How to Care for Vinyl Tonneau Cover? Easy Steps to Follow

It is a truth that a tonneau cover can level up the look of your truck. A tonneau cover adds a clean and nice finishing look to the truck with its black finish. It does not matter if you are hauling your truck for cargo shipment or adventures. Your truck bed cover gets dirty and muddy with mother nature’s wrath. Therefore, I am making this guide to help you with How to Care for Vinyl Tonneau Cover? 

The key to maintaining its lifespan is to treat the tonneau like the rest of the truck. That means sparing some time for tonneau cover cleaning and maintenance. This keeps the cover in its tip-top shape all year round. This article will teach you how to care for a vinyl tonneau cover to look great all year with simple cleaning and maintaining techniques and tools. 

Let’s dive into the care and maintenance of the vinyl tonneau cover. 

How to Care for Vinyl Tonneau Cover? Vinyl tonneau cover protectant

Everyone wants to get the Best Tonneau Cover for their trucks and keep them intact in better form. Maintenance of the tonneau cover is recommended because if you do not look after it, your cover is prone to damage. Because a neglected tonneau cover gets scratched and could lose appeal by building up the dirt. A good cleaning technique can regain the previous factory’s look and extend its life.

To care for a vinyl tonneau cover, you should follow these steps:

  1. Clean the cover regularly to remove dirt, dust, and other debris. Use a mild soap, water solution, and a soft cloth or sponge to scrub the surface of the cover gently. Rinse the cover thoroughly with water to remove any soap residue.
  2. Protect the cover from harsh weather conditions. If the cover is exposed to extreme heat, cold, or UV rays, use a cover protector or a vinyl conditioner (303 Tonneau Cover and Convertible Top Cleaner) to help protect it from damage.
  3. Repair any cuts or tears on the cover as soon as possible. Use a vinyl repair kit or adhesive to patch any holes or tears in the cover. This will help prevent the damage from spreading and keep your cover in good condition.
  4. Keep the cover lubricated. Use a silicone-based lubricant to keep the cover flexible and prevent it from drying out or cracking. Be sure to apply the lubricant evenly over the surface of the cover, and avoid using too much as it can attract dirt and dust.
  5. Store the cover properly when it is not in use. If you need to remove the cover, store it in a cool, dry place from direct sunlight. This will help prevent the cover from becoming damaged or discolored.

Other Ways to Protect a Vinyl Tonneau Cover – Tonneau cover cleaner and protector

There are several ways to maintain a vinyl tonneau cover:

Clean it regularly: 

Dirt and grime can build up on the tonneau cover’s surface, leading to fading and cracking over time. To prevent this, it’s essential to clean the cover regularly. You can use mild soap and water to gently scrub the surface and rinse it off with a hose. Be sure to let the cover dry completely before closing it.

Protect it from the elements

If you park your vehicle outside, the tonneau cover can be exposed to the sun, rain, and other elements. You can use a vinyl protectant (best protectant for tonneau cover) spray or wax to protect it from these weather conditions. This will help to keep the cover looking new and prevent it from fading or cracking.

Keep it Lubricated

The hinges and other moving parts of the tonneau cover can become dry and stiff over time, making it difficult to open and close. To prevent this, you can lubricate the hinges and other moving parts with a silicone-based lubricant. This will help to keep everything moving smoothly and prevent wear and tear. Or you can use wax on the bed cover to keep it intact.

Avoid Overloading

It’s essential to avoid overloading the tonneau cover, as this can cause it to become damaged or even break. Follow the manufacturer’s weight limits and distribute the load evenly across the cover. You can read about loading here: Can you stand on the tonneau cover?

Store it Properly

When you’re not using the tonneau cover, it’s essential to store it properly to prevent damage. If you have a hard tonneau cover, you can store it in a garage or shed. If you have a soft tonneau cover, you should store it in a dry, cool place where it won’t be exposed to sunlight or extreme temperatures.

What should I use to clean my tonneau cover? Tonneau cover protectant spray

To clean a tonneau cover, you can use mild soap and water. You can use a soft cloth or sponge to gently scrub the surface of the cover and then rinse it off with a hose. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaners, as these can damage the surface of the cover. People also use the tire shine on the bedcover. You can learn whether you can use tire shine or not here.

If you have a tonneau cover that is particularly dirty or has stubborn stains, you may need to use a more powerful cleaner. In this case, you can use a vinyl cleaner, such as TruXedo Pro-tex Tonneau Cleaner or Extang Tonno Tonic, formulated explicitly for tonneau covers. These cleaners are typically more effective at removing tough stains and grime and are less likely to cause damage to the cover.

Following the manufacturer’s recommendations when cleaning and maintaining your tonneau cover is essential. If you need help with what to use, you can check the owner’s manual or contact the manufacturer for guidance.

What should you not use on vinyl?

There are several things that you should avoid using on a vinyl tonneau cover:

  1. Harsh chemicals: Harsh chemicals, such as bleach or acetone, can damage the surface of the tonneau cover and cause it to become discolored or brittle. It’s important to avoid using these types of cleaners on your cover.
  2. Abrasive cleaners: Abrasive cleaners, such as scouring pads or steel wool, can scratch and damage the surface of the cover. They should be avoided.
  3. Strong solvents: Strong solvents, such as gasoline or turpentine, can dissolve the vinyl and cause it to become brittle and prone to cracking. It’s essential to keep these substances away from your tonneau cover.
  4. High heat: Excessive heat can cause the vinyl to become brittle and prone to cracking. It’s essential to avoid exposing the cover to high heat, such as placing it in direct sunlight for extended periods.

Can you use alcohol wipes on vinyl?

Yes, you can use alcohol wipes on vinyl. Alcohol wipes contain isopropyl alcohol, a mild solvent that effectively cleans and disinfects surfaces. They are safe on vinyl if used sparingly, and the surface is allowed to dry afterward.

However, it’s essential to keep in mind that alcohol wipes can dry the vinyl, and they may cause it to become brittle and prone to cracking over time if used excessively. Therefore, it’s important to use alcohol wipes sparingly and to follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for cleaning and maintaining your vinyl. Or you can go for Armor All for your tonneau cover.

Does vinegar damage vinyl?

Vinegar is a mild acid that can effectively remove dirt and grime from surfaces, including vinyl. However, it is essential to use vinegar sparingly when cleaning vinyl, as it can dry the material and may cause it to become brittle and prone to cracking over time.

If you do decide to use vinegar to clean your vinyl, it is essential to dilute it with water. A solution of equal parts vinegar and water should be sufficient for most cleaning tasks. Be sure to test the solution on a small, inconspicuous area of the vinyl before applying it to the entire surface, as some types of vinyl may be more sensitive to vinegar than others.

After cleaning with vinegar, it is essential to rinse the vinyl thoroughly with water and dry it completely to prevent any residue from being left behind.


Now you get the idea of how to care for a vinyl tonneau cover. After cleaning the cover, your tonneau looks pretty new and polished. Keeping the vehicle accessories clean and protecting against debris and dust is crucial. In this way, give insight into this article to maintain your vinyl tonneau cover for a more extended period of time. 

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