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How to Replace Tonneau Cover Straps? Easy to Remove?

If your truck has a soft or hard roll-up tonneau cover, then you already know to roll it up and secure it with the attached buckle when it is not in use. 

The straps on either end are what hold the cover in place when you’re not using it. After prolonged use or because of too much sun and moisture, those straps become damaged.

When you can barely get the straps to close, that’s when you know it’s time to change them. There’s no need to worry if you don’t know how to replace tonneau cover straps, because I’ve listed the steps for you.


How to Replace the Safety Straps of a Tonneau Cover ? 

Here is the simple process to replace the straps.

Step 1: Gather the Required Tools

The following are the things you will need to replace those cover straps:

  • Drill bit #11 (0.1910”)
  • Hydraulic rivet nut tool (or something similar, for the drill bit)
  • Pliers (optional)
  • Vacuum cleaner

Step 2: Open Up the Cover

Unfold the tonneau cover and make sure that it is fully laid out. 

Step 3: Remove Rivet Head

Using the drill bit, detach the rivet head from where one end of the strap is attached. Be mindful that during this step, the rivet might turn along with the drill.

A tip would be to hold onto the rivet with pliers while using the drill bit, so it doesn’t spin.

Step 4: Detach Rivet Sleeve

Take the drill bit again and remove the rivet sleeve. You will be left with a big hole in that spot, which will serve as a space for a larger rivet to be inserted. 

Step 5: Take Out the Cap

At the base of the hinge, there is a small cap. You need to remove that next.

Step 6: Clean Up

You will notice that there are a lot of metal shards and splinters left over from removing the rivet. Now it’s time to bring over the vacuum and clean up any remaining bits of metal from the top of the hinge base and inside it as well.

Do note that this is very important, and you should not skip this step.

Step 7: Install New Straps

Take the new replacement strap. Place the buckle so that it is facing towards the front side of your truck, and at a 90 degree angle from the tonneau cover. The snap button on the strap’s buckle should be facing upwards.

Install the rivet accordingly with the drill bit. You have to be very careful at this step. Because, if the buckle is not installed correctly, you will have to get a completely new buckle and rivet. 

Step 8: Do a Check

Do a check and see if the buckle goes in the tonneau cover properly and that you can attach the snap button on the buckle.

Step 9: Repeat for the Other Side

Repeat steps 3 to 7 for the strap on the other side. 

Step 10: Reinstall the Caps

Put back the hinge base caps with the drill bit. And there you have it – all done and replaced!


How to Choose Replacement Straps for Your Tonneau Cover? 

Generally, you don’t have to be concerned much about compatibility because almost all replacement straps are the same with the buckle system.

Even if you get a non-branded set of replacement straps, there are high chances that they will work for your tonneau cover, regardless of what brand it is. 

However, when choosing the best replacement straps, you can consider:

The Tonneau Cover Manufacturer: If you can get replacement straps from the same company as your tonneau cover, then that will be the best. No need to go through the hassle of additional tools and parts.

Cost: To consider longevity, I would suggest you go for the pricier ones in the market. In the end, it will be a good investment for you.


What Are the Best Replacement Tonneau Cover Straps?

There are plenty of good replacement tonneau cover straps in the market, but my personal favorites would be the one from General Motors and the limited edition one from Access.

Both are extremely heavy duty, and I have recently installed the Access ones on my truck and have no complaints.


Photo of author

Kevin Shaw

Editor-in-Chief at F150Lab

Kevin Shaw has a vast knowledge of pickup trucks, especially the Ford F150. He has been doing various DIY fixes, upgrades, and modifications to pickup trucks for more than five years now.

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