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Using Ratchet Straps: The Do's and Don'ts

Where would the transport and haulage industries be without ratchet straps? These humble tie-down devices have been around for more than a century now, and it’s hard to imagine a world without them. Used for transporting everything from vehicles to building materials, they can be tremendously strong while simultaneously being simple to use - not to mention cost-effective.

As great as ratchet straps are though, they have to be used and maintained correctly. To help you stay safe and maximise the lifespan of your tie downs, we’ve put together a list of five essential dos and don’ts on how to use ratchet straps.

How to use Ratchet Straps?

If you are thinking of buying a ratchet strap, it is important to establish what it will be used for. There are an array of different straps that you can use depending on your requirements.

Once you’ve established which type is right for your requirements, it is important to know how to use ratchet straps:

Do: Make sure you’re using them correctly

Ratchet straps are easy to use - that’s a large part of their appeal. But this can be deceptive - you could be using them incorrectly without even knowing it. The correct usage technique can vary depending on what you’re transporting. If you’ve not used them before, we recommend watching videos online to gain a better understanding of how they work and how to operate them safely.

Do: Choose an appropriate anchorage point

Wondering which anchorage points are unsafe to use with ratchet straps? The answer will vary depending on the vehicle you’re using and the load you’re transporting. The heavier your cargo, the more substantial your anchorage point will need to be. Look out for sturdy, built-in hooks or reinforced areas that have been specifically designed to support additional weight.

Don’t: Leave your straps exposed to the elements

UV rays and moisture can damage your straps quickly, so make sure you store them safely when they’re not in use. If you don’t, you could compromise the safety of yourself, your cargo and other road users. For this reason, you should inspect the straps regularly.

Don’t: Use ratchet straps for lifting

Ratchet straps are merely designed to secure cargo, not lift it. Don’t be tempted to give it a try!

Do: Read the label

Always read the label on your straps to make sure that they’re compliant and that they’re rated to support the weight of your cargo. Look out for the minimum break strength and ensure that this figure is never exceeded.

Need new ratchet straps?

As one of the UK’s leading manufacturers and suppliers of ratchet straps, we have a vast array of different straps and accessories available here at Taut Strap. View the full range and place your order online today.

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