Chain Sling Inspection Criteria

Chain Slings

As with all slings, chain slings shall be inspected before use.

According to OSHA (1910.184 for General Industry and 1926.184 for Construction), the inspection should follow a formal written inspection procedure to ensure complete examination as follows:

  1. Clean each chain sling prior to inspection. Chain that is coated with paint, dirt or oil may hide nicks, gouges or other damage.
  2. Check the identification tag legibility. Ensure that its serial number, name of manufacturer, size, grade, working load limit and reach correspond to the original Chain Sling Certification when the sling was manufactured.
  3. Measure the reach of sling legs to make sure they correspond to the values stamped on the chain sling identification tag. If one or more legs are longer, there is a possibility that the sling has been subjected to overloading or excessive wear.
  4. Make a link-by-link inspection of the chain slings for:
    1. a. Excessive wear. If the wear on any portion of any link exceeds the allowable wear shown on this table remove from service. Use of a caliper is required to ensure proper measurement. Chain wear is often visible near the hooks on heavy slings since they are often dragged around.

      Minimum Allowable Thickness at Any Point on a Link

      Inches mm Inches mm
      7/32″ 5.5 0.189 4.8
      9/32″ 7 0.239 6.07
      5/16″ 8 0.273 6.93
      3/8″ 10 0.342 8.69
      1/2″ 13 0.443 11.26
      5/8″ 16 0.546 13.87
      3/4″ 20 0.687 17.45
      7/8″ 22 0.75 19.05
      1″ 26 0.887 22.53
      1-1/4″ 32 1.091 22.71
    2. b. Twisted, bent or cut links.
    3. c. Cracks in the weld area or any portion of the link.
    4. d. Nicks or gouges.
    5. e. Stretched links.
    6. f. Severe corrosion.
    7. g. Any deformation or degradation of components.
  5. Inspect the master and coupling links for wear or damage.
  6. If hooks have been opened more than 5% of the normal throat openings (measured at the narrowest point) or twisted more than 10 degrees from the plane of unbent hook, the sling shall be removed from service.
  7. Attach “Danger – Do Not Use” warning tag to each sling removed from service. Record the removal of the sling on sling inspection report form.
  8. Any chain sling removed from service should be tagged and returned to the central issuing department with data covering the detected during the inspection. The sling can then be returned to an authorized repair service center for the appropriate repairs and proof testing.