Towing any type of motor vehicle should always be done with utmost care. Not only should one consider safety while the actual towing of the vehicle is done, but one should also take into consideration how to ensure the least damage the actual towing will inflict on the motor vehicle. This accounts for the reason why wheels are mostly jacked up from the ground during the towing process to avoid damaging the vehicle's transmission system.
Towing a front-wheel or rear-wheel drive vehicle is less complicated when compared to towing a four-wheel drive vehicle. This is because four-wheel drive vehicles have all four wheels connected to the transmission, which essentially means they cannot be unhooked. Since this is the case, four-wheel drive vehicles will require special attention during towing. Unless of course what you own is a manual transmission four-wheel drive vehicle, in which case all you need to do is disconnect the drive shaft to make sure the transmission system won't be busted during the towing process.
Several types of towing techniques and mechanisms are used for this very purpose.
- There's the tow dolly used to prop a four-wheel drive vehicle's front wheels up. However, using a tow dolly will require a lot of patience and muscle. That being said, at least two people are needed to safely and successfully use a tow dolly. Add to that the extra hassle of having the tow dolly registered, as some states mandate this. And since a tow dolly is an add-on to your vehicle, it has to be installed with its own set of lights such as clearance and brake lights for safety, which could eat up your finances. Disengaging the four-wheel drive vehicle's drive shaft is also crucial to avoid wrecking the transmission system and will prove to be a nuisance, especially if you're unfamiliar with how your four-wheel drive vehicle works in general.
- Another alternative to towing a four-wheel drive vehicle would be to use a tow bar. Rigid tow bars require that the four-wheel drive vehicle be positioned directly in the center of the coach's back during hook up, as the parts of the tow bar cannot be folded or adjusted. Collapsible tow bars, on the other hand, are not as difficult to use. Rigid tow bars are a popular choice among motorists on a budget. Meanwhile, collapsible tow bars are much more expensive but are generally preferred by those who frequently travel and require towing a four-wheel drive vehicle.
- Lastly, the easiest way of towing a four-wheel drive vehicle would be to use a flatbed car trailer. Flatbed car trailers are quite expensive, so chances are you will need to rent one to have your four-wheel drive vehicle towed. As the name suggests, vehicles are loaded onto the bed located at the back of the trailer so not a single wheel of your four-wheel drive touches the ground. Flatbed trailers are the best choice, especially if you want to make sure your car gets taken care of during towing. Just make sure that all necessary measures have been undertaken in securing your car onto the trailer before heading to the freeway.