Why should I use a tarp system?
What size tarp do I need?
What style of tarp do I need?
Which tarp material do I need?
How can I help my truck tarp last longer?
Do I need a manual or electric tarp system?
Why should I use a tarp system?
In most states, laws require that trucks use a tarp to cover their load. The reason behind these laws is that tarps help keep drivers safe from debris that may come loose during transport.
Even if you live in a state that doesn't require tarping, it's a good idea to use a truck tarp system. Tarp systems keep your load protected during transit and also can save you money by cutting down on wind resistance and improving fuel efficiency.
Using a tarp system makes the tarping process significantly easier than covering a load by hand. Tarping a load by hand takes time and can potentially put the driver at risk of injury. Using a tarp system keeps the driver safely in the vehicle while the load is covered in as little as 30 seconds by the push of a button. Faster tarping puts trucks back on the road faster, and increases profitability.
What size tarp do I need?
You should use the following formulas when determining the tarp size for your truck:
Tarp width: Take the width of the tarp axle/roller and subtract 4 inches.
Tarp length: Take the length of your truck body and add 2 feet. The additional length allows the tarp to cover a heaped load.
We offer several types of tarp styles for different hauling applications.
Standard tarps can be used with any of our front-to-back style electric or manual dump truck tarp systems.
Our landscape tarps are designed for use with any manual crank-and-pull style tarp system and are often used by the landscaping industry for the removal of debris.
We carry many styles of specialty tarps, including:
- Side roll tarp systems
- Cable tarp systems
- Side dump tarp systems
- Roll-off tarp systems
We can make any tarp custom to any specification. If you don't see what you need on our site, contact us today for a quote.
The type of tarp material you need comes down to your application use as well as your budget. The first question to ask yourself is if you need waterproof protection, or not.
Non-waterproof mesh tarps are the most common dump truck tarps and use an open weave mesh design. Mesh tarps are ideal for hauling gravel, sand, rocks, landscaping and agricultural debris, and any other use for which you do not need 100% weatherproof protection. There are several types of mesh truck tarps available to choose from, including:
- Economy black mesh - lighter weight, lower cost
- Heavy duty black mesh - sturdier and longer lasting
- Multi-mesh - made of multi-color strands, as strong as heavy duty black mesh but priced lower due to multiple colors
Waterproof vinyl tarps are made of solid vinyl and are designed to keep the contents of the dump body completely dry. Vinyl tarps are classified by the weight of the vinyl. The standard weight of vinyl truck tarps is 18oz. Vinyl tarps are ideal for hauling perishable items, such as grains and other food items, as well as fertilizers due to their waterproof and UV protective qualities. Vinyl truck tarps are also perfect (and sometimes required) for applications that require heat resistance, such as asphalt hauling.
The best way to ensure your truck tarp will last as long as possible is to make sure you order the correct tarp size, made of the most appropriate material for your tarp application.
Another way you can go further between tarp replacements for your truck is by only operating an electric dump truck tarp system when the truck is parked. Covering or uncovering the load while in motion will cause the truck tarp to flap unnecessarily and will make it wear out quicker.
Deciding between a manual truck tarp system or an electric dump truck tarp system depends on both the application you will be using it for as well as your budget.
Manual Tarp Systems require the operator to manually cover the load with either a pull bar or a pull rope and uncover the load using a crank handle (or spring-loaded self-retracting tarp on certain models).
- Truck Size: Good for small dump bodies and pull trailers
- Applications: Landscaping, small construction projects
- Benefit: Lowest cost tarp system option
Electric Tarp Systems allow the operator to remain safely in the truck while covering and uncovering the load with a push of a button.
- Truck Size: Good for large dump bodies and trailers
- Applications: Commercial construction & waste hauling projects
- Benefit: Fastest tarping option, safest for operators
At the end of the day, if your budget allows, it is only marginally more expensive to go with an electric tarp system but the benefits make it well worth the slightly higher price tag.
All in-stock Ground Shipping items are typically shipped within 2 business days of receiving your order. If you ordered a custom item, you will be notified of a shipping estimate when you receive your custom quote. LTL Freight shipments will typically ship within 5-10 business days.
You will receive a shipping notification via email or text message when your order is shipped that will include a tracking number so you can track your item while it is in transit.
Once your item has shipped, the shipping time will depend on whether it was sent via ground or LTL freight. Typically, orders shipped via ground arrive between 2-5 business days after the shipment leaves the warehouse. Items shipped via LTL freight typically arrive in 2-6 business days.
If your order is expected to take longer than these estimates, we will contact you and let you know as soon as we become aware of any delay.
Where is my order?
Within 2-3 days of placing your order you should receive an email or text message notification with your shipment tracking number. If you do not see this email in your inbox, please check your "Junk Mail" or "Spam" folder in case the email was auto-filtered there by mistake (and remember to add American Tarping to your safe senders list so this doesn't happen again).
If you've been tracking your order and the status hasn't changed in more than two days, please let us know so we can contact the shipping carrier or send a replacement item.
Please note that sometimes shipping carriers experience shipping delays due to inclement weather or other reasons outside of our control at American Tarping. If you need your item by a specific date/time, contact us by phone at (786) 708-6662 so we can ensure you get your item exactly when you need it.
Yes! We proudly ship to international destinations. International shipping rates are automatically calculated at checkout.
We do occasionally offer discounts and coupon codes on top of our everyday low prices. All coupon codes and special offers can be received by signing up for the American Tarping newsletter.
Yes, we offer discount options for bulk ordering! Please contact us to see if your order qualifies for bulk pricing.
Returns / Refunds
Ordered the wrong item? No problem! New, unused items can be sent back to us within 30 days for a refund, minus original shipping costs and a 15% restocking fee. Customers are responsible for shipping the item back to us, and payment will be refunded after we receive and inspect the item. Please keep all packaging and documentation that came with your item as it will be required for return.
Received the wrong item? We will gladly pay return shipping costs of the incorrect item and send you the correct item ASAP to make things right.
Something wrong with your item? If the new item you received is defective, let us know within 30 days and we will pay to have your item shipped back to us and will send you a new one right away. Please note, if the item was damaged due to anything other than manufacturer's defect, we will not be able to refund the item or any shipping costs. Please note, if something goes wrong with your item after 30 days and it is still covered by manufacturer warranty, the manufacturer will work directly with you to resolve the issue.
We regret that we are only able to refund custom tarp orders that are found to have a manufacturer's defect. Please measure carefully prior to ordering a custom tarp and if you're not sure what you need, call or email us and we will be happy to help you figure out the perfect size tarp for your truck.
Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to start the return process. Please include your order number and details about why you are returning the item. If the item is damaged, please also include pictures if possible to expedite the return process. You'll hear back from us quickly with instructions about how to return your item.
Once we receive your item, we will process your refund within 5 business days. After the refund has been processed, allow 2-10 business days for the payment to be processed by your bank and returned to your original payment method.