If you’ve ever transported cargo from point A to point B with an enclosed trailer, van, or flatbed, then you know securement is of the utmost importance. Without securing your items, they shift, create a mess, and even break during transit. This is where E-Tracks come in.
Widely known for the trucking and transportation industry and moving industry, professionals rely on E-Track systems for their ease of installation, versatility, and durable design. E-Tracks don't have to be for transporting cargo though. You can also use them for recreational vehicle tie downs and securing ATVs, motorcycles, dirt bikes, and other motorsport vehicles.
Continue reading what an E-Track System is, and what equipment you need to have an efficient cargo securement system. Follow our E-Track 101 guide for more information.
What is an E-Track System?
E-Track is a cargo securement system that makes tying down your cargo easier. It’s often used in partially filled spaces to prevent items from shifting during transit, but vehicles like trailers, shipping containers, cargo vans, moving vans, flatbeds, enclosed semi-trailers, and other logistic applications are great to utilize an E-Track System with. Its incredible versatility can create horizontal, vertical, lateral, and radial constraints. This allows you to tie down a wide range of cargo.
Essential Enclosed Trailer E-Track Accessories
- E-Track Rails
- E-Track Ratchet Straps
- E-Track Load Bars
- E-Track Accessories like O-rings, D-rings, rope tie-offs, wood end sockets, and specialized E-Track fittings like J-hook fittings.
It’s made of high-strength, 12-gauge steel rails with small slots attached to the walls or floor of an enclosed or flatbed trailer. E-Track is completely customizable and flexible as everyone hauls differently. Depending on what types of cargo you’re securing, the small slots allow you to connect the tracks with E-fittings like screws and rivets for various types of load securement options.
You can even weld the tracks for another attachment method. If welding, make sure to weld galvanized rails in a well-ventilated area, as fumes may be toxic.
You can mount this style on the floor/bed of a trailer, as well as the walls of enclosed trailers and cargo vans. The horizontal version contains slots that run perpendicular at 90-degrees angles to the sides of the rail and spaced tightly together at approximately 2” intervals.
They’re more commonly used for flatbeds and trailers to haul cargo that don’t take up dead space. However, they can provide numerous tie-down points for cars, ATVs, snowmobiles, motorcycles, and cargo on pallets.
- Read more on How to Tie Down ATVs Using Ratchet Straps.
The vertical version is most common in the trucking and moving industries, and used for enclosed trailers. It can haul cargo of various sizes and heights and provide the support system necessary to create a second level using shoring beams. The vertical E-track rail has a narrower profile and has anchor points that run parallel. It also permits D-rings to mount perpendicular to the floor.
Although they have some differences, there are no rules for deciding between vertical or horizontal. You just have to consider the type of cargo you’re transporting and the type of vehicle you’re installing rails onto.
E-Track Tie Down Straps
E-Track straps are highly favorable tools to use in an E-Track system for their ability to snap in and out of E-fitting slots, and to adjust to different lengths. There are two types of E-Track Straps – ratchet straps and cam straps – and they both will secure cargo safely and efficiently.
Our E-Track cargo straps have color-coded polyester webbing for easy identification of length. Specifically, yellow for 12’, gray for 16’, and blue for 20’. Each has a rated capacity and working load limit (WLL), so you’re able to decide which tiedown is best for your application.
- Learn more about the differences between Working Load Limit, Breaking Strength, and Safety Factor.
Ratchet straps can be tightened much more than cam buckle straps, as the ratcheting action allows you to crank the webbing of the strap around the ratchet’s mandrel. This gives you leverage and force to pull the strap tightly. This is more useful for securing large and heavy loads, especially since they have higher working load limit (WLL) and break strength (BS).
Cam Buckle straps are simpler and quicker, and their tension is easier to controll which makes them perfect for lighter cargo. You thread the webbing through the cam buckle, then pulling the loose end of the webbing away from the cam buckle to make it tight. Knurled grips on the cam buckle use friction to prevent the strap from loosening from transport.
E-Track Shoring Beams
Shoring Beams can secure cargo from shifting around during transport and can maximize the space inside your trailer or enclosed space. Using load bars (in place of tiedowns) at multiple levels in your enclosed trailer will provide superior strength in bending strength and friction strength. You can use truck cargo bars to create decking shelves so you’re able to increase usable space.
- Learn more about E-Track Shoring Beams vs. Load Bars.
We carry E-Track load bars (also known as shoring beams) and ratcheting cargo bars. E-Track load bars are for enclosed trucks and trailers that can stand alone or work with a track system. We carry E-Track load bars made from aluminum or steel, and these comes in lengths starting at 85” and will extend to 104”.
You can use ratcheting cargo bars without a track system, and they are ideal for pickup trucks or smaller trailers. They’ll extend up to 104” and are fitting with a ratchet that allows you to adjust the tension incrementally for a very secure fit.
Other E-Track Accessories
In addition to these rails, tiedowns, and load bars – we have E-Track accessories to help you organize your truck or trailer.
Wood end sockets work with dimensional lumber to create a wall or shelf system. Rope tie-offs or spring E-fittings with D-rings/O-rings are great for offering a quick snap-in way to create a tie-down point. Specialized E-Track fittings like our 2" J-Hook fitting snaps in and out of E-Track slots, so you can hang extension cords, rope, or straps. We also carry an E-Track storage bag to attach to E-Track for an instant storage space for your necessities.
If you’re just getting started with E-Track or simply looking to pick up some essentials, an E-Track kit is an easy and convenient solutions.
- Read more: 9 E-Track Kits to Help You Tie Down Your Trailer.