Getting a Christmas tree home in one piece is no easy task, even if it seems like it should be one of the less stressful parts of the holiday season. Drivers need to keep in mind that things like their cars speed, outdoor conditions, and the state of the tree, all play a role in determining whether or not the tree arrives intact, with the vast majority of is needles, ready to last throughout the month of December. For those new to this unique part of the holiday season, following a few tips can ensure the tree suffers minimal damage and the holiday season remains festive from start to finish.
1. Dont Underestimate the Size of the Tree
Plenty of cautionary tales exist to work customers about buying a tree thats way too big for their homes ceiling heights and square footage. Thats only one piece of the puzzle, however. Buyers also need to make sure that the tree theyve chosen can fit either inside the vehicles cargo area or atop its roof when a roof rack is present. Very large trees can sometimes dwarf the size of the car, making them difficult if not impossible to haul home.
Before picking out a tree, keep in mind its overall height and compare that height to the length of the vehicle doing the hauling. If the tree seems just a bit too long, either find a different vehicle to transport it or decide on a different tree. Alternatively, see if the seller offers delivery service of its own.
2. The Trunk Should Always Face Forward
Aerodynamics is the name of the game when pursuing more efficient driving, but its also the name of the game when avoiding a tree that has lost all of its needles. Because trees tend to open very wide and narrow toward the top, placing the top of the tree forward will turn the conifer into a sail. Needles will fly off at an alarming rate and, by the time the tree gets home, it will look out of place everywhere except a Charlie Brown Christmas special.
Place the trunk forward and make sure the tree has been tightly, properly netted prior to placing it atop the vehicle. Netting will keep the branches and needles close to the trunk, reducing the number that fly off due to wind pressure. The trunks forward position will turn the trees wide bottom into more of a bullet shape, allowing it to cruise through the air without incident.
3. Test the Ties and Drive a Bit More Slowly than Usual
Before departing the tree farm, make sure the tree is tightly secured no matter how its being hauled home. If the tree is attached to the top of the vehicle, give it a strong pull in all directions to make sure that it wont easily slide backward or forward, or to either side of vehicle. The only thing worse than a wind-damaged tree is one that disappears in traffic and causes serious safety concerns for other motorists.
After the tree is secured, drive home a bit slower than the speed limit. Generally, limiting the amount of wind exposure during transportation will keep the tree healthier and longer lasting throughout the holidays. It will also minimize any needle or truck damage, and reduce the possibility of the tree sliding off the roof and into someone elses windshield. That can only be a good thing.
4. Attention to Detail Makes for Easy Hauling
With careful attention to details like the trees netting, position, and tight attachment to the roof, the worst of Christmas disasters can be avoided. Remember to face the trunk forward, pick a tree of the right size, and drive carefully after the pine tree has been attached to a rooftop cargo rack. Everything else will fall into place.