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How to Tie a Christmas Tree to the Roof of Your Car

Just hang on with one hand and drive really slow / Shutterstock.com

When it comes to using the family car as a delivery truck, we’ve all seen some questionable tie-downs that look neither safe nor secure. Most of us are guilty of having rigged something on the roof of our car that kind-of worked, knowing deep down it wouldn’t pass a real stress test. And an unlucky few among us have had a disastrous experience with a roof tie-down gone wrong.

With an eye to avoiding injury and mishap while pursuing the time-honored tradition of bagging a Christmas tree, we want to point you toward some useful tips for getting your tree–and you!–home safely.

With the help of this great Popular Mechanics article, we can all feel a little bit more confident that our drive home from the Christmas tree farm will be safe and uneventful. The article includes instructions on how to tie the best and most secure knots, if you are using twine to attach your tree to the roof of your car, as well as how to safely use bungee cords or ratchet straps to secure your tree. And even if your car doesn’t have roof-rack bars or rails, the article describes in detail a safe method for ensuring that your tree stays put while you drive home.

Here are a few other helpful tips to get you and your tree home in one piece:

  • Before you get started securing your tree to the roof of your vehicle, ask to have it wrapped by the folks who are selling it–this helps limit damage to the tree, and makes it easier to handle. And if the seller isn’t able to wrap your tree, you can do it yourself with an old travel blanket and some twine.
  • Always position your tree on the roof with the tree-trunk pointed toward the front of the car. This positioning is more aerodynamic, and helps limit potential damage to the branches that might be caused by wind resistance.
  • And don’t forget to put an old blanket or towel on the roof under your tree, to avoid sap and scratches on your vehicle’s paint job!