When your car is broken down by the side of the road or won't start in the morning, then it's obvious that you need to call a tow truck to have it taken to a repair shop. However, there are times when you may want to consider having your car towed even if it does actually run.

This is for your own safety and the safety of other drivers, and to avoid causing more damage to your car while it's being driven. Note the following:

Problems With Brakes

If your brakes continue to work even after you release the pedal, or if you notice that you need to virtually stand on the pedal to get your brakes to work, you don't want to drive your car. Brakes that continue to grip often mean that the calipers are failing; these are the clips that push the brake pads against the rotors.

When these fail, your brakes will also fail. When your brakes are soft or not gripping at all, usually your car is losing brake fluid or the pads have slipped out of place. This too can mean that the brakes might fail while on the road.

When the Engine Smokes or Steams

A very slight oil leak is not necessarily an emergency, but if you notice smoke or steam coming from your engine, you typically don't want to drive it. Smoke often means that the engine is not being cooled as it should and if you drive it this way, this can cause the engine block or a cylinder head to actually crack.

These are very expensive repairs. Steam often means a leak in the radiator, and driving your car this way can make the leak worse so that the radiator actually bursts.

Smoke can mean that the car has a very serious fluid leak from the steering, transmission, or other major part. These too can get much worse if you drive your car this way and cause serious damage to the part with the leak.

When a Tire Is Completely Flat

Never drive on a flat tire, as brakes cannot grip flat tires and the car can be very difficult to steer. You could easily skid and slide on the road if you were to drive on a flat tire, and also cause damage to the tire rim or even the axle. The air in tires cushions the car from bumps in the road, so it's better to call for a towing service rather than drive your car when a tire is completely flat.

If you find yourself stranded and with these types of problems, you need more help. After troubleshooting the problem, you may need intervention from a towing service. To learn more, contact a company like Barnes Towing & Salvage Qld Pty Ltd with any questions you have.