Like any other industry, the car towing industry has undergone significant changes throughout its history. If you were to reference to older images of car towing, you would find a distinctly different setup from the modern-day tow.
Chains and Hooks
In fact, at the beginning, cars were hauled away by tow trucks using chains and hooks. To secure the car, the chains and hooks were attached to the car’s axle or frame rail. This offered the chain a firm grip on the car throughout the journey.
This early towing system afforded the car a secure transport option but was not without downsides. In exchange for its firm grip, the chains and hooks would at times scratch or dent the car during the tow. This left car owners fuming, especially if the car had a valuable body.
While newer methods have emerged, chains and hooks are still relied on under certain circumstances. For instance, certain vehicles are only compatible with this method or where extremely rough road conditions are encountered.
Tire Lift Devices
A replacement to the chain and hook system is that of tire lift devices. To avoid damaging your car, tow truck operators use his modern system which solely touches your tires. Consequently, since no contact is made with the body of your car, damage will not be deal to it.
Tire lift systems work by having the operator fit brackets around the drive wheels. Once fitted, the brackets are secured using steel pins before being lifted by the tow truck. At this point, the drive wheels will be lifted off the ground while the rear wheels remain in contact of the ground.
With the car in an inclined elevated angle, the tow operation can commence. Overall, the process of fitting the brackets to the wheels and securing them should take the operator a couple of minutes.
Cable Winch & Flatbed Truck
The key difference between a flatbed truck and a wheel lift tow truck is how the car is towed. As covered before, wheel lift systems only lift up the drive wheels, thus enabling the truck to tow the car on its rear wheels. On the other hand, flatbed trucks actually lift the entire car and have it secured onto the truck itself.
A flatbed truck is typically used where a car is too heavy for wheel lift systems. In this case, an electric cable winch is deployed to pull the car onto a hydraulically inclined flat surface. Once the car is on the surface, the truck levels the surface.
From here, the car can be firmly secured before the tow truck begins journeying back to the workshop.
In Need Of Towing Services
If your car breaks down, do not hesitate to call a towing service to retrieve your car. Rather than hoping that the problem goes away, it would be best to have the car towed away safely and a full inspection done on its systems.