Should I Put a Flatbed on My Tacoma?


So many people prefer trucks over any other vehicle because of their capability to transfer large or heavy objects. Many trucks also have the capability to go off-road and be totally fine. A Tacoma is such a great vehicle, but it can always be upgraded, and a flatbed could be a way to do that.

Installing a flatbed on a Toyota Tacoma truck is beneficial because flatbeds allow you to carry larger items and have easier loading. Flatbeds also require less maintenance and offer extra capabilities that a regular cargo bed might have trouble handling.

While we know what some of the benefits of a flatbed truck are, we should understand why they are beneficial. Tacomas are good as they are, so it’s not usually necessary to turn them into flatbed trucks. If you’re considering installing a flatbed on your Tacoma, it is just as important to consider the cons as it is to understand the pros. We will cover everything you need to know before deciding whether or not you should put a flatbed on your Tacoma.

Benefits of a Flatbed

Truck lovers would not be installing flatbeds on their favorite vehicles if it didn’t add some great benefits. We are going to cover all of the benefits of a flatbed on a truck. Maybe these will convince you to get one for yourself!

Carry Larger and Heavier Loads

Flatbeds come in all sizes for different needs. Whether you need a large 10′-12′ flatbed or just a small 6′-8′ one, there is an option for you. The typical bed on a Tacoma is 5-6 feet long. A flatbed is a clear size upgrade at almost double the length! If you are having trouble fitting your cargo in a small 6-foot bed, a flatbed could be the easy solution. This will also reduce the number of trips you have to take if you are carrying a large load.

A flatbed also increases the amount of weight you are able to carry as opposed to the regular bed. Outside of what weight the Tacoma itself can handle, a flatbed will make it easier to carry heavier loads, which often come along with bigger cargo. This is because a flatbed is more durable than a regular bed, so it will not buckle under a heavy load.

Less Maintenance Needed

Because a flatbed does not include the delicate aluminum sides or sleek paint that a normal truck bed has, it and your Tacoma will not need nearly as much maintenance. If you need to do maintenance on the exterior of your truck, you only have to worry about the cab and not the bed.

The durability of a flatbed will ensure that you do not have to fix it up very often. You also do not have to worry about damaging the truck when loading a flatbed.

Load Cargo Easier

Some people argue that the increased height of a flatbed makes loading more difficult, but despite the extra height, a flatbed is often easier to load because you don’t have to navigate around the raised sides. Because of the increased size of the bed, one person can stand in the bed during loading to help secure the cargo while another hands things up.

Like we mentioned before, you also won’t have to worry about getting cargo over the sides of a normal bed while also avoiding scratching the paint or denting the metal.

Customizable

Flatbeds are much more customizable than regular beds are. While Toyota offers two different bed sizes, they do not have any more customizations beyond that. Flatbeds come in all sorts of styles and materials.

Each brand makes their flatbeds differently, and each different style fits a different need. There are completely flat and open beds that are great for hauling things that might need to stick out a bit, like wood or piping.

A step up from this is having sides on your flatbed. While one of the benefits of a flatbed is the omission of sides restricting the size of your cargo, some people feel safer with sides as they can prevent sideways shifting while driving.

Finally, you can get a cap on your flatbed to cover any cargo that might be sensitive to rain, snow, or any other weather. Some people do not like having a cap very much because of its greater restriction on the size of your cargo, but others find it necessary. Caps are often removable, so if you only want a cover part of the time, a removable cap is a great option.

Flatbeds also come with more material options than regular beds. Most commonly, flatbeds are made out of various sheet metals. This is great because they are very durable and can often have more add-ons, like sides and caps. Flatbeds are also pretty commonly made out of wood. These are still durable, but they can be heavier than sheet metal. However, a wood flatbed provides the option to easily paint and repair it.

Disadvantages of a Flatbed

There are clearly a lot of advantages to a flatbed on your Tacoma, but nothing is completely perfect. There are some disadvantages as well that are really worth considering.

Higher Risk of an Accident

Flatbeds have been known for having a higher risk of creating an accident. Not because the driver crashes, but more likely because something falls out of the bed and into traffic.

Insurance companies will often require more expensive insurance for owning a flatbed truck.

This is a pretty common occurrence, so it creates another annoyance of flatbed trucks: insurance companies will often require more expensive insurance for owning a flatbed truck. Because of the increased likelihood of damages being the truck’s fault, insurance companies make up for that by charging you more.

Heavier than a Standard Bed

While a flatbed can support heavier loads than a normal bed can, that does not mean the truck can. Flatbeds are often much heavier than regular beds, so the truck is already weighed down and cannot carry as much. This is usually not a problem unless you are carrying cargo in the flatbed and pulling a trailer. Even though it is not a common problem, consider what your needs are and if you might exceed the weight limit on your Tacoma.
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Will Turner

Will has an absolute passion for 4x4s and loves discovering all of the small details about each model. Will joined the Four Wheel Trends team in early 2021 and has been a valuable contributor ever since!

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