Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat.

Theodore Roosevelt, The Strenuous Life

Rhino sells franchises for the application of linings for pickup trucks.  They promote their product with a “lifetime” warranty that turns out to be virtually useless.  This is a lifetime warranty for a product with a useful life of perhaps as few as five to ten years, depending on the severity of service. Pieces of mine are disappearing all over my truck bed. Some of the limitations to the Rhino warranty are:

  • Repair must be with the installing dealer. Mine went out of business years ago. Persons in my situation are instructed to make a claim at a warranty website and to include photographs of the failure. I could not find the website to which the dealer I called referred me.
  • If Rhino thinks your claim is valid, Rhino will have the dealer closest to where you live evaluate the failure. The closest dealer to me is 40 miles away. If they agree that the liner has failed in a manner that is subject to the warranty, I will get an approval and an appointment for another 80 mile round trip. So success means 160 miles of driving. That is roughly $80 in driving costs alone.
    • There are also different warranty limitations in my contract than noted on their website. Current coverage is limited to cracking, bubbling or peeling. My warranty excluded abuse and misuse.

    I specifically recall the dealership telling me at the time of purchase they would fix any failure, but of course that is not what the contract states.  Do you think there is a potential argument about what constitutes abuse of a bed-liner? This is a product we buy to protect the steel bed from abuse like sharp objects in trash or excessive wear from rocks and gravel. This is not a purchase based on style.

    My advice is simple. Be careful of companies offering lifetime warranties. View these warranties as an annoyance; why should they pay for repairs or replacement of a product that is beyond its useful life? You do not think that is smart and they do not either. Therefore, they will likely make the success of your claim difficult. Lifetime warranties are often the signal of a company willing to abuse consumers, like Rhino.

    You might want to consider a truck with a factory composite bed, such as the Toyota Tacoma, or a competitor to Rhino if you select a sprayed-on liner. Or simply save your money, sand the scratches that eventually accumulate in the painted factory finish, and roll and brush some top quality coating in the pick-up bed when it is needed. After all, it’s a truck.

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