The bed liners for trucks are popular for several reasons. Of course protection for the bed is probably the number one reason to get a bed liner.
Especially in newer trucks, a bed liner for a truck lets you use your truck as a truck without scratching the bed. Protecting the bed is not just about cosmetics either. A scratched and dinged bed is a starting place for rust and corrosion.
The plastic bed liner is custom fit to your truck. The plastic bed liners are tough and durable especially suited for hard use. And the liner is removable if you choose to do so. However, water can collect under the mat leading to corrosion of the bed over time. Also, since the liner has some clearance between the liner and the bed, you can experience some vibration and noise.
Rubber mats are used for bed protection. These can be custom made or cut to fit. You can get mats just for the floor. Or you can get multi-piece mats that fit the floor and walls of the bed. Like the plastic liners, rubber truck bed mats are durable and easy to remove.
You can really smash these and not hurt the bed liner or the bed! But truck bed mats too can hide water leading to rust and corrosion. But if you are in a dry climate or you are careful to keep the bed where it can drain, these are a good choice.
The most popular bed liners for pickups are the spray on version or roll on ones. It's a spray on bed liner or roll on liner because the material is a liquid before application. The professionally applied bed liners for pickups are durable and attractive in appearance.
The bed coating protects the bed paint from rust as long as the coating is intact. Also most liners have a texture which is non-slip.
The spray in bedliner materials vary. Some are multi-part products with a catalyst that produces a hard finish that dries in seconds. The latest materials can be sprayed up to 1/4 inch thick and still are usable in 24 hours. Spray on liner material sometimes is subject to fading in color from light. Though some formulas now are uv light resistant.
For the do-it yourself crowd, especially the cheap ones like me, there's the roll on bed liner kit for bed liners. And there is material that the do it your-selfer can spray on too.
If you want to spray or roll on your own bed liners for trucks, you now have several choices. Especially for an older truck, the finish you apply yourself can make your truck look much better. You can have a good looking do it yourself truck bed liner with a practical finish for a reasonable price.