One of the first things that a new truck owner should do is figure out the best way to protect the truck bed. I mean, you are buying a truck for a reason, right? You are going to load it up with tools, furniture, whatever you need to haul, and odds are, the bed is going to get dinged up. Having a quality bedliner can protect the bed from damage, and it will make sure that when you do move on from that truck, the bed will not lose you any money on trade-in or a sale.
Bedliners come in all different types, and each one has unique characteristics that make them a solid choice. However, some types of liners are expensive, and after spending big money on a new truck, the last thing you want to do is spend another bucket of money on a bedliner.
One of the most affordable and effective ways to add a bedliner is to purchase a DIY kit. These kits come with all the parts you need to give your truck bed a protective layer and the beauty is, you save money on installation costs by doing it yourself. Throughout this article, we will review our five favorite DIY bed liners and help you identify the best DIY bedliner for your truck.
Best DIY Bedliners Review – (Updated For 2020)
1. U-Pol Raptor Black Urethane Spray-On DIY Truck Bed Liner
- The kit comes with 4 bottles of truck bed liner base substance, totaling 4 liters.
- It comes in a jet-black color to hide any deep scratches or dings.
- The package comes with an application gun that allows the base and the hardener evenly throughout the application process.
- After the liner is applied and adequate time is given for it to settle, the bedliner will be completely waterproof.
It is hard to find any product on the market that has as good of a reputation as the U-Pol Raptor bedliner kit.
First off, you are getting an awfully good value for a bedliner product with its price tag of under $150. Secondly, even the biggest novices should be able to apply this bedliner product and have professional results.
By following a simple 3:1 ratio of liner base and hardener, you will be able to protect your truck bed from everything that you or the weather can throw at it. It can also be painted with any color you wish so that you can match your truck’s color.
It is completely waterproof while also protecting everything underneath it from rust, dings, and dents. Because multiple coats are usually best when it comes to truck bedliners, another awesome feature of the Raptor DIY kit is that it comes with enough product to apply multiple coats to your truck bed.
The included applicator spray gun is high-quality and distributes the liner and the hardener evenly throughout the application process.
What We Like:
- The included application gun is high-quality, and it is nice that they include it in the package.
- We noticed that after the installation, the bedliner helps reduce any noise and vibration that may come from the truck bed.
- The installation process was quick and painless. There are only two steps to the process, and it will be completely settled in just a few days.
- The amount of liner and hardener that is included in the package is enough to apply multiple coats to the truck bed.
- Many bedliner products require a wax layer but the Raptor does not, which saves time and money.
What We Didn’t Like:
- For best results, a layer of primer is suggested but not included with the package.
2. Custom Coat Black 1 Gallon Urethane DIY Spray-On Truck Bed Liner
- This DIY kit comes in 10 different colors so you can apply whichever one matches your car.
- All the components come packaged in the proper mixing proportions, so you do not need to measure anything.
- The Custom Coat product comes with the choice of a spray-gun applicator or a roller.
- It is entirely waterproof, UV-resistant, and heatproof, which helps protect from corrosion and rust.
We love having options, and the Custom Coat truck bed liner provides us with multiple options that allow us to choose our preferences. With this system, you have the choice of how much product you would like along with the choice of a spray gun or roller applicator. Both are great options and no matter what you choose for an application device, they both work great and will leave your truck bed completely covered.
Another thing we appreciate is the number of color options that you can choose from. Having 10 color options will save you time and money compared to other models when you factor in the painting time and cost of having the liner painted.
The application process is quick and easy, and all the components come in pre-filled amounts that make mixing the liner and the hardener easy as can be. There is no room for error with this system and takes away a lot of the guesswork. We were impressed with the noise-dampening and lack of vibration that was present after the bedliner was installed.
What We Like:
- The 1-gallon kit comes with 4 cans of bed liner base and 4 cans of hardener to allow for multiple applications from 1 kit.
- There are several color choices that you can choose between to match the color of your truck or make it your favorite color.
- The application spray-gun is solidly built and comes with a decent pressure reader.
- Once it is applied, the layer is usually around 10 mm thick and stops vibrations and noise that can come from the truck bed.
- There are several surfaces that you can apply this DIY bedliner to, which makes it extremely versatile and allows you to protect multiple objects, not just your truck bed.
What We Didn’t Like:
- We were hoping the product would cover more surface area.
3. Dupli-Color BAK2010 Bed Armor DIY Truck Bed Liner
- You will have 4 different colors to choose from with this DIY bedliner kit.
- It will work effectively on metal, wood, fiberglass, and concrete with easy application to all.
- There is no shelf-life for unused products meaning you can use it to re-apply your truck bed or use it on something else.
- The finished product is 100% impact-resistant and does not chip, crack, or break.
The first thing you will realize is that this DIY bedliner kit is tough as nails. The first layer has a thickness to it that I have not seen on any other product, and right away, you get a good feeling about applying this to your truck bed.
We were very impressed with the Dupli-Color’s instructions and in-depth manuals that very easily described each step of the process.
The shelf life of this product is also very impressive. Because of this, you can keep the remaining liner and hardener around and use it for easy touch-ups on your truck bed or any other surface that it works with.
Speaking of other surfaces, this DIY bedliner kit will work on a variety of different surfaces allowing you to protect multiple different products outside of your truck bed.
The color options allow you to choose from whichever color best suits your vehicle or you can choose to paint the surface if you would like to. The texture of the bedliner kit is perfect and will not get damaged even during the heaviest of hauling.
What We Like:
- The application process could not be any easier. The instructions are very clear and concise.
- We were very impressed by how well the first layer applied to the truck bed. It does not slip or have any blemishes.
- There is often an odor with some bedliner products, but with the Dupli-Color kit, there is virtually no odor, which makes applying it enjoyable.
- We love that there are 4 different color options to choose from.
- This system works on multiple surfaces, which allows you to add texture and toughness to any surface.
What We Didn’t Like:
- The included application roller is not as high-quality as the product itself.
4. Durabak Brown Textured Roll On Truck Bed Liner
- There are 16 color choices with the Durabak DIY bedliner kit.
- This kit will apply to several different surfaces, including wood, and fiberglass.
- It allows you to choose between a smooth finish or a gritty, more textured surface depending on your preferences.
- There is only one substance that you need to apply, making it the simplest application yet.
The Durabak Kit is one of the easiest DIY truck bed liner kits to install that we have reviewed thus far. All the DIY bedliner kits that we have reviewed require multiple different substances that require mixing but with this system, it is all-in-one. Also, the online manuals and application videos are top-notch and extremely easy to follow.
There are several other features that we love about the Durabak Kit. To begin with, a large color selection is a nice touch. This allows you to save time and money when it comes to matching paint, which is an added expense with most DIY liner kits.
The kit comes with quality rolling brushes, but if you want to apply it via a brush or an applicator spraying gun, those are both options with the DIY bedliner kit.
The non-slip finish is also something we loved. Because of this, you can apply this bed liner kit in multiple different places to protect other surfaces and make things safer. This bedliner product can also attach solidly to wood that allows you to protect specific items like wooden boats and other valuables.
What We Like:
- You can apply this DIY bedliner kit with a brush, roller, or with a sprayer, which we love because that allows us to choose the texture of the finish.
- It does an especially good job with protecting boats from rust, and other damage water may cause.
- Once it is applied, the final product is completely slip-resistant, making it have many different applications.
- The US Navy uses this on tons of their equipment, which makes us feel confident in the product.
- It applies to wood as well, which is rare and a nice feature for a truck bed liner kit.
What We Didn’t Like:
- We strongly suggest using two coats as one does not seem to work well.
5. Al’s Liner ALS-TAN Tan Premium DIY Polyurethane Spray-On Truck Bed Liner
- Al’s Liner comes in three different color options: black, tan, or gray.
- It uses a combination of three liquids to create a polyurethane coating.
- You can choose between applying it with a roller for a flat appearance or applying it via sprayer for a more textured look.
- This kit includes an additional primer to save you a trip to the hardware store.
One of the first DIY bedliner kits on the market, Al’s was a pioneer for folks who like to handle tough jobs on their own. You can customize the finished texture and appearance to be virtually anything you want, and Al’s products come with detailed instructions that explain perfectly how to accomplish this.
Al’s was the first DIY bedliner product that is an acrylic and urethane combination that provides you with a finished product that closely resembles professionally installed bedliners.
One of the best features of this bedliner kit is the versatility it has. Not only can you protect your truck bed from rust, damage, and everything else, this system also works effectively on a multitude of other materials.
Aside from truck bed protection, many folks use this to protect their wood and fiberglass toys from the elements. It will easily apply to either of these surfaces, and installation is just as easy.
If you are someone that wants to keep their cars, boats, and everything else completely protected, Al’s is a great choice.
What We Like:
- This system works effectively on a ton of materials including, wood, fiberglass, and metals.
- Because the three components come packaged separately, you can choose exactly how much you wish to mix, which helps avoid wasting product.
- The tint or color formula is easy to mix-in and apply. Nor does the tint compromise the integrity of the product.
- It is nice that the bedliner can be applied in multiple different ways; both are simple.
- Al’s provides several add-on options that can alter the look and performance of the DIY bedliner.
What We Didn’t Like:
- If you choose to apply the bedliner with a roller, you need to go fast because the mixture sets way too quickly.
BUYING GUIDE: IMPORTANT DIY BEDLINER INFO
DIY Bedliner Kit vs. Professional
There are several factors to consider when deciding between a DIY bedliner kit or having a professional handle this for you.
Before anything, make sure you are comfortable with chemicals being around and that you have adequate space for applying a DIY bedliner kit. If you are good to go, I think you will realize quickly why a DIY bedliner kit is a great choice.
DIY Bedliner Kit
DIY bedliner kits will ALWAYS be cheaper than having a bedliner installed by a professional. Quite frankly, it is not even close. DIY bedliner kits allow you to choose the exact components you need, and many times, they will enable you to measure the exact amount you need for your installation project.
Often, professional bedliner installations will require unnecessary components that increase costs and installation times. For less than $200, a DIY bedliner kit will get you the exact result you are looking for, at a fraction of the price.
Because you will have additional bedliner components left over from your kit, you will have everything you need to fix any small patches or add another layer to your bedliner if needed.
If you went with a professional bedliner, you would always have to refer to the installation company for anything else you need. With the DIY bedliner kit, you always have the option of ordering more components and elements which ensures that you will have consistency across all layers and surfaces that you apply your DIY bedliner kit too.
One of the reasons that DIY bedliner kits are becoming so popular is because of how customizable they are becoming.
Often, you can choose the texture of your finished product with a DIY kit but with many professional products, what you see is what you get. With a DUY bedliner kit, if you want to move from a smooth finish to a textured finish, you have the option by simply applying another coat with a different application device.
If you wanted to do this with a professional product, you may not be able to but on the off chance you can, you will have to bring it back to the shop which is a headache in itself.
DIY Bedliner Kit
One area that professional bedliners take the cake is the warranty department. Because the company that provides your DIY kit does not install your bedliner, they are usually not on the hook for anything that goes wrong with the installation or if the product does not work as it is supposed to.
This should not waiver you from going the DIY route because there are many ways to fix any issues or mistakes, the only difference is that it would be on your dime.
It is no secret, DIY bedliner installation can be a major headache for many people. Often, they require a meticulous measurement of chemicals that when mixed incorrectly, can completely ruin your DIY bedliner kit.
Recently, DIY bedliners are coming with pre-mixed chemicals that are making this a lot easier, but it is still quite daunting for many truck owners.
Instead of dealing with these headaches, some choose to go the professional route for the simple fact that they do not want to apply the bedliner. While this is much easier than doing it yourself, you will pay a pretty penny for it.
Can you add paint to a DIY bedliner?
The simplest way to answer this question is to say, YES! But it is a little more loaded than that. Essentially, almost all DIY bedliner kits will come with a pre-configured color option that you purchase OR the ability to paint the bedliner to the color of your choice.
It depends entirely on the bedliner kit that you purchase and the chemical makeup of the final product. Some combinations of chemicals do not like paint, and it can compromise the structure and integrity of the bedliner. These will often come with a color option that you choose from that allows you to match your truck or boat color.
Other DIY bedliner kits are made up of components that are designed to be mixed and then painted over. The most important thing you can do is research a specific bedliner kit’s ability to withstand paint and ensure that the one you choose is up to the task.
As you saw within our product reviews, nearly all DIY bedliner kits will allow you to have a color option of your choosing, the only thing that differs is how we get to that final color.
A DYI bedliner kit is an awesome option for a lot of truck or recreational vehicle owners that wish to get the most out of their toys. With the ever-evolving technology surrounding DIY bedliner kits, you now have many options to choose from when you are deciding on the best DIY bedliner kit for you. It may