Whether you`re moving a heavy, load down the road, a boat trailer, a trailer or a motorcycle, the process of towing is a tricky and challenging process. Driving an automobile with another set of wheels fastened at the rear of your automobile is a different experience than driving an actual automobile. While towing is a fun-filled experience, lack of knowledge about towing is a contributing factor to accidents worldwide.
While towing, there`re several issues that you always keep in mind. Overlooking some of the minor details can make the ride rough, arduous and a potential shift or damage of the load leading to serious situations such as flipping or jackknifing the load.
Although the process might seem too technical and involving, being aware of the existing conditions and adjusting your driving technique can make the process easier and fun-filled.
This article looks at the top 10 towing tips.
1) Understand the Towing Capacity
Before towing, you should always be aware of your vehicles towing capacity or rather the allowed payload. The towing capacity is the maximum amount of weight that your vehicle can handle, including the passengers, cargo, and payload. Being aware of how much weight your vehicle can tow is essential for a safe towing process.
2) Weight distribution
Weight distribution in the towing process is a critical aspect in a successful towing process. The most basic principle of a successful weight allocation is by securing the weightier objects first so that they do not move or topple easily in case the trailer shifts or hits a bump.
3) Tire maintenance
Most people do not realize that tire and rating have a load rating. When using a new set of tires, it`s important to ensure that the set can accommodate the given load. Apart from tire maintenance, a good firm can also offer a number of services.
4) Synchronize your Brakes
A successful towing process requires a properly maintained and functioning braking system. Many state laws require the trailer/towed car to have a separate braking system. This prevents the towing vehicle to perform all the work when braking.
5) Limit on your Speed
Speeds limits are different for different towing vehicles. Excessive speeding might be fatal because the vehicle is carrying an additional weight. As a rule of thumb, it`s always good to ensure that you never exceed the 50mph limit.
6) Choosing the right hitch
Some of the towing vehicles come with factory made towing hitches, but for the rest, they give the driver a chance to choose a hitch. Hitches come in two variations; weight-carrying hitches and weight-distribution hitches.
The weight-carrying hitches are ideal for lighter loads (less than 3,500pounds). On the other hand, the weight-distribution hitches are a suitable choice for the heavier load.
7) Checking on the Mirrors
Investing in quality mirrors is a necessity. Mirrors help you to monitor both the rear and side traffic, which makes the driver completely aware of the traffic situation and facilitates easy maneuverability and lane switching.
8) Lighting the way
Towing a car at night puts the driver and cargo in a risky situation. The situation is even dire where there`s lack of a well-defined lighting system. A successful towing require the towing vehicle and the cargo to have fully-functional headlights, rear lights, and side lights. Moreover, the vehicle and the cargo should have a synchronized lighting system.
9) Routine maintenance
Performing regular checkup to the towing vehicle is equally important as the above-mentioned tips. It`s important to realize that towing can add additional stress to the vehicle, and it`s, therefore, important to have it always well-maintained and in good condition.
10) Be aware of the laws
Different states have different towing rules. It`s only prudent that you are fully aware of the existing rules to avoid getting yourself on the wrong side of the law.