Caring For Your Truck Tarp

Jun 25 07:48 2010 Chris Harmen Print This Article

State laws require that truck loads be covered by an approved truck tarp. You can extend the useful life of your truck tarp by keeping it clean, tie it down securely, and storing it out of the elements. Caring for your truck tarp properly will ensure its long, useful life.

Most states have laws requiring that loads be covered and tied down securely to prevent litter,Guest Posting accidents, and injuries.  Trash carriers, long haul rigs, and even the family pickup must comply with these laws. If something flies off of the back of your vehicle and causes someone else injury or property damage, you will be held liable. Investing in high quality truck tarps can provide many types of protection.

There are many styles and materials to choose from and all can be effective with the exception of canvas. Canvas should never be used to secure a load due to its tendency to rip and tear. Truck tarps are heavy duty tarpaulins made of 18-ounce, vinyl coated polyester that features double stitched, heat-treated hems, rust resistant grommets, welded D-rings, and nylon webbing for extra support. Taking proper care of these covers can extend their useful life and save your hard-earned money.

Keep It Clean

Cleanliness is one of those, "easier said than done" issues when it comes to a full-size rig cover. Hosing it down, sweeping it off with a broom while it is still being used, and avoiding parking under trees (especially pines) are your best bets for keeping a tarpaulin clean. Most of these large-sized covers can also be taken through a truck wash for a more thorough cleaning.

Detergents and products specifically designed for cleaning tarpaulins work just fine. A bucket, a sponge, and a hose are the only other items you'll need. If the local high school is running a car wash to raise money, well, take advantage of the opportunity!

Secure The Load Snugly

A loosely tied cover will flap harder in the wind and be far more likely to tear. If a small tear does occur, vinyl cement and a spare piece of fabric can be used to prevent the tear from getting worse. Truck tarps are not designed for hurricane force winds. Securing your cover snugly will prevent it from flapping erratically and tearing.

If the cover cannot be tied tightly to a solid structure without allowing air to get in, it is a good idea to create a "path of least resistance" for the wind to pass through without causing too much damage. Most truck tarps are designed with either a four-foot or eight-foot drop and a tail curtain that protects and secures whatever type of load is being carried.

Proper Storage

Most tarpaulins are UV treated to prevent sun damage but that does not mean they can be left in the sun indefinitely. When not in use, all types of tarpaulins should be cleaned, dried, and folded neatly before being stored out of the sun and other elements. In addition to the potential damage caused by sunlight, being blown around a yard and rubbing against rough or sharp surfaces can have devastating effects.

These tarps can protect your property, prevent injury, and keep you within the law. Just a few simple precautions can help these covers provide many years of protection from more than just the elements.

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Chris Harmen
Chris Harmen

Chris Harmen is a writer for, where commercial truck drivers can buy a high quality truck tarp to meet the many state laws that require truck tarps be used when carrying a load.

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