuable items in the process.
What Tonneau Covers Can You Stand On Without Getting Them Ripped?
Though it is advised that you must not stand on tonneau covers even when the manufacturers say that you can, we shall still endeavour to study some of those truck covers you can stand on without any risks of getting them ripped.
Hard One Piece Truck Bed Covers: There is no denying that these type of covers are sturdy and durable, which are mostly produced with fibreglass, polypropylene or aluminium. All these construction materials are renowned for their exceptional toughness and can support heavy weights without any fear of getting ripped.
Hard Retractable Tonneau Covers: These kinds of truck bed covers simply retract into themselves and are produced using the same materials as the hard one-piece tonneau covers.
They, however, have one clear advantage over all the others, which is the fact that they can expose or conceal as much or as little of the truck bed as possible whenever required. For this reason, they allow large-sized or awkward shaped cargo to peek out above the truck while still protecting it.
How Do You Fix A Ripped Tonneau Cover- Conclusion
Of course, a lot of research has been done before it was decided that truck bed covers should be produced with these chosen substances, nevertheless, they can very easily get ripped or torn through several causes.
To outrightly guard against this ugly development, we are required to make our choices after careful study of their types, properties and durability. While some can easily get mutilated, there are still others which can withstand significant stress such as the hard tonneau cover or the hard retractable.
There is also the issue of how well you use them. For example, in order to prevent any regrettable ripping of your truck bed cover, do not forcefully close them against large goods that are most times beyond the capacity of the truck bed itself or place very heavy objects on them.
Similarly, you are as much as possible, enjoined to avoid standing on them even when the manufacturers claim that you can because in most cases, you will only be at the receiving end should anything go wrong.
Despite everything, your choice of truck bed covers ultimately determine a lot of things. For instance, the hard types of truck bed covers are known to be more durable and fortified to withstand significant stress, but expectedly, they come a little more expensive than the rest.
We have also discussed, in detail, how you can fix any reap or tear in the truck bed covers using a very simple process with the aid of the vinyl repair kit.
They can rip either early or late after purchase which is dependent upon how meticulous you are with them and how well you treat them. In summary, choose those type that will serve for longer, if you are able to.
The elements of weather such as wind, rain and snow do a lot of damage to these covers and for this reason, you are required to travel with your tonneau cover closed to prevent it from getting devastated by the wind on the road.