Applying Bed Liner the SMART Way
The pickup truck is a uniquely American symbol. It signifies durability, strength, and the ability to do a variety of jobs - from moving a friend’s furniture to hauling rugged loads. As the pickup truck has become more commonplace, owners are looking for ways to maintain a clean yet durable appearance.
In the 1990s, sprayable bed liners were introduced into the market, marking a significant improvement to plastic pre-fabricated liners. The sprayable bed liners provided excellent protection from dings, scratches, and corrosion. However, at $500 to $1,000 per application, the option was somewhat cost prohibitive. New and improved Do-It-Yourself bed liners are now available to common users, costing a fraction of the price while still providing excellent protection.
The SMART Bed Liner Kit (SMT2930 black and SMT2931 tintable) fits the needs of customers who want benefits such as UV protection as well as corrosion and abrasion resistance. In addition, these kits are perfect for other applications such as sound deadening, water proofing, and anti-slipping for other areas like trunks, underbody, concrete, and more. Today, we see our SMART bed liners being used on the exterior of Jeeps and hunting buggies. We’ve seen the liners used on the interior of classic cars and even on the decks of boats. The uses are becoming nearly limitless.
While the application of the SMART bed liner is relatively easy, it is not without pitfalls if not done correctly. If you follow the six Ps - Proper Preparation Prevents Poor Paint Performance - you can realize the benefits of a top quality lining. I’m going to share with you my experience of applying dozens of bed liners and how you can ensure a lifetime of superior results. I’ll also point out some areas you’ll want to focus on as you or your customers are prepping and applying our bed liner kit.
As always, be sure to review the product’s technical data sheet for specific materials and application recommendations (ex. mix ratios, sandpaper recommendations, flash times, dry times, etc.).
STEP 1- Use a good solvent wax and grease remover. Ensure the area is completely clean and allow to thoroughly dry. Improper or incomplete cleaning and prep is one of the top reasons for product failure.
STEP 2- Mask areas not to be coated using automotive grade masking materials.
STEP 3- Thoroughly sand the application area making sure to get into all areas and grooves to ensure proper adhesion.
STEP 4- Use a final cleaner to remove any surface contaminants and sanding debris.
STEP 5- Treat bare metal areas with an etch primer and allow it to dry thoroughly.
APPLYING THE BED LINER
STEP 1- Use technical data recommendation for mix ratio of product.
STEP 2- Apply using the proper Schutz gun and evenly dispense product at recommended PSI.
STEP 3- Allow 60 minute flash time between coats. Apply a maximum of three coats.
Application tip: To obtain preferred texture or slip resistance, adjust distance from panel and air pressure (a lower air pressure provides a greater droplet, making the texture coarser).
Following these simple steps and the manufacturer’s instructions will ensure a top quality lining that will outlive the life of the vehicle. The liner will work as intended and provide outstanding protection and customer satisfaction.
If you have any further question, don’t hesitate to contact your local FinishMaster team member.