Odds are, you invested in a truck because you either enjoy the versatility it offers and the access it grants you to explore unknown places, or because you simply have too much stuff to transport inside a standard car. Either way, you’re probably using its truck bed for all types of purposes, and it’s important that your tools, toys and other gear stay protected where ever you go. To avoid damage, scratches, and in a worst-case scenario, a total loss of your assets, make sure to take the following steps.
1. Establish protection against Mother Nature
Whether you’re transporting tools that are worth more than your truck itself or a piece of machinery or metal, you don’t want it to get wet, so establishing protection against the elements is paramount. Depending on what it is you’re protecting, a simple tarp might get the job done – but if your cargo is more valuable, you may want to go the route of a tonneau cover, which extends over the entire back of the truck bed and helps prevent theft in addition to protecting your pricy belongings.
2. Prepare the truck to bear the burden of its load
The last thing you need is to damage your goods or gear by having it smash around in the bed of your truck, and that’s exactly what anchor points and tie-downs prevent. Not all anchor points are created equal, however. Whether your truck comes equipped with its own or you install them, it’s critical that you consider how much weight you need them to ultimately bear, and make sure that your anchor points are up for the job. Any reputable truck tie-down or anchor point available for purchase will have a rated capacity, so make sure the ones you buy are in line with your transportation needs.
3. Consider additional security features
While a tonneau cover can offer your cargo additional protection, there are several other accessories and add-ons you may want to consider if your needs and the value of your cargo warrant it. A bed rail is a great option if you feel you could benefit from additional anchor points and added security. If you are worried about your cargo scratching up the surface of your truck bed, you may want to consider a bed liner. Non-skid bed liners protect the surface of your truck, but they also keep your cargo in place and help prevent it from shifting around.
So, that’s it – these are the three easy steps to securing your cargo for safe transport. With a little effort and research, you can effectively protect your truck and your gear, enhancing their resale value and helping preserve the quality of both.
NOTE: We’ve updated a previous version of this article that was published in December 2016.