How to Equip A Flatbed Trailer With Cargo Control Products

Published on 03/10/23

custom flatbed loading cargo on back of flatbed trailer

The Challenges of Securing Cargo on Open Trailers

When it comes to securing cargo on flatbed trailers there are several different challenges that drivers face when securing cargo. Such as the flatbed trailers are open-air and do not have any walls around the outside of the trailer which makes the wiggle room for error extremely slim. This is why it is extremely important to ensure that the cargo you are securing is using reliable cargo control supplies to prevent potential damage to the cargo or potential injuries from improper cargo securement.

Flatbed Trailers are responsible for securing some of the heaviest and oddly shaped cargo ranging from building materials, farm equipment, machinery, metal materials, vehicles, and more! As Flatbed trailers do not have walls the different cargo being secured from day to day can vary greatly compared to dry van trailers which are more limited in space for the cargo that can be transported. This makes having the proper sizes of cargo control equipment for your flatbed trailer that can accommodate various sizes and weights an absolute must.

In this blog post, we will be going over some of the best ways to equip a new flatbed trailer from tarp systems, tie-down straps, safety gear, corner protectors, chains, and more. Let’s begin with the best ways to equip your flatbed trailer for transporting cargo.

Different Types of Custom Made Flatbed Straps

The Best Flatbed Straps for Flatbed Trailers

When it comes to Flatbed trailers three main different types of tie-down straps are often used Winch Straps, Ratchet Straps, and Rubber Tarp Straps. Each of these three different tie-down straps is used to help secure cargo on the flatbed trailer or by helping to keep the tarp systems secured in place around the cargo to hold it in place to help prevent road grime, rust, and weather that it may come in contact with while going down the roadways.

Flatbed Winch StrapsWinch Straps is the most commonly used style of tie-down straps on flatbed trailers that are equipped with installed rub rails along the sides of the flatbed trailer. Winch straps are tightened into place using the winches installed on the outside rails of the trailer to eliminate the need for heavy-duty and heavy in weight ratchets that can weigh upwards of 8 lbs each on 4-inch Ratchet Straps. This makes purchasing new straps and replacing old straps as they need repair over time much more economical while providing the same levels of strength for your cargo securement.

Flatbed Winch Straps come in 2-inch wide, 3-inch wide, and 4-inch wide webbing and are commonly sold in 27’ and 30’ in length sizes. At Lodi Metals, we are a manufacturer of custom-made winch straps and can help you make the ideal winch strap in-house to your custom spec and hardware options of choice if you don’t find exactly what you are looking for. If you are interested in our custom winch straps you can give our experts a call at 800-807-5634 or by using our online contact us form located at the top of the website.

Flatbed Ratchet StrapsFlatbed Ratchet Straps are very similar to Winch Straps but they are tightened by using the Ratchet Hardware mechanism that is found on the strap. Ratchet Straps are extremely heavy-duty, rigid, and durable and are a great way to ensure that once the cargo is tightened in place it does not come undone while going down the roadways. This is why they are one of the most preferred ways to transport cargo by professional flatbed drivers.

The most common sizes of Flatbed Ratchet Straps range from 2 inches, 3 inches, and 4 inches wide and are commonly made for flatbeds in lengths 27’ and 30’ in length. We stock and manufacture various sizes and lengths of Ratchet Straps in-house so if you are looking for a length you are not able to find online we can custom-make it in-house for an additional price. You can contact our custom experts by giving us a call at 800-807-5634 for further information and to get started today!

Rubber Tarp StrapsRubber Tarp Straps can be known around the industry as bungee cords and are commonly used to secure tarps down safely for transport on flatbed trailers. Available in 10-inch, 15-inch, 21, and 31-inch lengths, and are specifically designed for tarp securement with heavy-duty rubber materials.

Available in Boxes of 50 pieces at affordable prices in the length desired for your tarp securement. When securing rubber tarp straps you should always wear head and eye protection and should never consider securing cargo down with rubber tarp straps. It’s a great rule of thumb to inspect the rubber tarp straps for any cracks, cuts, or defects before every use to ensure they are safe to use before and after every use.

Flatbed Lumber Tarp for Cargo Control on Flatbed Trailers

The Best Tarp Systems for Flatbed Trailers

When it comes to finding the best flatbed tarp systems for flatbeds the number one thing to look for is a heavy-duty and yet quality material tarp system. We have several different types of tarps such as our Flatbed Lumber tarps designed for protecting construction materials, lumber, and general cargo from the elements, and our Flatbed Steel Tarps designed for protecting steel coils, metal building materials, and metals from road debris, grime, and dust while in transit.

Flatbed Lumber Tarps – As a professional flatbed driver you know the importance of protecting your cargo from the harsh realities of the road. That’s where flatbed lumber tarps come in. These tarps are specifically designed to safeguard your construction materials and other cargo from the weather, ensuring that your cargo arrives at its destination in top condition.

Our flatbed lumber tarps are crafted from 18 oz coated fabric, making them extremely sturdy and resistant to water. By covering your lumber or building materials with a tarp, you can significantly lower the risk of water damage and keep your cargo organized during transportation.

Our tarps are made right here in the USA with heavy-duty 18 oz PVC-coated fabric. They feature welded reinforced hems with grommets spaced every 24 inches, as well as two rows of D-rings located at 24 inches and 48 inches from the edges (sides and rear flap). This ensures that your cargo is securely fastened and protected from rain, road debris, and other potential hazards.

Flatbed Steel Tarps – When it comes to transporting steel coils, metal building supplies, and other metal materials, flatbed truck drivers know the importance of protecting their cargo from the elements. Not only do road debris and grime pose a threat to the appearance of the cargo, but moisture and corrosion can lead to serious damage to the metal itself. That’s why using steel tarps is an absolute must for any flatbed driver.

We understand the importance of quality protection for your cargo. That’s why we offer a range of durable flatbed steel tarps made from 18 oz coated fabric. Our tarps are designed to withstand even the most extreme temperatures, with the ability to function at temperatures as low as -40°C/F.

Heavy Duty Corner Protector for Flatbed Trailers

The Best Corner Protectors For Flatbed Straps

Corner Protectors, also known around the industry as edge protectors are one of the best ways to help protect your cargo from potential overtightening damage as well as to help keep your tie-down straps in good condition for longer. This happens due to the heavy-duty corner protectors acting as a barrier between sharp edges and the cargo you are securing and the straps holding it in place.

Deluxe Corner ProtectorsDeluxe Corner Protectors is 12 inches in length and are made from heavy-duty plastic materials are extremely heavy-duty and yet durable. Available in both Dark Blue and Orange color options to fit your securement needs best. This corner protector provides a location on the top of the corner protector to hold your straps in place once secured to prevent the straps from coming undone or from moving out of place once secured.

Heavy Duty Plastic Corner Protector – Our Heavy Duty Plastic Corner Protector is 11 inches in length and provides a 4.5-inch drop on the sides to help keep the straps in place during transit. This corner protector is extremely heavy duty and is one of our more popular corner protectors due to the added durability over time and is available in the color red.

Heavy Duty Corner Protector – This heavy-duty plastic corner protector is made from thick, durable, plastic and is designed with flatbed load securement in mind. These corner protectors are ideal for securement applications such as building materials or securing pallets on flatbed trailers. Designed with a 4-inch slot for tie-down straps to hold them securely in place during transport and is 8” x 8” x 10” in size.

Plastic Corner Protector – 4-inch White – This plastic corner protector is designed for 4-inch tie-down straps and is the most economical corner protector that we offer. These corner protectors are ideal for when you need a large number of corner protectors for securing your freight or for supplying a new rig.

Plastic Edge Protector for TarpsPlastic Edge Protector for tarps is a three-sided plastic corner protector that is engineered to keep your tarp away from the sharp corners of your cargo to help keep the tarps in great shape over time. These are ideal to help prevent the strong winds during transit from cutting the tarp system on sharp edges during transit and the rounded top design lets your tarp slide over corners that could otherwise rip or damage the tarp. This is a great investment for those looking to extend the life of steel tarps or lumber tarp systems.

48-inch Heavy Duty Corner Protector48-inch Heavy Duty Corner Protectors is 48 inches long and are made from heavy-duty plastic and are the largest corner protectors that we offer. The extra length of these corner protectors helps to protect large and oversized loads and provides a larger surface area to help make the job easier for finding the ideal tie-down securement locations.

Reflective Heavy Duty Corner ProtectorReflective Heavy Duty Corner Protectors is ideal for those looking to provide better visibility and safety of the cargo you are securing. The reflectors are designed to help illuminate your cargo for better visibility and added safety while in poor lighting conditions such as at night so that other motorists are aware.

Flatbed Masonry Sideboard for Block and Brick

Flatbed Trailer Winch Accessories and Flatbed Safety Gear

Winch BarsChrome Winch Bars and Combination Winch Bars are designed for tightening winch straps into place along the rub rails of the flatbed trailer. Winch Bars come in several different lengths and styles to find the ideal setup for your flatbed trailer at affordable prices.

Aluminum Masonry Sideboards – Designed for protecting block and brick while going down the road these aluminum sideboards are light in physical weight and make holding the cargo in place and protecting them from load shifts a breeze. Available in 40 inches x 24 inches and 48 inches x 30 inches in size depending on the ideal setup for your rig. Made with a durable one-piece aluminum mesh design to help keep the cargo secure and easy to handle.

Regular Duty Coil Racks with Re-enforced Ends – Our Regular Duty Coil Racks are extremely sturdy and easy to use on flatbed trailer beds and are re-enforced to provide extra stability while loading and while in transit. Made from heavy guard steel construction and engineered to be extremely durable and a reliable coil hauling solution.

Lashing WinchesLashing Winches can be welded or bolted into place like a standard winch but offers the quick release and easy-to-use operation of a ratchet buckle. Ideal for canvas buildings and tent securement applications and works with 2-inch wide tie-down webbing. Featuring a 10,000 lbs Breaking Strength and a 3,335 lbs Safe Working Load Limit Rating.

Portable Bolton Winch for 4 inch Webbing on Flatbed Trailers

Portable Bolt-on Winch – 4 inchesPortable Bolt-on Winches can be placed anywhere along the trailer’s side rails and comes with 2 set screws. Engineered for securing cargo on flatbed trailers and other cargo securement applications. Our Portable Winch can be used with any of our 2-inch, 3-inch, or 4-inch heavy-duty flatbed winch straps and can hold approximately 25 feet of tie-down webbing. Featuring a 15,000 lbs breaking strength minimum and a safe 5,000 lbs working load limit.

Slider Winch – 4 inches – Our Slider Winch is tightened into place when the winch strap is tightened. The slider winch can also double as the weld-on winch and can be welded in place at the preference of the operator. One of the major differences between this winch and other winch systems is this winch is engineered to move easily in both directions on the track that is installed along the trailers. Featuring a 15,000 lbs breaking strength minimum yield and a 5,000 lbs safe working load limit.

Oversize Load Signs and Safety Flags – Our Oversize Load Signs and Safety Flags are designed to provide added safety and visibility for oversize loads as well as added visibility for flatbeds. The Department of Transportation requires trucks with loads exceeding the legal limit for width and height to use some type of indicator that warns the other passengers on the road. These signs are used to indicate a load that could be damaging to other passengers if they are not careful.

Therefore, it is very important to make sure that you are using the right signs to let others know that you are carrying an oversized load. Not only because it is the law, but also because it is the safe thing to do. We have a full selection of various red safety flags and oversized load signs that are designed with safety in mind.

Custom Show Truck with Flatbed Trailer

Shop our popular Flatbed Supplies


Webbing 12,000 lbs BS
Assembly 3,335 lbs WLL


10,000 lbs BS
3,335 lbs WLL


Webbing 12,000 lbs BS
Assembly 3,335 lbs WLL


18 inch by 18 inch
Jersey with Dowel


Cold Crack to -40° C/F
18 oz Coated Fabric


Cold Crack to -40° C/F
18 oz Coated Fabric


Cold Crack to -40° C/F
18 oz Coated Fabric


Cold Crack to -40° C/F
18 oz Coated Fabric


40-inch by 24-inch
Aluminum Mesh


48-inch by 30-inch
Aluminum Mesh


12 inches Long
Plastic Protector


8” x 8” x 10”
4-inch Wide Slot for Straps


39” long x 2.75” wide
33” between stops


Flat Hook 16,200 lbs BS
Assembly 5,400 lbs WLL


Wire Hook 22,000 lbs BS
Assembly 5,670 lbs WLL


Webbing 24,000 lbs BS
Assembly 5,400 lbs WLL


BOX OF 10 Straps
Assembly 5,400 lbs WLL


Webbing 24,000 lbs BS
Assembly 5,400 lbs WLL

Frequently Asked Flatbed Trailer Questions

What are the advantages of using a flatbed trailer? – Flatbed trailers offer several advantages over enclosed trailers including the ability to carry oversized and irregularly shaped loads, easy loading and unloading, and flexibility in arranging the load on the trailer.

What are the disadvantages of using a flatbed trailer? – The main disadvantage of using a flatbed trailer is that the load is exposed to the elements during transport, which can cause damage to the load. Additionally, securing the load can be challenging, and special permits may be required for oversized loads.

What are the dimensions of a flatbed trailer? – Flatbed trailers come in different sizes and dimensions. Standard flatbed trailers typically have a width of 8.5 feet and a length of 48 or 53 feet. Some specialized flatbed trailers can be wider or longer depending on the load requirements.

What other supplies are great for flatbed trailers? – Some of the other supplies that we recommend transport chain, chain binders, gloves, tools, flares, and an emergency supply kit.