Cold Cars Equals Big Business for Some

January 03, 2018 10:57 PM

For the past couple of weeks, tow truck drivers have been playing the role of hero. "People are really appreciative, when they can't get their car going, and we get them going for them," Darin Lind told us. He's the owner of Duke's Towing, which has been in business for 20 years. "There's an art to getting them going."

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We followed him on Wednesday to a call where the car ended up giving out on the owner's way to work. It was too soon to say if it was weather related. But they have seen plenty of those. "With the cold temps, we have been extremely busy. Phones have been ringing non-stop. People need help with flat tires, dead batteries, and of course, when the cars just won't go."

The owner of the car was told it was going to be a 4 hour wait to get a tow, but Duke's was there much faster.

Lind's crews also have to deal with the cold temps themselves, and have to take care of their own gear and make sure it runs.

He has some tips for people as the bitter cold seems to be sticking around.

1) Make sure you check your tire pressure.
2) Plug your car into a block heater if you can.
3) Make sure your battery is less than 5 years old.
4) Try and start your car every few hours.

Sometimes the car is so cold, it needs to thaw out before service techs can work on it. Over at Allstar Service and Accessories on Central Entrance, that's been the case for a few clients. But Gavin Aker said it's been mostly run of the mill stuff. "Most of the time it's an alternator or battery that needs to be replaced. Occasionally a broken belt, because the severe cold and the rubber not being able to hold up."

Business is booming for them. "Lots of people are seeing problems with their electrical," he added. When Eyewitness News was there, we saw the water dripping down from the undersides of the vehicles. It was snow and ice that was melting off.

They do sell remote starts, but most of those were sold during the holidays.

One last reminder, from Lind, about keeping going during a deep freeze. "The cars need to acclimate to the weather. Start it ahead of time, and let it warm up. The transmission fluid has to get going and work its way through the system. It's about taking your time, and being patient."

Which can be hard to do, when you're freezing your face off. 


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