Safely Towing a Car

by Lee Wyatt
(last updated March 29, 2012)

Chances are really good that if you haven't already had to have a car towed somewhere, then you will probably will at some point in your life. Safely towing a car isn't all that difficult. All it really requires is that you pay attention to what you are doing, and follow these instructions carefully.

  1. Fasten the chain. The first step in safely towing a car is to locate a secure place on the undercarriage of your car, and loop the chain or tow cable around it. On the average you should at least double loop the chain or tow cable so that you can help ensure that it is securely attached. Once you have done that attach the loose end of the tow chain or cable to the trailer hitch of your towing vehicle. If you don't have a trailer hitch on your towing vehicle, then locate a secure location on the undercarriage, and double loop it there. Do not attach the tow cable or chain to the bumper, as this will only be pulled off when you get moving.
  2. Put it into neutral. Once you have secured the vehicles together, it is time to prepare for movement. Place the car that is being towed into neutral, and then get out. Having the car in neutral will help ensure that you do not damage the wheels, brakes, or any other pricey pieces of the car.
  3. Make a sign. Before you get moving, you still need to do two things. The first is to make a sign that you can put into the back window saying that you are towing this vehicle. In fact, all that the sign has to say is "Being Towed" and that will work. Make sure that it is printed large enough that the vehicles behind you can easily see it. The second thing you need to do is turn the hazard blinkers on your car on. This will also give another indicator to those behind you that they need to give you plenty of room.
  4. Get moving. It is now time to begin moving. When you begin driving and towing the car, make sure that you don't have anyone in the vehicle that is being towed. There are two reasons for this. The first is that it's not exactly safe to have someone riding in the towed vehicle while you are towing it. The second is that in most states it is illegal to have anyone in a vehicle that is being towed. As you are moving make sure that your travel speed is no faster than 45 miles per hour, and if possible go slower than that. If you travel faster than that you increase the risk of an accident, and also put additional strain on the towing cable.
  5. Keep it short. You should always keep your towing travels as short as possible. Ideally you will only tow the vehicle to the next gas station or rest area. This will allow you to get it off of the road, and be able to work on it in a safer location.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...

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