Just as there are companies that specialize in moving the contents of one’s home from point A to point B, across town or across the country, there are also companies who specialize in moving motor vehicles in the same manner.
We have all seen the auto transport semi-trucks that are used to move cars between automotive dealerships, and most of us have had to call upon a tow truck at one time or another. What most people do not realize is that they have other options.
When someone needs to move a broken car to the mechanic’s shop, the towing service is usually the first service provider the individual will consider. Towing companies provide a valuable service to their clients, but given the cost of hooking up a car to the tow truck and moving it across town, an individual will seldom consider a tow truck service to be an economical means of moving a vehicle from one city or state to another.
The Challenges Of Moving Vehicles Without Professional Help
When one needs to move a vehicle several hundred miles, people seek out methods of moving the vehicle that will not require a tow truck service, due to the high cost of transport.
This writer has moved vehicles twice over three hundred miles, once by tow strap and once by car trailer hooked up to a pickup truck.
* Tow Straps Are Only For Short Distances
There is a very good reason why the packaging with a tow strap recommends that it should only be used for short moves. The first twenty miles were okay, and then the decision to move the car on the cheap leads to a nightmare scenario.
Moving down the freeway at 45 mph, with the lead car only twenty feet in front of your own requires absolute attention to everything going on around both vehicles — remember, the back car provides the braking system for both vehicles. The need for absolute attention grows more difficult with every passing mile. When one adds the elements of freeway traffic, rain, cold, and a lack of power or heat in the back vehicle, the job becomes even more difficult.
* Car Trailers Should Not Be Hooked Up To Just Any Pickup Truck
The next time out, we rented a tow-hitch package and a tow trailer to pull behind a pickup truck.
People may be surprised to learn that not all pickup trucks are equipped to haul trailers. A standard pickup truck package is designed to haul a few hundred pounds of materials in its bed, but adding a trailer to the truck is beyond the manufacturer’s original design specifications.
Pickup trucks that are designed for towing trailers generally have a stronger engine, bigger transmission, better cooling systems — including oil coolers, and improved braking systems.
The first 125 miles went well, and then the pickup truck began to overheat, and we were forced to stop every twenty- to thirty-miles to let the truck cool down. Those last 175 miles required us to adhere to a speed limit of only 40 mph, and we still had to sweat every mile wondering if the truck could hold up under the additional weight load. The last 50 miles were the worst, as we slowed the truck to 30 mph to ensure that we were not going to destroy our truck in the move.
When one takes the time to consider what might be required to upgrade their vehicle in order to ensure that it will survive towing another vehicle, the cost of the expensive tow truck becomes even more attractive. Fortunately, the standard tow truck service is not the only option available to consumers.
Moving Home And Family To A New Town
Most people who need to move a vehicle from one destination to another will be doing so because they are actually moving residences and work locations.
When moving across the country, it frequently makes more sense to hire a moving company to handle moving the household goods from one location to another. In addition, many people would prefer to have a similar option open to them for moving their family vehicles.
There are many reasons, beyond its low-cost, for which a family would consider hiring a professional automotive shipping service to help them move their cars and trucks to a new city.
No matter where one might move to in the United States, if that move covers a distance of more than 100 miles, then the distance might include long stretches of barren countryside, perhaps even hills, valleys, curves, and mountains. If one decides to drive to their new home, he or she will have to travel these roads they have never driven before, making the journey more perilous than a trip across town. Within these long stretches of roadway, local traffic mixes into the equation, making the road even more dangerous.
When families land in a new town, they will have to find restaurants and motels to stay the night. Many criminals prey upon people who seem out-of-place in a location. Travelers stand out in a crowd, and this makes them especially susceptible to criminals who target the weak.
Many people find an auto transport company to be an essential element of a safe move from one place to another. For that reason alone, the cost of the auto shipping can be well justified.
Beyond the safety aspect, many automobile owners would not want to add the potential wear-and-tear to their vehicles, in order to get their vehicles to their new home.
Hiring A Private Driver
Some people decide that the most economical way to get a vehicle across country is to hire a local driver to drive the vehicle to the new destination. On the surface, this seems a logical option, but when the risks and costs are considered, the option soon shows itself to be a poor choice.
For this option, an individual must find someone whom they trust to drive their car. The car’s owner must provide this person the keys to the car, money for fuel, hotel rooms and food for the trip, and they must provide them money for the return trip home. The vehicle’s owner must also provide insurance for this individual to drive the vehicle legally.
This nickel-and-dime approach to saving money could very well cost the car owner far more than it would have cost them to hire an auto transport company to move their vehicle(s).
Professional Auto Transport Services Provide A More Economical Solution
Auto transport companies bring a whole new element of safety and protection to the car’s owner. From the time the Bill Of Lading (BOL) is signed at the pickup location to the time the BOL is signed at the destination, the vehicle is usually insured at full-replacement value, depending on the auto transport company. Some companies provide insurance with a deductible; better companies provide insurance on the vehicles they transport with no deductibles.
Depending on the circumstances of available time, the car’s owner can choose to get door-to-door or terminal-to-terminal delivery. Door-to-door is often a better option, but it does require someone to meet the truck driver to sign for the vehicle at both the pick-up and drop-off locations. Of course, door-to-door delivery is sometimes controlled by the circumstances on the ground, which means that pick-up or drop-off might need to be handled down the street at a shopping center parking lot.
It is recommended that vehicles should be operational at the time of transport, but this is not an absolute requirement. Since non-operational vehicles require more physical labor to move and load, there will be additional costs for the transportation of inoperable vehicles.
Most cars are transported in open-air carriers, but it is possible to contract an enclosed auto transport carrier. Enclosed carriers can add additional protection to vehicles, most notably protection from paint damage due to road debris, but they are more expensive to contract. Open-air auto transport trucks can generally carry 8-10 vehicles, compared to the 4-6 vehicles that enclosed auto transport trucks are able to carry. As a result, the use of an enclosed auto shipping truck will result in a much higher cost of transport.
Improved Safety And Reduced Cost Makes Auto Shipping A Good Choice
When one is moving their family 100 miles down the road, the do-it-yourself approach may be the ideal solution for most families. But, when the move is even more distant, auto shipping will prove to be safer for your family and the cost of transport will be much less than any other option available.
Once a family has decided to hire a moving company to move their belongings and an auto transport company to move their vehicles, the family will be able to enjoy their own journey to their new home. Riding on an airplane can be a real treat for the children, and where available, a long, leisurely train ride can provide the family a scenic vacation trip to their new home.