Packing Tips for Trucks
December 12, 2008
- Install a non-skid bed liner. Heavy loads in trucks can shift when braking. A non-skid bed liner will reduce the movement of items and will make corners and curves easier to handle.
- Install side rails. Most trucks are manufactured with post holes in the top of the bed sides. Put posts in these holes and the cargo capacity of the truck is increased so that additional trash or light cargo can be transported.
- Use cargo netting for hauling light materials. Nets sized for specific beds resist rot and decay, are easily stored, are lightweight and easy to handle. Most come with hooks or anchors that can be permanently fastened. (If hauling water soluble items, use a tarp secured with bungee cords or ratchet straps.)
- Try high-quality ratchet straps. Made of strong synthetic fiber and fastened to solidly anchored attachment points, ratchet straps can hold both balanced and awkward items tightly.
- Travel a smooth road. If you can choose the road less traveled, do so. Items transported on difficult roads or roads under construction have a better chance of becoming projectiles or highway debris.
- Know the load capacity. Make sure you know you Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) (listed on the factory sticker or in the owner’s manual). Suspensions and tires should never bear more than this amount.
- Tie a flag onto items extending outside the vehicle. Although this tip won’t prevent things from becoming highway debris, it will alert other drivers. Those traveling behind you will avoid approaching too closely.
- Can you still see? If you’ve piled things too high or too wide, your mirrors are useless. You’ll need them for driving and to see the things you’re transporting that could get away.