Terry's Towing Blog

3 Dangers of Towing Your Own Vehicle During a Roadside Emergency

If your vehicle breaks down unexpectedly, you need to tow it to a mechanic for repairs. Instead of paying for towing services, some people opt to do the task themselves. If you or your loved one has a truck, you may decide to use it to tow your vehicle and save money on professional towing. While this may seem like an excellent idea, it can expose you to various dangers. Thus, before towing your vehicle yourself, consider these risks of self-towing.

Damage to the towing vehicle

There are various factors you should consider before using a truck for towing. They include:

  • The vehicle's maximum towing capacity
  • Tow bar or hitch compatibility
  • Tow bar's maximum rated capacity
  • Condition of the truck's braking system

If you attempt to tow a vehicle that exceeds the towing truck's capacity, you may cause damage to its suspension system. Similarly, if the tow bar isn't compatible with your car or has a low rating, it may get damaged, leading to the risk of disconnection. 

The towing vehicle's braking system should be in the right condition to handle the extra weight. If not, the brakes may fail mid-journey, leading to a case of two broken down vehicles. Check these components before towing your vehicle to avert further damage and accidents.

Damage to the towed vehicle

Most people who carry out self-towing employ the hitch towing method. Instead of being hoisted onto a flatbed, the towed vehicle is attached to a tow bar on the truck. Thus, its wheels remain on the road throughout the journey. This form of towing can cause damage to the vehicle in the following ways:

  • Scratches, dings and dents on the car's exterior
  • Damage to the wheels and tyres
  • Extensive damage to the transmission and mechanical components 

Exercise care when attaching the towing components to prevent cosmetic damage to your vehicle. Also, consider your car's transmission before employing the hitch towing method. For example, you should disconnect the rear driveshaft and leave the rear wheels on the road to prevent transmission damage. 

Accidents due to poor towing skills

Towing a vehicle may seem like a simple task, but it requires care and skill. During poor weather, you should drive at low speeds to protect the towed vehicle from swaying. You must also know how and when to brake to prevent the braking system from failing. If you intend to use a route with sharp bends, you should know how to negotiate the corners without destabilising the towed vehicle. Failure to do this can lead to accidents and extensive vehicle damage.

To avoid the above self-towing risks, hire an emergency towing company. For prompt services, find a firm that offers 24-hour services and fast response times.