5 steps to choosing the right tarpaulin for your business

Tarpaulin is an essential element for any business to stay afloat. Whether it’s protecting products and cargo from harsh weather, or giving workers a safe place to take cover during emergencies, no company should go without them! While there are multiple types of tarps to choose from, we will be focusing on the most used – the low-density polyethylene (LDPE) tarpaulin.  It is a lightweight and inexpensive choice for many business owners and offers protection against the harsh conditions of the outdoors.

Before you choose which tarp to use for your business or commercial purposes, it’s important to know all there is to know about this staple material!

Here are 5 steps to choosing the right tarpaulin for your business:

1. Understand what kind of weather you’ll need protection from

The first thing you should do when shopping around for tarps is understand what kind of weather that you’ll need protection from. There are various types of LDPE tarpaulins that are specifically designed to protect against certain weather conditions.

The low-density tarpaulin is the most common type of plastic tarp and it is cold, resistant, waterproof, and tear-proof. It’s best suited for light rain or snowfall. This kind of tarp can also be used as a temporary shelter during emergencies such as floods. High-density tarpaulin, meanwhile, is thick, heat resistant, waterproof, and windproof. It comes with grommets on all four corners to make your tarp stronger and more durable. This type is best for torrential rains or strong winds.

2. Consider the size of your tarp

Depending on the purpose that you would like to use your tarp for, it’s best to get one that is of an appropriate size. If you are looking to protect products or cargo from weather conditions, a general rule of thumb is to choose a tarp with approximately 1′ more circumference than what you need. This gives you enough space for securing the tarp down and tying it down safely. Meanwhile, if you are only seeking temporary shelter during emergencies such as floods or storms, make sure that there are no gaps between your tarp and the ground. Try covering up any doors or windows so that rainwater doesn’t sleep in through these openings.

3. Check the thickness of your tarp

Depending on what you need to use it for, make sure to get a tarp with the proper strength and durability. There are different types of LDPE tarps available in various thicknesses (measured in mils). The thickness ranges between 30 – 60 mils, while thicker tarps go up to 100 mils. Generally speaking, the average business owner would only need 30-60 mils thick tarpaulins, but this will depend on your usage of the product. If you intend to use your tarp for heavy-duty purposes such as construction or large-scale industry needs, then opt for 80 – 100 mils thick tarps.

4. Pick your size

There are many types of plastic tarpaulins that vary in their dimensions and sizes. If you need a taller or wider tarp, there is no shortage of options to choose from! The most commonly found LDPE tarpaulin sizes include: 2’x20′, 3’x30, 4′ x 40′, 4′ x 100′, 8 ‘x 30′. For larger buildings such as warehouses, arenas, or any other large area, try finding tarps that measure 4′ x 200’. These larger tarps offer enough coverage for any commercial use. Remember though that the bigger your tarp is in its dimension, the less strength it has to offer.

5. Make sure you have all the proper accessories

To make your tarpaulin stronger and more durable, try incorporating a variety of other plastic products that can hold down your tarp while safeguarding it against various weather conditions. You need to find a way to secure your plastic tarps down in order for them to be effective against windy conditions!


Understanding the various tarpaulins available on the market is the first step to getting your business up and running. By keeping these five steps in mind, you’ll be able to choose the right tarp for your commercial use!