4 Tips to Install Your Truck Ladder Racks Yourself
One of the greatest advantages of using a fiberglass truck body is that these vehicle add-ons often come with a pre-installed ladder rack. But what if your vehicles don’t already have truck ladder racks? While installing your own ladder rack can be somewhat tricky, there are a few tips that will ensure you get a great result. Here’s what you need to consider when installing a truck ladder rack on your own.
Positioning a ladder rack can be a tricky proposition. While a roof-mounted rack could be difficult to reach and cause you to strain your back, a side-mounted rack could actually increase your risk of causing a traffic accident.
How do you balance these conflicting issues? When selecting a truck ladder rack, be sure to choose a model with an adjustable handle system. This allows you to load the ladder on the side of your vehicle, then turn a handle to securely raise it to the roof for transport. Such systems ensure your safety on the road, while also preventing any injuries that might occur by while loading or unloading a ladder.
2. Secure & Seal
Installing a ladder rack can be a great way of securing this important piece of equipment — but only if the rack itself is properly secured. If you don’t fasten everything to the vehicle body, you could very well have the rack fall off your truck when you hit a large bump in the road.
Fortunately, when you purchase a separate ladder rack for your vehicle, you’ll typically receive detailed instructions explaining how to secure it to the truck body.
This is one area where you should never cut corners. Pay particular attention to the carriage bolts, which keep the ladder rack system securely in place. Depending on the type of rack you are installing, you may also need to seal any areas with telescoping tubes to prevent moisture buildup.
3. Ladder Rack Locks
Ladder rack locks are an essential consideration when installing truck ladder racks on your own. These locking mechanisms do more than keep the ladder firmly in place while driving over rough terrain — they can also be used to prevent theft when you leave your vehicle unattended.
Tie-down anchors with a cable are among the most popular options for a ladder rack lock, in part because of their adaptability. The use of a cable allows you to adjust the locking mechanism based on the size of the ladder currently stored on top of your vehicle. This way, you’ll be able to safely transport both large and small ladders.
4. Warranties Matter
When selecting a ladder rack (as well as the lock and any other accessories), pay close attention to warranty information. Contractors rarely enjoy smooth and easy driving conditions — the last thing you want is to install equipment on your truck that can’t stand up to harsh weather or the rigors of the road.
As such, it’s always worthwhile to compare warranties when making a product selection. The more generous the warranty, the more confident the manufacturer is in the quality of their ladder rack. Such items are more likely to stand the test of time — and if something goes wrong, you’re more likely to have your repair costs covered as well.
Ready For Any Task
Don’t leave the transportation of your equipment to chance! Even if you are confident in your installation work, you should still periodically inspect your ladder rack to ensure everything is securely in place. Don’t delay in making adjustments or repairs when needed. With a properly installed ladder rack, you’ll be better prepared to safely transport your equipment to and from job sites.
By taking advantage of ladder racks and the other accessories included in a truck body, you’ll be able to work more effectively than ever before, while also protecting the things that matter most.