Truck shells provide you with weatherproof storage for all of your camping items and necessities. In an ideal world, you would be able to remove this shell and the contents within to place your roof top tent inside the actual truck bed.
However, this can be in hassle if you are only spending a night or two in this spot. After all, it might be a nightmare to have to unload all of the truck bed contents just to get a quick night’s sleep. In that case, you might be wondering if you can simply put your roof top tent on your truck shell.
So, can you put a roof top tent on a truck cap?
The short answer:
Yes, it is possible for you to put a roof top tent on your truck cap, but it is imperative that you reinforce the shell or buy one that is specifically manufactured for a high load capacity. Find out your model’s static load capacity to learn if the truck shell can withstand the weight of your roof top tent.
Since there is no one size fits all answer to this question, it’s important to read on. This article will help you understand when roof top tents can be put on a truck shell and what you need to do to make this a reality for your camping situation.
Putting a Roof Top Tent On a Truck Shell
Whether or not roof top tents can be put on truck shells depends entirely on the shell in question. You will have to research your individual truck shell to learn if roof top tents are OK.
Specifically reading about the static load capacity will let you know if a roof top tent is applicable for your truck shell.
Unfortunately, not all truck shells will be able to withstand the weight of a roof top tent, let alone you, the roof top tent, and all of the additions. If your truck cap does not have a high enough load capacity for these items, do not put a roof top tent on top.
That being said, there are some heavy-duty truck shells that are able to withstand a large static load capacity. If you have one of these truck shells, you can put a roof top tent on top. There is more to consider than just the weight of the tent, though.
You also have to consider any blankets or mattresses you’ll put in the tent, as well as your weight or any other sleeper’s weight. This means that you could easily be looking for a total load of 500 pounds or more. Only install a roof top tent on your truck shell if the truck shell is able to handle the entire load, not just the weight of the tent itself.
Consequently, it might be a good idea to reinforce the shell. Reinforcing your truck shell involves welding an inner frame. This cage will provide more support for the roof top tent, ensuring complete safety.
Reinforcing the shell is a good idea if the total load is slightly less than the shell’s maximum capacity.
How Much Weight Can Be Put On Truck Shells?
The maximum weight for a truck shell largely depends on the shell in question. Most shells are designed to carry up to 400 pounds. However, some may only hold up to 200 pounds, whereas some can hold up to 500 pounds.
You will have to research your individual truck shell to learn how much it can carry.
400 pounds is usually enough for a lightweight roof top tent and one sleeper. If you have a heavier tent or need room for more than one sleeper, 400 pounds will likely not cut it.
How Do I Figure Out The Weight Capacity Of My Truck Cap?
Figuring how much your truck cap can handle is relatively easy. The manufacturer likely has it posted on the shell itself or in its owner’s manual.
If you don’t have access to the owner’s manual, you should be able to call customer service or look up a digital copy online.
If no capacity is listed, that normally means that the manufacturer has not intended the shell to withstand additional weight. In that case, you should not place a roof top tent on the truck cap, no matter what. The cap will almost certainly be damaged.
What If I Can’t Install A Roof Top Tent On My Truck Cap?
If you can’t install a roof top tent on your truck cap, don’t panic or fret. The truck bed should definitely be strong enough to withstand the weight of the tent, you, and any other items.
Although it may certainly be annoying having to unload and reload all of the truck’s contents, it may be the best option. You could also consider investing in a new truck cap. This will be a good idea if you intend to use the roof top tent frequently.
We recommend buying a new truck cap only after you have tested the roof top tent a lot and know for certain that you’ll use it more in the future.
Can Roof Top Tents Be Put On Any Vehicle?
Roof top tents are designed to be put on most vehicles, whether it be a truck shell or an SUV. However, not all roof top tents are suitable for all vehicles. For example, larger roof top tents will require a much larger vehicle in order to withstand the weight.
If a heavy roof top tent is placed on a small vehicle, that vehicle can be damaged. Unfortunately, this happens more often than you might think. It is for this reason that you need to be careful about the load capacity on your truck cap.
Once again, you can put a roof top tent on your truck cap, but you must research the load capacity before you do so. Although some truck caps can handle the weight of a roof top tent, not all can.
Only put a roof top tent on your truck shell if you know it can handle the weight of the tent, its contents, and you.
(feature image: equipt1.com)