How do I remove a Snugtop tonneau?

In this article, we will answer the following question: How do I remove a Snugtop tonneau? We will also help you reinstall a Snugtop tonneau cover and explain its purpose and benefits. 

How do I remove the Snugtop tonneau from my truck?

Removing a Snugtop tonneau cover from a truck is quite easy with practice and a few assistants. You just have to follow a few simple steps:

  1. Open the tailgate as well as the rear window of the pick-up truck lid.
  1. Disconnect all wiring connections on the inside of your Snugtop tonneau to the third brake light and interior tonneau light if applicable. This is essential to avoid snagging or damaging them when the Snugtop tonneau is removed. While more pigtail electrical connections, if installed correctly, feature simple plug-in connections, you may need a pair of wire cutters to cut the wires.
  1. Mark the inside of the bed rail to the cart cap joints in several places with a grease pencil or marker if you intend to replace the Snugtop. This will help you realign the cover during reinstallation.
  1. Remove the four clamps from the Snugtop to the four corners of the truck bed.   Remove the four cap clamps at each corner of the truck bed. If cap staples are used to hold the tonneau off the bed rails, a socket wrench will be required. Some people use regular C-clamps to hold the caps to the bed rails.

Although most clamps can simply be loosened by turning the clamping handle in a counterclockwise direction, you may need a socket wrench set to remove the bed cover if special pliers were used.

  1. Lift the Snugtop off the rails with the help of at least three other people so there is at least one person in each corner of the tonneau. Take the Snugtop to a safe place and gently put it down. You can do this with a single helper if you wish – one on each side – but if you care about the paint job on the bed rail or lid, it is best to have enough manpower to do the job efficiently and carefully.

Some tips for removing a Snugtop tonneau safely:

  • If you are thinking of replacing the Snugtop, you can leave the foam padding, if applicable, on the bed rail. Although it is best to remove and replace for sealing purposes, the decision is up to you. If you are removing the Snugtop permanently, you can find the cleaning solution at most auto parts stores to clean the sticky foam padding from the bed rails without damaging the paint on the bed rails.
  • Make sure not to leave the cable connections cut with scissors or pigtail plug connections open and vulnerable to the environment. Most cap electrical connections integrate the tail light harness. Leaving them vulnerable can create future electrical problems with the truck’s rear lighting!

How to install your Snugtop tonneau cover?

Snugtop tonneau covers are a great way to add storage space to your truck. Truck beds have long been a convenient way to transport objects or materials that may be oversized or dirty to fit inside a car or truck. A tonneau cover offers protection and shelter from bad weather to protect materials from mould or mildew build-up. Besides, Snugtop tonneaus often have window locks to protect against theft. 

Here’s how you install a Snugtop tonneau cover step-by-step:

  1. Lay strips of foam tape to the bottom rails of the Snugtop cover. This will prevent the tonneau from scratching the paint on your truck. Attach the sticky side of the foam tape to the rails at the base of the carriage bushing.
  1. Lift the lid of the truck and put it on the bed of the truck. Ask for help with this step. You and your helper stand on either side of the top of the truck and lift it onto the bed of the truck. Align the carriage bushing rails with the truck bed rails.
  1. Use C-clamps to secure the cover to the side rails of the truck bed. Clip the tips of the C-clamps onto the carriage bushing and bed rails. Turn the locking screw clockwise to tighten the C clamps. Attach a C-clamp to each of the four corners of the trunk lid, securing the lid to the truck bed and you’re done!

The advantages of using a Snugtop tonneau cover

Snugtop tonneau covers are the perfect addition to any truck. During severe weather, it keeps the truck bed clear from rain or snow, providing dry storage year-round. It also secures the truck bed for the safe storage of tools, materials, and equipment. A Snugtop tonneau cover allows the owner to transport groceries, equipment or other items in rain or shine. 

A tonneau cover is a soft or hardcover placed over the bed of a truck also known to improve aerodynamics and protect cargo. It comes in different styles: some can be retracted or raised, while some can be folded back. There are also different materials used to make tonneau covers, such as vinyl, leather, canvas and polyester for soft covers, and fibreglass and aluminum for hardcovers.

There are many types of Snugtop tonneau covers⁠, the most common of which are:

  • Rollable tonneau covers;
  • Folding tonneau covers;
  • Retractable tonneau covers;

It is essential that you think about what type of tonneau cover you need for your specific needs.

  1. Rollable tonneau covers: Rollable tonneau covers generally close the truck bed at the height of the cab. Provides a locking rear glass door that provides quick access to items located on the truck bed. The second type of tonneau cover, called the high-rise cover, extends the enclosure above the level of the cab. This adds more storage space while protecting the contents of the truck bed from being blown by the wind.
  1. Folding tonneau covers: A truck lid that covers the truck bed at the height of the bed walls, providing a line of sight to the rear cab window. A folding cover offers a stylish design for your truck. 

There are two types of folding tonneau covers: a hard camper shell and a soft camper shell. The hard shell offers the best protection for the truck bed. When the lid is open, the arms extend to hold the lid up while accessing the elements of the truck bed. 

On the other hand, the soft camper shell offers some flexibility if an item is just a little too tall to fit under the cover. Having this flexible space, you can save yourself from having to pay a delivery fee or having to take truck covers off to move an item. However, even a soft cover is not a replacement for the closed space that a Snugtop tonneau cover can offer.

  1. Retractable tonneau covers: These tonneau covers replace the windows typically found on standard truck tops with essential storage space for contractors and other work truck users. The space is completely enclosed and offers features such as toolboxes and a roof rack. Toolboxes give you a place to store the tools you need as you travel from place to place, as well as quick access to your most frequently used tools.

At the same time, the retractable tonneau cover offers ample storage space on the truck bed for the materials needed for each job. While these tips are specifically geared towards contractors, they will provide you with valuable storage space as well.

The bottom line

Removing a Snugtop tonneau cover gets easier with practice. As long as you pay attention to each step, removing your camper shell shouldn’t bring too much hustle and can eventually be done by yourself! We remind you that Snugtop covers come in different styles: some can be retracted or raised, while some can be folded back. Choose the one who fits your needs best!

And if you have any questions or comments on the content, do not hesitate to let us know.

FAQ on How do I remove a Snugtop tonneau cover?

What is a tonneau cover?

A tonneau cover is a soft or hardcover placed over the bed of a truck to improve aerodynamics and protect cargo. It comes in different styles: some can be retracted or raised, while some can be folded back. There are also different materials used to make tonneau covers, such as vinyl, leather, canvas and polyester for soft covers, and fibreglass and aluminum for hardcovers.

Can you sleep under a tonneau cover?

Yes, you can sleep under a tonneau cover. In fact, there are many people who go camping with their pick-ups without a truck camper! 

Are camper shells useful?

Yes, camper shells can be useful. They offer extra space to store your equipment and also protect the truck bed when driving. There are different types and sizes of camper shells, so make sure you choose the one that fits your needs best. 

How much do Leer camper shells cost?

Leer camper shells can cost between $1200 and $1800, including the costs of installation. Leer camper sheets are made from aluminium and are very popular caps for pickups. 


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