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Towing Company West Linn

What Kind of Tow Truck Does My Car Need?

Towing Company West Linn OR

Part of deciding which towing service to call when you’re in a jam is being aware of what types of towing they provide. The tow company will ask you several questions about your vehicle, your location, and other aspects of your situation. They do this to determine whether they can handle your tow — and which truck to bring to do so.

If you’re like most drivers, you’ve had to call a tow company at some point. Even if you’ve never been in a collision or gone off the road, many things can go wrong with a car on any given day. No matter what’s gone wrong, it’s a stressful situation. One thing that can help is understanding the towing process, including how your towing provider selects the truck for the job. In this blog post, we’ll explain a few of the variables that go into recovering your car successfully.

Vehicle Size

The main differences between light-duty and medium-duty towing are fairly straightforward, but it’s important that the towing service uses the right one. As you might guess, using a light-duty truck for a heavier vehicle is dangerous. An underpowered tow truck may not be capable of safely transporting your vehicle.

The most obvious information the tow truck driver will need is the size of your vehicle. Most cars can be safely hauled with a light-duty truck, but larger cars, such as pickup trucks and small buses, require a medium-duty haul. You don’t need to know your vehicle’s weight in order to call for a tow; just be ready with the make and model. The towing service can take it from there.

Off-Road Recovery

If your car has gone off-road in an accident or slid into a ditch during a snowstorm, you might need a little extra power to get it back on track. That’s why medium-duty trucks are commonly used in vehicle recovery situations, even if the vehicle in question is small enough for light duty. Medium-duty trucks are built to pull heavier loads, ensuring your car is safe during recovery.

Location of Tow

Sometimes cars end up stuck in tight spaces, such as driveways or alleys. In these cases, in addition to off-road incidents, you might require a winch-out. Make sure you’re ready with answers to any questions about the location of your car or truck to help the tow truck company assess your needs.


If you’ve been in an accident and your car is damaged, you’ll most likely need the aid of a flatbed tow truck. These trucks hoist the entire vehicle onto the bed so no part of it will drag along the ground. This prevents additional damage from occurring during the tow, protecting you from dealing with unnecessary repair costs.

For cars that are severely damaged, flatbed towing is the best method of recovery. If your car can’t be towed with a wheel lift for any reason, the towing service provider will use either a flatbed truck or a car carrier.

Specialty Vehicle Towing

Some cars require a little extra care during the towing process, regardless of whether or not they’re damaged. This includes EVs, collector cars, project cars, and more. If your luxury car needs a tow, you shouldn’t entrust it to any less than the best. Make sure the tow company you call is capable of towing your car safely. An incompetent tow truck driver can do a lot of damage to your vehicle, so it pays to double-check that they can handle your specific make and model.

Many electric vehicles can’t be towed by wheel-hoist trucks because they can’t be put into neutral. If an EV’s wheels turn during the towing process, it can damage the vehicle. This is also the case with low-rider vehicles; wheel-lift tow trucks run the risk of damaging the underside of these cars by scraping them along the road.

Stalled or Disabled Vehicle Towing

If your car isn’t starting but also isn’t damaged, wheel-lift tow trucks are used. These lift two of the car’s tires off the road and let the other two roll along as the truck moves. This will be used unless your car cannot be put into neutral gear for any reason.

Another option is a car carrier. Speed’s Towing has two covered car carriers for cars that need to be transported that way. If your car is undrivable or can’t be moved with a conventional tow truck for any reason, our courteous team can still help you out. Just let us know if your car needs any such accommodations, and we can plan for them.

Call Speed’s Towing!

At Speed’s Towing, we know how stressful it is when you need a tow. Your car is an important part of your day-to-day, and it’s frustrating when your routine is disrupted. The last thing you need is a sloppy tow truck driver making things worse. When you call for professional towing services, you want to know your car is in good hands. That’s why you should trust the highly-experienced and professional team at Speed’s Towing. We’ve been in business for over 65 years, and we know a thing or two about towing.

If you find yourself stranded roadside in the Portland OR area, give Speed’s Towing a call. Whether you need roadside assistance like a flat tire replacement, a jumpstart, or full accident recovery services, our team has you covered. Our trucks are all equipped with an air hose, jumper cables, lockout tools, and more. For all your towing needs, think Speed’s. Give us a call and our friendly team be there as soon as possible.

Posted on by Speed's Towing
What Kind of Tow Truck Does My Car Need?

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