The towbar is typically fitted to the rear of the vehicle, attached to its chassis. It is used for transporting or towing caravans, trailers and other vehicles. Although it is often overlooked, you should inspect the condition of your towbar periodically, especially if you frequently haul caravans, trailers or other heavy loads. As always, Hi-Q is your best bet for replacing or fitting towbars.
The Hi-Q 5 Point Check
- Check and secure all items in caravan.
- Check your indicators, brake lights and tail lights.
- Check that the mirrors are in the proper position.
- Check that the hand brake is released.
- Check that the safety chain is over the towball and that the tow hitch is properly secured over the towball.
When pulling away, release the clutch gently while you slowly accelerate. Allow the car to gradually pick up speed. Before cornering, take your foot off the accelerator. While taking the corner, slowly but firmly accelerate around it.
Don’t allow the engine to labour. Change to a lower gear and keep your revs steady.
Overtake on a flat or slight uphill gradient only. Give yourself sufficient time to safely overtake and return to the correct lane. It is very dangerous to return to the correct lane too early. Leave a 50m gap between yourself and the car in front so that traffic may flow more freely.
Try travelling downhill against the engine’s compression. Don’t travel too fast up the hill and try not to decrease your speed on the way down, this will set up a sway.
Correcting a sway
Keep calm, steer in a straight line while decreasing your speed. In this situation use controlled braking. Do not brake too hard (this will create a whiplash effect) or steer in the sway’s direction. Keep steering straight while slowly decreasing speed. Most importantly don’t accelerate too fast. Remember that fitting a reputable SABS approved towbar is the safe and smart choice before travelling or towing.
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