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Inspecting Your Ratchet Straps For Damage: A How to Guide

Inspecting Your Ratchet Straps For Damage: A How to Guide

Trusted by logistics and transport firms the world over - as well as professionals in a vast array of other industries - ratchet straps are the go-to device for securing loads. A huge part of the appeal of these devices lies in their safety; when they’re correctly maintained and used, these humble straps can put up with intensive usage, day in, day out.

Ratchet straps are certainly robust, then. But by no means are they invincible. If they’re neglected or simply used for too long, they will eventually begin to wear - and spotting this wear is absolutely critical. A failure to notice damaged webbing or a malfunctioning ratchet system could be all that’s needed to cause a significant accident, costing your company money and potentially endangering lives. Simply put, not inspecting your ratchet straps regularly is a risk that’s not worth taking. 

Inspection List For Your Ratchet Straps

So, to help you and other road users stay safe, we’ve put together a list of essential checks you should perform regularly.

Check the label

To start with, consult the label. Ratchet straps are available to handle ranges of weight. Such as 10 tonne, 5 tonne, 2 tonne etc. Therefore, If it’s not clear what the minimum break force or lashing capacity of the strap is, don’t use it. You need to be absolutely sure that the strap is rated to withstand the forces you’re going to be applying to it. 

Inspecting the webbing

Next, turn your attention to the webbing. Look for signs of wear and tear, including damage to the stitching, fraying, cuts and signs of fading. Although the latter may only seem cosmetic, if the strap has been exposed to UV rays for too long, this can compromise its strength. The same goes for mould; if the webbing has been exposed to moisture in storage, this can eventually affect its strength.

Inspecting the buckle

The main thing to look out for here is signs of corrosion. If you can’t see any, double check that the ratchet operates as it should.

How often should I inspect my straps?

We would recommend checking your heavy and light duty ratchet straps each and every time you use them, just to be on the safe side. It’s worth inspecting them both before and after you use them, so you can spot any signs of wear and tear as they emerge. It may seem like a chore, but a few checks here and there could make all the difference. You never know - they could even save a life.

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