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A World Without Towing: How To Push A Car

girl pushing red corvetteAs hard as it is for me to imagine such a thing, let’s examine a world where commercial and residential towing services in northeast Florida didn’t exist. Heck, even the whole world!

Would you know how to push a car if your engine won’t start but you need to move your car? Now that you’ve lost your best rated towing company in Jacksonville, will you be stranded?

Those of you young and foolish enough to jump up and say “Yes, I can push it!” have a hard lesson coming to you. For starters, it takes at least two people to push a car.

So if you find yourself without a tow, either because you’ve ended up on this alien world we’re imaging or, more likely, you’re on the side of an empty road with a dead cellphone battery, here’s how to properly push a car.

It Takes Two

I know men like to think of things in terms of brute force, but, fellas, pushing a car alone just cannot be done alone. Sure, you might scoot the vehicle forwards, but to move a vehicle any great distance you need two people.

One person is required to sit in the driver’s seat for steering and breaks while the other person, obviously, has to push. The reason why you still need a driver when pushing a car is that cars are a lot less controllable with the engine off due to power-assisted steering and breaking. Having someone to sit up front and control the vehicle means you’re not going to damage anyone or anything.

Alert Other Drivers

Let’s hope someone would stop to help you, but if they don’t you need to at least make them aware of your presence.

In your roadside emergency kit that you should always have prepared in your car, include a high visibility jacket like construction workers wear for nighttime emergencies. And, don’t forget to turn your vehicle’s hazard warning lights to warn other drivers, too.

Put The Car In Neutral

Especially in automatic cars, putting your car in neutral will prevent damage to the engine, transmission and other pieces of your car. Make sure you have it switched out of drive or park before attempting to move the car.

After that short checklist, you’re ready to go. Pushing the car by simply rolling the tires can be easiest depending on your car, but play around with your grip and positioning to find out the best place to move your car. Sometimes opening one of the car doors and allows you to get a better angle on pushing the weight of the car through the interior.

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Most Famous Cars Sold At Auction

As one of the best car auction companies in northeast Florida, we know what makes a car sell for a high value. There’s a combination of factors that will determine how much a car will sell for, such as maintenance records and visible condition, but one thing can make them sell for even more: fame.

To show you what we mean, let’s take a look at some of the most famous cars ever to be sold through a car auction:

Movie Cars

Almost nothing makes a car more famous than seeing it on the big, silver screen. So how well do the Hollywood vehicles sell?

Some of the most famous vehicles come from the same franchise. James Bond and his inventive left-hand man known only as his code name, Q, have been building, driving and blowing up some of the most famous cars to date.

When Sean Connery was James Bond, the 1964 DB5 from Aston Martin made it into two movies. Of course, what appeared on screen was laced with machine guns, missiles and oil slicks to help you get the bad guy.

1964 Aston Martin DB5 (Credit: Photo: Shooterz.biz/RM Auctions)

Initially sold to a private buyer for a mere $12,000, this car later was then sold at an auction in London in 2010 for 4.6-million dollars. Missiles not included.

TV Cars

Only one man has the money and secret technology required to challenge James Bond for most famous cars: Batman.

Batman’s Batmobile is one of the most famous cars of all times, but not just any Batmobile, the original version from the 1966 TV sitcom starring Adam West and Burt Ward as Batman and Robin.

1966 Batmobile by George Barris (Credit: Photo: Barrett-Jackson)

Originally a 1955 Lincoln concept car, it was quickly adapted to the caped crusader’s needs to fight crime on the fly. Though almost every Batman TV show or movie has spawned their own version of the Batmobile, nothing is as iconic and defining as the original version pictured above.

This Batmobile sold for 4.62-million dollars in 2013.

John Lennon’s Rolls-Royce

No mystery here, just a story of fame and misfortune.

With the wealth and fame enjoyed by being a member of The Beatles, John Lennon bought a Rolls-Royce Phantom V in 1965. Not happy with the black color of the car and being a cultural icon of psychedelic rock, James had artist Steve Weaver design something more impressive.

1965 Rolls-Royce Phantom V (Credit: Photo: Royal BC Museum)

Under pressure from the IRS, Lennon was forced to donate the car in 1977 in exchange for a tax credit. The museum to which he donated this one-of-a-kind car then auctioned the car in 1985 for 2.29-million dollars.

But, don’t let these cars intimidate you. You don’t need a car with a unique paint job or lasers to do well at a car auction. Having a regular maintenance history and a car that looks and runs well is much more important.

For more tips on how to sell your cars at an auction or to find out about our next car auction, give ASAP Towing a call at 904-771-0790.

ASAP is the #1 car auction company in Florida

Stop by any one of our locations or see our inventory online to see what we have for sale.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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Do You Need Special Tires In Florida?

stack of tiresHere in Jacksonville, Florida, we joke about getting snow each winter, but do you ever think that means you need actual snow tires for your car?

It’s an interesting question, and one we’ll discuss in today’s article. If you can’t answer it in confidence, come check out the facts with us below.

Tire Types

Now, tires aren’t just limited to all-season tires and snow tires like you might think. There are actually types such as touring tires, high-performance tires, rally tires and many more. There’s essentially a different type of tire for just about any activity you might be doing in a car.

Luckily, the tire name pretty much tells you exactly what they do, so the lingo is easy to pick up. Snow tires, for example, help you drive better in the snow. Touring tires are designed for smooth, quiet rides and are named for “grand tours,” or long road trips in vehicles, where you want comfort above all else. For our towing services throughout northeast Florida, we need a more heavy duty tire to help move the cars we lift and haul every day.

If you don’t remember asking for a specific type of tire when you last bought a set, or if you’re not sure what are on your car, most likely you have all-season tires. As the name suggests, these tires are the jack of all trades designed with water channels for wet roads but harder rubber to survive hot roads in the summer.

So Which Type Do I Need?

Like so many things cars, the answer is “it depends.” Our original question that brought us here was about snow tires, so let’s look at that first.

Though snow tires are named after the cold, white substance, they’re actually designed more for just wet roads and helping you with traction on wet roads. For actual snow, you put chains around your tire that help dig into the fluffy white powder.

When you start to think about snow tires as just “wet” tires or “water” tires, they start to make more sense. Florida, lightening capital of the United States, has a rainy season every summer that lasts anywhere between 2 and 5 months when the road is going to be slippery every day.

In that context, tires that help you grip could be worth it if you’re in one of the heavier-rainfall areas; the only problem is that snow (or water) tires aren’t designed with heat in mind. And in the summer when it rains, it’s also beating down the heat on the road.

Could they be helpful? Absolutely. If you notice your car hydroplaning a lot the specially designed tires could help move that water around your wheel in a safer, more secure way. But, if you’re putting 200+ miles on tires every summer day on a tire not built for it, there’s an increased chance of blowouts as you wear the rubber out faster.

It’s a conversation worth having with your mechanic or automobile dealership to get the best tire for your needs, but always remember, if your tire fails and you’re stranded on the road, ASAP Towing is just a phone call away!

ASAP Is A Reputable Towing Company

We are the #1 rated and most widely used towing company in North-east Florida.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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Worst Times To Drive This Holiday Season

boy driving toy carAs the year ends, people often celebrate with long journeys across the country to connect with distant family and friends for a few joyous days. But, those journeys can be fraught with peril if you’re unprepared for the holiday travel season.

Remember, November and December have days like Thanksgiving and Christmas where nearly everyone travels on the road or by air to somewhere else to see someone they know. This is not just an ordinary day of travel.

Driving Around Thanksgiving

Research and experience from past years suggest that we like to procrastinate, which means the best time to drive around Thanksgiving is early or on the day itself.

The majority of Thanksgiving week traffic happens the Tuesday and Wednesday before the actual holiday. Due to work hours, family needs and sheer dislike of traffic jams, the majority of Americans wait to travel at the very last minute before the holiday.

Past years have also shown that the most traveled holiday period of the year is Thanksgiving weekend, so avoid driving home right away.

To beat the heavy flow of traffic around Thanksgiving, travel early and stay at your destination long. If that’s not an option, driving on Thanksgiving Day is your best plan. The morning and afternoon are often quiet while traffic begins to pick up again in the evening.

Driving Around Christmas And New Years

Christmas and New Years are historically some of the worst times to drive. While both are heavy periods of travel in the sky and on the road, these two holidays are also a heavy period of alcohol-related crashes.

If you are going to drive, stick to an early schedule. As the days go on, so do the amount of fatal crashes. Avoid the “eves”—Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. Both of these two nights see heavy crashes across the nation due to inattentive drivers.

If the unfortunate does happen and you end up stuck on the highway with us here in northeast Florida, give ASAP Towing a call. We know accidents don’t take a day off, and neither do we. We’ll be here 24 hours helping those in Jacksonville and St. Augustine, Florida.

ASAP wants you to be safe during the holidays

Be safe. Be happy and have a good time. If you have any trouble don’t hesitate to call the best towing company in North Florida.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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Tips for Trips: Take Care of Your Car During Holiday Travels

toy car on ground in houseIt’s about that time of the year again. Yes, we’re talking about the holidays, but let’s focus on how they affect your car.

Thanksgiving and Christmas season mean long car trips for lots of people, and those miles quickly add up to unexpected wear and tear on your car. If you live in northeast Florida and go to visit family members in southwest Florida, that’s an extra 500 miles on your car, and you’re doing it twice or even three times from November through January. That’s 1,500 extra miles on your car!

Is your vehicle ready for those long miles? Though ASAP Towing is a 24-hour towing service in Jacksonville and St. Augustine, that doesn’t mean we want to get those midnight calls from you when you break down on Christmas Eve!

Here’s a quick checklist of things you can do to make sure you’re ready for any holiday car trips:

Fuel

If you’re driving somewhere cold, you don’t have the luxury of Florida keeping your fuel warm anymore. Cold fuel makes an engine hard to start, and if it gets cold enough you’ll have frozen fuel in your lines. Yikes!

Pick up some fuel deicer and keep it in your car if you’re planning on visiting the frozen north this winter. Just remember, use it preventively. It won’t do much if your fuel is already frozen, but it will keep you from ever having it freeze in the first place.

Windshield Wipers

You’re probably expecting something like snow tires to be on this list, but surprise! Windshield wipers are more needed in day-to-day driving anyway.

Having a fresh pair of wipers, especially rubber-clad or winter wiper blades if you’ll be in a cold environment, can keep your eyes on the road where they’re supposed to be.

If you can’t remember the last time you replaced your wipers, now is the time. When you can see in the middle of a rain or snow storm while driving home, you’ll be thankful you did.

Lights

Cold winters come with long, dark nights, and you can prepare for both by making sure the lights on your car are working properly.

Not only are lights required to have by law on the road, but imagine if you do break down on the road. You want your hazard lights in working condition to notify other drivers you’re stopped and need a hand!

Make sure you’re prepared for holiday travel plans before setting off. Your car might be able to work fine in Jacksonville or St. Augustine, but when you start traveling for the holidays you don’t know how your car will react!

ASAP wants you to be safe during the holidays

Be safe. Be happy and have a good time. If you have any trouble don’t hesitate to call the best towing company in North Florida.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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Important Towing Laws For Jacksonville, Part 3

law books with gavelGetting out of a parking ticket in Jacksonville, FL can be tough but doable if you know the law! Join us in the final installment of our series on important towing laws for Duval County to make sure you know what you can and can’t do in the face of the law.

But why trust us? We’ve been in northeast Florida since 1995 and grown to provide towing service in Jacksonville all the way through southern St. Augustine. No one knows the rules like we do!

If you haven’t already, be sure to read up on part 1 and part 2 of this series to learn more about how the towing ordinance in Jacksonville can work for you, not against you.

Let’s Talk Money

You hear it in the news all the time: people get charged outrageous fees and prices for having their car towed in some horrible scam. But, did you know tow rates are actually included in Jacksonville’s towing ordinance?

That’s right, what a tow company can legally charge you for their services, even if you car was removed due to a parking violation, is lawfully set to a maximum rate. The only scaling costs is based on how far they might have to tow your car (which, if you remember from our previous articles, is set at a maximum of 10 miles from where the tow originates).

Section 804.1306—Establishment of Rates

If you want to read the entire Jacksonville towing ordinance, you can find it here on our website. But, here are the basics:

The tow rate is determined by vehicle classes and set to a maximum rate.

  • Class A vehicles: $91.73 plus $2.62 a mile
  • Class B vehicles: $104.83 plus $3.28 per mile
  • Class C vehicles: $375.00 with no mileage charges

Likewise, the maximum storage rate of vehicles is determined by their class. Impounded vehicles in Jacksonville cannot be charged for the first six hours of their storage, but after that the rates are as follows:

  • Class A vehicles: $19.65 a day
  • Class B vehicles: $26.20 a day
  • Class C vehicles: $32.76 for semi-tractors and $45.84 for semi-trailers per day

Which Vehicle Class Am I?

As you now know, the rates for impounded vehicles and their trip to storage is determined by vehicle class, but which class do you fall in?

If you’re a regular citizen, most likely your class is Class A. These are normal-sized cars, trucks and vans up to 10,000 pounds. Some of your bigger trucks and box cans fall into Class B, which is anything between 10,001 and 19,500 pounds. Finally for RVs, semi-trucks and the heavy-duty vehicles, there’s Class C which is any vehicle more than 19,500 pounds.

So now you know what class of car you have and the absolute maximum you can be charged in towing and storage fees in Jacksonville, Florida. With that information, you’ll never be overcharged in a towing scam again!

ASAP Towing has the tools and trucks for any job

ASAP Towing uses safe equipment and uses safe practices to tow your car or boat with any type of truck.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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Important Towing Laws For Jacksonville, Part 2

law books with gavelIf you’re just joining us, we’re taking a look at the law of the land when it comes to towing illegally parked vehicles in Jacksonville, Florida. Catch up with part one of the series here.

If you’re outside of Jacksonville, such as St. Augustine or other northeastern parts of Florida, please keep in mind that your local city ordinance might have different rules than what we’re about to discuss. While these articles can give you a good idea of general towing laws, always check with your local city for their exact set of rules.

Don’t forget, you can view the entire city ordinance at any time on our website here.

In part one of this series on towing laws for Jacksonville, we discovered that a property owner has to have a written agreement with a towing company on file with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office before they can tow your car.

For part two, we’re taking a look at Jacksonville city ordinance section 804.1305, titled “return of owner prior to tow.” We’re going to clear up some facts about what you can do to stop your car from being towed even after the tow truck shows up.

Hey! That’s My Car!

You’ve probably seen in movies or TV shows a scene where a driver comes out to find their car being hooked up by a tow truck operator. The operator almost always says “Sorry, there’s nothing I can do” and takes the car away. But, is there really nothing they can do?

According to section 804.1305, there is a way to get your car back! It states, and for the sake of your boredom I’m paraphrasing here, that no towing service shall tow a vehicle or charge for its services when the owner arrives at the scene unless the owner refuses to move their car or the car has already been connected to the tow truck.

So, if you’re going to park illegally, make sure you get back to your car quickly to save the charge! As long as you catch them in the act, you can get your car back.

But What If It’s Connected?

If you read the aforementioned unless line carefully, you’ll see that stopping the tow is tough if it’s in  progress, and by that I mean your car is already chained to the tow truck ready to be moved or worse.

But, there’s still good news. Even if your vehicle is chained to the tow truck but the tow driver hasn’t set off, you can still get your car back for a cost.

The rest of the ordinance states that if the vehicle has been connected the owner can pay a service fee of no more than one-half of the normal tow rate to get it back. Also, the tow truck operator must wait a minimum of 30 minutes to let the vehicle owner to secure cash for that payment if they only accept cash as a payment.

So there you have it! If you come out of the shops to find your car being towed, you have some room for recourse, and don’t let any tow company in Duval County tell you otherwise!

ASAP Is A Reputable Towing Company

We are the #1 rated and most widely used towing company in North-east Florida.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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Important Towing Laws For Jacksonville, Part 1

law books with gavelTowing a car, as you can imagine, is a heavily documented process. Someone cannot simply show up and move your several-thousand dollar car without following a precise set of rules.

While many of those rules and laws are written in the convoluted way most laws are, some of them are surprisingly simple to understand.

Having a basic understanding of some of the key points in the Jacksonville, FL towing process can save you headaches, big bucks and hopefully get your car back when it has been taken, so let’s learn!

What To Know

What we want to know are rules in the Jacksonville city ordinance (ordinance section 804.1303 to be exact) that you can use to protect yourself from scams, illegal tows and any other kind of program designed to separate you from your hard-earned cash.

While there are many fine points in the city ordinance pertaining to what you can and can’t do to tow a car, you don’t need to know all of them. What you should know are these fine points:

The Police Have To Know

The first section of the Jacksonville city towing ordinance states that “prior to the trespass towing of any vehicle, the property owner of the real property and the towing service shall have executed a written agreement which shall at a minimum contain the following provisions.”

Then it lists a lot of provisions such as address of the property, duration of the agreement and several other common sense things you don’t need to worry about.

What you should know is that further down, the ordinance states that “prior to the trespass towing of any vehicle, a copy of the executed agreement described above shall be filed by the towing service with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Vehicle Storage and Recovery Unit.”

So, according to city law, the property owner trying to move your car has to have a written agreement with the towing company they’ve hired and that written agreement has to be filed ahead of time with the police.

Now the next time you find your car has been moved, before you pay anyone some sort of fee for your car or their services, verify with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office that they have a copy of the written agreement.

If they don’t, then the property owner had no legal right to move your car. Bad news for them, good news for you!

I Fought The Law…But I Won!

You can familiarize yourself with the rest of the city ordinance on our website, but we’ll be taking a look at other important parts over the coming weeks to make sure you, as the consumer, are protected against any towing violations.

In the meantime, feel free to look over the entire city ordinance on our website here. And if you have any questions about towing, be sure to give us a call at 904-771-0790!

ASAP Is A Reputable Towing Company

We are the #1 rated and most widely used towing company in North-east Florida.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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Here’s How to Tow a Boat

diagram of boat tow inspectionIf there’s one thing north Florida is famous for, it’s our oceans. With all that beautiful water, boats are almost as common on the cars, even on the road!

That’s right, boats have to get to the water somehow, so seeing them being towed or pulled with a trailer down the road is a common sight!

What’s it take to move boat? Let’s find out.

Getting To A Boat Ramp

Boat ramps are the most popular way of getting your privately owned vehicle in the water, but how do you get it there? And, more importantly, how do you get it in the water?

First, find your boat ramp. For Jacksonville residents, our City of Jacksonville website has a free boat ramp listing online!

With your destination in mind, how are you going to get your boat there? A professional marine towing service can more your vehicle to the destination, but that might not be enough. Your goal here is to actually get your boat in the water, and our tow trucks aren’t waterproof!

Almost any boat you buy should come with a trailer to at least get the vehicle in the water. Not every trailer that comes with your boat is road legal, but for slowly putting your boat in the water via a ramp you should be okay.

Road Legal Boat Trailers

So what makes a boat trailer legal to take on the street? Well, there are a few rules.

Florida law regarding boat trailers mandate that they have proper lighting, including turn signals and brake lights. Also, those tow trailers must be equipped with safety chains and tie-down straps. (Duh! Always secure your cargo!)

That’s not all! For trailers weighing more than 3,000 lbs., they must have brakes that work on all wheels. Don’t forget to get your trailers registered and titled, too!

Just don’t forget to check everything before you leave! Boat trailers generally have a manual winch attached to help pull the boat into place, but that winch isn’t enough to keep the boat secure. Make sure you secure your ship to its trailer properly with other chains and ropes.

Other Options

Now you’ll find a lot of companies like Sea Tow that will help your boat if it gets stuck in the water, but what about if your boat is still stuck on land?

Towing a boat is no problem, in fact boat trailering and towing is a common practice of ours. It falls under the category of specialty towing. Specialty towing is also what we call it when we tow aircraft, motorcycles and just about anything you might think of as an unusual tow.

Think you have a job that would require a little special attention? Contact ASAP Towing today at 904-771-2790 so we can help with your unique towing needs!

ASAP Towing has the tools and trucks for any job

ASAP Towing uses safe equipment and uses safe practices to tow your car or boat with any type of truck.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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How Not To Tow A Motorcycle

improper motorcycle towing strapsI found these pictures online of a motorcycle being towed and instantly cringed. Can you see what’s wrong?

If you said something about the tow straps, you’re right! Take a look at those pictures and you’ll see an excellent example of what not to do when towing your dirt bike, motorcycle or other two-wheel vehicle. Let’s examine why.

Improper Tow Strap Placement

First, take a look at this picture in particular. What immediately jumps out are the tow straps around the forks, or the two large bars that connect the front wheel to the rest of the frame. The reason being is that those are easy to bend.

Bent forks mean misalignment, so your steering won’t have the impact you want. You’re more likely to spin out on a turn as your motorcycle under-steers or over-steers with a bad alignment.

Since the forks of a motorcycle are so easily bent, they are a bad spot for the high-tension tow straps. Remember, these straps are cranked and locked down to prevent any movement, so they are designed to tightly wrap around car parts. Delicate parts of the car and thin metals are easily damaged under stress, so in general they are bad places to put these straps.

In addition to putting tow straps on motorcycle forks, this picture shows tow straps on the side bars (also known as crash bars, engine guards or tip-over bars). Those bars are tubular pieces of metal that bolt onto the frame and attach to the motor, and they serve the purpose of protecting your leg, engine, paint and just about everything else that might scrape your motorcycle if you tip over or crash it.

The problem with placing towing motorcycles using the crash bars is that they’re rounded pieces of metal, meaning the tow strap has nothing secure to latch onto. During the course of a trip down a bumpy road, the strap can slowly begin to slide around on the angular side bar and lose all tension they had from their starting position. If that happens, they’re doing nothing to keep your bike upright!

Better Ways To Move Your Bike

If you’re using tow straps for a do-it yourself job, make sure to use the triple clamps (also known as the triple trees) as the anchor for your straps. The triple clamps are what hold the aforementioned fork in place and are much sturdier than the easily-bent motorcycle fork.

If you’re looking for roadside assistance for motorcycles, companies such as AAA offer excellent programs for members that cover locksmith services, limited towing and other needed services. It’s not cost-effective if you’re just looking for a one-time simple move, but if your main transportation is a motorcycle that you drive most every day, it can be worth it!

If you need something more local, don’t forget that ASAP Towing is experienced with every make and model of motorcycle and have six locations in the Jacksonville/St. Augustine area for quick response! Call us today and let’s discuss how we can help you.

We Tow Motorcycles

If you need your motorcycle towed by a reputable towing company, call ASAP Towing.

Email ASAP Towing Or call us at (904) 771-0790
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