If you plan to ride your ATV or UTV anywhere besides around your home or need to transport your golf cart for a golf getaway, it’s essential that you have a safe and efficient way to transport it. With all of the options out there for loading ramps, and the near-innumerable makes and models of trucks, how do you know which ramp is best for you?
Ask yourself these seven questions to help you choose the right loading ramp for you and your family.
ATVs, UTVs, golf carts and other off-road vehicles (ORVs) all have different sizes, weights, ground clearances and tire tread. Knowing which type of vehicle you will be loading, and the dimensions and features of that vehicle, will help you determine the size and type of loading ramp you need.
For example, because golf cart tires are smaller, you need a ramp with rungs that are closer together. With the larger, knobbier tires on ATVs and UTVs, rung spacing on ATV loading ramps is farther apart.
Notice the difference in spacing between rungs on the ATV/SXS ramps and the golf cart ramps.
Are you loading your off road vehicle on a truck, flatbed or trailer? Because truck beds are typically higher than trailers, a longer ramp helps ensure you can more easily and safely load your ATV or golf cart.
Will you only ever use that one vehicle, or might you need to load on a friend or family member’s truck or trailer? If you could be loading on multiple, different sized vehicles, it’s best to get a ramp that’s safe for any situation. The longer the ramp is, the more options you have.
If you have a standard sized truck, we recommend 8 foot ramps or longer. For trucks lifted up to four inches, the 9.5 foot ramps are better. If you truck is lifted more than four inches, go with the 11 foot ramp set.
However, we strongly believe that longer is always better. So if you can get the 11 foot set, even with a standard height truck or trailer (and if you might load into other people’s vehicles), we say go for it!
Check your owner’s manual or search online for the weight of your vehicle, then add up all the other things that contribute to the overall loading weight--fuel weight (assume each gallon of gas weighs 8.5 pounds), driver’s weight, weight of all attachments and accessories (again, check owner’s manuals or search online) and weight of any cargo strapped to the vehicle. If this total loading weight exceed the weight capacity of a ramp, don’t even think about using it!
Our 8 foot and 9.5 foot ramps support up to 2,000 pounds per set (1,000 pounds per ramp), and our 11 foot ramps support up to 1,600 pounds per set (800 pounds per ramp). These weight capacities are for both the ATV/SXS and golf cart loading ramps .
Consider the various types of conditions you may need to load your ORV in--rain, mud, snow, sleet, sand, dirt, gravel, uneven surfaces. Ramps with open rungs (versus a solid surface) allow debris to fall to the ground and provide better traction while loading.
Also, having two separate ramps for each set of tires (versus a larger single board or sheet) allows you to more easily and safely load on rocky, bumpy or otherwise uneven surfaces.
If you will have help loading your vehicle, the sizes recommend above should suffice. But if you’ll be loading by yourself, consider going for a longer ramp to reduce the steepness of the angle, and allow for a slower and safe ascent.
Always, always make sure you have the right equipment and accessories to safely load your vehicle. At minimum, we recommend using tie-down ratchet or cam buckle straps to secure the ramp to the truck and avoid slipping or kickout, and a helmet for anyone riding the vehicle up the ramp. For optimal safety, consider wearing other protective gear, such as gloves, boots that cover your ankle, pants, long sleeves and protective eyewear.
Still unsure of which loading ramp is right for you? Contact us today and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions to ensure you get the best and safest loading ramp!