Painting ATV Plastics With Bedliner

ATV with bedliner paint job

Painting ATV plastics with bedliner such as Raptor Liner has become a lot more popular recently. Many people with ATV’s have caught on to the durability, ease of application, and good looks of bedliner for their Plastics. If you are considering a bedliner paint job for your motorcycle or ATV, here are a few tips that will help you get a better end result.

ATV painted with bedliner

The number one concern when painting plastic is adhesion. Not only are plastics petroleum based which makes paint adhesion a problem, but they also tend to flex and bend. Because of this, it can be a real challenge to get paint to stick to plastic surfaces long term, and bedliner is no exception. 

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Motorcycle with bedliner paint job

The trick is all in the prep. You need to prepare your plastics correctly to give your bedliner paint job the best chance of adhering to the plastic bits and lasting a long time. So here are a few tips I have used with good results:

ProductEase of UseCostPurchase Options
Raptor LinerEasy$$$Check on Amazon
Tintable Raptor LinerMedium$$$$Check on Amazon
Raptor Liner AerosolVery Easy$$$Check on Amazon
Bed Armor Roll-OnMedium$$Check on Amazon
Rustoleum Bed CoatingVery Easy$$Check on Amazon

Scuff the surface thoroughly

A light scuff with a Scotch-Brite may not be enough. This is because many plastics will have a waxy-looking surface, and all of this must be removed to expose the pores in the plastic. This is especially true on textured plastic surfaces, so take the time to do some extra scuffing and really get into the recesses between the raised areas. If you just hit the tops, the bedliner may not adhere in the recessed areas and you might have problems down the road.

Use the right solvent

After scuffing it is important to use a solvent to dry out the plastic and remove the oils from the surface. Personally, I have found that Xylene works very well at preparing plastic surfaces without melting them or causing problems. This may vary depending on exactly what type of plastic you’re working with. Be sure to do some research or test it on a small area first if you’re not sure.

Xylene is great for painting ATV plastics with bedliner

Use an adhesion promoter

This is a tip that eluded me for a while. A good plastic adhesion promoter like this one from Dupli-color can greatly improve the adhesion of the bedliner and help prevent peeling or flaking in the future. Basically, adhesion promoter is like a clear, flexible primer designed to work with plastics and help the bedliner stick. It’s relatively cheap insurance to ensure you’ll get the best results possible painting your ATV plastics with bedliner.

Adhesion promoter is great for painting ATV plastics with bedliner

Those are the three tips that I’ve used to get really good results applying bedliner to plastics. Keep in mind, if you’re riding an ATV in rough terrain, damage is still possible (likely) even if you do everything right. The good news is that bedliner is easy to apply and easy to match, so repairing some chipped bedliner on your quad, bike, or side-by-side isn’t a huge undertaking. You can also check out my step-by-step guide for more tips and hints. Go for it!

ATV painted with bedliner

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