When hauling cargo, the key concern is to protect whatever is being hauled. It doesn’t make much sense to haul a load of important items across the country only to arrive and find the trip destroyed the shipment. There is also the safety of the delivery vehicle and crew. It makes even less sense to have the cargo damage the vehicle or injure the driver. One of the most important tools for cargo delivery is the tie-down strap.
Many Kinds for Many Applications
A wide variety of tie down straps are available for many different purposes from tying down simple household objects or sporting goods to unusual or large items like antiques, statues or vehicles. There are two general ways to differentiate tie-down straps. The first is the strap itself. If it is a wide and thick strap, it is likely designed for heavy duty applications like vehicle transports. A lighter strap is probably a little easier to work with and will be more flexible and designed for smaller or lighter loads.
The second characteristic is the type of hook or fastener. Light duty tie down straps generally use simple hooks. More advanced and higher capacity straps use more elaborate fastener systems like e-tracks. Straps can also have various kinds of tightening mechanisms from ratchets to buckles to heavy duty winches
Nearly all tie-down straps will also have a recommended weight limit. Be certain that limit exceeds your needs by a healthy margin. It is difficult to tell from where and how often a tie-down will be stressed, and if the load is close to or exceeding the limit, there is a chance the strap can break and jeopardize the load and vehicle.
Choosing Straps for Furniture
With all these different options in mind, it is possible to make some fairly common sense recommendations for furniture tie-down straps. First, the strap itself should be made of a material that has a smooth texture or that can accommodate padding so the furniture is not damaged. Second, the fasteners should be of a secure type that prevents any possibility of slippage, as furniture is relatively susceptible to damage.
Third, although tie-down straps can include rather formidable tightening mechanisms, care should be taken to avoid securing furniture so tightly the stresses placed on the load during transport attempt to push against unforgiving tie-downs and damage or break the furniture instead of stretching the straps a little.
Ratchet straps are widely considered the most versatile, so they are often a good option. Be certain the weight limits are sufficient and provide a little room for cargo shifts by adjusting the ratchet appropriately.
Moving is always stressful. But don’t let the chaotic activity distract you from protecting what you’re moving. It can very easily spare you an expensive replacement or vehicle accident.