Using a Car Dolly or Trailer for Towing Disabled Vehicles


Before you find yourself standing on the side of the road with a broken down vehicle, you should consider investing in a car dolly or car trailer. These devices let you quickly and carefully tow your car, truck or motorcycle home or to the auto mechanic. You can purchase a car dolly for far less than you think, and you can use the dolly for multiple purposes. If you compare the cost of renting a dolly to the cost of buying one, you might be surprised at what you find because buying a dolly is cheaper than renting if you use it frequently.

Most car trailers feature a steel or aluminum construction with two wheels on the front. The dolly also has a tow bar attached to the front, which you connect to your towing vehicle. When you need to tow a vehicle from one location, place the dolly in front of that vehicle. It is best if you attach the two bar to your towing vehicle first because this lets you get the vehicle as close as possible to the disabled vehicle. If your towing vehicle does not have a trailer hitch on the bumper, you need to attach one before you use the dolly.

Position the dolly near the front of the disabled vehicle. The dolly has two metal pieces that slide underneath the front tires of the car. You might need to put the disabled car in neutral, and push the car onto the dolly. You need to make sure that the car gets as far onto the dolly as possible and that the tires sit flush against the front of the dolly. Depending on the type of dolly that you have, it might feature locking mechanisms that you close around the tires. These mechanisms keep the tires from slipping or sliding off the trailer.

Most car trailers also feature metal chains that wrap around the dolly. You must slide these chains under the disabled vehicle and lock the chains in place. These chains keep the vehicle firmly attached to the dolly, which reduces the risk of the car falling off the dolly. You can also find car trailers that have taillights. If you choose one with taillights, you must attach the lights to the electrical system of your primary vehicle. Depending on where you live, you might discover that local law requires you use taillights when towing a vehicle.

If you cannot afford to buy a car dolly or car trailer, you can usually rent one from a tool rental shop or auto repair shop. Not everyone needs a car dolly because many people only use these devices when an emergency occurs. When you rent a dolly, the rental shop should show you exactly how to attach the dolly and use it. Some shops will even attach the dolly directly to your vehicle before you leave the shop. This ensures that you use the dolly properly.

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