Motoring Solutions

Guides Advice

When Roadside Assistance Should Be Recovery

It is very true that the majority of breakdowns are sorted via a roadside assistance policy, when the engineers get the vehicle going at the roadside. But around 20% of call outs are more serious in nature and the only option would either to be covered via a Recovery policy or towed to a local garage.

Mechanical Instances Where A Recovery Policy May Be Preferable

If you are happy with being towed to a local garage, then the cheapest option of roadside assistance may still be right for you. But when things are a bit more serious, having a recovery policy will give you the choice of where the vehicle is transported to within the UK.

engine needs fixing

Here Are Some Instances

  • Brakes: In most cases any issues regarding brakes should not be repaired at the roadside. They should be fixed by a competent garage and then road tested, before use.
  • Ripped Tyre Without Spare: If you do not carry a spare, or even have an emergency tyre get you home type repair canister, it still may not be enough to be allowed to drive away. All tyres need to be safe, and as patrolmen cannot carry every size of tyre within the van, it is likely nothing can be done at the roadside.
  • Suspension Issue: If you have clipped the kerb , or something on the road and there is spring damage, this job would be too large to fixed outside of a garage. Tracking arms etc, would come under the same banner.
  • Misfuel: If you have put petrol into a diesel vehicle, then this won’t be fixed at the roadside by the engineer. Each service may have an alternative system to deal with this, from paying a 3rd company to do deal with this, or just taking you to a nearby garage.
  • Fire: Although this may be covered by your vehicle insurance policy, this clearly would be treated as something too serious to be repaired.
  • Gearbox: Sometimes thinks like linkage arms can be fixed quiet easily, but if there is a failure of some sort within the box, the likelihood is the vehicle will need to be transported away.
  • Engine: There should be a better chance of getting you on your way, if there are issues with ignition, spark and simple fuel supply. But if something major has occurred with your vehicle, such as timing belt failure, pistons or cylinder head issue, chances are the vehicle will need more specialist help.

The above is not an exhaustive list and maybe just an indication of what issues that could go wrong on your vehicle. It is also very true that if your vehicle is new or well serviced, the likely hood of something major happening would be less, than an older or non serviced vehicle.

Upgrade To Recovery?

So the decision to whether it is worthwhile upgrading to a recovery policy would be determined by the likelihood of anything major occurring and the cost and inconvenience of dealing with an issue without a recovery policy.

If any of these issues happen a large distance from home, the cost could be considerable, certainly more than a recovery policy.

Remember though, even a Recovery policy does not protect for home call outs, on your drive or within a ¼ mile from home.