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From Tonneaus to Canopies: An Aussie Guide to Customising Your Ute with the Perfect Tub Accessory

From Tonneaus to Canopies: An Aussie Guide to Customising Your Ute with the Perfect Tub Accessory

Weighing the Pros and Cons of various Ute Tub Storage Solutions

  • Canopy
  • Roller Cover
  • Tonneau
  • Tub Rack
  • Sports Rack
Written by Caine Toad
4 min read

G'day, mates! If you're like me, your ute isn't just a vehicle – it's a loyal companion for work, adventure, and everything in between. We Aussies love our utes, and we love to make them our own. That's why I'm diving into the world of aftermarket tray accessories, where the options are as varied as the roads we drive on.

From the rugged outback to the bustling city streets, our utes need to be as versatile as our lifestyles. Whether you're hauling tools to the job site, packing gear for a weekend bush bash, or just looking to spruce up your ride, there's an accessory out there that's perfect for you. From robust tradie tops to sleek roller covers, and from hardy tonneaus to versatile racks – I've got you covered.

So, strap in and join me on this true blue journey to find the ultimate add-ons that will transform your ute from good to great. Let's explore the ins and outs of these Aussie favourites and find out how to make your ute the envy of the neighbourhood!

Retractable Roller Covers

Roller Cover Pros:

  • Secure and lockable, protecting cargo from theft.
  • Retractable, allowing for flexible use of the truck bed.
  • A sleek design, often flush with the truck bed, enhances the vehicle's appearance.

Roller Cover Cons:

  • Can be expensive compared to other options.
  • The mechanism may take up some space in the truck bed.
  • Moving parts may require maintenance.

Tonneau Covers (Soft and Hard Lid)

Soft Lid Pros:

  • Lightweight and easy to operate.
  • Generally more affordable than hard lids or roller covers.
  • Flexible, and can be rolled up or removed for full bed access.

Soft Lid Cons:

  • Less secure, and easier to cut through than hardcovers.
  • May not be as durable or weather-resistant as hard options.
  • Can sag or flutter at high speeds if not properly tensioned.

Hard Lid Pros:

  • Provides a high level of security.
  • More durable and offers better protection from the elements.
  • Often can be painted to match the truck, offering a custom look.

Hard Lid Cons:

  • Typically more expensive than soft lids.
  • Heavier, can be more difficult to remove for full bed access.
  • May require more effort to install and operate.

Canopies (Steel, Alloy, Fiberglass)

Canopies Pros:

  • Steel Canopies: Highly durable, excellent for heavy-duty use, great security.
  • Alloy Canopies: Lightweight, won't add much weight to the vehicle, good corrosion resistance.
  • Fiberglass Canopies: Good balance between weight and strength, sleek designs, can be painted to match the vehicle.

Canopies Cons:

  • Steel Canopies: Heavy, can affect fuel efficiency and payload capacity.
  • Alloy Canopies: Less durable than steel, more expensive.
  • Fiberglass Canopies: Less secure than metal options, can crack under impact.

Tub Racks (Full-Width/Full-Height vs Half-Width/Half-Height)

Tub Rack Pros:

  • Full-Width/Full-Height: Maximizes storage space, is good for large items, versatile for different uses.
  • Half-Width/Half-Height: Less intrusive, good for carrying smaller items, easier to remove or adjust.

Tub Rack Cons:

  • Full-Width/Full-Height: Can be bulky, and may be difficult to access the truck bed.
  • Half-Width/Half-Height: Limited storage capacity, not suitable for larger items.

Sports Racks

Sports Racks Pros:

  • Ideal for recreational activities, can carry bikes, kayaks, etc., often lightweight and aerodynamic.

Sports Racks Cons:

  • Limited use beyond sporting equipment, may require additional accessories for secure mounting.

Tradie Tops

Tradie Tops Pros:

  • Designed for tradespeople, often come with built-in toolboxes and shelving, secure storage for tools and equipment.

Tradie Tops Cons:

  • Heavy, can significantly reduce payload capacity, often more expensive due to specialized build.

Full Tray Replacements

Full Tray Replacements Pros:

  • Completely replaces the existing bed, highly customizable, can increase payload and versatility.

Full Tray Replacements Cons:

  • Most expensive option, installation can be complex, may affect vehicle's warranty.

Including these options, you have a comprehensive list of aftermarket tray options for pickup trucks, each with its specific benefits and drawbacks. Your choice will depend on your specific needs regarding security, budget, vehicle performance, and the type of cargo you plan to transport.

Make sure to jump into our Online Shop and have a look around if any of our Ute Storage solutions piques your fancy.