Best Tow Straps: Be Ready for Anything

Never get stuck out on the trails with these great tow straps

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If you’ve ever been off-roading or worked with heavy equipment, you know that something unexpected can happen in the blink of an eye. Stuck or rolled vehicles are drastic outcomes and recovering those vehicles can be challenging. There isn’t always time or space to bring specialty vehicles to help you recover, not to mention how expensive that would be. Like all things, preparation is key, and carrying a tow strap keeps you ready for anything. These nylon straps are engineered with incredible strength and durability, making them a simple solution for towing your dead vehicles. Whether you’ll need them for yourself or to help someone else, recovery or towing, everyone will be better off with a tow strap in your emergency kit. So let’s talk about our top picks.

How We Selected The Products

We carefully selected each tow strap based on performance criteria, price point, and their respective brand’s history of reliability. Tow straps come in varying sizes, but to give you the best comparison, we only selected straps of the same size. We avoided selecting product bundles, as each manufacturer offers different bundles that make comparisons difficult. 

We also looked at the strap’s working load limit and breaking point to ensure it would be capable of any task you’d need it for. The pricing for each strap had to be affordable, ruling out extravagantly priced products. We avoided straps with attachment hardware included, as the type of hardware for attaching tends to be a personal preference and/or situation-dependent. 

Our product selections, rankings, and awards for this story are based on research. While we haven’t conducted real-world testing on all of these products yet, we’ve looked at consumer testimonials and data, tutorials, and general discussions on social media and in forums. We also consider price and specification in the context of the segment. And, of course, we rely on our institutional knowledge of the automotive landscape to weed out weak products.

Best Tow Straps Reviews & Recommendations

Best Overall

Gear America Heavy-Duty Tow Strap

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Best Value

TGL Tow Strap

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Premium Pick

Rhino Recovery Tow Strap

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Best Overall Runner Up

AllTop Nylon Recovery Tow Strap

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Honorable Mention

Bubba Rope Power Stretch Recovery Rope

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Buying Guide/What to Look For 

Towing requirements vary by vehicle and site conditions making it vital to select a tow strap that can get the job done. Here are some quick tips to help you select the right strap for your needs. 

  • Breaking Strength: This is the maximum amount of force the strap can handle before breaking. It’s not recommended to use straps close to this rating, this is a safety factor. The higher the breaking strength means the higher your WLL (working load limit). 
  • Working Load Limit: This is the recommended weight to use with the product. Generally, this is one-third of the breaking strength. The higher your WLL, the more the strap can do for you. 
  • Material: Not all materials perform the same. Some materials, like nylon, stretch under pressure and give the strap a kinetic feature. Other materials, like polyester, are less flexible under pressure making them more static. 
  • Width: It’s important to select a strap that fits your hardware. While most straps have reinforced loops for attaching to hardware, you may need to improvise to get the job done and the width could play a factor. Keep in mind the width is correlated with the strength of the strap. 
  • Length: A 20-foot strap will be long enough in most scenarios. Each tow and recovery scenario is different though and may require a longer strap. 

FAQs

You’ve got questions. The Drive has answers.

Q: What’s the difference between breaking strength and working load limit (WLL)?

The breaking strength is the absolute maximum a strap can handle before failing. The WLL is the recommended limit to use for using a strap. Generally, this is 1/3 of the breaking strength. It is strongly discouraged to attempt using a strap above the WLL. 

Q: How do I attach a tow strap? 

There are many ways to attach a tow strap to a vehicle. The easiest way is by using D-ring shackles or soft shackles with a built shackle point. Attachment hardware is a separate purchase from a tow strap. 

Q: Is a tow strap the same as a recovery strap?

Technically, no. A tow strap has static properties specifically for towing vehicles. A recovery strap has kinetic properties that help pull the stuck vehicle. That being said, a recovery strap generally can be used for towing. 

Q: Is there a difference between a tow strap and a tree protector? 

Yes, a tree protector is a smaller strap intended to be used with a winch.

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Scott Whisler is a family man and Marine Corps veteran. He writes gear reviews for Task & Purpose and is known for starring in the documentary series The War Within (2018). Outside of writing, he’s an avid reader and outdoor adventurer.