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Whether you’re hauling heavy appliances cross-country for a big move or taking your dirt bikes out for a spin, having ratchet straps will make sure your stuff gets to the destination in the same condition that it started in. Ratchet straps, also called tie-down straps, are webbing straps that are outfitted with buckles and loops on the ends. They’re essential tools for hauling cargo; the straps are used to secure vehicles and equipment to a flatbed truck or open trailer.
For fairly self-explanatory reasons, it’s especially important to use ratchet straps when hauling anything with wheels. You don’t want your ATV deciding to drive itself off the back of your trailer. When choosing ratchet straps, you’ll want to know what kind of stuff you’ll be moving. This will help determine the strength of the straps that are needed.
There are a couple of numbers that factor into calculating the strength of ratchet straps: the breaking strength and working load limit. They mean different things, which is why it’s important to familiarize yourself with the terminology. The breaking strength is the maximum amount of force that can be exerted on the straps, and the working load limit is 1/3 of the breaking strength. For the sake of safety, the number that you should reference should be the working load limit.
We’ve rounded up some of the best ratchet straps for hauling gear, including kits with varying amounts of straps.
1. RHINO USA Heavy Duty Tie Down Set
These ratchet straps are available in five different colors, and each set consists of four ratchet tie-downs and four soft loops. The straps are eight-feet long, and the soft loops are 17-inches long. The straps are made from a durable polyester/silk blend, and the breaking strength is 5,208 pounds.
Pros: Set includes eight pieces. S-hooks have clips for easier securing, which many other straps don’t have. Lifetime warranty.
Cons: Ratchet can be difficult to undo.
2. RHINO USA Ratchet Tie Down Straps
This ratchet strap set is also from Rhino USA, and it’s lighter load-bearing and includes fewer straps than the other option. However, if you don’t need to secure anything that heavy, this is a more affordable option. The maximum breaking strength for these is 1,823 pounds. Each strap is 15-feet long, and four are included.
Pros: Lifetime warranty with the ratchet straps. Reasonably priced option for medium-duty jobs.
Cons: Unlike the other Rhino USA option, the S hooks don’t have clips.
3. AUGO Ratchet Tie Down Straps
These affordable ratchet straps come in a set of four, and each strap is 15-feet long. The straps have a 1500-pound break strength. The S-hooks are coated with rubber to prevent scratching, and the ratchets are designed to be ergonomic for easy adjustments. As a bonus, two handy bungee cords are included.
Pros: Affordable light duty option, comes with bonus bungee cords.
Cons: Straps are not very wide and are not intended for heavy loads.