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Discussion Starter #1
I am a new Ridgeline owner seriously considering a bed cover. This forum contains favorable reports for both the Access roll up bed cover and the Retrax retractable one. I would like the opinions of experienced forum members about which option encroaches least on bed functionality. I would like answers to these specific questions:

Which cover allows the in-bed trunk lid to open widest?

Which cover has side rails that extend the least distance into the interior of the truck bed? The extension of attachment rails into the bed space would appear to hinder loading or unloading the bed from the side.

Which cover occupies the smallest space when fully folded/retracted? From pictures posted in this forum, the Access cover appears to fold into a roll that sits above the level of the bed cover. This partially obstructs the view from the rear window but does not take up space below the level of the bed cover. On the other hand, the Retrax cover appears to retract into a canister that sits below the level of the bed cover and projects into the bed space. How many inches does the Retrax canister project into the bed space from the anterior bed wall?

How much of a hassle is it to fold the Access cover sufficiently to open the in-bed trunk lid maximally and then reclose it following loading/unloading?

Does each cover allow the use of tie-down cleats following installation?

I would like to thank forum members for considering these questions and for any helpful replies.
 

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It's all a matter of personal preference. The Access cover takes up the least amount of useable space, but requires more manual effort. The retrax is easier to use, but takes more bed space, and makes more noise when rain and wind hits it. So really, it's a matter of personal preference.
 

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I have the Access and like it just fine. A little water comes in but I wasn't looking for watertight to begin with. Limits the trunk opening somewhat but no big deal there either. The cover was cheaper than the Retrax. Would agree that it's mostly a matter of personal choice between the two.
 

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I have the Access cover and like it very much. The two main reasons I chose it over the Retrax are Price and the amount of space it takes up in the bed. I believe the retrax takes up a space about 11"x11". The Access takes up very little bed space when rolled up and doesn't really hinder the rear vision all that much, especially if you have your rear headrests in place. I did add some black caulk and some extra weather stripping and now the only water that I get in the bed is from around the tailgate when going through a carwash. I could add a tailgate seal and that would probably take care of most of that as well. My previous vehicle was a Dakota with a snap on cover and there is no comparison to the Access cover. It literally comes undone as you unroll it and takes about 1 min to roll it back into place. I'm sure that some Retrax owners will have some very positive things to say about that product as well but I don't have one so I don't know the pros and cons of it. Installation time for the Access is a little more difficult than the Retrax as far as I can tell. It took me about 2.5 hours to install mine, but was not really difficult if you follow the directions and take your time.
 

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I have the Retrax and I'm satisfied with it. I bought it because of the locking feature... still waiting for the dynolock to come out with the tailgate lock. One thing about the retrax is that it gets dirty and scrathes pretty quick, just have to be carefull. You can also partially cover something as well... I also recommend installing the gate seal. I didnt install the drain tube... I'm not to concerned with the bed being wet, all the water goes underneath my bed mat and out to the bed drain... I was in the same boat as you 3 months ago.. $860 later and no regrets. Whatever your choice, Im sure both will do there jobs well.
 

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I also have the Access cover and I'm very satisfied. For the price it was a no brainer for me. It is easy to open and close, is fairly water tight, and really finishes off the look of the truck. It does not look like a soft cover. It looks like a hard cover because you really don't see the rails that go across like other soft covers.

I like it because it gives quick access if you need to carry something large. It does impede the view out of the middle rear window when rolled up. This didn't concern me too much since I figured if you are carrying something large in the bed, it most likely will impede your view anyway.

You need to be handy to do the installation but just take your time and follow the directions carefully. I bought mine from "AutoAnything" for $369 delivered. They were easy to work with and shipped fast.

Also...Any cover you choose will restrict the opening of the trunk opening fully to some degree. The trunk is still functional enough with the top in place, it's not even a concern.
 

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You need to be handy to do the installation but just take your time and follow the directions carefully. I bought mine from "AutoAnything" for $369 delivered. They were easy to work with and shipped fast.
Nighthawk- I went to the AutoAnything website and found the Access covers, but no listing for the RL. Did you have to call them? About the only place in Denver I can get one locally wants $495 plus tax. Another website I found (realtruck.com) does list the Access cover for the RL with a delivered price of $409.19 (no tax).
 

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Whats the scoop??? Autoanything says that there is nothing available for the 2006 Ridgeline; either $404 or the $3** product. :(
 

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Oh, BTW, has anyone done a cost analysis to fine the break even point on
getting one and installing one. To start with, I think that the liner is supposed to help with anywhere from .5 mph to 1 mph. And at a cost of $3/gal. what would be the break even point in miles traveled. :D But, if its all for the astetics (.sp), what the heck. lets go for it... :rolleyes:
 

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I still am very happy with mine. I use it all the time because it is so easy to use. For example, when you go to the grocery store; slide it open, open the trunk, in go the groceries, close the trunk, slide the retrax closed. So far I have not carried anything in the bed shaped like a box that is longer than 4 1/2 feet long where the canister would otherwise interfere. A box that size calls for a trailer and two people to load it anyway. I have carried a lot of stuff in the bed, especially when I was cleaning out my basement and preparing a commercial property for sale. The canister just has not been a problem for me. I don't miss the space that it takes up. Lumber and other long but flat items slide under the canister and, if they are really long, I use the hitch hand. For all those times that I have to carry a big screen TV (never),again, I would use a trailer or have the store deliver it. Other peoples use of the bed may be different and the canister certainly could present a problem for some but the ease of use of the Retrax is what sold me on it. I rarely drive with the back window open at interstate speeds so I don't hear the fluttering noise that it can make if you listen for it with only the back window open. If the side windows are open you cant hear anything anyway. As to water in the bed, there can be some but I have a piece of commercial rubber flooring as a bed mat so any water that gets in goes under the mat. The top of the mat stays dry. If I work with the side gasket seals for the bed I am sure that I could make it nearly water tight. It is not very easy to do. The only time that water gets in anyway is when I wash and rinse very thoroughly. I made a temporary chain lock for the tailgate that I only use if I am in a place that warrants using it and I have something of value in the bed. I am also waiting for the Dynalock and will install it with the electric Retrax lock when it comes.
The Retrax works great for me but everyone's needs and tastes are different. I am glad to see additional good choices appearing for the Ridgeline.
 

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Well, let's see...

Lets say you average 20 MPG without a cover. At $3 per gallon, to go a mile costs $.15. If a cover increases mileage an average of .75 miles per gallon, then you'd increase your MPG to 20.75. At $3 per gallon, that comes out to about $.145 to go a mile in the RL, so a cover would save you a half a cent per mile driven. At $400, you'd break even at 80K miles.
 

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milehigh, oldguy

I checked my notes from when I ordered the cover. I spoke to Chris ext. 127. When I called, they didn't even know the cover was available for a Ridgeline. I told them it was available. Chris called Access directly and got the item number. They will order it and have it direct shipped to you from Access.

On my packing slip it is listed as Item # 16019.

I really don't think you will beat the price, I called around and checked 5 - 6 places.

Hope this helps.

By the way, I have experienced better gas mileage since the cover was installed. I track my gas mileage and I have not made any changes in driving habits. The gas mileage has gone from 16 mpg to 18 mpg the last two fill ups. I did expect it to improve somewhat, but I've been pleasantly surprised. I need to see if it continues.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
thanks to all who responded to my Access VS Retrax question. The information in these posts has been very helpful.
 

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Nighthawk, If you can repost the 800 No. and extension of Cris, and is it the Access cover??? I'M INTERESTED!!! And thanks!!! :rolleyes:
 

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oldguy

The toll free number for Auto Anything 800-874-8888 Chris ext # 127

Ask for the "Access roll top tonneu cover" for the 06 Ridgeline

Good Luck.......... I know you'll be happy with the cover.
 

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Nighthawk, what was the price you paid? Did you get free S&H and the tailseal thing free ($20-$25 if purchased separate), too? I saw that "Access" is offering all that stuff for somewhere around $440, plus you get 5% off...wooppee!

Keep us posted,
George
 

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I just ordered the Access cover from truckalterations.com for $360 delivered with no tax to California. Where do I find a tailgate lock to work with this cover?
 

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I received my Access cover today. Two days!!! Only problem is that the directions are generic for a normal pickup. Will call tomorrow. Does anyone have a pdf file for proper installation?
 
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