6 Essential Truck Accessories

With the right truck accessories at your disposal, you can transform your set of wheels into a truly multi-purpose vehicle. These six accessories are a great way to start tapping your truck’s full potential.

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1. Truck Bed Extender

Increasing your truck's hauling capacity is often possible by adding a bed extender to the tailgate, which can give you several additional feet of carrying space. On the other hand, the tailgate will get a lot of abuse when using a bed extender, since it will used as an extension of the truck bed itself. As such, another useful truck accessory to have is a spare tailgate, since it will almost certainly need replacing several times through the truck's life. 

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2. Tie-Downs and Tow Hooks

Since the whole point of having a pickup truck is to carry around large loads, you'll need to make sure you have all of the necessary steel hooks and tie-down straps. Although many vehicles come with these essential truck accessories, they're often not adequate for securing larger and heavier loads. Although rope tie-downs are the cheaper option, those featuring ratchets are stronger and more versatile, and they don't need to be tied, since they have hooks that attach directly to the frame of the truck bed. 

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3. Loading Ramp

When loading up a truck with large objects, such as wheelbarrows, recreational vehicles and lawnmowers, a loading ramp can make the process far safer and easier. Stored on the truck bed, they don't usually take up a lot of space either. 

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4. Heavy-Duty Toolbox

A lockable steel toolbox provides a safe place to keep any tools you may need, and some are designed to be securely attached to the truck bed. If the toolbox is going to be exposed to the weather a great deal, you'll be best off opting for one with an aluminum and powder-coated steel finish, since they offer improved security and are less susceptible to wear and tear. 

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5. Winch

A cable winch, powered either by its own battery or, preferably, the engine itself, is a useful truck accessory for anyone who regularly needs to carry around heavy loads. Although they normally require professional installation, it's well worth the cost if you need to load heavy objects, such as logs, haystacks and other large items. A powered winch will also come in extremely handy if you need to free a car or tractor which has become stuck in mud or snow. Alternatively, you can purchase an unpowered winch with a crank shaft for a lot less.

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6. Truck Cap or Camper Shell

While a basic tarpaulin or cargo net is usually enough to protect a load from the weather during transfer, a truck cap or camper shell does this and much more. A quality truck cap essentially upgrades a truck into an SUV, and larger camper shells even allow you to turn your truck into a basic campervan when combined with some sleeping gear.