Pickup truck owners know that a tonneau cover is an essential accessory for securing gear in the truck bed. A high-quality tonneau can protect your cargo from weather and prying eyes. But the most important feature of any tonneau cover is how well it locks. You want sturdy, tamper-proof locks to keep your valuables safe from thieves.
So what are the best tonneau cover locks on the market today? Here we will review some of the most secure and convenient lock designs to consider for your new tonneau purchase.
What Makes A Good Tonneau Cover Lock?
When evaluating tonneau cover locks, you want to look for a few key features:
- Strength – The locks should be made of hardened steel or thick aluminum to resist cutting and prying. The more lock points the better.
- Weatherproofing – Look for locks that are sealed and/or coated to prevent rusting and corrosion over time.
- Ease of use – The best locks allow you to secure and access the tonneau cover quickly without fussing with separate keys or combos.
- Tailgate sensor integration – Advanced systems can connect with your tailgate lock to trigger an alarm if the tonneau is tampered with.
- Locking positions – Quality locks allow you to secure the tonneau cover in multiple positions, not just fully closed.
Keeping these factors in mind, let’s look at some of the toughest and most convenient tonneau locks available.
One of the most heavy-duty tonneau cover locks comes with the Renegade Cover. This truck bed cover uses thick aluminum construction with an integrated rail system. The rails have multiple locking positions to accommodate gear of different sizes.
What makes the Renegade lock stand out is the simple paddle lock design. Each side has 4 hardened steel lock rods that drop into place with the turn of a key. So there are 8 lock points total creating a virtually impenetrable barrier.
Renegade Covers come in both hard folding and retractable styles. The folding cover has dual paddle locks on each side while the retractable version has one. But both offer the same uncompromising security that Renegade is known for.
Owners love the rugged simplicity of these tonneau locks. There are no separate lock boxes or combos to mess with. Just turn the key and go – it couldn’t be easier to safeguard your truck bed.
GatorTrax Retractable Tonneau
Truck owners needing a retractable tonneau should look at the GatorTrax. This roll-up cover consistently earns high ratings for its smooth operation and integrated lock system.
The GatorTrax employs industrial-grade aluminum slats joined by weatherproof hinges. These heavy-duty materials prevent sagging over time and enable the cover to glide open and closed effortlessly.
Locking it in place is a snap thanks to the secure side-click latches. You simply turn the attached paddle lock on each side to engage or release the spring-loaded latches. With a total of 4 lock rods securing the tailgate and cover, your cargo stays protected.
One advantage of the GatorTrax is the ability to lock in intermediate positions. Just apply the paddle latches wherever you want the cover opened or closed. This way you can accommodate loads of different sizes and shapes.
For even more security, GatorTrax offers a dual paddle lock upgrade. Having 2 locks on each side doubles the lock points to keep your gear truly safe from thieves.
Roll-N-Lock M-Series Retractable
In the retractable tonneau cover category, the Roll-N-Lock M-Series sets the bar for security. This sturdy cover features aircraft-grade aluminum slats coated in a thick vinyl. The low-gloss black finish looks great on any truck.
But what really makes the M-Series cover stand out is the patented Rotary Latch lock system. This ingenious design uses a rotating brake drum mechanism to lock the tailgate in place. No other tonneau can match the 26 lock points that grip around the perimeter of the M-Series tailgate.
The Rotary Latch allows you to lock the cover in any position along the rails. So hauling cargo of different sizes is no problem. Opening and closing the dual-coated vinyl cover is easy too thanks to the torsion spring drive system. Just pull the strap to roll up the cover – no need to mess with unlatching anything first.
Truck owners needing maximum cargo security should check out the Roll-N-Lock M-Series. The unrivaled Rotary Latch design sets a new standard for tonneau cover security.
Access Roll-Up Cover
Truck owners looking for an affordable retractable tonneau will want to consider the Access Roll-Up Cover. This vinyl cover offers smooth operation plus adequate security from its full-length aluminum slats and durable latches.
Opening and closing the cover is easy thanks to the torsion springs integrated into the rails. Just release the tailgate latches and pull on the attached strap to roll up the cover. Latching it back down only takes a moment too.
While not as heavy-duty as premium roll-up covers, the Access does include lock rods on each side to properly secure cargo. Turning the attached paddle lock engages the rods into the side rail for a full perimeter seal.
For added protection, some truck owners add aftermarket locks onto the existing latch system. This disables the factory key and improves security against break-ins.
Overall the Access Roll-Up Cover provides truck owners an affordable way to secure their cargo with a retractable tonneau. While not impenetrable, the lock system does deter most smash-and-grab theft attempts.
BAKFlip G2 Hard Folding Cover
Folding tonneau covers offer their own set of advantages for truck owners. And one of the best options for security is the BAKFlip G2. This robust folding cover features heavy-duty aluminum panels coated with a textured matte finish.
Locking the panels in place requires just an easy turn of the attached lever. This rotates the high-strength latches underneath to grip both sides of the cover. The latches lock tightly to the bed rails to prevent prying or lifting of the panels.
For even greater security, the BAKFlip G2 has an integrated tailgate lock as well. This extra lock rod connects with your tailgate latch to protect that access point too. So with locks on all sides and panels, your cargo stays fully protected.
The low-profile matte finish of the BAKFlip G2 looks sharp on any truck. And folding up the panels takes just seconds when you need full bed access. If you like the versatility of a hard folding cover, the G2 provides plenty of strength and security.
UnderCover Flex Hard Folding Cover
Another premium hard folding cover with sturdy lock systems is the UnderCover Flex. The Flex has a smooth glossy finish to accent your truck’s paintwork. And the flexible polymer panels ensure this cover will never crack, warp or dent.
Keeping cargo secure is a simple process with the Flex’s EZ-Lock system. Just use the attached clamp to engage the powerful rotary latches along the sides and tailgate. The latches grip tightly and sit flush to prevent prying. The low-profile locks add minimal bulk or protrusion.
Owners love that the Flex cover allows partial opening of the panels over the truck cab. This provides easy access to cargo in front of the bed without needing to fold the entire cover open.
Overall the UnderCover Flex earns high marks for its resilient panels and flawless operation. The integrated EZ-Lock system keeps your cargo locked down safely.
Lift-Assist Hard Folding Covers
A recent advancement in hard folding truck covers is the addition of gas struts for easy lifting. These “lift-assist” designs make opening and closing the heavy panels effortless.
Covers like the BakFlip MX4 and TruXedo TruXport feature dual struts on each panel. These provide lift assistance without compromising security. They use the same heavy-duty side locks and latches as standard hard folding covers.
The struts are a great convenience feature when you need to access cargo frequently. No more struggling with heavy panels or unsightly support rods. Just release the locks and watch the panels gently rise into place.
Lift-assist covers provide the best of both worlds – security and convenience. Truck owners who need regular bed access should consider these innovative hard folding designs.
Smart Tonneau Controls
Another high-tech advancement for tonneau covers is smart controls operated through a phone app. These covers integrate remote sensors and electronic locking mechanisms as part of a complete security system.
For example, BakFlip’s FiberMax cover features their BakBox system. This lets owners monitor and operate their cover from an iOS or Android app. You can do things like:
- Check cover status (open/closed)
- Lock and unlock the cover
- Receive alerts if the cover is opened or tampered with
- Automate cover opening upon vehicle approach
Retractable covers like the Roll-N-Lock A-Series offer similar smartphone control options. The key advantage being that you don’t need your keys to lock and unlock the cover. Just tap the app from anywhere.
Smart covers like these add convenience and prevent any guessing about the status of your tonneau security. With remote capability, any attempt to access the cover triggers an instant alert to your phone.
Combination Cable Locks
If your tonneau cover lacks built-in locks, a good add-on option is a combination cable lock. These flexible steel cables loop through grommets or latch holes to secure the cover in place. The toughened steel resists hacksaws and bolt cutters to provide reliable protection.
The combination locks allow you to set your own numeric code. So there’s no need to keep track of separate keys. Just remember the combo and you can unlock the cable in seconds.
Some good cable lock options for tonneaus are:
- Master Lock Street Cuff
- Trimax TCL65
- McGard 75007
By running the cable through both sides and the tailgate, you can deter thieves even with an unlocked tonneau cover. The cables are also handy for securing gear inside the truck bed.
Adding padlockable hasps is another way to improve security if your tonneau lacks built-in locking. The hasps install into the cover’s side rails or panels and allow you to thread a sturdy padlock through.
TruXedo’s Edge series hasps can be riveted anywhere along the cover rails. Other brands like Rev make adhesive hasps that stick onto folding panels or retractable ends.
Padlocks are available in all different grades from laminated steel up to solid brass for extreme weather resistance. Just be sure to get heavy shackle padlocks (at least 9/32” shackle thickness) for optimal security.
Some good brands for hardened padlocks are Master Lock, ABUS, and American Lock. With hasps and a stout padlock on each side, you can transform an unlockable tonneau into a highly secure one.
With so many options now available, truck owners should have no trouble finding tonneau locks that meet their needs. Whether you want integrated locks, smart controls, or simple add-on solutions, there are good ways to secure your cover.
When choosing locks, prioritize strength and ease of use so you’ll actually use them consistently. Built-in locks with minimal separate keys or combos are ideal for everyday convenience.
And don’t forget enhanced security options like touchpad entry and app connectivity. With the right tonneau locks, you can relax knowing your truck bed cargo and personal gear are protected.
So do your research and take your time selecting the ideal tonneau cover locks. The small investment will pay dividends every day in safeguarding your truck’s contents from thieves and weather damage. Peace of mind is invaluable when it comes to your vehicle’s storage security.