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One other thing to think about - if you hit a bump with the tailgate down and no load on it, it can raise up, and if it hits the right spot and combination of bumps, it can fall off! they were made to come off easily.
This happened to one of our work trucks, of course the straps caught it so it did not leave completly, but enough to mess it up.
__________________ 90 F250 7.5L E4OD, 03 F350 SD auto with the infamous diesel 6.0 for work, 70 C600 330 MT40 auto dump truck O2 Oldsmobile Bravada, Kubota L3200, Hustler Super Z mower, all Hydrostatics, 85 Honda Elite 250 & 150 scooter CVT - Nary a manual in the fleet!
Mythbusters revisited this myth and they found out that the plastic tailgate nets worked the best.
I drive with my tailgate up.....I just have too much junk in the back!
Once I drove around with a snicker bar on my rear bumper-- and I was there when I remembered about it. I also left a wingnut for my Hilift jack on my bumper and it was still there. I think I left my keys there too.
How come some things stay in the bed with the gate down? The junk stays, but the good stuff falls out!
Okay thanks gentleman! One more question for the moment then; Is it true that BED COVERS will help with gas milage? I heard this from a man on this site, and saw it stated in a magazine selling them. Of course I know not to trust sales lines, but I figured a man in the "real world" would know.
There was an article in Tailgate Talk about this very subject. Here is an exert from that article:
According to many of those same experts, the best way to improve a pickup's fuel economy is to leave the tailgate up and cover the bed with a quality after market tonneau cover.
"Tonneau covers on pickup boxes reduce aerodynamic drag" said Ford's Jack Williams. "we've seen reductions of about 8 to 10 percent on the F150, which means the average fuel economy improvements for the EPA city/highway cycle(test) is about 2 percent.
"The average steady-state (cruise control) fuel economy improvement at highway speeds is close to 5 percent.."
Adding a tonneau could mean an improvement in fuel mileage that is the equivalent of a free gallon of gas for every 20 gallons used.
I read all of the time about improvements that have been seen or predicted by the addition of tonneau covers. I guess in a perfect situation, they are probably true, to an extent. However, in my experiences with a toyota, chebbie and, currently, my PSD CC, I saw in the real world over extended periods of time absolutely no change in the fuel consumption. If there was any, it must have been so minor as to not be able to calculate it. But in defense of the tonneau covers, I never purchased any of them with the expectation of mileage improvements - they were purely for their practicality, protection and appearance. I do like them!
a lightweight fiberglass or aluminum canopy that is the same height as the top of the cab, and stays that height for the entire length of the bed can also improve gas mileage by reducing drag. (not always cause if the canopy hurts gas mileage through excessive weight more than it helps with aerodynamics, you can go in the reverse direction, thats why the lighter the canopy the better)
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