If you happen to own or work at a business that uses dump trucks on a regular basis, you know how important they are to your daily activities. Whether working on a construction project or hauling other materials here and there, dump trucks play a vital role in getting the job done. Since these trucks are very versatile and used in many different situations, they often have a tarp over their bed to keep materials protected from elements and to keep whatever is being hauled from scattering about while on the road. But since tarps cost money, it’s important to keep them in excellent condition. If you want to extend the life of your dump truck tarp, here are some tips you should follow.
Visually Inspect the Lifting Arms
Before you start using your dump truck each day, take a few minutes to perform a visual inspection of the tarp’s lifting arms. Since these move the tarp back and forth when materials are being loaded or unloaded, they must be parallel in order to operate properly. If they are not, the result can be a torn tarp or one that puts unnecessary stress on the tarp system’s motor, causing it to burn out.
Install a Wind Deflector
While dump truck tarps are heavy-duty tarps that are made to withstand harsh conditions, this does not mean they are indestructible. For many of these tarps, wind damage eventually takes its toll, causing them to tear. To keep this from happening, you may want to install a wind deflector to lessen the strain your truck’s tarp will come under as it goes down the road. Once done, you can expect to see your dump truck tarp last many more years.
Roll It Up After Emptying
If there is one thing that does not make any sense, it is seeing a dump truck that has been unloaded driving down the road with its tarp still covering the bed. When this is done, the tarp is subjected to unnecessary wind damage and other elements, increasing the chances it will need to be replaced sooner rather than later. Therefore, it is always recommended that you roll up the tarp as soon as the load from your dump truck is emptied. Should you continue to drive around time after time with the tarp extended over an empty bed, it will lead to the tarp fraying and requiring replacement.
Don’t Overload the Truck
Finally, you will help your dump truck’s tarp last much longer if you make sure not to overload the truck. For the best results, it is recommended you not fill the bed of the dump truck higher than its top edges. Should you go higher than this, you will then need to stretch the tarp over a large area, creating a hump in its middle that will likely result in it tearing. In many cases, these situations happen when dump trucks are overloaded with gravel or wood chips, all of which rub back and forth across the tarp, causing tremendous friction and eventually large tears. In addition, overloading the truck so that the tarp is stretched could also bend or break its arms, which will then become an even bigger expense and repair job.
Since your dump truck tarps did not come to you free of charge, it makes sense to keep them in good shape for as long as possible. By remembering these tips and putting them into practice on a regular basis, you will find yourself with dump truck tarps that stay in excellent condition, resulting in more money staying in your pocket.