Towing mirrors are crucial components when hitting the road with a trailer or caravan. When safety concerns arise, one question comes: Do you need them on both sides of your vehicle?
If your towing vehicle’s size and the width of your load obstruct your rear vision, then you need to ensure you have towing mirrors on both sides.
These specialized mirrors play a pivotal role in providing a clear and unobstructed view down the sides of your trailer. There are other factors that contribute to the need for mirrors on both sides.
We will discuss factors that influence the need to install towing mirrors on both sides of a towing truck when towing, as well as how to install a towing mirror.
Do You Need Towing Mirrors on Both Sides: Factors Influencing Your Decision
When determining the need for installing towing mirrors on both sides, several criteria must be considered. These are:
Legality and safety requirements
Maneuvering and parking
Examine each factor in detail to determine if both sides of the trailer require towing mirrors.
1. Legality and Safety Requirements
Having towing mirrors on both sides of your vehicle while towing a trailer is a legal requirement in many regions to ensure safety.
These mirrors are crucial in providing you with the necessary visibility to navigate and monitor traffic effectively.
When you have a trailer attached, your rear vision is obstructed, making it difficult to see vehicles approaching from the rear or in your blind spots.
Towing mirrors extend the field of view, giving you a clear line of sight. This ensures that you can change lanes, merge, and make turns safely without endangering yourself or other drivers.
Additionally, having towing mirrors on both sides helps you maintain better control of the trailer overdrive when towing, reducing the risk of accidents and ensuring a smoother towing experience overall.
2. Trailer Width
You should consider the width of your trailer compared to your towing vehicle. Most trailers, especially larger ones like RVs, are wider than the vehicle towing them. This means that without proper mirrors, you may have blind spots that can make it difficult to see approaching vehicles.
When towing a broken motorhome, car or another vehicle, having mirrors on both sides of your vehicle is essential for safety. These towing mirrors help eliminate blind spots by providing a wider field of view, allowing you to see vehicles approaching from behind or attempting to overtake your trailer.
This is particularly important when driving on highways or at higher speeds, where vehicles can quickly come up behind you. You can always see that a commercial towing company utilizes towing mirrors on both sides to ensure a safe operation.
3. Maneuvering and Parking
To ensure you can safely maneuver and park your trailer, you’ll benefit from clear visibility provided by mirrors on both sides. Towing mirrors play a crucial role in enhancing your visibility and ensuring you have a clear view of the sides of your trailer.
When maneuvering, these mirrors allow you to see any potential obstacles or vehicles that may be in your blind spots.
This is particularly important during turns and while navigating tight spaces, as it helps avoid accidents and potential damage to your trailer.
With mirrors on both sides, you can confidently make precise maneuvers and easily park your trailer.
How to Install a Towing Mirror on Your Tow Truck?
Step 1: Position and Attach the Mirror
Before you begin attaching the towing mirror, you need to find the correct position for it. The mirror should give you an unobstructed view of the rear and the trailer.
One of the best ways to determine this is by sitting in the driver’s seat and having someone guide you as you make adjustments to the mirror.
Most towing mirrors are adjustable to fit different towing setups. Therefore, following the manufacturer’s instructions for attaching the towing mirror is essential.
If you are using clip-on mirrors, they usually attach securely to your existing side mirrors using adjustable straps or clips.
On the other hand, slide-on mirrors may require more effort as they often slide over your existing mirrors and need to be tightened in place.
When attaching the towing mirror, ensure it is securely fastened and not prone to any vibrations or movement while driving.
You can do this by tightening any straps, screws, or clamps according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Step 2: Adjust the Mirrors
After installing the towing mirrors, it’s time to adjust them to provide the best possible view. To begin with, make sure you can see the entire width of your trailer.
It’s worth noting that the side mirrors should be set up so that the farther part of the trailer is visible. In addition, minimize blind spots by keeping the mirrors at a slight angle.
A common mistake when adjusting the tow mirrors is tilting them down to see the trailer more easily. This limits the field of view and can lead to blind spots on the sides. Therefore, adjusting the mirrors to have a balanced view of the road behind and the trailer is essential.
What types of towing mirrors are available?
You can choose from slip-on, snap-on, or replacement towing mirrors for your specific vehicle.
Slip-on towing mirrors are designed to fit over your existing side mirrors, providing a wider field of view. These are easy to install and remove, making them a convenient option for occasional towing.
Snap-on mirrors are similar to slip-on mirrors but use adjustable straps or clips to secure them in place. This ensures a more secure fit and minimizes vibrations.
Replacement towing mirrors, on the other hand, completely replace your factory mirrors. They offer the most stability and adjustability, allowing you to customize the position and angle of the mirror for optimal visibility.
Consider your towing needs and budget when deciding which type of towing mirror is right for you.
Reap the Benefits of Enhanced Safety with Dual Towing Mirrors
When towing, it’s generally recommended to have towing mirrors on both sides of your vehicle. These mirrors play a pivotal role in enhancing your safety on the road.
Legal requirements, trailer width, and the need for maneuvering and parking all contribute to the necessity of mirrors on both sides. Clear visibility eliminates blind spots, allows for safer lane changes and turns, and provides better control over your trailer.
Installing towing mirrors is a straightforward process, but adjusting them correctly is essential for the best view. Choose the type of towing mirror that suits your needs and budget.