Towing is a technical job. Even the smallest slip-ups can have a devastating impact. Whether you need to move a broken-down truck or a fully functioning sedan, the best choice is to work with a local tow service, and here’s why.
Towing a vehicle the wrong way can cause significant damage to the vehicle in tow. Each type of vehicle needs to be towed a certain way depending on the make, model, and features of the automobile. Without the knowledge and expertise of a certified towing company, you could make a mess of your car in no time.
The vehicle in tow is not the only vehicle susceptible to damage during a DIY tow, though. The tow vehicle must be able to haul a lot of weight, and not every kind of vehicle is cut out for the job.
Beware: if you plan to use your vehicle to tow another car, you are putting your automobile’s engine, transmission, brake system, suspension, tires, axles, and more at risk of needing costly repairs afterward.
DIY towing without the proper equipment is downright dangerous. Poor DIY towing execution can pose a threat to those within the tow vehicle and other drivers on the road as well. Unfortunately, lives are lost due to unsafe towing practices.
Why is DIY towing so unsafe? Since there are significant differences between tow truck driving and normal, everyday driving, you need a specific skill set to operate a tow vehicle.
You need to make significantly wider turns. You need more room when merging lanes or passing other vehicles. You will have limited visibility You need to break earlier and slower. You cannot make sharp or drastic movements.
Do you know the gross weight rating of your vehicle? Do you know how to balance your tow load?
Do you know how to calculate tongue weight (the measurement of the downward force exerted at a vehicle-trailer coupling point )? Do you know the rating of your towbar? Do you know whether your vehicle requires a separate braking system due to its overall weight in order to legally tow another vehicle?
Every state has certain laws and regulations to follow, which means towing protocols vary based on your location. While the average adult does not remain up-to-date on all the latest legal specifications you must follow to avoid getting in trouble with the law, professional towing companies do.
Furthermore, you can run into insurance coverage problems during a DIY tow. Insurance companies have rules to follow, too. If you get in an accident while breaking those rules, your insurance company can refuse coverage.
There are plenty of circumstances where the do-it-yourself route makes sense, but towing a vehicle is not one of them.