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Two reasons why you should use a towing service instead of trying to fix your broken-down vehicle by the roadside

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If your car breaks down during a road journey, you should call a local towing company immediately, rather than trying to fix the vehicle yourself by the roadside. Read on to find out why.

DIY repair attempts could damage your car

Unless you happen to know a lot about the inner workings of cars, your 'DIY' repair efforts could end up doing more harm than good.

For example, if your car battery dies and you have a pair of jumper cables in the boot, you might be tempted to use these to jumpstart your vehicle. However, if you are unfamiliar with this equipment and as a result of this, are not quite sure how to use it, there is a chance that you could end up making a serious mistake.

If, for instance, you accidentally put the jumper cables' negative and positive clamps on the wrong terminals, the battery could overheat to the point where some or all of its internal components end up melting.

If the battery's external case cracks as a result of being exposed to this electrical heat, the acid inside the battery could also seep out and corrode the terminals.

The powerful electrical charge created by the incorrectly-connected cables could also damage the alternator.

In this situation, you would probably have to hire a mechanic to install both a new battery and a new alternator. This could take several days and would almost certainly cost at least a few hundred dollars.

Conversely, if you were to contact a company that offers towing services, they could arrange for your car to be towed to the nearest garage, where a qualified mechanic could recharge the dead battery and get your vehicle up and running again. The combined cost of the towing service and the repair work would still be far lower than the cost of replacing both the alternator and the battery.

You could end up getting hit

Even if you are quite good at performing car repairs, it is still best to have your vehicle towed to a garage instead of trying to fix it by the roadside.

The reason for this is as follows. If your car breaks down when visibility is poor (because, for example, it is late at night or is raining heavily), passing motorists may not be able to see you or your car. This, in turn, means that another road user could accidentally hit you with their vehicle.

The longer you remain by the roadside, the greater your chances are of being hit. As such, if you spend a long period of time trying to change a tyre, or attempting to replace a worn-out spark plug, you could easily end up being struck by a passing vehicle. This type of accident could leave you with very serious, potentially fatal injuries.

However, if you call a towing service as soon as your car stops working, they should be able to locate and collect your vehicle very quickly. This, in turn, could drastically reduce the likelihood of you being hit and injured.