When you get into an accident or run out of gas, you may need to call a tow company to transport you to a different location. However, doing so is not something that you should take lightly. It can be costly and, if you’re an inexperienced driver, dangerous. To make sure you’re making the right decision, there are 5 things you should know before calling a tow company.
You should know about your insurance company’s opinion, whether you really need a tow truck, and what tow company is reliable and affordable. This is because, in most cases, it could be safer to drive by yourself than rely on a tow truck. Some tow companies may insist on towing your vehicle even when there is no need to. This can be unnecessarily costly.
In this article, we’ll talk about some things you should know before calling a tow company and how you can identify whether you need a tow company. We’ll also mention the things you need to be sure of when having your vehicle towed and the consequences of not doing so.
Calling a tow company is usually our first bet when we’re stranded on the side of the road somewhere, but here are 5 things you should know before you do that:
1. Details of Your Insurance Cover
Before you decide to call a tow company, you should see whether your insurance company covers tow services. Some insurance companies cover the cost of towing. Others may cover certain services related to towing your vehicle.
Your insurance company may want to call a tow company they trust to tow your vehicle. Alternatively, they may tell you about tow companies they are partners with (if any) and have those companies tow your vehicle. The assistance of your insurance company may help reduce the cost and effort required to tow your vehicle.
Even if your insurance provider does not provide tow services, calling them can help you get some advice. They can advise you on whether you need a tow company, the best companies to contact, and the rates you should look for.
2. Whether You Really Need A Tow Company
Another thing you need to know before calling a tow company is whether the problem you are facing really requires you to call a tow truck. You can sometimes fix the problem by calling a mechanic, changing your car batteries, or refilling your tank. A lot of tow companies (ourselves included) offer a flat tire service too, but some don’t.
You can find out whether you need a tow company by examining the problem at hand and trying to come up with a cheaper solution than a tow truck. Alternatively, you can call a friend or a family member with more knowledge of vehicles than you do and get them to try and solve the problem.
If that does not work, you can consult a mechanic and ask them what to do about the problem. If none of these options work for you, and you still think you need a tow company, call one.
3. Whether Your Automotive Club Offers Roadside Assistance
If you’re a member of an automotive club, you can check whether your membership includes roadside assistance. If it does, consider contacting them before deciding to call a tow company.
Most automotive clubs provide members with free roadside assistance. Some of them may partner with towing companies, which may earn you some discounts. Therefore, when you run into a problem on the road, you should give your local automotive branch a call and find out whether you can get roadside assistance. This will be cheaper than calling a tow company.
Calling an automotive club has other cost benefits too. Some automotive clubs may offer to cover the cost of towing, the cost of a replacement vehicle, or the cost of any needed repairs.
4. The Issue with Your Vehicle
Before calling a tow service, you should know exactly what is wrong with your vehicle. This can prevent the tow company you call from charging you for nonexistent problems. You can also be sure of what services you need from the company this way.
Cheap tow companies offer different services than expensive ones. Expensive tow companies can deal with more severe issues. However, if the problem with your vehicle is not severe enough to require the services of an expensive tow company, hire a cheap one and save money. Though, to do this, you will need to know the exact issue with your vehicle.
When you know the details of your problem, you can better explain the situation to the tow company, allowing them to act according to the specific issues your vehicle is facing. They will bill you accordingly.
5. Which Tow Company to Call
When having your vehicle towed, you need to know what company you should call. This has implications in the form of cost, reliability, and reputation.
Wanting business, some tow companies will be more concerned with whether you hire them than studying the problems you are facing. Even when they find that the problem with your vehicle does not require a tow truck, they might still try to convince you that it does. For this reason, you should hire a trustworthy and reputable company.
Some companies are also not accredited. Hiring an accredited tow company is a must as they have good employees, proper equipment, and the right knowledge. If you cannot find an accredited company, hire one that has good customer reviews in large numbers.
You should keep these 5 things in mind when faced with a situation where you feel you need a tow truck. Calling a tow truck is a difficult decision and one that requires you to think your options through. Keeping these things in mind will benefit you in terms of cost, safety, and time.
Two of the most important things you should know are the insurance coverage details and the roadside assistance details. They can help prevent many costs related to towing.