Pack Hacks: How to Tame Excess Backpack Straps

Run or hike with a pack long enough and you may begin to notice tiny annoyances about your gear transporter that are enough to drive you crazy.

For example, your zippers may make jingling, tinkling noises with each step. The quiet, sloshing water in your bottle or hydration pack might start to sound like you’re camped next to a gushing waterfall. You may even get noticeably angry at your straps that keep swinging into your arms as you move.

Some backpacks come with pre-built solutions for all these issues, but many do not. What can you do to keep yourself sane while out on the run? We’re here with answers!

In our first Pack Hacks instructional post, we’re going to show you how to deal with excess backpack straps.

The Problem:
Excess Straps on Your Pack

The Solution:
Secure the Straps with Velcro Tape

Here’s How to Do It

Step 1

Purchase some Velcro Tape

Also known as “fastening tape,” velcro tape comes in a wide range of sizes and lengths and is suitable for many jobs in which things need to secured (wires, cables, yoga mats, rope, etc.).

For our example, we used a roll of 3/4″ tape.

Step 2

Cut a 5″ – 6″ Piece of Tape

The length may vary depending upon how much excess strap you have, but usually 5 – 6 inches (13 – 15 cm) will suffice.

Step 3

Place End of Tape Near End of Excess Strap

By placing the first part of the tape inside the roll of strap, you will be securing it from unrolling later on.

Step 4

Roll Excess Strap to Buckle

The roll doesn’t have to go all the way up to the buckle – it can finish near it.

Step 5

Wrap Tape Under and Around Strap and Secure

If you have too much tape leftover, trim the excess.


The Finished Product Should Look Like This

When done correctly, the straps should never come loose. If you need to expand the pack straps, simply unfasten, adjust, re-roll, and secure once more.

Use anywhere you have too much extra strap on your backpack

By |2018-09-19T11:36:52+00:00June 10th, 2017|Categories: Gear, General, How To|9 Comments

About the Author:

Editor-in-Chief of The Run Commuter by night, paralegal by day. Father of three boys. Husband to the world's greatest bicycle advocate. Avid runner. Lover of beer and urban gardening. Can be found running with a backpack around the streets of Atlanta, Georgia. Contact Josh at


  1. Nicolas Pedneault
    Nicolas Pedneault April 3, 2015 at 10:41 am - Reply

    This is so simple… thanks!

  2. […] Re: Allen exterus large sling pack Velcro…. Pack Hacks: How to Tame Excess Backpack Straps – The Run Commuter […]

  3. Jeff Jones March 26, 2016 at 3:13 pm - Reply

    Hey Josh – great idea. I’m still kinda partial to letting the straps blow in the wind for the dramatic effect… ;-) But it looks like velcro strips may be in my future.

  4. Don May 31, 2016 at 1:30 am - Reply

    I was able to do similar with zip ties. Roll it up, then slip the zip tie through the middle and then lock it around the other strap to tie them tightly together.

  5. T January 6, 2018 at 12:58 am - Reply

    I used duct tape lol

  6. Anne Betts January 7, 2018 at 4:45 am - Reply

    This is a great idea. It’s got me thinking about other uses of strips of Velcro. Have you tried Web Dominator? It’s a little plastic clip with elastic shock cord attached. I use four on my travel backpack. Works beautifully. Here’s a description:

    • Josh
      Josh January 9, 2018 at 11:13 am - Reply

      Interesting. I’ll check those out. Thanks!

  7. Jonathan Castellino April 3, 2018 at 1:41 am - Reply

    This is great; I just got a new camera backpack, which has REALLY excessive amounts of extra strap — this saved me constant minor irritation — which adds up !


  8. […] Mueller mentioned this life hack to me after he purchased the same backpack that I did a few weeks ago. By using this, you can get […]

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