Towing always looks easy enough when you drive down the highway and see a tow truck hauling something behind it as you pass by. But towing can actually be quite complicated and even dangerous if you don't know what you are doing. If you have recently acquired a boat, trailer, or something else that you will need to start towing behind you from time to time, you are going to need to pay close attention while out there on the open road. Here are three tips to keep in mind when attempting to tow something for the first time.
1. Start Braking Far in Advance
One of the hardest concepts to get a handle on when towing something for the first time is that the huge rig or trailer you have behind you is adding quite a bit of momentum as you cruise down the road. It will take you longer to come to a complete stop when you are towing something behind you, which means you should practice hitting the brakes much sooner than you otherwise would. It's for this reason that you should never, ever go above the speed limit while towing. If you get out of control, it might be impossible to stop in the event someone cuts you off or creates another situation where you need to quickly halt.
2. Take It Wide
It can take practice to turn correctly and safely with something in tow. Practice turning on your neighborhood streets before you head out on the open road. You'll want to keep a wide angle as you turn, using extra-wide side mirrors that you can place on your car to get a complete view of what's behind you.
3. Backing Up is Not a Good Idea
As you are planning your towing adventure, take steps to ensure that you will always be moving forward. Backing up with a tow attached is an advanced skill that you might not be ready for. If you mess up and suddenly move the hitch at the wrong angle, you could end up detaching the entire tow. If you must back up, do it incredibly slowly and with a spotter behind you if at all possible.
As you prepare for your first tow, make sure your vehicle can handle the extra weight and practice basic driving techniques like braking sooner and learning to use a wide angle while towing. If this all seems like more than you can handle, reach out to a local towing company for help. For more information, contact a company like Aces Roadside Towing.Share