Getting a bed liner is usually one of the first things that new truck owners do. It’s pretty much a no-brainer to protect your truck bed from scratches, scuffs, and water. If you want to haul things in your truck bed, a bed liner is the best way to protect both your items and the truck bed.
Let’s take a look at some FAQs about bed liners and what they do.
Q: What is a bed liner?
A: A bed liner is a protective coating applied or installed into a truck bed. The bed liner’s purpose is to protect the truck bed and anything hauled in it from impact damage and corrosion from the elements.
There are two main types of bed liners: spray-in and drop-in.
- Drop-in bed liners don’t require too much preparation and can simply be dropped in the truck bed and then removed later if necessary.
- Spray-in bed liners do require specific preparation to ensure that the coating properly adheres to the bed.
Q: How to install a bed liner
A: Installing a bed liner depends on the type of bed liner it is. For a DIY spray-in bed liner, you will need to follow all the specific instructions that prepare your truck bed for the coating. The level of preparation directly correlates with adhesion for a spray-in liner. That’s one of the reasons that professional installation is generally recommended for this type.
Drop-in liners are much easier. For example, here are the steps to install a DualLiner bed liner:
- Pop in the load guard
- Snap in the sidewalls
- Lay the ZeroSkid rubber mat into the C channel
- Add the tailgate protector if applicable
This can be done over bare paint with no significant preparation other than the bed being clean and dry.
Q: How to remove a truck bed liner
A: Removing a drop-in bed liner is pretty simple. Get into your truck bed and look for the Phillips screws that are usually used to affix a drop-in liner to the truck bed.
- Unscrew all the screws, then lift the middle part of the liner closest to the tailgate.
- Push down on the edges to work it out from under the bed rail.
- Repeat these steps on all remaining pieces.
Q: How much does a bed liner cost?
A: The price of a drop-in bed liner varies from only $50 for a small tailgate mat to around $500 for a plastic liner with complete bed coverage. For example, a DualLiner complete coverage bed liner for a 2021-2023 Ford F150 with a standard bed costs just under $500.
Q: How to spray bed liner
A: Generally, it’s recommended that you have spray-in bed liner coatings professionally applied to ensure a long-lasting product. However, you can do it yourself. Consider the following steps:
- Wash the truck bed with a generic soap that doesn’t contain protectants and then let it completely dry
- Use 36-grit sandpaper to scuff the bed surface
- Wipe any debris or dust off the bed
- Mask any areas near your bed to protect from overspray
- Coat the truck bed with primer according to your kit’s instructions
- Prepare your spray gun and do a test spray on cardboard to make adjustments
- Fill the hopper and spray the bed from about 18 inches away using a long sweeping motion
- Apply several coats, letting each coat dry for ten minutes before applying the next one
- When the liner is as thick as you want, remove the masking tape and allow the liner to cure
Q: How to remove bed liner overspray
A: If you apply a spray-in bed liner by yourself, it’s possible that you will end up with overspray. That’s why it’s important to meticulously mask off any areas that might be susceptible to overspray.
If you do get light overspray on your paint, you might be able to get it off with washing and a clay bar kit. However, heavy overspray could require paint scrapers and sandpaper. In this case, you might need to take your truck to a body shop.
Q: How to remove spray-in bed liner
A: It’s actually quite difficult to remove spray-in bed liner by yourself. It requires harsh chemicals and powerful tools. If you absolutely must remove it, you’ll need to get professional help. A better solution is to cover it with a drop-in truck bed liner like DualLiner.
Q: How much is a spray-in bed liner?
A: A spray-in bed liner can cost up to $700 depending on the brand, the installation, and your truck. The cheapest spray-in liners typically cost around $400. The average cost to have a spray-in bed liner installed is about $500.
Q: How much is a Line-X bed liner?
A: A Line-X bed liner typically costs around $525, depending on the shop and your truck.
Q: How to clean a truck bed liner
A: Most bed liners can be cleaned just as easily as a bare truck bed. You can generally send a truck with a bed liner through the car wash, or you can clean it yourself with soap, water, and a stiff brush to remove dirt and debris.
Q: What is the best bed liner?
A: Most industry experts agree that DualLiner offers the best complete-coverage bed liner on the market. Compared to other plastic drop-in liners or spray-in liners, it has many benefits and no real drawbacks.
However, DualLiner doesn’t fit every make and model of truck, so if you have a truck that isn’t compatible, some other top bed liners to consider include:
- Rhino Liners (spray-in)
- Line X (spray-in)
- DuraLiner (drop-in)
- BedRug (drop-in)
DualLiner fits most full-size American truck brands and offers the very best in rugged protection against rust and damage.