We all have those items that we’ve used once and then put in a cupboard or a box in the back of the garage. We don’t get rid of them because you never know when you’re going to need it again.
Like many people, these items include ratchet straps. To the unimaginative person, they may seem like a one-purpose type of gadget. But, with a little imagination, there are actually a few other things you can use ratchet tie-down straps for.
The Many Uses of Ratchet Straps
Ratchet straps are primarily used to tie down loads on the backs of trailers. But, interestingly enough, these versatile gadgets can be used for more and we’ll have a look at what additional value they can have for you.
The Original Use
Ratchet tie-down straps are usually made of webbing which is manufactured from a type of polyester mesh blend. The main purpose is to provide industrial-grade strength to secure items during transport. These rope-like straps prevent items from moving around on the back of trucks and trailers. Different sizes and strengths allow for just about any load to be tied down.
Tie Down Your Groceries
Going to town with your pickup truck? Stressed that your groceries will fall all over the place while on the back of the vehicle? Well, you could secure the bags by threading the straps through the bags and securing them to the vehicle. Perhaps not the most common use for your ratchet straps but, if it keeps your groceries from getting damaged on the way home, why not consider it?
Make a Hammock
When you just want to spend a long hot day relaxing outside, you might want a little more relaxation than your garden chair can provide. Use two tie-down ratchet straps and a comfy blanket or large piece of netting to create the perfect hammock between two trees or pillars. It’s a whole new way to enjoy the hot, sunny days of summer.
If you’re looking for a fun and unusual activity to do in the summer, there’s a crazy activity called slacklining. Slacklining happens when you tie a ratchet tie down strap between two very strong trees. When the strap is tightly secured and there’s no longer any slack, the strap becomes a tightrope. Now, try to cross without falling off. This creates a fun-filled activity for the whole family to partake in.
You could even add a few sponge mattresses under the slackline to prevent smaller children from getting hurt. Ideally, your slackline shouldn’t be too far off the ground.
If you do woodwork, you’ll most likely have several clamps that you use to secure items together once they have been glued. That can only work up to a certain thickness. What do you do with bigger items? Well, this is another area where your ratchet tie down strap comes in handy.
Use the straps to hold larger items together while the glue dries. Let the straps and hooks perform the function of a giant clamp.
Few people know this, but you can actually use the right strength of the ratchet strap to tow another vehicle. So, when you’re in a pinch and you don’t have a towing rope available, you can always reach for the ratchet strap. These industrial-grade straps can also be used to pull a car out of the mud, which will save you costs on a towing truck.
Rope Swings for the Kids
If you enjoyed the slackline idea, you’ll enjoy the rope swing idea even more. Ratchet straps can easily hold up rope swings and make the swing more secure. You could tie two ratchet straps to an old tire and secure that to your favourite tree in the backyard and have a swing for the kids to play on.
Secure Items in Your Garage
If you have trouble finding space for some of your larger items you’d like to keep in storage, you can always secure them to the ceiling of your garage using a couple of ratchet straps. You could even use this method to store your pickup truck’s canopy.
Remember the Working Load
Before you attempt any out of the ordinary activities with your ratchet tie down straps, consider the working load limit. Simply put, it’s the tension put on the ratchet strap that it can tolerate before snapping. Ensure that the ratchet strap and hooks you have are going to be able to handle the weight of what you’re going to lift or tie down. You will also have to make sure you have the right hooks.
If you’re done moving, don’t throw the ratchet straps in the corner. You never know when you’ll need them to assist you with something you perhaps haven’t even thought of. In fact, keep some in your car in case of an emergency!