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Towing weight and width limitsMost cars have a maximum weight they can tow. It’s usually listed in the handbook or specification sheet.
Alternatively the vehicle’s ‘gross train weight’ may be listed on the vehicle identification number (VIN) plate on the car. This is normally under the bonnet or inside the driver’s door.
The gross train weight is the weight of the fully-loaded car plus fully-loaded trailer and must not be exceeded.
If your VIN plate doesn’t list a train weight, you should not use your vehicle for towing.
Width and lengthThe maximum trailer width for any towing vehicle is 2.55 metres.
The maximum length for a trailer towed by a vehicle weighing up to 3,500kg is 7 metres. This length does not include the A-frame.
Trailers, caravans and towing equipmentThe equipment you use with your trailer or caravan must:
meet certain safety standards
be used correctly
You can be fined up to £2,500, be banned from driving and get 3 penalty points for using a vehicle in a dangerous condition.
Carry out safety checks to make sure you’re using the trailer and equipment legally.
Towing barsIf you get a tow bar for your car, it needs to be ‘type approved’. This means it meets EU regulations and is designed for your car.
Type-approved tow bars have a label with:
an approval number
details of the vehicles it’s approved for
If your car was first used before 1 August 1998, your tow bar doesn’t need to be type-approved.
Towing mirrorsYou must have an adequate view of the road behind you.
Fit suitable towing mirrors if your trailer or caravan is wider than the rear of your car.
You can be fined up to £1,000 and get 3 penalty points for towing without proper towing mirrors.
Trailer or caravan brakesYour trailer must have a working brake system if it weighs over 750kg when it’s loaded.
Some smaller trailers also have brakes, but these are optional.
Any brakes must be in good working order.
You must use a breakaway cable or secondary coupling in case the trailer becomes detached from your car.
Number platesYou must display the same number plate on your trailer as on your towing car.
If you tow more than one trailer at a time, fix the number plate to the trailer at the back.
Towing an American caravan or trailerAmerican trailers and caravans don’t always meet European safety regulations.
If you want to use an American caravan or trailer in the UK or the EU, you must first check that it’s legal.
Licences issued from 1 January 1997If you passed your car driving test on or after 1 January 1997 you can:
drive a car or van up to 3,500kg maximum authorised mass (MAM) towing a trailer of up to 750kg MAM
tow a trailer over 750kg MAM as long as the combined MAM of the trailer and towing vehicle is no more than 3,500kg
Licences issued before 1 January 1997If you passed your car test before 1 January 1997 you’re usually allowed to drive a vehicle and trailer combination up to 8,250kg MAM. View your driving licence information to check.
You’re also allowed to drive a minibus with a trailer over 750kg MAM.
Towing heavier combinations Follow these steps if you want to tow heavier combinations.
1. Apply for provisional licence for a medium-sized lorry and trailer (category C1+E).
2. Pass the lorry theory test.
3. Pass the C1+E driving test.
When ever when you're unsure about towing procces
The best thing is to contact local 24/7 Recovery Service Service in this case Aly Spedition Recovery Division, and ask them to transport your trailer or caravan to your preffered location
24-hour Recovery Assistance Across Lanarkshire
Whether you’re in Glasgow, Airdrie or another corner of Lanarkshire, you can count on us. Contact us today for an excellent and efficient service.