Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover? Top 3 Picks

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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?

A truck tent is a perfect product for anyone who knows that their vehicle isn’t the most comfortable place to sleep. However, there are many people out there who use tonneau covers on their trucks and wonder if they can still use a truck tent with this type of cover. The answer depends on plenty of factors that we have discussed throughout the article.

Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover?

Definitely, you can use a truck tent with a tonneau cover. However, it should be retractable. The key thing is to find a truck tent with a small profile or very low ground clearance. You want the lowest possible profile to maximize the amount of usable bed space.

Some of the best truck tents that are compatible with tonneau cover.

NameTruck Tent
Overall BestNapier Backroadz Truck Tent
Best DeluxeGuide Gear Premium Truck Tent
Best For Automatic SetupFOFANA Truck Bed Tent Automatic Setup
Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover?

Which is the best truck tent to use with a tonneau cover?

The Napier Backroadz truck tent is the best truck tent for use with a tonneau cover. This tent is made of polyester taffeta and polyethylene floors and its frame is designed with fiberglass poles.

Moreover, this truck tent has windows and doors to keep the user safe from rain and storm. It is suitable for using any season including spring, summer, and fall. Finally, you can zip it to the truck if you don’t need to use this truck tent.

How to Install a Truck Tent on a Tonneau Cover?

Following this effective and easier method you can install a truck tent properly and successfully:

1. Place the truck tent

Open the tailgate and set the truck tent in the vehicle bed with the mesh window side upwards. Now trip the truck tent over the tailgate and drive the tailgate strap under it. 

2. Cover the truck bed

Place the tent forward so it can cover the entire truck bed. Make sure the tent’s front corner splitting seams to go over the bed’s front corner. At this time, gently fix the c straps to the lower outer lip of the vehicle bed.

How to Install a Truck Tent on a Tonneau Cover?
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3. Thread the strap

Now open the tent door and tip the tailgate up. After that, thread the orange strap throughout the space between the truck bed and the tailgate.

4. Pull the strap up

In this stage, take down the tailgate and pull up the strap to assure every clip’s swivel base attacks against the base of the tailgate.

Now pull up the clips through the tailgate gap and re-thread the strips throughout the gap and attach them under the truck’s bumper. Then fix the orange straps to prevent the inner flap run along the upper outside edge of the truck bed rails.

5. Tighten the straps

Now drive the attached A and B straps to the truck bed’s lower outside lip and fix the A, B, C straps. Make sure the inner strap stays connected along the bed rails’ top outside edges. Fix the tailgate strap and set its side flaps behind the bumper. Then drive the d strap over A and fix them to the truck bed’s bottom outer lip.

6. Run the three poles

Generally, the front poles are covered with gray tape and these poles should run under orange marking poles. Now raise every mark’s poles and attach them into the compatible color pole pockets.

Again raise the grey marked poles following the same method. Fix the four pole clips to the gray marking pole. Set the inside flaps of the bed rails upper part under the orange straps and insert any slack.

7. Finish up

Lastly, adjust all the straps and ensure the inner side flap seams drive along the bed rails’ top outer edges.

Read More: Can A Tonneau Cover Be Painted?

Pros and Cons Of Using A Truck Tent On A Tonneau Cover?

Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover

The key advantage of using a truck tent is it offers you a safe space to sleep using the journey or on camping. This way you won’t need to rent a room paying an extra cost. More importantly, it is easier to set up and you can use it on any tough journey where the surface doesn’t allow you to make a tent on it.

The downside of using a truck tent is you can’t drive with an open truck tent. Doing so will damage the tent and even the truck.

Read More: Tri Fold Vs Roll Up Tonneau Cover?

Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover? Qualities needed in truck tents to use with a tonneau cover

Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover
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When it needs to be used with a tonneau cover, the truck tent should have some exceptional qualities. Firstly the tent should be made of 68D 185T polyester taffeta with polyethylene floor to ensure strength and durability.

Read More: Best Hard Tonneau Cover For F150

If the tent has fiberglass poles constructed frame it will be more preferable. Besides the truck tent, you will choose should offer enough space so two people can fit in comfortably. 

A truck tent with windows and doors will keep the structure safe from strong storms with violent rains. More importantly, this feature will ensure better ventilation and easier access. An additional feature like a gear pocket, gear loft, and a lantern holder is also appreciable. 

Conversely, the truck tent should have the ability to withstand both spring and summer. However, the tent can freeze during the winter. You can choose a truck tent that has a year’s warranty to assure its durability.

Read More: Best Retractable Tonneau Cover For Ram 1500

Can I mount a truck tent with any tonneau covers?

Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover
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No, all the tonneau covers don’t allow you to mount truck tents on them. Retractable tonneau cover allows mounting truck tents commonly. You can use a shorter than 6″ high tent on any tonneau cover.

Also read: How To Open Truck Bed Cover Without Key? Answered!

Otherwise, you may need to remove the tonneau cover entirely to set the truck tent up against it. But doing so won’t cover you from rain as there will be a little gap between the tonneau and the tent.

Thus mounting a shorter than 6″ high tent on retractable tonneau or other types, will cover you completely. Apart from these, the tonneau cover should have the ability to hold the truck tent successfully.

Read More: Best Retractable Tonneau Cover For F150

FAQs: Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover?

1. Can I Use A Truck Tent If I Don’t Have A Folding Tonneau?

If you have another type of tonneau still you can install a truck tent only if the tonneau is not higher than 6″. If so, then you can install the truck tent by removing the tonneau completely or alternatively placing the tent up against the tonneau.

2. How Much Time Is Required To Install A Truck Tent Alone?

Whether you are installing along or getting air from other people, it won’t take more than 10 minutes. However, the time can extend if you don’t have the essential tools to deal with the operation. Apart from these, the method can take a bit more time especially if you aren’t familiar with it.

Read also: Can You Sleep Under A Tonneau Cover

Final words: Can You Use A Truck Tent With A Tonneau Cover?

The truck tent is a useful addition to the truck bed that brings plenty of advantages costing a little money. so using a tonneau on the truck will offer you emergency shelter while you are on a journey or camping. Above all, can you use a truck tent with a tonneau cover?

Let’s consider the above mentioned requirement with your tonneau cover type. Hope you will get the desired answer. If you find it compatible, follow those installing steps to enjoy the truck tent on the tonneau cover.

Read also: Best Hard Tonneau Cover For Jeep Gladiator

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