If you have got a boat, ride dirt bikes or restore classic autos – or some other thing that you might be towing around the countryside, you need to get a handle on some basic towing principles. Now, here at Jones, we do this stuff day in and day out. We have the whole forward and backward thing down pat. Want to see something fun? Watch someone who doesn’t do much towing try to back a trailer (or a towed car) into a space.
That all said… Should you not follow simple security tips, driving while towing could be flat out dangerous.
Maker of various vehicles for outdoor enthusiasts, Suzuki, proposes the following guidelines for towing:
* Always follow the maker ‘s recommendation and use safety chains. Don’t attach them to the fender. Leave enough slack in order to turn, and ensure the security chains don’t drag on the road or street. Too low and you very possibly can snag something – problems ahead. Or behind as it were.
* Be certain the brake lights, turn signals and taillights of the vehicle that is towed work together with the vehicle in sync. There is nothing more horrifying than cruising along behind a trailer and out of the blue it’s coming towards you – FAST. Actually you’re going towards it, but as you get closer, you can see around the trailer and see the vehicle brake lights are bright and on – but the trailer lights are doing nothing.
* Use the tow vehicle that is right. If you’re going to be doing much towing, it is NOT a bad idea to match your vehicle to the towing that you expect to be doing. If you’re towing a 30′ RV trailer, using a VW is NOT going to be the vehicle of choice. However, towing around a little trailer for a lawn mower is fine – but probably even that may be a bit much for a small vehicle. If you live in a hilly our mountainous area, you’re going to need more vehicle with more oomph. Think about it if you’re planning on buying a new vehicle.* Do a little practice in a quiet area before hitting the highway. If you’ve never really towed anything before, it’s not a bad idea to make some trips around your OWN area before setting off on a long distance adventure. The feel of your vehicle is going to be a LOT different with any kind of weight on a trailer behind you. Slowing and stopping takes more time – and more distance. Turning can be a little trickier in tight areas – don’t want to be running over curbs or scraping things that you wouldn’t normally hit with just your vehicle. That trailer can be a whole new world of fun to get used to while driving.
Keep in mind that when backing up, the opposite way is turned by the trailer. Specialists suggest putting your hand in the base of the steering wheel and transferring how you would like the trailer to really go when to it. Make slow, simple steering system alterations.
If you need something handled by the pros, contact us at Jones! We can move vehicles – trucks, cars, motorcycles, some RVs, other stuff – around the area. We’ve got regular tow vehicles and then we also have shiny new flatbed towing equipment for other things that you might need moved around the area!