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How to Thread Ratchet Straps

by Chyrene PendletonUpdated October 18, 2017

Ratchet straps allow you to tighten loads safely and securely, whether you use them for your motorcycle loads or for large cargo and equipment on trucks. Ratchet tie-down straps come in a broad range of sizes and strengths, which you can find in retail stores or online. Knowing how to thread ratchet straps correctly will help ensure you transport your loads safely.

Pull back on the release lever located just below the ratchet handle and lift up the release lever. Position the release lever facing you, with the strap already attached to it towards the back.

Feed the end of the webbing or strap through the bottom of the take-up spool, located below the release lever.

Pull the webbing end out away from you, towards the back, to take up any slack, then feed the end back towards you on the top of the same take-up spool

Start ratcheting the fastener with one hand to create tension, while holding the webbing taut with your other hand. Ratcheting means lifting and lowering the ratchet handle down towards you repeatedly until you have the webbing securely in place on the take-up spool. The clicking sounds you hear come from the teeth of the ratchet wheel as it winds and tightens the webbing.

Open the ratchet fastener when finished using it to release the tension. Press the release lever, then pull the webbing out to remove it.

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