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GMC Sierra Bed Liners Explained

By:  Zach Wright  / Sep 25 2019
GMC Sierra Bed Liners Explained

Your Sierra is a vessel, designed to transport people, tools, and whatever you can hitch onto your truck or whatever you can fit in the bed. Arguably the biggest reason to own a pickup truck like the Sierra is to have a bed that you can use for storage, transportation, shelter, and a long list of other items. To keep your cargo contained and to protect the longevity of your truck, you will want to consider a bed liner. This guide will go over everything you need to know when it comes to GMC Sierra bed liners.

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Hauling and carrying are among the many uses for having a pickup truck. For this task, a bed liner made from tough material that is resistant to spills, chemicals, and normal wear and tear can save you a lot of money. It also helps minimize the damage from dings and scrapes from the usual hauling routine, transporting heavy or several objects.

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What is a Sierra Bed Liner?

A Sierra bed liner is an aftermarket insert that covers the inside of your truck’s bed. Bed liners can either start at the top of the bed, completely covering both sides, or simply just cover the bottom of the bed only, leaving the sides exposed. Bottom bed liners tend to have a small lip to them, helping to keep any loose materials contained within the liner instead of working their way out and slipping under the liner. 

Benefits of Using a Sierra Bed Liner

  • Make transporting materials easier
  • Help you unload your cargo easier
  • Keep the body/metal of your bed area in good shape
  • Help to keep the resale value high

Outfitting your GMC Sierra with a bed liner is a relatively inexpensive upgrade that can provide huge dividends for you later down the road. Adding a bed liner to your Sierra will reduce the number of dings, scrapes, and damage the inside of your bed receives from all the abuse it takes because the liner creates a protective layer in between your cargo and your truck. Having this protective layer in your Sierra’s bed will not only add a small amount of value to your truck, but it will also help you snag a higher asking price if you should ever sell your truck. 

Sales numbers aside, bed liners can help to take some of the stress and pains of hauling cargo out of the truck equation. When you are hauling something messy, it can often be hard to clean out your bed when it is the bare metal, but with a bed liner it is much easier to hose down and clean out. If need be, you can even remove the liner to thoroughly clean it.

Sierra Bed Liners vs. Bed Mats Explained

A Sierra bed liner is typically made from a composite plastic/silicone/rubber type of material and more often than not is hard/rigid (not all are, but a solid majority). Sierra bed mats are softer, not rigid, and use a thick carpet-like material such as polypropylene. Bed mats are designed to be resistant to spills, chemicals, and normal wear and tear, which they do a great job of combating. However, a bed liner will offer much stronger defenses against spills and abuse. 

Bed mats are great if you are transporting more sensitive cargo as the mats work to absorb some of the shock that comes through the frame, but bed liners are better suited for construction jobs and rigorous outdoor work such as mulching, lawn care, power tool/vehicle transportation. Bed mats tend to be much easier to remove on a whim than bed liners as they are secured by a system of Velcro straps/patches and can be undone quickly while staying secured under normal conditions.

How Much Does a GMC Sierra Bed Liner Cost?

Sierra bed liners and mats run the spectrum in terms of price. On the low end, you can expect to spend right around $90 to $100 on a bare-bones bed liner, but for a more robust option, you can expect to spend right around $400 to $600. There are a lot of solid options great for any type of enthusiast right in the $150 to $300 range. It all depends on what you are looking for. ​​

How Hard is it to Install a Bed Liner on My GMC Sierra?

Installing a bed liner on your GMC Sierra is a relatively easy task that can be taken on and accomplished by just about any enthusiast of any skill level. While not all bed liners or mats are designed the same and will require different install steps, by in large it is an upgrade designed to be relatively straightforward to install. 

For a small number of bed liners, you may need to drill into your bed to secure the liner to the truck, but others use adhesive materials, fasteners, and existing hook-up points in your bed. Sierra bed mats will require you to install a series of Velcro patches to connect the mats to which is done with an adhesive material. For install time, you are looking at anywhere from a half hour to two hours depending upon which one you go with.

If this feels like a job that is too much for you to take on, don’t sweat it. Just about any mechanic or body shop you can take your truck to will be able to install a bed liner for you. As far as price goes, expect to spend anywhere from $50 to $300 depending upon the type of bed liner and how involved the install process is.

Did My Sierra Come with a Bed Liner from the Factory or Dealer?

While bed liners are a popular aftermarket upgrade for Sierras, some trucks do leave the showroom with them. Typically, this is a dealer added option that they will charge a premium for. Bed liners are not standard equipment, but are considered optional equipment. You can get a brand new bed liner installed by the dealer when you go to pick up your brand new Sierra, but get your checkbook ready. Dealerships tend to charge top dollar for adding and installing a bed liner on your new GMC truck.

In the grand scheme of things, you would save yourself a decent chunk of money by buying your truck without one and adding one in afterward. Dealerships will sometimes charge up to $1,300 for the addition and installation of a bed liner when instead you could turn to the aftermarket and install one for a third of the price.

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