Ford F-150/F-250: How To Install Tonneau Cover

Tonneau covers are designed to enhace the looks, style, and security of the Ford F-150 or F-250 Super Duty.

By Scott Deuty - November 11, 2014

This article applies to the Ford F-150 (2004-2014) and F-250 (2005-2014).

Tonneau covers add versatility, style, and security to your vehicle. Depending on which claims you believe, they may also improve aerodynamics and gas mileage.

Tools Needed

  • Wrench and/or screw driver (Depending on the tonneau’s hardware)
  • Drill
  • Bits
  • Tape measure

Determine the style of cover that best suits your needs. Choices include:

• Folding Tonneau Covers

• Roll-Up Tonneau Covers

• Hinged Tonneau Covers

• Retractable Tonneau Covers

    • Folding Tonneau.
    • Roll Up Tonneau.
    • Hinged Tonneau.
    • Retractable Tonneau.

Determine the mounting requirements of the cover. Some covers simply clamp in place while others require drilling holes.

(Related Article: Tonneau Cover Modifications - Ford-trucks.com)

Step 1 - Read the instructions fully and lay everything out where it belongs

Remember, you are doing a custom installation that requires alignment with the lines of the truck bed. Think ahead as if you only get one chance to do it right. Mark the location of the holes and rails for future reference.

Figure 1. Lay all the components on the ground.

Step 2 - Connect the rails

It’s a good idea to leave things loose until final adjustment. Follow the manual that came with your tonneau cover, and connect your rails. They will most likely either bolt in pre-drilled holes, or snap on underneath your rail covers.

Figure 2. Connect the rails.

Step 3 - Install any seals

Following the instructions, install any seals that needs to be installed. Make sure each seal is tight before tightening any bolts.

Figure 3. Install any seals.

Step 4 - Install the top

Place the top on and fasten it to the rails. The top should just snap on the rails.

Figure 4. Install the top.

Step 5 - Check and adjust accordingly

Check the seals for potential leaking spots. Adjust the connections for free and easy movement of the top.

Figure 5. Adjust by loosing and tightening the bolts.

Pro Tip

The best place to check for leaks is in your driveway. Simply grab your hose, and spray the truck bed down, wait a few minutes, then open the cover and check if water leaked inside. Waiting until after a down pour or snowfall may damage your load.

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