Can A Tonneau Cover Be Painted? (How To Do It?)

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Written By Waylon Joe

Hey, It’s Waylon “Joe” Kite here. I am a West Virginia native and a die-hard pickup truck fan. My story with trucks started with my dad’s 1989 Ford F-150, and it's still going on. I'll share all my trucking experiences (both great and gross ones) with you. I have a garage full of tools to fix and renovate trucks and a freezer full of ales. Do you want to join me?

The tonneau cover is a long-lasting investment in having better security and protects both the truck bed and its contents.

But using a tonneau for a longer time can damage the paint over the surface. In such a condition, what would be the next step? Can a tonneau cover be painted? 

Let’s find the answer. We have covered the answer deeply so you can take the further step successfully to maintain the tonneau for improved longevity.

Can A Tonneau Cover Be Painted?

Of course, you can paint a tonneau cover over the existing color or remove it and repaint the tonneau for a new and fresh-looking tonneau. Painting a tonneau cover is essential and it gives the tonneau a new look while protecting it from dust and direct UV rays.

Or if you don’t want to go through hard situations you can just buy a pre-painted tonneau cover like A.R.E. Fusion Painted Hard Fold Truck Bed Tonneau Cover.

Can A Tonneau Cover Be Painted

How to Repaint a Tonneau Cover?

The basic intention of designing a tonneau cover is to cover and enclose a pickup truck’s open bed. It effectively protects the pick-up truck bed and its contents while making the vehicle more aerodynamic for improved gas mileage.

Due to its working position, the tonneau cover always remains under direct sunlight and fades from the UV rays.

Apart from these, tonneau covers are placed flat and cover a larger area, thus highlighting the little defects in the pain brightly.

But the good news is you can repaint your tonneau cover at your home garage and it is a pretty easy process. Let’s learn step by step:

Tools are required:

  • Ratchet
  • Socket
  • 600-grit sandpaper
  • 800-grit sandpaper
  • Tack rag

1. Open the tonneau cover

Firstly, open and unlock the tonneau from the pick-up truck bed with a ratchet and socket. Ask for help from a minimum of one person to lift the tonneau from the truck. Place the tonneau cover in a standing position so you can easily reach all sides.

2. Smooth out the tonneau

Now san the cover using a piece of grit sandpaper and running water hose consistently. It will protect the tonneau surface from building up digging.

At the same time, sanding makes the tonneau surface smooth and prevents showing any deep scratches through the new paint.

3. Re sand the tonneau surface

Now use 800-grit sandpaper to re-sand the tonneau surface to reduce the sanding scratches left by using 600-grit sandpaper.

Make sure the 800-grit sandpaper is wet while using over the tonneau surface. After that, wash the tonneau cover and let it dry properly.

4. Wipe the dirt and dust

After drying the tonneau completely, wipe it with a tack rag before painting. Doing so will remove the existing dust and debris. Otherwise, that small particle will be visible under the dried paint.

5. Paint the tonneau

At this stage, Spray a deep coat of primer over the cover and wait about 30 minutes so the tonneau can dry. After drying the premiere, spray three to five thin coats of pain.

Remember, you have to hold the sprayer about 8 inches from the surface and apply a thin coat so it can prevent runs in the paint. Now again, wait for 30 minutes so the paint can dry.

Then spray three to five coats of clear coat paint following the same method as using the usual coat paint. Wait for 4 to 5 hours to let the paint dry completely before touching the tonneau cover.  

Read More: Can You Use Tire Shine On The Tonneau Cover?


How Expensive Is Painting A Tonneau Cover?

Painting a tonneau cover will cost around $99 to over $500. Usually, the cost depends on the quality of the painting you desire. Otherwise, if you only need to paint quickly over the existing color, you can talk to the local paint shop to get an idea of the cost. 

Is It Possible To Paint The Bakflip Tonneau Cover?

If the Bakflip tonneau cover is painted metal, you can repaint it. Simply smooth it out with a red or green scuff pad, mask the tonneau off and paint it using Rust-oleum Bedliner.

Final words

So, can a tonneau cover be painted? Hopefully, you have got the answer. Repainting a tonneau is one of the maintenance processes that not only offer a shiny new look but also keep the cover from damage by UV rays.

Now you learned the easier way of painting a tonneau cover. So let’s make it practical to make the tonneau new and long last while saving some extra bucks that may have cost professional help.

Read also: How To Keep Dust Out Of Tonneau Cover?

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