Don’t know how many you need to secure your load? Read to learn more.
When you are securing your cargo load with tiedowns, it is crucial to know how many you need. Protecting your cargo with the correct amount of straps is important so you can transport and deliver it safely. Read on how to use ratchet straps, how many you need, and what to use to protect them.
How to Use Ratchet Straps
Learning how to use cargo straps is beneficial to how many you need for the task in front of you. Our ratchet straps are an important player in transporting cargo and once you understand how to use them, you’ll be a pro at it!
We have a wide variety of ratchet tie down straps in so many sizes and styles, and each of them is listed with weight capacities. To learn more about how to thread a ratchet strap, check out one of our product experts explaining the steps.
How Many Heavy Duty Ratchet Straps Do I Need?
Depending on the weight and length of your cargo, the number of straps vary. According to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, they state that you only use one tiedown if your cargo is shorter than 5 feet and less than 1,000 pounds.
If your cargo is shorter than 5 feet but weighs more than 1,000 pounds or is between 5 to 10 feet long, then you would need to have two straps. Keep in mind that for the first 10 feet of length, it must be secured by two tiedowns. Then for every additional 10 feet, you would add one tiedown.
We recommend that if you are transporting 10,000 pounds or more, then to use at least four tiedowns. Be sure to use corner protectors to protect your straps, which is explained more below.
How Do I Protect Them?
To prevent your ratchet straps from getting damaged from edges, consider using corner protectors. Also known as corner guards, they can extend the life of your ratchet straps.
Corner protectors are inexpensive and they can protect not just your straps, but also your cargo, chains, tarps or any covers that you will use in tie down applications. For how to store your ratchet straps, read 10 Ways to Store Tie Down Straps.
We carry quality products to keep you and your flatbed trailer moving forward. Check out the five most popular pieces of equipment made for flatbed owners.
From corner protectors to tire chains, we have the flatbed equipment for your trailer to keep you running smoothly
Being a flatbed trailer owner, you know there is not much your trailer cannot hold. Your load is exposed, and you need the equipment to hold it down tight while protecting it from abrasions or damage. Whether you’re a new flatbed truck driver or an experienced one, we carry supplies that can help you deliver your cargo load safely and on time.
These tire chains, also known as snow tire chains, are designed to help transport you and your cargo to your destination through snowy or icy conditions. These snow chains provide added control behind the wheel when you’re stuck in the snow, and allow better traction as well.
We carry light-duty tire chains and heavy-duty tire chains. The difference is in how you plan on using these types of chains. If you think you will rarely use a tire chain during the cold months, consider the light-duty chain. If you know you will be using chains frequently, then you might want to invest in a heavy-duty chain.
Tarps are one of the best ways to protect your cargo load. We carry heavy- duty tarps that fight against elements such as rain and snow. Not only can they combat certain weather situations, but these tarp covers can also prevent scratches and marks on your precious cargo. These truck tarps contain two or three rows of d-rings across the length of the tarp, so the tarp can be tied down firmly to the truck bed. Some of the different types of tarps we carry are lumber tarps, steel tarps, machinery tarps, smoke and nose tarps, and more.
We even create custom flatbed tarps at our facility in Urbana, IA. In this video, Adam explains how our team creates long-lasting custom tarps at your convenience.
Corner Protectors & Vee Boards
Corner protectors are an inexpensive way to protect your cargo. Not only can they protect your cargo from being smashed or damaged, but these guards can also protect your straps, chains, and tarps. They are designed to protect the tarp material from any ripping or abrasions caused by sharp corners. The purpose behind these wall corner guards is providing a layer between the cargo and the strap or chain, and having this extra layer can decrease the pressure on the load from the strap/chain.
Fun fact: the plastic corner protectors can extend the life of your ratchet straps by reducing rubbing.
Winch Straps & Ratchet Straps
Both ratchet straps and winch straps work well for heavy tie down applications for the trucking industry. The only differences are in how to tighten the straps, and what type of lock the two straps carry.
When using the ratchet strap, you slide the strap to the spool, bring it back over on itself, and pull the strap. After this, you can start to ratchet and repeatedly crank the lever until the load is tightened. Both tie-down types are available with a flat hook, wire hook, chain extension, or grab hook.
We carry many colors like red, green, blue, and yellow so you can recognize what strap you are using, as well as matching your company or vehicle’s colors.
A D-ring is a piece of hardware shaped like the letter D, that can connect to the strap or be mounted directly to your flatbed trailer to secure your cargo. D-rings and straps are a flexible way to supply a trailer with many tie-down points to secure the cargo load. We carry many different styles of d-rings, and we have d-ring parts and accessories that allow you to customize your trailer configuration.
We also carry transport chains and binders, rubber/bungee tarp straps, safety supplies, winch bars, and more. Learn more about the flatbed trailer equipment we carry on our USCC website.
Call our team of experts at 800-404-7068 if you have any questions or need more information.
Steel corner protectors are excellent for heavy-duty uses involving transport chain and for larger, heavier cargo like coils. The durable galvanized steel is protected from premature rust and allows these metal edge protectors to last a long time. We also sell steel corner protectors with rubber lining.
Felt Corner Protectors
Felt corner protectors are durable and tear resistant, great for protecting sensitive cargo and tie down straps. They’re made of industrial grade felt material and are commonly used as lifting sling pads and coil padding as well as for edge protection.
We also have two different types of sleeves: the Cordura wear sleeve and the fleece sleeve protector. Both sleeves wrap around your tie down straps and provide abrasion resistance. The fleece sleeve also adds a level of padding and is great if you’re hauling vehicles with nice paint or chrome that you want to protect.
Extension Handle for Corner Protectors
Using corner protectors is easier than ever with our 8-foot extension handle, specifically designed to make it easier to place corner protectors, brick guards, and veeboards without having to climb onto the trailer. It extends to approximately 8 feet and then easily retracts to approximately 4 feet for easy storage.
As the scent of fresh-carved turkey and pumpkin pie inches closer and closer to our noses, it’s important to resist the temptation of retreating to the comfort of your recliner for a nap or the warmth of your bed to, well, get away from the in-laws. There will be plenty of time for naps and in-law annoyances come Thanksgiving Day. Until then, you’ve got work to do.
And just in time for the holiday season, US Cargo Control has compiled a list of the top 10 cargo control products to be thankful for. One way or another, they’re all bound to come in handy this time of year.
Cover your firewood, boat, or motorcycle for the winter or bring a tarp on your next hunting trip to wrap and drag back game easily. Even if you’re not a professional truck driver using tarps to cover your cargo, a good quality tarp has nearly endless possibilities.
This cargo control product is an invaluable tool to have in your truck or SUV during the winter months. You can save someone’s day by pulling them out of the ditch with a heavy-duty tow strap.
5. Safety Triangles
If you find yourself in a ditch or pulled over to the side of the road during these cold and dark winter nights, you’ll need to always make yourself visible to others. Keep a set of these fluorescent orange warning triangles with you to stay safe.
6. Blackline Ratchet Straps
It doesn’t matter how big of a Christmas tree you get when you have these heavy-duty Blackline straps. With the strongest break strength in the industry, these could be used to bring the that massive Christmas tree into Time Square.
7. Good-N-Tight Ratchet Strap Handle
Putting less strain on your back when tightening ratchet straps is something you’ll be thankful for, for years to come. The inventive Good-N-Tight Handle even makes the job easier by giving you three times the leverage.
8. Corner Protectors
These simple devices ensure that cargo (including your Christmas presents) gets delivered damage free. Plastic corner protectors also help extend the life of your ratchet straps by reducing rubbing.
9. Camo Moving Blanket
Friday night football games, early morning hunting trips, or to protect your vehicle’s seats from the dog’s hair and slobber – camo colored moving blankets can be used for much more than just moving.
10. USCC Branded Stainless Steel Mug
Unless your one of those people that likes a cold cup of coffee, a USCC branded tumbler is a no-brainer for cold winter months. This 30-ounce insulated mug, will keep your drink warm for up to six hours.
There you have it, 10 cargo control products that provide plenty to be thankful for this Thanksgiving and beyond. Do the preparation work now and come Thanksgiving, you’ll have earned that nap, and maybe even an extra piece of pie.
Choosing the best flatbed truck tarp for your particular needs might not be as clear cut as you think. Flatbed tarps not only come in a wide variety of sizes, but they are made of different materials and designed very differently depending on their intended use. The best tarp for a dump truck won’t necessarily be the best for covering lumber or steel.
There is no one size fits all type of tarp, which is part of the reason it’s so important to understand exactly what your hauling needs will be.
What are the main types of flatbed truck tarps?
Lumber tarps. A lumber tarp is designed with flaps at the end to cover the ends of a load, protecting the lumber or other cargo from the elements.
Steel tarp. A heavy duty steel truck tarp is four-sided without flaps. This design is most efficient for protecting steel rods, sheets, cables, etc.
Dump truck tarps. Roll tarps for dump trucks are waterproof and designed not only for traditional dump trucks, but also many similar style trucks like grain trucks, grain carts, fertilizer tenders, trailers, and more.
Smoke Tarps. A smoke tarp serves one very specific purpose: covering the front of a load to protect it from soot, dirt, and especially exhaust smoke. As an added benefit, it can help stop wind from creating an annoying and distracting whistling sound if you are hauling PVC pipes or steel pipes.
While heavy duty lumber and steel flatbed truck tarps often come in 16×27, 20×27, or 24×27 configurations, you’ll find that heavy duty smoke tarps are only 10×12 in many cases. A dump truck tarp looks much different from both of these configurations coming in at 9’10×41 or 10’6×42.
Tarp tie downs
Just as with tarps, there is also a huge variety of tie downs and other accessories for use with truck tarps. Equipment for securing a tarp can be broken down into a few overall categories:
Rubber tarp straps. These heavy duty tarp tie downs are available in both natural rubber and ethylene propylene diene monomer – M-class (EPDM) rubber. A natural rubber tarp strap is best for cold, Notherrn areas because the rubber won’t crack, tear, or become brittle even in freezing temps. An EPDM rubber tarp strap is best for hot climates as they stand up well to extended sun exposure.
Shock cord. Also called bungee cord or elastic straps, shock cord is a stretchy rope with a heavy duty polyester fabric covering a rubber core. Shock cord is an excellent choice if you need to make a custom length strap for flatbed truck tarps, simply by adding a coated bungee hook.
Rubber rope. Like a shock cord tie down, rubber rope can also be cut to length to make custom tie down straps. It’s available in a hollow style for lightweight applications or a solid core for more heavy-duty jobs.
Corner protectors have a variety of names in the industry: strap protectors, corner guards, etc. A plastic corner protector for tarps has a rounded edge, allowing the tarp to curve around the edge rather than pulled tightly over the sharp corner.