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Best Hard Folding Tri-Fold Tonneau Covers: Increase the Protection in Your Truck Bed

Here are the best choices for covering up your truck bed.

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BY/ LAST UPDATED ON February 8, 2022

Pickup trucks offer an amazing capacity to get work done. For towing and hauling a truck is the default option, and they can make for exceptional off-road rigs and family cruisers when properly optioned, too.

Of course, the truck's most unique and useful feature – its open bed – also represents its biggest design compromise. An open bed is at the mercy of the elements, and, unless modified, doesn't offer much security for any of the gear it's so adept at carrying.

Thankfully the truck aftermarket has a long-standing solution to help shore up the compromise of an open bed: a hard folding tonneau cover. Made from durable materials and affixed directly to a truck's bed, one of these covers can lock in your valuables and lock out the weather and would-be thieves. Take a look at our list for some great hard-folding tonneau covers options, right here.

Best Overall

BAKFlip MX4 Hard Folding Truck Bed Tonneau Cover

Summary
The ability to  expose the entire bed makes this a solid choice. The practicality of leaving stake pockets open cements it's practicality. 
Pros
  • Flips completely out of the way to uncover entire bed
  • Aluminum construction 
  • backed by a 5-year warranty 
Cons
  • Premium price point 
  • Quality control issues are common 
Best Value

DNA Motoring Hard Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover

Summary
An affordable way to add a hard folding cover to your loadout. It's easy to install and the warranty makes it hard to ignore. 
Pros
  • Affordable price point 
  • Easy to install 
  • Lightweight construction
Cons
  • Covers stake pocket holes 
  • Quality can see improvements 
Honorable Mention

BAK BAKFlip G2 Hard Folding Tonneau Cover

Summary
Yet another cover that flips entirely out of the way. It too leaves the stake pockets open, and the lower than average price makes it a clear choice for many truck owners. 


Pros
  • Flips to uncover entire bed
  • Does not cover stake pocket holes 
  • Backed by a 5-year warranty
Cons
  • Quality control issues are relatively common
  • May not fit some makes and models properly
Best Hard Folding Tri-Fold Tonneau Covers: Increase the Protection in Your Truck Bed

Our Methodology

We can’t put our own hands on every item available. In these instances, we put our collective experience in journalism, research, and prior product testing to use to make our product picks. Items that are used by our own staff may get earnest endorsements as well, but we’ll never accept fees or bonuses to sell you stuff we’re not actually excited about. Affiliate revenue is always disclosed. 

The Drive aggregates reviews and research from all over the internet to figure out which products are worth buying. We also put out shopping guides to help you understand how to assess the value of these things on your own. As our editorial cousins at Car Bibles say, “Knowledge is horsepower!

Best Hard Folding Tonneau Covers Reviews & Recommendations 2021

Specs

Manufacturer: BAK

Part Number: 448121

Panel Count: Four

Pros:

  • Flips completely out of the way to uncover entire bed
  • Aluminum construction 
  • backed by a 5-year warranty 

Cons:

  • Premium price point 
  • Quality control issues are common 

 

It's hard to argue that any hard folding tonneau cover is better than the Bakflip MX4. The decision to crown it with the title of Best Overall is primarily based on the ability to uncover the entire bed as needed. Unlike many others, all panels can lift up and out of the way, eliminating the need to remove the cover altogether to transport large cargo, and that's still something of a gamechanger there is to like, though. It's also made from aluminum to provide the best mix of weight savings and security and is backed by a 5-year warranty.

 

As for the downsides, it is one of the costliest options out there. Despite that, there are far too many reports of quality control issues to ignore. 

Specs

Manufacturer: DNA Motoring

Part Number: TTC-HARD-001

Panel Count: Three

Pros:

  • Affordable price point 
  • Easy to install 
  • Lightweight construction

Cons:

  • Covers stake pocket holes 
  • Quality can see improvements 

There's no question that hard folding covers are often priced out of budget for truck owners, which is why DNA Motoring is an obvious candidate for many. At roughly half the price of the bigger name brands, it's a hard folding cover that does many things well. The aluminum panels offer the structural rigidity you demand, it's easy to install and doesn't look half bad. And no, it's not overly cumbersome with a weight of just 70-lbs.

 

While it's good, it's certainly not the best. It does block the stake pocket holes, which can cause some considerable issues — namely, preventing the use of bed rails and other accessories. Also, it is apparent that quality can see improvements, especially when it comes to the seals, creating some fitment issues. 

Specs

Manufacturer: BAK

Part Number: 226227

Panel Count: Three

Pros:

  • Flips to uncover entire bed
  • Does not cover stake pocket holes 
  • Backed by a 5-year warranty 

Cons:

  • Quality control issues are relatively common
  • May not fit some makes and models properly

BAK is back at it, but this time the BAKflip G2. This is an affordable alternative to those that want the legendary function without going too high in price. This cover features three panels, all of which can be flipped up to provide access to the entire bed. It does not impede the stake pockets, and the low-profile design provides that sleek look many truck owners desire. Of course, it is backed with a 5-year warranty to provide peace of mind when investing a considerable amount of money in a tonneau cover.

 

Unfortunately, this too is stricken with quality control issues and may report that leaks are the primary consequence of manufacturer defects. Furthermore, there are some reports of an imperfect seal toward the tailgate on some trucks, making it worth double-checking the fit for your exact make and model.

 

Specs

Manufacturer: Mopar

Part Number: 82215227AC

Panel Count: Three

Pros:

  • Flips up to expose entire bed 
  • Does not cover stake pocket holes 
  • Easy installation

Cons:

  • Premium price point
  • Limited application compatibility 

RAM owners that prefer the OE will have no other choice than to roll with Mopar. Obviously, the fit and finish is going to be ideal for RAM trucks, but that's not all that's good about this setup. This hard cover is designed to leave the stake pockets wide open and will flip out of the way to expose the entire bed. It's also very easy to install, with no drilling required, and the use of aluminum makes for a lightweight package that won't bog that Hemi down.


As for the drawbacks, the premium price tag is something that will drive many RAM owners elsewhere. That said, it is limited to solely RAM trucks and its limited application coverage does hold it back from ranking any higher.

Specs

Manufacturer: Extang

Part Number: 83905

Panel Count: Three 

Pros:

  • Easy to install
  • Configurations compatible with tool boxes and headache racks
  • Backed by 3-year warranty 

Cons:

  • Covers stake pocket holes
  • Quality control issues are relatively common 

Extang is one of the leading names in this industry, so it's no surprise to see the Sold Fold 2.0 as a top pick. Ease of installation is something many appreciate about this cover, but that hardly separates it from any of the other top offerings. That said, it's the versatility that makes it stand out. This cover can come in configurations that allow the use of tool boxes, headache racks, and more. A solid 3-year warranty also backs it to protect you from anything that may have gone wrong during production. 


Unfortunately, the use of accessories mounted to the front of the bed is all it will work with. This cover does block the stake pocket holes. Also, it is worth pointing out that quality control issues are commonly complained about by reviewers. 

Specs

Manufacturer: Access

Part Number: B1020029

Panel Count: Three

Pros:

  • Sleek, distinctive looks
  • Leaves stake pockets uncovered
  • Backed by 3-year warranty 

Cons:

  • Adhesive on seals can see improvement 
  • Quality control issues are somewhat common

If you don't want a hot tub cover on the bed of your truck, the Lomax is one of the best options out there. It's designed to sit flush with the bedsides to provide that sleek look many truck owners need. That also allows it to leave the stake pockets wide open, making it a practical choice for work trucks, if nothing else. The quality is among the best, which is to be expected from Access, and a standard 3-year warranty backs it. 


As for the drawbacks, the rubber seal is a problem area. The adhesive does tend to let loose over time. Also, it does seem that leaks tend to occur near the corners, which seems to be linked to a quality control issue. 

Our Verdict

If you’re looking for the best of the best, our top choice is the BAKFlip MX4. The convenience, warranty, and practicality are just hard to beat. However, the DNA Motoring Hard Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover is clearly the choice for budget-minded truck owners. What do you prefer? Be sure to let us know what you demand of hard folding tonneau covers! 

What to Consider When Buying Hard Folding Tonneau Covers

Top Brands

BAK Industries

BAK develops tonneau covers to help you use your truck better. There’s the BAKFlip, Vortrak, Revolver, and Rack Contractor Series. Each one is designed for a particular use to fit how you use your truck. One of its popular covers is the BAK BAKFlip G2 Hard Folding Truck Bed Tonneau Cover.

DNA Motoring

DNA Motoring is a relatively new company, setting up shop in just 2007. Since then, it's targeted and developed products in a number of segments including everything from racing to passenger trucks. The DNA Motoring Hard Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover is but a sample of its lineup. 

Extang 

Extang has been hard at work developing tonneau covers since 1982. Since then, it's grown to become a leader in innovation, quality, and warranties. In 2007, it was acquired by Truck Hero, and the Solid Fold 2.0 is an excellent example of what this titan is capable of.

Access 

Access is another veteran of the territory with roots stemming back to 1991 when it introduced the Original Roll-Up Cover. Fitment and quality are the two key ingredients to its success, and that can be seen in the Access Lomax.

Key Features

Vehicle Compatibility

All truck bed covers are constructed with a particular vehicle in mind. There is no universally compatible bed cover. Even when trucks have the same bed length, their body styling can cause them to require different covers. It's essential to make sure a cover is an exact match to your application's year, make, and model, as well as the specific bed size. Keep in mind that there is no standard when it comes to measurements of the bed, and you may want to research the method your application uses to verify proper length. 

Ease of Use

Some hard tonneau covers are easier to open, latch, and fold than others — and you want one that allows you the highest level of convenience. A cover that’s easy to lift and maneuver will make you more likely to use all of its benefits and folding configurations. It’s also a good idea to find a cover that’s simple to adjust if needed to carry different types of items. The best hard folding tonneau covers are those that make getting to your gear happen in just seconds, with little difficulty.

Materials Used

The reasons to consider hard covers over soft covers are improved durability, security, and aesthetics. The use of high-quality metals, powder coating, seals, and latches are all key to a cover's success in these areas. Since all manufacturers will claim to use nothing but the best, it's necessary to read reviews for real-world evaluations of performance before purchasing.

Profile  

The profile may seem like it's related purely to aesthetics, but that's certainly not the case. High-standing hard tonneau covers often sit on top of the bedsides. This can create the appearance many prefer, but it does block the stake pockets. If you intend to use the stake pockets for tie-downs or bedside rails, you will need to select a cover that uncovers them, which generally means opting for a low-profile tonneau cover.

Hard Folding Tonneau Covers Pricing

If you're buying a hard folding tonneau cover, you can expect to pay at least $500. Very few exist in that price range, though, and you're more likely to spend $800-$900. Going for the best offerings on the market can inflate the price well beyond that point, as some of the premier covers in this segment bring in $1500 or better.

Tips

  • All tonneau covers are designed to fit a specific truck bed model and size. Look at the compatibility list of each cover you consider before buying one. 
  • It helps to know the exact dimensions of your truck bed. This way, you can get an idea of how much room a cover will take up while folded.
  • Double-check a cover's installation once you are finished setting it up for the first time. Make sure everything is tight and secure. 

FAQ

Q. Why should I buy a folding cover?

Folding tonneau covers are more convenient than solid, one-piece designs. They allow easy access to the bed, and can be installed or removed with minimal effort. 

Q. Is a hardcover better than a soft one?

That depends on how you look at things. Some people prefer the simple and affordable soft covers, while others demand the durability and security of a hard cover. It ultimately comes down to preference. 

Q. What do I need to install a folding hard tonneau cover?

For the most part, all you will need are some basic hand tools and possibly a helping hand. Some do require drilling and modification of existing bed liners, which is why it's best to read to instructions. 

Q. What is the best hard folding tonneau cover?

When it comes to choosing a folding cover, we like the BAKFlip MX4.  It's convenient, practical, and well made. The ability to flip the cover away, revealing the entire bed is a function that's just too hard to overlook. 

Q. Can I go through a car wash with a tonneau cover?

Yes. You can go through the carwash with a tonneau cover. You should make sure everything is latched securely before doing so to prevent getting excessive water in the bed, though. 

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