When your car breaks down, whether it’s in the middle of nowhere or the center of heavy traffic in a crowded city, the ones that can come to your rescue are towing roadside assistance. However, before they go to you, they will ask you what type of vehicle you have. The helps the dispatcher know which tow truck is more suitable for your vehicle.

Different vehicles need different kinds of treatment. To get you out of trouble in the best way possible, the right kind of tow truck, also known as wreckers, will come to your service. But how do tow trucks differ from each other? Read on to find out.

How Tow Trucks Are Categorized

Telling the towing company what kind of vehicle you have will inform them of the towing capacity. They will know the vehicle’s size and therefore know which towing vehicle can handle it best.

Light Duty

Light duty wreckers have a towing capacity of 5-10 tons. Their compact design can only manage to tow family cars, light trucks, small SUVs, and sedans.

Medium Duty

These types of towing vehicles are mostly sent to help out small trucks and vans. With a slightly bigger build than light duty wreckers, they have a towing capacity of 15-20 tons.

Heavy Duty

Heavy duty wreckers are commonly used to transport vehicles weighing 25-50 tons. But some of them are built for bigger engines that have a towing capacity of 50-75 tons. This includes construction vehicles and large industrial equipment.

5 Types of Tow Trucks

Another way to compare a wrecker from others is by identifying their way of picking up vehicles. Each type has its benefits, depending on the kind of roadside emergency you’re in.

1) Hook and Chain

Perhaps the most popular ones, hook and chain wreckers are the traditional trucks used for towing. This is done by locking the hook in a car’s axle or bumper. Then, the chains will be wrapped in the car’s frame, and a boom will lift it off the ground.

2) Wheel-lift

The mechanism of a wheel-lift tow truck is similar to hook and chain. The big difference is, instead of chains, it uses a metal yoke that goes under the car’s front wheels.

3) Flatbed

A flatbed wrecker is not the type of tow truck you usually see on highways. This has a flat area on the back, where a whole car can sit on. The car will be secured with a winch.

4) Integrated

Integrated towing vehicles are made with an extra axle. This gives them the power and stability to tow vehicles as big as buses and other rigs. The arm at the center gives the truck enough balance to hoist vehicles larger than itself.

5) Rotator

When it comes to heavy duty towing capacity, rotators are the biggest players. Its layout makes look like a construction crane but with a boom that can stretch up to 30 feet. With an ability to rotate 360 degrees, it can deal with the toughest of emergencies.

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