There are many different types of tow trucks in the market today. The most common is the flatbed truck used to tow large or heavy objects, and the hook and chain truck uses a metal chain to secure the object to be towed. Other popular types of tow trucks include the wheel-lift truck, which uses a device similar to a forklift to lift the vehicle off the ground, and the wrecker, explicitly designed for towing damaged or wrecked vehicles.
Ultimately, the type of tow truck that is best suited for your needs depends on the size and weight of the object being towed, as well as the condition of the road. Consult with a tow truck operator to determine which type of tow truck is right for you.
1. Flatbed tow trucks
To load a car onto a flatbed truck, you need to open the back of the flatbed truck. There is the ability to slide out the flatbed and allow it to tilt towards the ground. A vehicle can be driven up and parked on top of the flatbed when it is tilted and on the ground. After the car is positioned on the flatbed truck, the winch can secure it. The ramp will resume its original position once the car is secure. You will not be able to exceed the weight limits of the flatbed truck since it has hydraulics at the back.
Flatbed tow trucks keep cars off the ground entirely, one of their most significant advantages. Compared to a car that rides along the road, the risk of damage is much lower. Flatbed trucks are helpful if your car ends up being totaled. It is sometimes not possible to move a totaled car along a roadway on its own; the vehicle must be lifted and towed on a flatbed truck. What remains of the car will be pulled onto the flatbed truck by the winch if it cannot drive.
2. Hook and chain tow trucks
Hook and chain tow trucks are primarily used to remove smaller or lighter vehicles from public roadways after accidents or breakdowns. The metal hook attaches directly to the car while the other end is secured to the tow truck using a metal chain. Hook and Chain trucks do not work well for removing larger vehicles because they require that the vehicle be able to drive onto the back of the truck.
3. Wheel-lift tow trucks
Wheel-lift tow trucks are used to remove vehicles that cannot be towed with a traditional tow truck. The wheel-lift mechanism resembles a forklift, and it is used to lift the front or rear wheels of the vehicle off the ground. This allows the tow truck driver to move the vehicle without damaging it. Wheel-lift trucks are often used to recover stolen cars or remove vehicles from tight spaces.
Wreckers are explicitly designed for towing damaged or wrecked vehicles from the road. They have a large flatbed that can accommodate most vehicles, and they come equipped with powerful winches that can pull even the heaviest cars free from ditches or other difficult situations. Law enforcement agencies often use wreckers to clear accident scenes.
4. Integrated Tow Trucks
Having a large vehicle will require an integrated tow truck that is powerful and large. There are quite a few truck and bus breakdowns that most people don’t realize. It is challenging to pull a vehicle like this with a typical tow truck, but an integrated tow truck is explicitly designed for such jobs. Tow trucks like these have an extra axle, which is more powerful and stable. In addition to assisting in difficult situations, they can handle large, heavy loads.
You will notice that the arm of an integrated tow truck is located directly in the center of the truck. A truck with this arm can tow loads more significantly than the tow truck itself, which is highly stable. A tow truck integrated into a car or SUV is not needed for most average drivers. A tow truck integrated into your motor home would come in handy if something went wrong while on your vacation.
5. Oversized Towing
You may also come across oversized tow vehicles in addition to integrated tow trucks. These vehicles can tow and transport large loads. It is not typical to see a tow truck towing a big boat or vehicle downs the road. The majority of smaller towing operations will not carry these vehicles in their fleet, but if you have a large vehicle to transport or heavy equipment to move, they may be able to help.
6. Boom Trucks
Boom trucks have hydraulic arms that extend from the body. Using this boom, vehicles that need to be towed will be grabbed past the end of the vehicle. The boom truck will resemble a small crane in appearance. Boom trucks are more like trucks you might see doing electrical work than tow trucks at first glance. Those booms can be used for a variety of purposes, including towing a vehicle. In terms of stability, the fixed boom of the truck makes it an excellent option for towing.
Boom trucks have historically towed vehicles much like hook and chain tow trucks. They would attach the car to the boom using hooks and chainsby wrapping them around the front bumper. After that, a lift would be performed on the vehicle’s front while it stayed on its rear end. This is not the best method for maintaining a car’s front if you want it to be in good condition.
Dependence on the best tow truck
If you need to have a large or heavy object towed, a flatbed tow truck is your best option. A hook and chain tow truck will do the job if you need to remove a smaller or lighter object from a public roadway. Wheel-lift trucks are perfect for removing vehicles that cannot be towed with a traditional tow truck, while wreckers are perfect for removing damaged or wrecked vehicles from the road. Talk to a tow truck operator today to determine which type of tow truck is right for you.