Sure, your service provider is constantly updating their toolkit, knowledge and service options to help you, but 24/7 towing only goes so far. Sometimes, surrounding factors prevail. Sometimes, a broken down car is more trouble than you might’ve originally thought.
Making sure you’re not in a life-or-death situation is important, and knowing your 24/7 tow company’s boundaries is, too. Before assuming the best, prepare for the worst. Here are five things a lot of drivers don’t know about 24/7 towing:
One: Dead Zones are No-Go Zones
If your vehicle is slowing, and if a breakdown is inevitable, check your cellular service. A lot of interstate stretches are dead zones, service-wise. Don’t get stuck in one of these areas, because you won’t be able to contact a provider without a phone. While some emergencies can’t be avoided, others can be eyeballed. If you’re expecting to need a tow from lacking gas, check out early from the road. Find a gas station.
Two: Weight Limits Apply
While your provider will almost always lend a helping hand, your vehicle’s weight can impact recovery times. Understand your vehicle’s towing requirements, because recreational towing is often aligned with emergency towing. Check your vehicle’s manual, too, as it’ll give you an estimate on towing requirements. If these requirements are a tall order, your emergency provider might need a bigger truck—lengthening the time needed to get to you.
Three: You Have Free Tows
Often, 24/7 providers offer free towing services. That said, they often limit these services to twice or thrice, annually. While many providers will update stranded drivers on their “free tow count,” some may forget to mention the topic. Ask your provider about your number of free tows, and examine your payment options before getting a lift.
Four: Get the Valuables
It might seem like common knowledge, but you need to strip your vehicle of all valuables before getting a lift. Too many drivers assume they’ll be able to get their phone, wallet, or backpack from a vehicle’s interior after a towing job—only to forget it later at the garage. Assuming you can still get your door open, you should be keen on saving any electronics, too. If your vehicle is damaged, moisture and debris may enter your car—lowering their lifespan.
Five: Watch Out for Rain
Speaking of moisture, you should check your car for gaps before a towing job. If your vehicle is damaged, its interior might be exposed to harsh weather conditions in transit. Communicate with your provider about such potential damages. Often, 24/7 towing services are knowledgeable about the subject. If all else fails, and if you’re stuck in the realm of DIY solutions, trash bags are fantastic insulators.
Never be afraid to ask your provider about service options. Remember: They’re there to help. While you may be down and out, you certainly have towing options. Get yourself to a safe area, call your towing company’s 24/7 line and discuss safety, insurance and payment options.