How to Tow your Broken down Car


Before towing a vehicle, you should know that unless specifically authorised to transport over-sized loads, no vehicle may tow or be towed by more than one vehicle. A vehicle may tow another vehicle that is not a trailer only if the towed vehicle can no longer proceed under its own power due to a breakdown or the lack of essential components. Also, the connection between the towed and towing vehicle must carry a flag or any other device that will make clearly visible.

Towing a broken down Car

Types of Connections used between Towing and Towed vehicles in emmergency Situations

Emergency situation could compel the Driver of a broken down vehicle to take to desperate means ( in terms of the choice of connections) that might compound the initial situation. Hence, drivers should take care to ensure that the vehicle is towed with any of the following secure connections: Suitable Ropes, Chain, Steel Cable and Rigid Bar.

Features of the vehicle being Towed

A broken down vehicle must be towed in a way that it does not pose a danger to other Vehicles. Hence, every means possible must be to increase the visibility of the vehicle being towed. Drivers should ensure that,

• The vehicle being towed must display the warning triangle or any other suitable sign.

• Must be able to simultaneously indicate the direction of travel with the towing vehicle. If the towing vehicle is flashing the indicator light to the right, the towed vehicle must also indicate right so as to avoid confusing other drivers,

• The vehicle being towed must be attached firmly to the towing vehicle and must also have reflecting materials attached to increase its visibility.

• The vehicle being towed must display the overhanging load plate in the absence of other suitable signs.

You should check here for your own Towing Winches

Trailer towing system

Towing systems for trailers are different from those of cars and other vehicles. For trailers weighing up to 3.5 tones, the towing system is made up of a lock and key system of a tow ball and a coupling head. The tow ball is on the towing vehicle which could be a car, while the coupling head is a connecting extension of the trailer. once the head is placed on the ball, a locking handle is used to lock the head to the ball by a vertical downward stroke of the hand lever. The system must adhere to certain qualities, thus bringing us to 'the qualities of a good trailer towing system.

Qualities of a good Trailer towing system

1. Must be attached firmly to th vehicle. The nuts should be tightened very well so as to secure vehicle to the Trailer.

2. Should allow for regular lubrication

3. Type of towing system used must comply with the with the prescription of the local Ministry of Transport.

4. Must allow for free vertical adjustment in terms of oscillation between the towing vehicle and the trailer so as to adjust to recurrence difference in the height of the road.

5. The towing system should not be rigid. ie. it should allow for free rotations in defined angles.

6. A Trailer towing System must not buckle, slack, cracked or welded.

Trailer braking system

We cannot discuss the process of towing a Trailer without taking a look at its braking system. Trailer braking system could either be Hydraulic or machanical. In the case of the hydraulic, the trailer tends to move closer when ever the towing vehicle brakes, thus exerting pressure on the hydraulic pump piston component to create the braking effect.

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