Regular transportation of goods requires sturdy equipment including ratchet straps, or tie-downs, to haul cargo loads. Ratchet straps are used to fasten loads with minimal labor and provide safety measures for the transportation of large goods. They also require specialized practices to maintain the quality and security of the straps for each use. Explore the best ways to make your die-downs last longer through strategic storage, safe handling practices, and general maintenance tips.
Limit UV Exposure
Ratchet straps, both lightweight and heavy-duty, use polyester. While this material can withstand rigorous movement, UV rays will eventually break down the fibers in polyester. Avoid storing your tie-downs in direct sunlight and thoroughly inspect them for signs of sun damage before every use.
Keep Ratchets Oiled
Routinely apply industrial oil to your ratchets to keep them lubricated. Regular lubrication prevents your ratchets from snagging, pulling, or ripping the straps during towing operations. Be mindful of lubricating the ratchet and not the strap to avoid corroding the webbing and reducing the overall effectiveness.
Prevent Heat and Friction
Avoid leaving your tie-downs hanging down when they aren’t in use to prevent friction. Allowing ratchet straps to hang loose causes the strap to rub and deteriorate faster over time. Be mindful of keeping your tie-downs away from moving parts and direct heat sources, especially smaller ratchets that are more delicate. Inspect your tie-down for lesions or burn marks to determine if you need to replace it.
Tip: To prevent damaging your tie-downs, invest in a wear sleeve for your ratchet strap.
Dry Ratchet Straps Before Storing
Proper storage is one of the best ways to make your tie-downs last longer and preserve their quality. Get into the habit of drying your tie-downs after hauling wet loads before storing them. Storing damp ratchet straps promotes the growth of mold and mildew spores. These growths can weaken the strength of your tie-downs over time.