Climb in the driver’s seat of your pickup and mash the gas pedal to the floor. There’s something visceral about growling exhaust, oversize wheels chirping, and leftover gravel tumbling around in your truck bed. You’re proud of your upgraded air intake and Skyjacker suspension lift, but between the doors it’s a different story. If there’s one thing you don’t take pride in, it’s your beat-up interior.
Grease stains on the passenger seat, dog hair on the back bench seat, and a cocktail of who-knows-what-sauces dripped on the driver’s bucket seat. You know where – that spot where it sticks to your seat bottom and your inner pant leg. How embarrassing.
If you’re tired of being the default slob or sloth in your offroading group, there’s an easy solution. Pick up a set of truck seat covers from AutoAnything and you can take care of your truck’s upholstery. Your vehicle maintenance is another story, though, buddy.
- Which Seat Cover Fabrics are Best for Trucks?
- Water Resistant vs Waterproof: What’s the Difference for Truck Seat Covers?
- Should I Buy Custom or Universal Seat Covers for My Truck?
- Which Style of Truck Seat Covers Do I Need?
- How to Look After Truck Seat Covers
Introduction to Truck Seat Covers: Reasons to protect your seats
“Why would I need seat covers? I take great care of my toys.” Whether you’re a beast for beautifying your pickup truck or a beauty that can’t be bothered with truck esthetics, seat covers are an investment you shouldn’t overlook.
Let’s face it, most of us aren’t keen on wiping up the milk dribble on our PJs after a midnight snack, and our vehicles aren’t the exceptions. A truck ends up being a dumping ground for everything – tools you don’t feel like putting away right away, fast food bags you’d rather your spouse didn’t see, the rusty hitch ball you needed last week but couldn’t find, for example.
You need truck seat covers more than you know. Here are some common reasons to consider.
Keep Up Its Resale Value
Trucks ain’t cheap. Sticker prices for new pickups can easily surpass $50K. Depreciation sets in immediately with as much as 30% of its initial value vaporizing in the first year. Poof – gone. There’s not much you can do about normal depreciation, but you can retain more of your truck’s resale value by keeping it in tippy-top shape.
That’s what seat covers for trucks do. It’s expected that you’re going to use your truck like a truck, and that can be hard on your upholstery. But when you protect your seats from spills, stains, tears, and abrasions, the next owner will be willing to part with a few extra pence to purchase your pristine pickup.
Take on the Rough Stuff
All that crap you put your truck through… You throw saws, luggage, and children in the backseat like its no big deal. But all that stuff comes with a cost. A blade tooth can cause a nick or pull in the upholstery that will never look the same. A suitcase is innocuous, right? Up to the point a luggage wheel drags fresh asphalt across the fabric, it is. And children – markers, pencil crayons, glue, or even Play Doh in hand and your backseat looks like a warzone.
A durable set of seat covers for your truck will take the brunt of that damage. Instead of costly repairs for damaged upholstery, you can either launder seat covers or replace them at a fraction of the cost.
Improve Its Appearances
Maybe you had to settle for entry-level instead of a Limited trim. Or maybe you drive a decades-old pickup truck and would rather not invest in recovering the seats at an upholstery shop. You don’t have to accept that your fabric is flawed and looks like it’s older than it actually is.
Low-cost improvements aren’t for cheap people – they’re for financially creative folks. A simple set of seat covers make your truck’s seats look refreshed, even if the seat underneath is torn or frayed.
Protect Against Damaging Rays
Sugar Ray Leonard beat up other badass dudes in the ring. And the sun’s UV rays are more damaging than a left hook from a heavyweight. Fabrics that are lightweight or smooth are especially prone to UV damage, becoming brittle and cracking, but it’s all upholstery that gets beat up by the sun, even leather and canvas.
A sure-fire way to protect your seats from UV damage? Keep them out of the sun. Wrap your truck’s seats in seat covers and you’ll block out the bleaching and degradation. And most truck seat covers are treated to repel UV, so they’ll last longer in direct sunlight than factory-grade upholstery.
Protect Your Work Truck
Your truck is a lease return that has to go back to the fleet manager after three years? You have a long-term rental for a company truck? If you picked up your pickup and have to give it back at some point, the last thing you want is to lose your damage deposit. We all know what shenanigans go on at construction sites, don’t we?
For less than a monthly payment, you can install seat covers that keep your truck’s factory upholstery under wraps and like new. Do your worst while you have the truck. When it’s time to give it back, pull the covers off and pretend like it’s always looked so clean and cared for. The floor mats might not keep the secret, though. That is, unless you get yourself some of those, too.
Which Seat Cover Fabrics are Best for Trucks?
Trucks today have a full range of uses. They’re as useful as a family hauler as they are for a work truck or your typical trailer tower. Which seat covers you choose for your pickup depends on how you plan to out your truck into action.
Plan to pour concrete in a monsoon or take the kids to the beach on a hot summer’s day? There are waterproof fabrics for that. Need truck seat covers that hold up against doggie nails and metal toolboxes? You’ll find a material that works for those needs too. And if it’s just protecting your seats from your mid-morning coffee spill or you’d like to dress up your interior, you needn’t look further than AutoAnything’s selection of seat covers for pickup trucks.
Which seat covers should you choose? Here’s a range of options available for your truck.
Sometimes the budget doesn’t work out and you’re stuck with fabric seats instead of the leather interior you wanted. Bummer. But stepping up to genuine leather seats doesn’t require an upgrade to the highest trim level (which is thousands of dollars more, by the way.) It’s a matter of hundreds of dollars when you buy leather seat covers, starting at around $499 per row.
There are good reasons to choose leather:
- Leather equals luxury. If you want to give your truck a luxury facelift, leather seat covers are a prime opportunity to do just that.
- Leather seat covers often are custom-fit covers that lends themselves to a factory-look finish.
- It can boost your truck’s resale value. You might not be duping a buyer on purpose, but hey, if they want to believe the truck has leather seats, who are you to stop them?
- Against popular belief, leather is a renewable resource. The soft, supple material feels is harvested humanely gives you the new car smell that lasts for months. No other upholstery gives you the rich feeling that leather does.
There are benefits other than appearance, though. Leather may be porous but it’s as close to waterproof as you can get. If you choose perforated leather, you lose the protection against moisture but gain the benefit of ventilation. Everyone hates a sweaty back, no?
But not everyone will appreciate genuine leather truck seat covers. It may not be the best choice if:
- You’re hard on your upholstery. Leather is rather delicate and its appearance diminishes quickly with scratches and wear.
- You have a sensitive disposition to animals. Frankly, leather is cowhide. ‘Nuff said.
- You’re often parked in a hot, humid climate. The hot sun on leather scorches many a shorts-wearing leg in the summer.
You’ll need to treat your leather truck seat covers with care to keep them looking great. Sharp things can puncture or scratch the leather while chemicals and heavily dyed clothes can discolor or damage the surface. It’s a small chance to take for the look and feel leather adds, though.
One of our favorite sets is Coverking Genuine Leather Seat Covers, custom fit and covered by a 2-year warranty.
If you like the look and feel of leather but would prefer a material that’s a bt less finicky, you have choices. Leatherette truck seat covers have a similar appearance to genuine leather yet are manufactured from plastic or vinyl of some sort. There are variations of vinyl, so your seat covers aren’t rigid like flooring. They’re soft and pliable and hold their shape courtesy of a fabric backing.
Don’t think of them as fake leather – that’s not true at all. Leatherette looks an awful lot like leather but think of it instead as an alternative to leather.
The good news about leatherette is pretty widespread:
- It’s a common material. The ingredients for leatherette are among the most readily available materials in the world.
- Leatherette seat covers are waterproof. Because leatherette isn’t porous, it prevents the most difficult spills and messes from getting deep into the material.
- It doesn’t stain easily. Again, not porous like leather. It repels dyes and staining better than pretty much any material.
If you’re looking for a downside, you’ll have to look hard. It really is a great alternative to full-grain genuine leather. Compared to some other man-made materials, leatherette seat covers can be among the more costly options. However, even custom-fit AutoAnything SELECT leatherette seat covers start at just $199 per row so it’s not like you’ll need to rob a bank for these covers.
Genuine suede is also a product of cowhide, but microsuede is not. While it has a very similar look and feel, microsuede is a manufactured material. It’s different than leatherette too – how microsuede is made is nothing at all like leatherette.
You wouldn’t believe it, but microsuede is polyester. Clearly, it’s not polyester in the same shape and pattern as Hawaiian luau shirts, but polyester nonetheless. For all the chemistry geeks out there, it’s a material that forms when purified terephthalic acid (PTS) or its dimethyl ester dimethyl terephthalate (DMT) and monoethylene glycol (MEG) are combined.
There’s no limit to the color variations in polyester, but microsuede is a classy-looking fabric. You’ll primarily find it in neutral colors like beige, tan, black, and brown. You’ll sometimes see it in bold colors too such as red or yellow, in sporty vehicle applications.
If you’re going for a rugged look, microsuede might be a touch outside of your realm. It has fantastic benefits to consider though.
- Microsuede is water resistant, or it can be waterproof if treated.
- It looks rich, much like a genuine suede does.
- Microsuede is much more durable than you’d expect.
- Because it’s man-made polyester, it’s recyclable when it wears out.
You’ll find microsuede truck seat covers from major brands such as CalTrend Microsuede seat covers. Best of all, the have the look and feel of real suede without the price premium of the real deal. Saddleman Microsuede seat covers start at just $143.99 per row.
When you think about canvas, images of boat shoes and prospector tents flash through your brain. They’re made from traditional canvas which is made of tightly woven cotton. Seriously, the weave is tighter than Brittany Spears’ updo, and when it’s treated it’s waterproof (unlike her hair).
Cotton is still an option for canvas truck seat covers today, but most are of the man-made variety. And once again, it’s polyester that shows up as the base material for modern canvas. Polyester is extruded in strands and woven tightly to form a nearly watertight barrier. The material is colorfast and can be manufactured in whatever color you can imagine. For truck seat covers, though, you’re probably thinking neutral, right?
For dog lovers, canvas truck seat covers might make you raise an eyebrow, as if you smell what the Rock is cooking. Rear-seat covers are available to cater to your canine friends with options like Canine Covers Econo Canvas Covers. Because canvas is so durable and resists pulls and snags, plus because it’s water-resistant or waterproof and won’t absorb smells, it’s perfect for pets.
Same goes if you accidentally sit in the driver’s seat with a screwdriver in your back pocket. If there’s any seat cover that can resist punctures round the clock, it’s made of canvas.
Another perk for canvas truck seat covers is the price tag. CoverCraft SeatSaver Seat Covers are an excellent bang for your buck starting at just $87. And because they’re built to last a long time, you’ll probably wear out your truck before you have to replace your seat covers.
What’s the difference between canvas and Cordura and Ballistic truck seat covers? Much appears to be the same across these types of fabrics but not everything is as it appears.
Ballistic nylon is a heavy fabric that has extremely high tensile and tear strength. It was originally designed for the military for combat purposes but let’s be honest – most ammo isn’t going to be stopped with a single layer of fabric anymore. Likewise, Cordura was developed for the military for use in tires and morphed into a material suitable for packs and other rugged gear. Science doesn’t know why, but it’s more abrasion resistant than ballistic nylon, too.
Because they’re fairly similar, we’re grouping Cordura and Ballistic canvas together. When you need seriously tough material to protect your truck’s interior and seats, this should be a contender. Cordura seat covers are available in a select colors – mostly neutrals and black – and are middle-of-the-road for cost. Ballistic seat covers fare much the same, and sometimes offer tactical pouches attached to the seat back.
Truck driving dudes rejoice! Grunting in approval works, too. Your favorite pattern is available to lovingly wrap your seats in… CAMOUFLAGE!
We’ll admit, camo isn’t its own fabric per se. But since camo truck seat covers are such a popular item, they deserve a fist bump and seven-gun salute of their own. You don’t need to hunt, fish, hike, or even like the outdoors to appreciate the camouflage pattern on your truck’s seats either. We might hold it against you if you don’t, though.
Camo seat covers are made in a ton of iterations. SKANDA Mossy Oak Seat Covers are one possibility although you’ll find Kryptek, Realtree, True Timber, DigiCamo, Tactical, Retro, snow patterns, and even pink camo as options for your seats.
As varied as the pattern are the materials they’re made of. Neosupreme, canvas, and Ballistic are all popular.
Whether your youngest son wet his pants again or you’ve just spent a day spelunking or noodling for catfish, getting your seats wet is a real possibility at times. If you sit directly on the seat cushion, it could hold that moisture – however polluted or smelly – for days.
But if you have waterproof neoprene seat covers installed, there’s a dam-like barrier to prevent the floodwaters from soaking in. Neoprene is the same material that wetsuits are made of, used for snorkelling or scuba diving, or noodling if your cutoff jean shorts aren’t warm enough. It’s the most waterproof version of the material. Neosupreme has mostly the same look and feel but is a blend of neoprene and – you guessed it – polyester. It’s still water-resistant, but doesn’t have the same ability as genuine neoprene.
Like the wetsuits all the surfers you follow on Instagram wear, neoprene and neosupreme seat covers are available in a crazy colors and patterns. Seat Designs Neosupreme custom fit seat covers are manufactured in as many as 14 color combinations, or you can find them in a Hawaiian pattern too.
If you’re heavy into watersports or consistently getting soaked for other reasons that an active imagination may explore, genuine neoprene is probably the better choice. But if you aren’t around water all the time, you’re probably just fine to go with the more flexible choice – neosupreme.
It only stands to reason that neosupreme seat covers are the less expensive option between the two. You’ll find cost-effective options like these Coverking Neosupreme seat covers for under $119 per row. Genuine neoprene is going to be a little more, but still reasonably priced, like these Fia Neoprene truck seat covers starting at only $136 per row.
Saddle Blanket Covers
Saddle blanket designs and material aren’t just for cowpokes anymore. Do you want your 80’s Chevy truck to match your cattle-driving steed? Is it time for your new Ram truck to learn what ranchin’ is all about? Give your truck some Old Western flavor with saddle blanket seat covers from AutoAnything.
Like you’d expect from a saddle blanket, this heavy-duty tweed material is so much better as resisting wear and tear than your factory seats. The coarse weave holds up against the fencing pliers you leave in your back pocket, and Rover’s nails and muddy paws aren’t going to offend your good senses.
Navajo patterns and styles that fit the theme of your Conway Twitty mixtape are your options. If you look hard enough, you’ll find a couple styles that are subtle… but that’s not how you roll, is it?
These seat covers are a great option if you’re trying to re-invest your money in cattle, not car accessories. A set like these Fia Saddle Blanket Seat Covers start at under $100.
Water Resistant vs Waterproof: What’s the Difference for Truck Seat Covers?
When fluids or stains set into your factory upholstery, it isn’t a good time. Cleaning it up is going to chew into your next MeatEater binge-watching sesh, and the missus won’t like that. With water-resistant or waterproof truck seat covers, you can keep up your daily pace and circle back around to clean up the spill later on. So, what’s the difference between the two?
Most readers think water resistant and waterproof are the same thing. It’s not the case. Water resistant offers protection against water-based messes for a time. Water-resistant materials often rely on a tight weave or dense foam to keep fluids from seeping through. But it isn’t a perfect barrier.
Think of it like an old wooden ship. The hull’s planks are wedged tightly together to keep the ship afloat yet there’s always that little trickle that needs to be plugged. It’s typically the seams and stitching that are the weak spots, letting a dribble through eventually.
Compared with a material that isn’t rated as water resistant, they’ll do a much better job of keeping spills on the right side of the seat cover.
The sense of the word itself should help tell you the difference between waterproof vs water-resistant. Waterproof carries the meaning that try as hard as you want, nothing is getting through.
Again, with boats you can compare waterproofing to an icebreaker with a welded hull. The impermeable hull material doesn’t have gaps between its panels because they’re filled in with reliable welds. Nothing is getting through – not water, ice, or Moby Dick.
The seams on waterproof truck seat covers is where the biggest difference is. Sewn seams are treated with a waterproofing spray. The thread will NOT wick moisture through to the underside.
You could spill a full coffee on your car seat and leave it there for hours. It won’t get through. But what a waste of coffee, all in the name of science.
Bottom line: if you want protection against minor spills that you intend to clean up right away, a water-resistant rating should be just fine. If you work hard and play hard, and there’s bound to be some serious battles against stains and moisture, look for the waterproof rating.
Should I Buy Custom or Universal Seat Covers for My Truck?
You’re all set to pull the trigger on seat covers, and you’ve chosen the material you want. But evidently, there’s a gaping divide in price between two choices: universal fit seat covers and custom fit seat covers.
The dilemma you face is as old as time.
You want your truck to look pretty but you don’t want to spend more than you have to. What’s the difference between them?
Universal Fit Seat Covers
Most entry-level priced seat cover sets are designed as one size fits most. Universal fit seat covers are intended to work on a particular seat style such as high-back bucket seats, low-back buckets, buckets with removable headrests, or a bench seat.
The benefits to choosing universal fit truck seat covers include:
- A lower price to pay initially than custom fit covers.
- No wait time. Universal seat covers are stocked and ready for delivery while custom covers usually take a bit longer to sew and deliver.
- You can use them on more than one vehicle (not at the same time, obviously). You could switch them between your truck and your compact car, so long as they have the same style of seat.
It isn’t all perfect, though, which is why the market for custom fit seat covers exists. Universal seat covers don’t have the same perfect fit and finish because they’re designed to be generic. And because they don’t always fit as snug as a bug in a rug, your seat upholstery underneath can get pilling or marks from abrasion.
Still, a set of popular universal-fit seat covers like these AutoAnything SELECT Universal Fit Leatherette Seat Covers look great and serve their purpose well. Starting at just $60 per pair, the price speaks for itself on what a great deal they are.
Custom Fit Seat Covers
The flip side of the coin is a set of custom fit seat covers. Other custom things, like silk suits, African carved masks, and man cave restorations can be extremely expensive. Comparatively, custom fit seat covers command less of a premium, but it’s often worth it.
What makes them custom fit? Literally, your seat covers are made to order.
When you place your order, someone puts together your seat covers in the seat style and fabric choice you’ve selected. Whether you have a Toyota Tacoma, Chevy Silverado, Ram 2500, or Ford F-150, the seat covers are cut and sewn to perfectly fit your truck.
The pros to choosing custom fit seat covers include:
- They’re going to fit like a glove, similar to your factory seat upholstery.
- Top-quality materials with little stretch wouldn’t work well for universal seat covers, but they’re ideal for custom seat covers.
- Custom seat covers take safety features into consideration – side impact airbags for example – where universal seat covers can’t.
- Sets commonly include headrest and armrest covers for a finished look.
Alas, it can’t all be sunshine and lollipops. With custom truck seat covers, you do need to weigh the added expense for your initial purchase. Plus, because they’re stitched together to be super snug like Aunt Ruthie’s hug, you might fight for an hour or two on a busy Saturday afternoon to get them installed.
We have a couple favorites to suggest if you’re thinking custom is the fit for you. Seat Designs SuperFlauge Camo Neosupreme Seat Covers start at just $187 per row while CalTrend “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Leather” Seat Covers kick off around $279 per row.
Which Style of Truck Seat Covers Do I Need?
Ordering truck seat covers isn’t like picking lunch from a McDonald’s menu board. While it might not be the chicken sandwich you thought you were getting, you can still put it to use.
If you order the wrong style of truck seat covers, though, there’s no way they’ll work for you.
Bucket Seat Covers
One of the easiest ways to tell if you have bucket seats in your truck is to look in the middle. Is there a center seat belt and a padded place for a passenger, or is there a console? If there’s a console mounted to the floor that doesn’t move when you adjust your driver’s seat, you probably have bucket seats.
Bucket seat covers are the norm for today’s trucks while bench front seats were popular even up until the 90’s. You’re pretty safe to buy bucket seat covers unless your truck is over 20 years old or you have a regular cab pickup.
Bench Seat Covers
Front bench seats move as a single piece when you adjust your driving position. They’re much less common than they used to be for trucks, but there’s still the odd one around in regular cab trucks. If your truck has a backseat, though, sure shootin’ it’s going to be a bench.
There are some great options for bench seat covers, particularly for the rear seat. Canine Covers Semi-Custom Canvas Covers makes a bench seat cover specifically for pooches while Carhartt Seat Saver Seat Covers have a few colors available in heavy-duty canvas.
How to Look After Truck Seat Covers
We’re betting you want seat covers to keep cleanup to a minimum on your factory seats…but what about when your truck seat covers get gooped up?
Caring for truck seat covers is relatively simple.
For most seat covers, you can spot clean them while they’re still installed on your truck’s seats. Start off with wiping them with a damp cloth and re-assess where you’re at.
Unless you have neoprene seat covers or leather truck seat covers, you can use mild detergent and warm water to take off any spills that require more. For neoprene, you’ll need to find wetsuit cleaner if you need to clean up anything that doesn’t just wipe up with a wet cloth. Leather can dry out and crack if you aren’t careful about the product you use, so stick with plain old water and a soft cloth.
Can I Machine Wash Seat Covers?
Remember that college hoodie you accidentally washed with white socks? Now they’re both pink, and the sleeves might be a little shorter than before. You don’t want something similar to happen to your seat covers, so laundering instructions are important.
Canvas, nylon, and saddle blanket seat covers can all be machine washed. NONE of them should be put in the dryer though – always air dry.
All the others like leather, leatherette, neoprene, and microsuede need only a wipe down, and could suffer irreparable harm if they go through the wash.
How to Remove Stains
Stains are going to happen. Blame it on the kids if you want, but only one of you had mustard on their hotdog. In the driver’s seat.
The trick is knowing how to spot treat stains.
- For leather, use a cleaner specific to leather upholstery to remove stains and follow the instructions on the bottle. Anything else, including many detergents, can dry out the leather.
- For neoprene and neosupreme, use wetsuit cleaner to spot-treat stains.
- For canvas, cordura, leatherette, and microsuede, a gentle detergent and warm water should be all it takes to get out a stain.
For saddle blanket and camo seat covers, do you really need to remove stains? They’re hidden enough, aren’t they? Same as usual – use soap and water soon after to clean up a stain.
If you have waterproof seat covers, there’s one more thing to keep in mind. After treating a stain or wiping them down, re-treat your truck seat covers with waterproofing spray.
Jack it sky-high, slap on cool decals, and install knobby tires to make it look cool on the outside. But the best way to improve your pickup truck on the inside and keep the mess under control is a set of truck seat covers. Leather, canvas, camo, ballistic, and more – there are plenty of choices to fit any purpose or budget, and you’ll find your perfect set at AutoAnything.com.