A Guide to Safely Towing a vehicle

Ever seen a truck towing a large container at the back? Or even a car towing a caravan behind? Have you ever wondered how it is done? In this article, we will be talking about a device called the ‘tow bar’, which allows a vehicle to pull another vehicle along for various purposes.

What is a tow bar?

A tow bar is a device that is installed on the chassis of the vehicle, that is used for towing heavy vehicles, boats, or even vehicles which have broken down. There are many different kinds of tow bars for different towing purposes and some are suited for vehicles up to a certain weight. Companies like Hedley Towbars do provide advice on the suitable kind of tow bars to be installed and they also carry a range of products from trailers, bike carriers and even solar panels as a one-stop solution for your towing needs.

Advantages of installing a tow bar

Installing a tow bar is not necessary, but in certain situations, it can help you out. For families who wish to take a long road trip, living in the car would not be viable. Staying in a motel or hotel may not be economically viable in the long run. Instead, they could rent or purchase a caravan and tour around the state without having to worry about accommodation. For commercial trucks who are engaged in transporting goods, a tow bar allows them to tow an additional container behind, increasing the productivity and reducing their carbon footprint.

Fitting out the tow bar

You will need to decide what kind of tow bar you intend to install. Installing the wrong tow bar could cause serious damage to both vehicles when you are not meant to be towing a heavier load. For general purposes like towing a caravan (or even mounting a bicycle), the Flange type tow bar would be the most common choice. Make sure that the tow bar is approved and suited for your car’s brand and model, because it may void the car’s warranty and not provide a good fit to your car’s chassis.

Limitations

There are certain limitations when towing another vehicle behind, be it your caravan, a shipping container or even heavy goods. Be aware and research about the speed limit that your local authority has enforced. With the added weight on the rear axle of the vehicle, the braking distance required is much higher, so maintain a safe distance between you and the car in front of you. Take note of your surroundings and note if there are any bends, slopes or uneven roads that might pose a danger. It is always best to drive slowly and carefully due to the added risk of additional weight to your vehicle.

Installing a tow bar by yourself may seem like an easy task even if there are instructions from the manufacturer, but do consider the safety aspect of it. You want to save on the cost of getting it installed by a professional, but you might not be sure about some of the processes which could lead to the tow bar not being installed properly, posing a danger to other motorists and yourself, should anything untoward happen.

Post Author: Forbes Erskine