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can towing damage your clutch

Can Towing Damage Your Clutch?

The type, size, and weight of the vehicle you want to use for towing are important things you should consider when you want to tow a vehicle. This is because you could damage the clutch if you attempt to tow the wrong car.

While some of the parts of the vehicle might still be in good condition, irrespective of what you use them to tow, some parts are prone to quick damage. This is why many people ask if towing could damage the clutch.  

While towing, the clutch like some other parts of the car could be ruined. In most cases, the clutch will get damaged when the weight of the towed vehicle is beyond the capacity of the towing vehicle. Check out this article for more information.

Read Also: How To Tow A Car With No Brakes

What are the things I can do to avoid ruining the clutch while towing?

It is possible to successfully tow another vehicle with your car without ruining it. There are, however, instances when some parts of the car will get ruined quickly when you use the vehicle to tow the wrong car. Below are some things you can do to avoid ruining the clutch of your car.

Compare the weight

One of the things that will determine if a vehicle can tow another one is the weight of the vehicle involved. Before you use your car to tow another one, you should know the weight of the car that is about to be towed.

You can then compare the weight of the two cars. If the weight of the vehicle that is about to be towed is more than the weight of the towing vehicle, there is a high chance that the clutch would be damaged during the towing process.

The right equipment

Before you use your car to tow another, you should check if you have the right towing equipment. You can make use of a tow package, tow dollies, and several others.

If you do not have any of this equipment that could make towing hitch-free, you should not attempt to tow another vehicle. The clutch would likely get ruined with additional pressure.

Towing distance

Towing a vehicle over a long distance could ruin the towing vehicle, depending on some conditions. In a situation where you use your car to tow another one, you should be convinced that your car has the capacity. In the process of towing, there will be additional pressure on the vehicle.

When you do this over time, some parts of the vehicle will become overheated and will burn out. If you will be using your car to tow another one, make sure where you are towing the vehicle is within a few miles.

The present condition of the car

If you will be using your car to tow another one, you should consider the present condition of your car. This includes the mechanical and physical condition of the car.

If there are parts that are not functioning optimally and you have not resolved the issue, it is recommended that you avoid towing another car. This is because the clutch and some other parts could break down in the process of towing.


of towing with the wrong car

Though you are free to volunteer to tow another car, however, you could be ruining your car and the towed car, depending on some conditions. One of the important conditions is the weight of the car. The following are some of the dangers of towing with the wrong car.

Read Also: Can I Tow With A Leased Vehicle?

Damage to the vehicle

It has been said earlier that towing could cause damage to the clutch of the car. In most situations, when the weight of the towing vehicle is less than the weight of the towed car, there is likely going to be an issue.

The truth, however, is that the clutch is not the only part of the vehicle that could be damaged in the process of towing.

For instance, moving another car is an additional burden on the towing car. When the engine cannot cope with the additional pressure, the engine could break down. Moreover, the chassis of the vehicle, suspension, gear, and braking system could also break down in the process.

Difficulty to maintain a straight line

The towing vehicle needs to maintain balance on the road when towing. In most situations, the driver will have a difficult driving experience when the weight of the towed vehicle is overwhelming.

The vehicle will likely wobble or sway due to overworking from the excess pressure on it from the towing vehicle.  

Additional expenses

Towing with the wrong car might seem cheaper when you are towing the car. However, in the long run, you might likely spend higher than what it would cost you to hire a towing company.

This is because if any part of the vehicle should get damaged in the process, which is likely going to happen, you will spend more money to fix the issue.

Precautions when you are towing a vehicle

There are many towing companies around you but a friend or family member can still safely tow your car, provided the person is willing and the car is appropriate for what you want to do. To avoid having issues during the towing process, below are some of the precautions you should follow.

 Know the law

Before you start towing at all, it is recommended that you first know the law of the state to avoid having issues. For instance, you should know the maximum weight and size of what could be towed. If it is legal for you to tow your vehicle, you can go ahead to do so.

The towing capacity

You cannot use any vehicle to tow your car. You should first consider if the vehicle has the towing capacity to move your car. This implies that the weight of the towing vehicle must be more than the weight of the vehicle you want to tow. When you use the wrong vehicle, you will likely have issues on the road.

Know the car

There are instances when you want to flat-tow a car. While you are free to do this, you could be ruining the car if you do it with the wrong car. You should first study the manual to know if your car could be flat towed and other precautions that you must follow.

Nevertheless, the general rule is that all-wheel and front-wheel vehicles with manual transmission could be flat towed.

Check the equipment

You shouldn’t tow a vehicle when you do not have the right equipment to do so. Even if you have the right equipment, you should double-check if you have done the right thing before you start towing.

While on the road also, you should regularly inspect the equipment. Check the straps, chain, and other things. Moreover, if you are using towing dollies, you should regularly check the pressure in the tires.

Have a functional brake

Before you begin to tow your vehicle, you should first check the braking system. You need to do this for two reasons. Firstly, it is illegal for you to tow a car without a functional brake. You also need to check the brake for your safety on the road.

If the car you want to tow does not have a functional brake, you can install a supplemental brake or turn on the electric parking brake, provided the car is equipped with the feature.

How to get a towing service

You cannot predict when your vehicle will break down or when you will need a towing service. When the vehicle breaks down and you need a towing service, you have few options. Here is a list of some of the options you can consider.

Call an organization

If you are a member of a towing and roadside organization, you can call the company when you need a towing service. However, there are other requirements that you must fulfill apart from being a member of the organization alone.

For instance, you must be with your membership card when you need the service and you must be driving a car that is registered. You can also be declined towing service if you violate any of the organization’s policies.

Call a friend

If any of your friends or a family member has a vehicle or equipment that could tow your car safely, you can call on them when you need a towing service. There are instances where this would take a longer duration before you get the service, depending on the schedule and proximity of the person.

Hire a towing company

You can also call a towing company anytime you need the service. While this might seem expensive, depending on the type of service, policy of the company, distance, the personnel the company possesses, the experience, and the expertise of towing your vehicle safely.

Conclusion – Can Towing Damage Your Clutch?

The clutch and other parts of the car could get damaged in the process of towing another car. You should always compare the weight of the tow vehicles involved before you agree to tow any vehicle. 

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