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Can You Put A Bed Rack On With A Tonneau Cover?

Can You Put A Bed Rack On With A Tonneau Cover?

By PattyKay Lilley

Installing a bed rack with a tonneau cover on your truck can offer you the best of both worlds – security and extra storage. However, it’s a common question among truck owners: Can you put a bed rack on with a tonneau cover?

The answer is not as straightforward as you might think. The compatibility largely depends on the specific types of bed racks and tonneau covers you have, as well as your truck bed’s design. Some bed racks are designed to work exclusively with certain types of tonneau covers, while others may not work at all.

In this guide, we’ll explore the possibilities and limitations of combining a bed rack with a tonneau cover. We’ll delve into different types of bed racks and tonneau covers, their compatibility, and how to choose the right combination for your truck. With the right knowledge, you can maximize your truck’s functionality without compromising on aesthetics or security.

Let’s dive in and explore the world of bed racks and tonneau covers. By the end of this read, you’ll be one step closer to making an informed decision that suits your specific needs.

Can You Put A Bed Rack On With A Tonneau Cover?

Yes, you can indeed install a bed rack on with a tonneau cover, provided the types are compatible. For instance, some roll-up tonneau covers work well with certain types of over-the-bed racks. The roll-up design doesn’t interfere with the rack structure and allows for easy access to the bed.

However, hard-fold tonneau covers may not offer the same compatibility. The rigid structure of these covers often causes installation challenges when trying to fit a bed rack. Consult your manufacturer’s guidelines to understand specific compatibility issues.

What about retractable tonneau covers, you ask? Some bed racks are tailored to accommodate retractable covers. These racks often have a low-profile design to ensure the cover’s seamless retraction and extension. But again, it’s crucial to confirm compatibility before investing in a rack or cover.

When choosing a bed rack, not only its compatibility with the tonneau cover matters. It’s also important to consider its load capacity. For instance, if you plan on hauling heavy items like kayaks or bikes, ensure the rack can handle the weight. Check the specifications and weight limits to avoid any unfortunate incidents.

Lastly, ensure the installation process doesn’t damage your truck bed’s integrity. Some bed racks require drilling into the truck bed, potentially causing damage. Opt for racks that use a clamping mechanism, ensuring secure attachment without the need for invasive installation.

In conclusion, the successful combination of a bed rack and tonneau cover largely depends on their specific types and compatibility. Taking time to understand the different types, their pros and cons, and their compatibility with each other will allow you to make the most of your truck’s functionality.

See more: What Are The Benefits Of A Hard Tonneau Cover?

How Do Bed Racks Work With A Tonneau Cover?

How Do Bed Racks Work With A Tonneau Cover

When installed correctly, bed racks and tonneau covers can work together to provide secure, accessible storage space. Bed racks are typically mounted on the bed rails, leaving the truck bed’s surface free. This allows for the tonneau cover to roll or fold back, providing access to the items stored beneath.

Due to their design, bed racks do not obstruct the operation of the tonneau cover. Some bed racks even come with integrated T-slots, allowing you to adjust the height and width of the rack depending on your truck bed and tonneau cover’s size.

However, it’s important to note that not all bed racks can accommodate all types of tonneau covers. For instance, some tonneau covers, such as retractable ones, may require a specific type of bed rack due to their unique operation mechanism.

In such cases, there are bed racks available that feature a low-profile design to accommodate the retractable tonneau cover. These bed racks allow for the full functionality of the cover, ensuring that it can easily extend and retract without any obstructions.

On the other hand, hard fold tonneau covers may have limited compatibility with bed racks. Their rigid design sometimes poses installation challenges, as they cannot be rolled or folded away to accommodate the bed rack.


When it comes to integrating a bed rack with a tonneau cover, several questions often arise. Here, we’ve compiled some of the most commonly asked questions to help shed light on this topic.

Can I install any bed rack with my existing tonneau cover?

Unfortunately, not all bed racks will be compatible with your existing tonneau cover. Each bed rack and tonneau cover has its unique design and features that may or may not work well together. It is crucial to consult the manufacturer’s guidelines or speak with a professional to verify compatibility before installation.

Will installation of a bed rack damage my truck bed?

The possibility of damage to your truck bed largely depends on the installation process of the bed rack. Some bed racks require drilling holes into the bed, which could potentially cause harm. However, many modern bed racks use a clamp system for installation. This method is non-invasive and does not require any drilling, thereby preserving the integrity of your truck bed.

Does the weight capacity of a bed rack matter when pairing it with a tonneau cover?

Absolutely. The weight capacity of a bed rack is a crucial factor to consider, especially if you plan to transport heavy items such as bicycles, kayaks, or camping equipment. It’s not only about the compatibility of the bed rack with the tonneau cover but also about the ability of the rack to safely handle the load you plan to carry.

Always check the weight capacity of the bed rack before making a purchase. Opt for a rack that surpasses your weight capacity needs to ensure safety and longevity.

Final Thought

The world of bed racks and tonneau covers may seem complex, but understanding the nuances can significantly enhance your truck’s utility and functionality. The ability to secure a bed rack and a tonneau cover together allows you to maximize your truck’s storage space while maintaining easy access to your items.

Compatibility is the key when pairing bed racks with tonneau covers. Each type has unique features that determine which other products it can work with. Ensuring that your chosen bed rack can accommodate your tonneau cover’s design, whether it’s roll-up, retractable, or hard-fold, will save you from potential installation issues down the line.

Remember, it’s not just about compatibility. The weight capacity of the bed rack also plays a crucial role, especially if you plan to haul heavy items. A bed rack that meets your weight requirements not only ensures the safety of your load but also prolongs the lifespan of both the rack and the cover.

At the end of the day, the combination of a bed rack and tonneau cover on your truck should serve your needs, whether that’s additional secure storage, ease of access, or enhancing the overall aesthetics of your vehicle. Don’t rush the decision, take your time to research, consult professionals, and make an informed choice.

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