Tonneau covers are some of the most popular aftermarket truck upgrades. Not only do they enhance the look of your truck, but they also serve a very important function of locking down truck bed contents and protecting them from the elements. We were able to install a retractable Peragon aluminum tonneau cover on a 2015 Ford F-150 and would love the opportunity to describe the installation process and our thoughts on using it on our work truck over the past few weeks.
First, it's important to note that the Peragon tonneau cover is an aluminum product that folds (retracts) like an accordion towards the cab side of the truck bed. It's also detachable, you can retract it and pull it out of the bed very quickly, just release a latch and lift it up and out. Because the retractable lid folds up like an accordion, Peragon includes rubber bumpers to protect the lid when it's folded together—crucial if you don't want to damage the aluminum finish. We ordered the Peragon tonneau cover in classic black, but it's also available in arctic white and mossy oak (camo) – plus they can be painted to blend nicely with your existing truck color .
It's hard to talk about features without mentioning options, and the Peragon tonneau has several:
- Stainless Steel Hardware – This is a necessary upgrade if you plan to use your truck for a long time and want hardware that won't oxidize. Stainless steel hardware includes…
- Dual Lock Lever – The standard lock on the Peragon tonneau cover only locks the driver's side, but the Dual Lock Lever Plus also locks the passenger side with the same keyed lock. This does a good job of preventing the decklid from being forced open from the "weak" side when locked.
- Tailgate Seal – This seal is a simple product that will allow you to get a better seal against water ingress from the sides and bottom of the tailgate. It definitely helps reduce the amount of water that gets into the truck bed when the bed cover is in place.
- LED Light – This small LED light shade can be attached to the side of the truck bed to give you some much-needed interior lighting when using the decklid in the closed position.
- Paint Match – Provide Peragon with the color code on the inside of the door panels and they can match the color of your bed cover to your truck.
What's unique about the Peragon Retractable Aluminum Tonneau Lid is that it doesn't take up a lot of space when in use. Some covers roll up into a can, leaving a foot of wasted space at the end of the truck's cab. Hard covers are just as difficult and take up a lot of space when you need to remove them for storage. Peragon's solutions allow you to always get the most out of your truck bed. With a bedspread, your interior storage takes up the entire length of the bed. When you don't need the cover, you can retract it and pull it out. For security, the locking system is reliable and easy to use, with one key for everything. The entire system is very low profile and doesn't disrupt the truck's natural look or stance. Finally, it's worth noting that the Peragon tonneau cover is one of those made in the USA – straight from Wisconsin.
Peragon Aluminum Tonneau Cover Installation
Honestly, I hate IKEA furniture – but I love their instructions. If you're a visual learner, it's a blessing to have a map that shows you how all the pieces fit together. Peragon goes one step further and provides customers with a series of easy-to-follow step-by-step videos detailing each part of the installation process. They then matched those videos with a carefully written, visually-heavy installation manual.
We followed the steps outlined exactly, with only a few hiccups along the way (possibly due to the unusual aluminum bedplate design of the 2015 Ford F-150 truck. Key components include the two aluminum side rails, the tonneau Underneath the deck slides, the brackets and hardware to hold the rails in place, and the hardware to guide the deck in both directions. Part of the difficulty is knowing how to tighten each bolt. We've found that you need to monitor how you applied Lots of torque so you don't start digging the internal retaining nuts into the side rails, or worse, tightening the bolts. Another oddity is the way the right side ramp is positioned. We found that moving the air piston to the secondary position was required in order to keep the aluminum tonneau cover catching on them. Other than these hiccups, installation of the Peragon tonneau cover is actually pretty simple – and fairly quick.
Peragon sells a weather-resistant LED disc light kit, so it's a good option if you want to illuminate the interior of your bed when the comforter is closed. The Peragon Infinity LED light is attached to the last part of the cover (next to the tailgate) with 3M tape and can be removed from its magnetic base if desired. It has multiple modes (flash/front/rear/full/dark) and runs on three AAA batteries. With a run time of over 10 hours in full usage mode, it's a great solution for making sure you can see what you're doing at night.
Using a Peragon tonneau cover
After installation, we tested the operation of the Peragon aluminum tonneau cover and found it to have a very short break-in period. After turning it on and off a few times, it started working flawlessly (in fact, we're not sure, but we 're probably the ones who need a break-in period). The way it works is that you unlock the lid via the integrated key lock, pressing between the front two folding panels to start retracting in an accordion motion. This works on the two gas struts that hold the cover in place. Then gradually continue to let the panels fold closed and secure with straps (if needed). If you're not careful, the retracting action could trap your finger between the folded aluminum sections, so be sure to control the speed of the retraction by starting the process and then feeding the lid in slowly.
To open the lid, you simply pull firmly and continuously on the included strap, which is still attached to the retracted bottom of the lid. This brings the retracted tonneau cover to you, unfolding along the way. It gets harder the farther you pull, but that's just the drag of the system's build across the track's surface area. Finally, you'll see the final fold straighten out – that's the opposite purpose of those gas struts. The action is so smooth, we can most likely attribute that to the use of sealed ball bearing rollers.
It's just as easy to remove the cover completely. You simply retract the hood, detach and remove the gas struts, and press the quick release lever on the right side of the hood. Turn the right side toward the tailgate and you'll find the left side comes right out. Since the entire tonneau cover weighs less than 40 pounds, it's easy to remove and store neatly inside the Super Crew cab (or anywhere else). Try the hard cover!
tonneau cover safety
A single-key lock is standard, but Peragon offers an optional dual-bolt system that includes an additional 3/8-inch heat-treated steel passenger-side deadbolt that can be operated by the same single-key lock. You don't have to use a key lock to operate the lid, but it's so easy that it makes sense to keep that extra level of security. I tend to go local and unlock the lid every time I use it. Since our 2015 Ford F-150 Super Crew has a locking tailgate, once you lock the decklid, the contents of your truck bed are secure – and getting in isn't easy at this point. If your tailgate doesn't lock, you may want to research an inexpensive third-party locking solution that will give you better options for securing your tools and other items in your bed.
Using TracRac SR Ladder Frames with Peragon Tonneau Covers
When you use a traditional tonneau cover, you end up with a product that typically covers the bed rail. Whether your cover rolls up, folds down, or lifts all the way off the top of your truck bed, you're less likely to add accessories like ladder racks. Since the side rails used by the Peragon aluminum bed cover are actually attached primarily to the inside of the truck bed, you can still add compatible ladder frames. We chose the TracRac SR sliding truck rack, which fit perfectly on top of the Peragon tonneau side rails, giving us the best of both accessories.
The Peragon aluminum tonneau cover is a really great system that works – and looks like it will continue to do so for many years to come. It's a relatively simple install (love the videos!), has durable components, and is made in the USA. It gives you more space and more flexibility than most other tonneau cover solutions we've seen. The only suggestion we can make is the inclusion of some sort of integrated fastening system to secure the folded tonneau cover when you need to open the bed. I opted to use an open bungee cord which slides into place easily and doesn't pose a scuffing risk to the cover.