Essential Guide to Towing a Tesla Safely and Efficiently

Table of Contents
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents
    Scroll to Top

    Tesla’s are supposed to be the future of driving, right? Self-driving, electric, and all that jazz. But then you realize that towing a Tesla is a necessary thing at times

    Towing a Tesla is not as simple as just hooking up a tow truck and calling it a day. There’s a whole world of considerations and precautions you need to take. In this blog, we’ll discuss those considerations so you know what to expect.

    Towing a Tesla: Can You Do It?

    As a Tesla owner, you might be curious if towing your car is possible. The good news is yes, it can be done. However, there are some crucial points to consider before you hitch it up.

    Towing Capacity of Different Tesla Models

    Tesla’s different models offer varying towing capacities. The Model X stands out with the ability to tow up to 5,000 lbs. Meanwhile, if you have a properly equipped Model Y, it can handle around 3,500 lbs. Unfortunately for fans of the Model S and Model 3, these cars aren’t rated for any towing at all.

    Towing Equipment Needed

    Since a Tesla is a low-clearance car, you need to know how to tow a lowered car. You need specific equipment for this tow. You’ll need either a compatible tow bar or dolly for your model and also an adapter to ensure the trailer’s lights function properly.

    Trying to tow a Model X without the right equipment can be a nightmare. There are so many ways it can go wrong. Always check your owner’s manual and stick to Tesla’s official towing guidelines.

    Precautions When Towing a Tesla

    Hooking up your Tesla for towing requires some extra steps. Make sure it’s in “Tow Mode” to safeguard both the battery and drivetrain. Additionally, keep your speed under 70 mph and avoid traveling more than 500 miles at once so you don’t deplete the battery too much.

    Some mistakes towing companies make can be as simple as not charging the battery. This can make for unnecessary headaches down the road.

    How to Tow a Tesla Safely

    Now that you’re familiar with the essentials of towing a Tesla, it’s time to break down each step for doing it safely.

    Preparing Your Tesla for Towing

    Before you even consider hooking up your Tesla to a tow vehicle, there are some important steps to follow first.

    1. Put the Tesla in “Tow Mode”
    2. Release the parking brake
    3. Disengage any Autopilot features
    4. Fold in the side mirrors
    5. Check tire pressure
    6. Secure any loose items inside the vehicle

    If you skip any of these steps, you could seriously damage your Tesla or even cause an accident. I’ve seen it happen before, so please be careful.

    Connecting the Tow Vehicle

    Once your Tesla is ready, it’s time to hook it up to the tow vehicle. Follow these steps:

    1. Attach the tow bar or dolly to the designated towing points on the Tesla chassis
    2. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully
    3. Double-check all connections
    4. Connect the lighting adapter
    5. Test the trailer lights

    If you’re feeling unsure about getting this right, don’t be afraid to ask a professional for help. It’s always better to play it safe.

    Driving Considerations While Towing

    Towing a Tesla comes with its own set of challenges, different from regular driving. Keep these points in mind:

    • Allow for increased stopping distance
    • Avoid sudden maneuvers
    • Use a lower gear on inclines to prevent overheating the tow vehicle
    • Monitor the Tesla’s battery level and plan charging stops accordingly

    Accessories for Towing a Tesla

    Getting the right accessories can simplify towing your Tesla. Check out these essentials:

    Tow Bars and Hitches

    To ensure safe towing with your Tesla, you’ll need a reliable tow bar or hitch. The Stealth Hitch fits perfectly on the Model X while the EcoHitch works great on the Model Y. These hitches match Tesla’s requirements and support appropriate weights too. Just be sure they’re professionally installed for proper alignment.

    Tow Dollies

    Thinking about towing your Tesla for a long trip? A tow dolly might be the way to go. It lifts two wheels off the ground, which helps keep your battery from draining too fast. Just double-check that the dolly can handle your Tesla’s weight and has secure tie-down points.

    Some learn the hard way that skimping on equipment isn’t worth it. They will use an unrated dolly to tow a Model 3 and halfway through the trip, it breaks down. The result? My the vehicle’s suspension got damaged. Always go for quality gear/

    Trailer Brakes

    If your Tesla and trailer setup is on the heavier side, you might need to add auxiliary trailer brakes. These can sync up with your Tesla’s braking system for better control and safety. Don’t forget to check local laws about whether or not these brakes are required in your area.

    Learning about trailer brakes came with quite a scare when my Model X nearly ended up in a ditch. The tow vehicle’s brakes couldn’t handle the car’s weight on a downhill slope. Installing electric trailer brakes can be a huge improvement.

    Common Issues When Towing a Tesla

    Even with the best gear and thorough prep, towing a Tesla can still present challenges. Keep an eye out for these common issues that might pop up.

    Battery Drainage During Towing

    When towing a Tesla, the battery can drain faster than usual. To prevent getting stuck, plan your trip with charging stops every 150-200 miles. Also, use slower charging speeds to keep the battery from overheating during the tow.

    Potential Damage to the Tesla

    Using improper techniques or gear while towing your Tesla might harm the drivetrain, suspension, or battery. Always adhere strictly to the official guidelines from Tesla and make sure you’re using approved tools. Should you notice any issues later on, it’s crucial to get a certified technician to inspect your car right away.

    I’ve heard stories of towing companies that didn’t follow the towing guidelines and ended up cracking the battery pack. That mistake can cost thousands in repairs. Only trust people who will stick to the rules like Geyers Towing when it comes to towing your Tesla.

    Troubleshooting Towing Problems

    Towing a Tesla isn’t always smooth sailing, even if you’re prepared. You might run into these common problems:

    • Disconnected wiring
    • Malfunctioning trailer lights
    • Overheating tow vehicle
    • Swaying or instability at high speeds

    If you run into these issues, the first thing to do is pull over safely and take a look at what’s going on. Inspect all your connections and equipment for any visible damage or problems. Check out your vehicle owner’s manual for troubleshooting tips. If nothing seems to work, it’s better to call professional roadside assistance rather than risk further damage or an accident.

    Towing a Tesla takes some planning and the right gear. You need to be careful, but by following these tips and learning from experience, you’ll get your car where it needs to go without any trouble.

    Towing a Tesla: Final Thoughts

    So there you have it, folks. Towing a Tesla isn’t rocket science, but it does require some know-how and the right equipment. Whether you’re a proud Tesla owner or a tow truck driver, understanding the ins and outs of towing these high-tech vehicles can save you a whole lot of headaches down the road.

    Remember, it’s all about being prepared, taking precautions, and knowing when to call in the pros. With the right approach, towing a Tesla can be a smooth and stress-free experience. If you need to tow your Tesla, contact Geyers Towing today!

    Share with your friends!