How Do You Tow a Car Without a Tow Truck?

Whether you find yourself in a situation where you need to tow a car without a tow truck or you’re just curious about the possibilities, there are some valid ways to do so.

Flat Towing

Flat towing is the most common way to tow a vehicle without a tow truck and can be done with two vehicles of roughly the same size and power. One vehicle is driven while the other is towed behind it, connected by tow straps or chains. The towed vehicle must be in neutral and not have its wheels on the ground. It’s important to remember that flat towing can only be done safely with vehicles that are meant for it; some vehicles require modifications before they can be flat towed. It’s also important to reduce speeds while flat towing as it increases drag and puts more strain on the tow vehicle.

Tow Dolly

A tow dolly is another option for those who don’t have access to a tow truck.

A tow dolly is an apparatus that fits around two of the wheels of a vehicle and lifts them off the ground, allowing them to be towed behind another vehicle. This method also requires two vehicles, though they don’t need to be of equal size or power like when flat towing. Tow dollies must also be properly secured for safe transport.

Trailer Hitch

Using a trailer hitch is another way one can tow a car without access to a tow truck. This method requires an appropriately-sized trailer hitch mounted on both the car being towed and the car doing the towing. The car being towed must be in neutral, with its wheels off the ground, while being connected by chains or straps that are attached securely between both vehicles’ trailer hitches.


Towing a car without access to a tow truck may seem impossible but there are several methods one can use such as flat-towing, using a tow dolly, or using trailer hitches between two cars. Each method has its own set of requirements and safety precautions so it’s important for anyone attempting this process to research thoroughly before trying it out themselves.

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James Gardner