Often, when it comes to tarps, material is paramount and correlates with usage. Polyethylene is the go-to material, while vinyl provides the strength for more heavy-duty and commercial jobs, like transport. Polypropylene mesh, able to let 25-percent of light through while still blocking out UV rays, is a specialized option, perfect for gardens but also for trucks carrying gravel and other materials that can be exposed to moisture. Canvas, another heavy-duty option, works optimally as a drop cloth and for temporary outdoor coverage.
Yet, an aspect we have not considered is size. Is it possible to have a tarp that’s too small or too large? Of course. Before purchasing a tarp, measuring how much area you need to cover is crucial. So, for common investments, here’s our solution to your conundrum:
Smaller vehicles and equipment. Are you just looking to shelter a motorcycle, a pile of wood, or a lawnmower? If this is your sole investment, a tarp that’s no larger than 10 feet by 10 feet should be sufficient.
Single cars and smaller boats. If you plan to cover up a single, average-sized vehicle, a heavy-duty tarp and bungee cords or clips are sufficient. But rather than come up too small or too large, such tarps should be at least 10 feet wide, if not greater, but no more than 20 feet.
Canopies. No matter if you call it a carport or a portable garage, a canopy may experience a damaged cover, and a tarp is a sufficient replacement. Nevertheless, sizes vary significantly with type of canopy, as well as style (valance or enclosed). Measure first before browsing for poly tarps. Retailers may also carry canopy replacement tarps for a better fit.
Construction Sites and Commercial Facilities. In these cases, it’s not how much of a tarp you have, it’s how many. Of course, function comes into play. If you’re planning to cover a fence, be sure the tarp is far wider than it is tall. If a building needs coverage, on the other hand, there’s no limit on how large the tarp can be.