5 Truck Accessories You Should Get First

There are so many OEM and aftermarket truck accessories out there that it can be hard for a truck owner to decide which ones to get first. Usually, it’s a good idea to get the most useful stuff put on first – and it’s best to have some things installed at the dealership.

For example, every truck needs running boards, a tonneau cover, and a bed liner. Rally lights and a tow kit can also add functionality to your truck. Let’s take a closer look at the truck accessories you need to get first.

1)   Running Boards

Running boards are a necessity for anyone who isn’t 6’5”, and even if you are tall, your passengers may not be, and they’ll appreciate the step up. A good set of truck running boards should bolt directly to your truck’s frame, not to its body. Truck running boards and nerf bars that bolt directly to the frame of the vehicle are sturdier than the kind that bolt to the vehicle body.

You can buy electronic truck running boards that fold up under your truck while the doors are closed and extend when you open the doors, but these are a lot more expensive than the normal, stationary kind. If you live in an area that gets snow in the winter, or coastal winds, reconsider buying chrome running boards – the salt, whether from the sea or from winter salt trucks, can eat away at the chrome finish and you may have to replace them in as little as a year or two.

2)   Tonneau Cover

Most people get a pickup truck because they want to be able to haul loads. However, you also want to keep your loads safe and dry. A watertight, locking tonneau cover will keep your stuff protected from elements and secured by a lock and key. Make sure you get a cover that folds up and out of the way, so you can still put taller stuff in your truck bed when you need to. Aluminum tonneau covers are sturdier and harder for thieves to break into. If you want to get fancy, you can even get a retractable tonneau cover that can be connected to your truck’s electrical system.

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3)   Bedliner

Throwing stuff into an unlined truck bed can leave deep scratches on the paint, and can even cause dents and other damage. You can buy spray-in and drop-in bedliners, plus truck mats and rugs that only cover the bottom of the truck bed. A spray-in bedliner is best because it attaches to the truck bed – there’s no gap between the liner and the bed where moisture and debris can creep in and damage the bed itself. A spray-in bedliner protects the entire inside of your truck bed – bottom, walls, and tailgate – and provides a non-slip surface so that cargo is more likely to stay put. They also give you better traction if you’re standing in the truck bed loading and unloading. 

4)   Rally Lights

Rally lights were designed for rally drivers, who need additional lighting in poor weather conditions and darkness. Additional lighting on the front of your vehicle helps you see further down the road at night, and that gives you more time to react to whatever might be happening in the road ahead. When weather conditions are suboptimal, you need that extra reaction time to stop safely. Rally lights can be useful if you frequently drive in poor weather conditions or at night, or if you do a lot of off-roading or camping at night and need more light to see the terrain ahead.

5)   Tow Kit

If you plan to tow anything with your truck, you’re definitely going to need a tow kit. Even if you don’t have definite plans to tow a lot of things, it can be useful to have a tow kit when you need one. And a tow kit can increase your truck’s resale value when you decide it’s time for a newer model.

It’s fairly easy to choose a tow kit – they come labeled with how much they can tow. You should have your tow kit installed by a professional. Make sure you get tow straps too – and consider the weight of your truck when choosing a tow strap capacity.

With so many truck accessories to choose from, it can be hard to decide which ones to get first. Start with the accessories that will protect your truck, like a bedliner, and move on to the ones that will increase your truck’s comfort and usefulness the most. Pick and choose just what you want to make your truck your happy place.

Featured photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels.