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Tips for Safely Hauling Stuff

These useful devices will help to protect your cargo and the drivers behind you when hauling stuff from place to place.

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Safe Hauling Lede

How many times have you seen coolers, lamps or sofa cushions lying on the road? All of this stuff flying off trucks can be a real hazard for motorists and a hassle for you if you’re the one losing something valuable. Securing truckloads is easy is you get the right gear. The products shown here can help you secure those loads, whether you’re hauling building materials or a motocross bike, or just spending a day at the beach.

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Safe Hauling 1

Solid tie-downs are a must

These movable clamp-style tie-downs mount anywhere along your truck’s box and clamp tightly to the side rails. You can position and remove the quickly with a socket wrench or socket. As with all clamp-type accessories, check them for tightness after the first half hour or traveling. Available at auto stores. Plus: You need these 16 bungee cord hacks in your life.

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Safe Hauling 2

Cargo ramps help you roll heavy items

Each aluminum ramp end outfitted with a sturdy yellow pine or Douglas fir 2×8 or 2×10 will hold up to 700 lbs. (no big motorcycles). This works great for light motorbikes and wheelbarrows of dirt or mulch. “Ramparts” are available at auto parts stores and online. Check out these other utility trailer upgrades you can DIY.

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Safe Hauling 3

Quick-release straps

Heavy-duty, quick-release straps are available in a variety of lengths, sizes and tensile strengths. Flexible Bungee cords work well for light-duty stuff but will stretch and fail if you’re trying to secure heavy objects. An adjustable tie-down strap that you can cinch tight will keep a load from shifting and toppling. Choose one with a tensile strength at least twice the weight of your total load.

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Safe Hauling 4

Stake hole tie-downs

Just push stake hole tie-downs into the stake hole and then turn the loop clockwise to compress the rubber insert. Give them several turns and then a yank to make sure they’re snug. Check them again after traveling awhile and retighten them if necessary. Plus: These zip tie hacks make DIYing a cinch.

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Safe Hauling 5

Cargo nets

Cargo nets are perfect for keeping light items like cushions, inflated toys and chairs from flying out of the box. This type has eight fastening locations, and each hook has a built-in adjuster to secure the load to your liking. About $20 at auto parts stores.

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Safe Hauling 6

Quick-release cargo bars

Quick release cargo bars keep boxes and coolers from sliding around in the pickup box. They’ll adjust for small or large pickup boxes and ratchet tight with the squeeze of a trigger. The bars work great for keeping boxed or bagged items (even groceries) right behind the cab and out of the wind. Expect to pay about $30.