It’s an age-old question new truckers may find themselves asking when seeing older, experienced truckers’ trailers and loads – “why are you twisting your trucking straps?”
While it may seem to be a matter of preference at first glance, there’s actually a very good reason flatbed haulers will twist their ratchet and winch straps when tying down cargo.
Twisting Straps: What’s the Deal?
When you use trucking straps to tie down your cargo, haulers who keep their straps flat may notice the shaking vibrations affecting those straps when on the road. The texture of the road and air flow play a big part in the wear and tear of webbing – if you’re hitting bumps or debris in the road, that’s creating vibrations that will travel up the wheels and throughout your trailer, cargo, and tie-down straps. However, even during smooth treks across the country, airflow will still cause your straps to shake and vibrate against the wind.
Creating a twist in the strap will decrease the amount of friction and vibration that your straps will experience on the road. Half-twists are a common and recommended style of twisting straps, as it greatly reduces any flapping without risking the security of your cargo.
Trucker Technique: The Half-Twist
Strap half twists prevent wind from moving the tie-down straps and causing any friction or rubbing against edges, which could tear or snap a ratchet strap. Half twists specifically work with preventing harmonics – a wind effect caused when the air hits a surface it can’t flow through – by providing a pattern that the air can easily flow between.
Wind can easily cause damage to any tie-down strap, no matter how new. Friction is a trucker’s worst enemy on the road, but you can easily prevent the vibration and back-and-forth movement of your straps by twisting them! Just make sure not to twist too much; this can result in the creation of a knot, which will snap your straps, or it will decrease the strength of your strap over your cargo which increases the risk of your load coming loose during transit.
It’s recommended to only twist a strap once or twice, depending on the size of your load. You can further increase the lifespan of your straps by investing in other trucking accessories, such as corner protectors, to keep them safe from sharp edges or corners.
It is crucial to always inspect your straps before and after jobs to check for any damages. A strap experiencing excessive wear and tear can still snap even with a half-twist technique in place. If you find any damage done to your straps, get them replaced immediately.
At Mytee Products, we have a variety of strap types, sizes, and colors available! Visit our website or call us at (888) 705-8277 to find the best, strong, long-lasting ratchet and winch straps that will meet all your trucking needs!