A year ago, my friend and I were headed for a fun-filled day of trail riding with our four wheelers. The place we were headed was 200 miles away from where we live. Carefully securing and testing the ratchet straps to the trailer, It was time to head out for adventure. Everything was going according to plan until about 100 miles into the trip.
Suddenly, my friend hit a pothole in the road and we hear the dreaded sound of a ratchet strap snapping loose. That is one of the worst sounds to hear as you’re headed to a well-planned adventure into the mountains. Looking back at the four wheelers, they were both still there, but mine was sitting at an angle. Telling my friend to pull over, we got out and inspected the damage.
Upon close inspection, we noticed that the strap snapped in the exact place where it was rubbing against the trailer rail. The square tubing that the trailer rail was constructed of wore the ratchet strap and caused it to snap. Luckily, we had a spare strap to replace the damaged strap and the whole day was not a waste.
The best way to prevent this kind of strap wear from ruining your trip is to buy some strap guards. These little modern marvels are a great way to prevent this type of strap wear. Sometimes we forget that the material that the ratchet straps are made of is either nylon or a polyester webbing. Even though these are the best materials for the job, they are, after all, just plastic.
When polyester webbing rubs against the metal of the trailer, the plastic starts to wear and melt at the contact point. When we use strap guards, the guards are placed in between the strap and the corner of the square tubing on the trailer. At the point of contact, instead of the strap rubbing against the metal, it is rubbing against the strap guard. This will put wear on the guard instead of the strap.
In conclusion, a ratchet strap guard would have prevented our almost catastrophic adventure. Preparing for these things ahead of time will ensure that your trip is a success. It is recommended that you use these guards wherever your straps come in contact with the trailer. In doing so you will prevent accidents and the unnecessary spending of money to fix damage to your precious cargo.