How To Protect Your Work Ute Without Overspending

If you’ve just picked up a new work machine you’ll want to deck it out in accessories and features that are going to protect it at a worksite and at home.

We understand how rough the worksite can get, concrete particles solidifying on vehicles, muddy tracks, piping and timber scratching your tray, the list is endless.

Not that you catch a break at home either; kids dropping their ice creams, lollies hidden in between the seats, and muddy floor mats.

This urge to pimp out your new ride is a slippery slope that can result in thousands of dollars being spent on unnecessary equipment and upgrades. 

From ute tray liners, steel trays, storage solutions, and must-have upgrades, we have devised a list to protect your new pride and joy at on both battlefields.

Protect your tub with a durable liner

It’s inevitable that your ute tray is going to take a beating and is most likely going to be scratched, dented and scraped as you cart around tools and materials, not to mention dirt bikes, skateboards and more. Leaving your tray unprotected can eventually lead to rust and corrosion, which will diminish the value of your vehicle. 

This is where a ute tub liner becomes a must-have upgrade. There are two types of liners to choose from:

  • Spray-on liners: Such as SPEEDLINER are an extremely durable coating that protects your tray or tub from inevitable damage, is UV resistant, does not vibrate or rub from movement, is waterproof, comes in a wide range of colours and has a lifetime warranty.
  • Plastic liners: Are prone to cracking, tearing and scratching away at the paint beneath with vibrations and rubbing caused from movement. However, if you’re looking for a cheaper alternative, regular liners and rubber mats will still offer a level of protection, but may need to be regularly maintained or replaced. 

Better tyres are a must

Standard tyres are for doing standard things. 

However, if your work schedule involves travelling from site-to-site, or you plan on tackling some of WA’s most hectic 4WD off-road tracks on weekends, having the right tyres is essential.

Most tyre retailers will recommend Light Truck Tyres, which are great for off-road strength and performance as well as carrying heavy loads around a worksite. They are tough, durable, long-lasting and offer superior traction, making it the perfect tyre for every situation, work or play.

When it comes to buying the right tyres, stick to the brands you know and trust. With tyres from one of the leading brands, you can safely assume that you’re receiving the best in technology, integrity and years of experience in the tyre industry. 

Cover up with a canopy

Canopies offer a whole new level of protection and security for your work vehicle and are generally the more popular choice for touring. Available in steel, composite construction or soft covers, canopies provide weather protection with a locking system for your tools and other goods on-site and when travelling to remote areas.

They are completely customisable, allowing you to colour match your canopy to your vehicle, as well as the choice of fixed, sliding or lift-up windows. Based on how frequent you access your ute tray, lift-up windows are generally used for easier access when loading.

The largest benefit of a canopy is how versatile they can be. If the tray is filled to the brim, why not just stack things on top? If you’re looking to cart around kayaks or other large objects, they can be simply strapped down on top of the canopy. Or, simply remove the canopy to store larger items.

Smarter storage solutions

These days, most commercial utes come equipped with ample storage space and drawers. However, if you’re after more you might want to consider a set of universal-fit drawers or custom-fitted liked the Decked drawers, which can be purchased at your local hardware store or your nearest 4×4 accessories supplier.

They come in a wide range of materials and can be used for various applications, including top shelf storage, outback drawers, individual and removable boxes, and roller-element sliding drawers.

This makes it easy to carry your work tools and camping gear at the same time, without getting them mixed up. Removable boxes means you can safely take out your gear without the risk of scratching or denting your vehicle.

Smarter storage solutions help make road trip preparation and worksite visits more manageable while keeping your tools and equipment safe and secure.

Upgrades to avoid

To prevent your new rig from becoming a money pit, here are some upgrades you should avoid:

  • Stay away from fake roll bars. They might make your ute look mean, but really provide zero-to-none in terms of protection.
  • Poorly designed canopies are riddled with blind spots, hatch lids that don’t line up, and cheap hardware.
  • Nudge bars are exactly that. If you’re after nudge-protection, you’re going to get it and nothing more. You’re much better off spending more on a solid aftermarket bullbar.
  • Huge wheels aren’t necessarily better.
  • Lowered vehicles may give you more street cred, but your boss won’t be happy if you have to lay out 2 pieces of timber to get onto site.

If you’ve just picked up your new ute or looking to upgrade your current and don’t want to empty your bank account, speak to the friendly staff at Total 4×4. We are your one-stop-shop for all your truck, passenger and 4WD accessories with over 30 years of experience.

As Western Australia’s leading four-wheel-drive equipment supplier, we’ll help you gear up your rig with all the right accessories and features suited to your job and lifestyle.