- 1 Top 5 Best Truck Bed Liner Reviews
- 2 Best Truck Bed Liner Buyer’s Guide
We examined more than 30 paints, mats, and sprays to help you with your search for the best truck bed liner. These three types of liners were judged according to their unique sets of qualities, but overall, the shortlisted products on our list are highly durable, water or weather resistant, and easily applied or installed.
We placed the Herculiner Kit at the top of our list because its coating is five times thicker than normal bed liner paints. Besides being less prone to peeling and flaking, the paint provides further protection to your truck bed due to its resistance to oils, solvents, and chemicals. This product from Herculiner requires no mixing and comes with two rollers and a hand brush. Keep reading to discover the other excellent features of this roll-on bed liner paint as well as the rest of our highly recommended products.
Top 5 Best Truck Bed Liner Reviews
#1 Herculiner HCL1B8 Brush-on Truck Bed Liner Kit
Award: Top Pick
WHY WE LIKE IT: This dense truck bed liner paint is made of protective polyurethane. It’s a favorite among DIYers because it comes as a ready-to-use mixture, complete with a user’s manual, brush, and rollers.
Produced by automotive and chemicals firm Old World Industries, which was founded nearly 50 years ago, the Herculiner HCL1B8 contains a gallon of polyurethane and rubber granules. Its content can provide two coats for a six-foot-long truck bed.
The liner, which is five times thicker than regular roll-ons, makes the surface of your bed resistant to rust, solvents, chemicals, gas, and oils. Due to its composition, the paint won’t easily chip, flake, or peel.
The brush-on product, which leaves a shiny finish, can also be applied on concrete and wood. If you are looking at liners, it might be a good time to check out the best truck floor mats as well.
#2 Dee Zee DZ87005 Truck Bed Liner Mat
Award: Honorable Mention
WHY WE LIKE IT: The high-density rubber Dee Zee DZ87005 is backed by cleats underneath and ultraviolet ray protection. The thick and tear-resistant mat mainly fits the truck beds of 2015 to 2018 Ford models.
The 0.375 inch thick mat is made of highly compressed rubber with nylon called Nyracord that resists cracking, abrasions, and fuel spills. And best of it, you just insert it and you’re good to go; no painting or application process.The rubber cleats on its backside make the mat stay put on your truck bed and allow any accumulated water under the mat to drain, preventing rust or mildew from forming. At the same time, its contoured surface helps prevent your cargo from shifting during transport.
The mat can be trimmed to size, but it’s originally designed for 5.5-foot truck beds, just like those of Ford’s F-150 pickup trucks released from 2015 to 2020. The DZ87005 measures 70″ L x 8″ W x 8″ H and weighs 45 pounds. You can compare this to the best truck bed liner mats to see which works for you.
#3 Dee Zee DZ86972 Truck Bed Liner Mat
Award: Best Budget
WHY WE LIKE IT: This popular cleated Dee Zee mat is compatible with Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra trucks. Its high-strength rubber-nylon combination makes the product durable, while its surface design ensures that your cargo stays securely in place while you drive.
The Dee Zee DZ86972 is the truck bed liner for you if you own a Chevrolet Silverado 1500 released from 2007 to 2019 or any of these trucks from the GMC Sierra series: 1500 (2007-2018), 1500 Classic (2019), 2500 HD (2007-2011), Denali (2007-2018), and Denali Classic (2019). The 0.375″-thick mat measures 65″ L x 9″ W x 7″ H and weighs 40 pounds.
You get the same thick, patented Nyracord material that keeps your truck bed protected from scratches or dents from cargo. It also features the same cleated backside that the DZ87005 has, as well as the same textured surface, so slippage is minimal to zero when hauling delicate or rough materials. Just make sure you have the best car battery charger so you can haul those materials.
#4 Dee Zee DZ86996 Truck Bed Liner Mat
Award: Lightest Heavy-Duty Mat
WHY WE LIKE IT: You get dual protection from the Dee Zee DZ86996 due to the cleated underside and anti-slip surface that the company’s quality mats are known for. Your liner won’t easily break or get damaged due to its Nyracord material, which also prevents rusting.
This mat model, which is just as thick as our other two Dee Zee mats, is designed to fit Dodge Ram 1500s and Ram 1500s released from 2008 to 2019. It measures 65″ L x 9″ W x 7″ H and weighs 37 pounds.
Like the DZ87005 and DZ86972, the DZ86996 is made to last, thanks to its tightly compressed rubber fibers and UV protection. These attributes, along with its rubber cleats, assure you that the DZ86996 is as durable as the two other Dee Zee mats on this list. Another accessory that you’ll want to check out is the best jump starter.
#5 U-POL Raptor Kit Bed Liner
Award: Best for DIY
WHY WE LIKE IT: Arguably the best professional spray in bedliner, U-POL Raptor’s urethane spray-in paint is fast-drying, UV-resistant, and waterproof. The six-part kit comes with a hardener and spray gun.
Whether you’ll be spray painting for the first time or you’ve had previous experience, this spray-on is fairly easy to apply once you’ve mixed three parts of the Raptor coating to one part of the hardener. The kit comes with four bottles of black base paint, a liter of hardener, and a spray gun.
The “low VOC” or low volatile organic compound level of the spray paint means this product won’t release a large amount of toxic gases that are harmful to the environment.
You’ll enjoy a scratch- and corrosion-resistant surface once your spray paint job is over. The product also helps minimize vibrations and protects your truck bed surface from UV rays. You can clean it with the best shop cloth and some cleaner.
How We Decided
Our buying guide aimed to provide you with options for the best truck bed liners for each type: roll-on paints, mats, and spray-ins.
Polyurethane paints are the gold standard for truck bed liner roll-ons. They’re not only convenient to apply, but they also protect materials from abrasion, corrosion, and weathering, so they help make your truck bed withstand the elements. Although the final appearance of this type of paint is usually rubberized and opaque, there are polyurethanes that provide a glossy finish.
They’re also scratch-resistant, but the surface where they will be applied needs to be scuffed thoroughly for the spray-on to adhere easily.
And since we didn’t want to limit our recommendations to permanent products, we also looked for the best mats, which are lighter and can be changed more easily compared to molded plastic bed liners. Cleated mats effectively adhere onto your bed liner floor but can be removed for occasional cleaning and to suit your aesthetic preferences.
We also selected the bed liner solutions that you can install or apply yourself. Besides saving on professional fees, you can use your truck sooner and minimize any loss on productivity, especially if you use your truck for business.
Best Truck Bed Liner Buyer’s Guide
The Most Important Features to Consider
Before choosing from the three types of bed liner products, decide on whether you want something more permanent like paint or a removable liner like a mat.
Applying a roll-on (aka a mat) is more economical than a spray product if you don’t have a high-powered air compressor to operate the air sprayer.Meanwhile, using a roller and paintbrush is more time-consuming and labor-intensive.
You may consider buying a mat or rug if you want a non-permanent liner. However, mats or rugs won’t be able to cover your entire truck bed. They will also require regular washing.
- For Roll-On or Brush-On Products:
Measure the size of your truck bed. Truck bed liner companies offer information on how much of their products will be required, depending on your bed size.
The best liner paints and sprays don’t peel or bubble after application and instead adhere evenly to the surface and create a consistent surface.
- Texture and Finish
You’ll need either a smooth finish for easier offloading of heavy cargo or rougher coating to keep cargo from skidding during transport. Polyurea liners leave your truck bed with a glossy surface, while polyurethane products provide a rubberized finish.
Choose products that are waterproof and resistant to rain, rust, and regular movement of cargo over the painted surface. Aliphatic sprays offer ultraviolet protection that prevents fading or peeling.
- Thickness and Density
A dense coating of paint or spray can hold up for months or years. Meanwhile, a thin coat might be enough if you only want to give your truck bed a clean and finished look. The density of your paint or spray should match your preference.
Doing the bed liner paint or spray job yourself can be time-consuming, but it may be faster and more cost-effective than taking your truck to a shop and waiting for your turn for a professional to do the paint job.
- For Mats:
Get the dimension of your truck bed to ensure the mat of your choice will fit inside.
The surface of your mat or rug must support the way you use your truck. If you regularly load cargo onto it, for instance, you’ll need a tough, rubbery mat to minimize slipping and falling. Carpeted liners look stylish and are comfortable for crawling around. You can also opt for plastic liners if your main concerns are cleanliness and easy maintenance. However, plastic products deteriorate easily in warm conditions.
Mats with cleats underneath will keep it securely on the truck bed while you’re driving.
Select products that can handle the cargo you’ll load onto your truck. Rubber mats are more resistant to tears and cracking compared to carpet and other removable liners. They’re also strong enough to protect your truck bed from scratches or dents.
- Installation and Maintenance
Mats are easier to work with compared to roll-on and spray-in liners. But they’re prone to stains and need regular vacuuming and shampooing.
Truck Bed Liner FAQs
How can I keep my bed liner in good condition?
Even the best truck bed liners suffer from wear and tear. But you can make them useful for a long time if you follow these steps:
- Position and secure the cargo on your truck bed, using straps if necessary, so it won't fall and dent or seriously damage your liner and bed.
- As much as possible, especially for beds with roll-on or spray-in liners, lift and position items on your truck bed instead of them dragging them around to avoid scraping or causing scratches on the surface of your liner.
- Wipe off spills to avoid corrosion. Keep the surface underneath rubber mat liners dry. Otherwise, it will deteriorate, and the truck bed will rust. Get rid of snow that falls on your truck bed.
- Use a camper shell or tonneau cover to protect your truck bed and the cargo from the elements.
- Regularly check for peeling or scratches every month and apply top-up coats when necessary. Clean and dry carpet and rubber mats completely.
How can I make my truck bed ready for spray-in liner application?
- Clear the truck bed of cargo and accessories and remove the tailgate. Vacuum or sweep out all the dirt before washing the surface with water and car soap. Rinse, then drain the holes and ensure that there's no water accumulation on the bed. Use a soft cloth to hasten drying.
- Use masking or painter's tape to cover all the parts of the truck bed that you don't want to roll on or spray over.
- Use sandpaper to remove the paint that comes with the truck and any rusting parts so that your spray-in product will adhere well onto the bed's surface. Remove the dust from the bed when you are done. Use gloves, a face mask, and goggles to protect your face and hands during this step.
- After scuffing and sanding, paint the bare metal surface with an oil-based metal primer or sealer so that the liner will bond to the surface better.
- Clean the surface with acetone or a manufacturer-recommended substance after the primer has dried. Residual dirt, dust, or oil can cause the liner to separate and peel from the truck bed.
Also why not check out: