What is a Car Dolly?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 09 October 2019
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Whenever there is a need to move a vehicle without actually driving the car or truck to a new location, a car dolly is the obvious choice. Here are some facts about car dollies, including where to get a car dolly when you need one.

Also known as a tow dolly, the car dolly is essentially a conveyance with a flat bed. The automobile is loaded onto the car dolly and secured into place. The dolly is then attached to another vehicle that pulls the car and the dolly to the anticipated destination. A car dolly may be constructed to provide transportation for a single vehicle, but here are also multilevel car dollies that will accommodate two or more vehicles, if the circumstances should call for the transport of several cars or trucks at one time.

The car dolly will include a number of safety features that help to keep the vehicles secure. The ramps on the flat bed of the car dolly are usually coated with a substance that acts as a gripping agent, helping to cut down on the incidence of shifting during the transport of the cars and trucks. A harness system helps to secure the vehicles from several angles, which also helps a great deal with any movement during the course of the trip.


With some types of these car dollies, swiveling wheel pans are secured around the tires as an additional precaution against movement during the travel. The car dolly itself will usually have a tongue that can be attached directly to the axle of the vehicle that will be towing the dolly. Other connections of chain and wiring that allow the rear lights on the dolly to act in conjunction with the taillights of the towing vehicle.

For persons who are contemplating a move, but are unsure how to get all the cars to the new location, a car dolly can be an excellent solution to the problem. A single unit car dolly can often be rented from national moving companies, as well as local businesses that rent small moving trucks. Typically the rental is based on the how many days you will be using the unit, rather than a per mile charge. While some companies may require you to return the car dolly to the rental location, many national moving companies are happy to receive the dolly at a location near the destination. Car dollies that will accommodate two or three vehicles may require rental from a professional moving company, who will have moving vans that are robust enough to handle the towing of multiple vehicles.


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