Got a caravan? How about a horse float or car trailer? A big old boat perhaps?
If you answered yes to any of the above, then you’re gonna need some towing mirrors.
Side note: if you answered yes to the car trailer or boat questions then I’d like to also offer my services as your new best friend, but we can talk about that later.
Anyway, towing mirrors are one of those mods that make life about a million times easier when you’re hauling a sizeable mass behind you. The ability to see your immediate surroundings and have a greater field of view while you’re backing up just makes you wonder how you ever got by without a set of bigger and better rear-vision providers, not to mention, they’re often a legal requirement.
Take a look at our list below and see if you’re inadvertently playing fast and loose with your safety, money and culpability whenever you’re next towing the trailer, and if you are, we can tell you where to head to get yourself sorted.
Then we can chat about that fishing trip we’re heading out on next weekend after you’ve helped me get another bucket of rust (aka project I’ll never finish) into my garage…
They no longer look like Dumbo ears
You ever seen a rig with stick on mirrors that are reminiscent of Forrest Gump’s leg braces? Straps and wires and telescopic poles shooting off in every direction and lenses that look like they could double as a handheld mirror you’d find in a cheap motel bathroom – you know the ones. They’re heinous.
Luckily, these days companies like Clearview Accessories have model-specific mirrors that not only offer infinitely more functionality, but they also look fantastic as well. They’re built to suit a range of 4X4s and even offer a full spare parts catalogue should anything need replacing after that trackside tree came out of nowhere and gave your fourby a love tap. We’ve all been there.
Vision, it’s kind of important
Pop quiz: did you know that there are legal requirements for rearward vision when towing? Basically, you have to be able to see right down both sides of your trailer when underway. Obviously, when you’re riding in a 1.8m-wide vehicle and your trailer is 2.2m-wide, this is going to be a little difficult to achieve – thanks for nothing, physics.
With a set of Clearviews attached and fully extended, however, you’ll have all the vision and be riding on the right side of the law, which let’s be honest, makes the drive a hell of a lot more relaxing when you’re spending a lot of time on the blacktop and the road pirates are roaming. The steel-arm construction of the mirrors also ensures that the mirrors will not retract under any road-going circumstances you can imagine. They’re also completely legal for use in every state and territory, so they’re a fit-and-forget item.
Modern problems require modern solutions
You may have noticed that a lot of modern vehicle mirrors have more electrical capability installed than the IronMan suit. We’re talking de-icing, blind-spot warnings, 360deg. cameras, temperature sensors, power-folding… you get the point, a single mirror nowadays has more wiring than Apollo 11.
Now, you may think that fitting up a set of Clearview Mirrors might cause some issues with this feast of the sensors, but you’d be more wrong than Goebbels moonlighting as a mohel. All of the technology currently found in your four-wheel drive’s mirrors are also mounted in the Clearviews. In some cases, it will add a little extra time to the installation, and you may have to remove a couple of devices from your old mirrors and mount them in the new ones, but the instructions are comprehensive and easy to follow. In short: if you’re using the technological complexity of your vehicle to put off grabbing a set of Clearviews – think again.
Styles for miles
Beauty is in the eye of the beer-holder. Looks are highly subjective and one person’s Chris Hemsworth is the next person’s Peter Dutton. Similarly, your hybrid camper trailer may not require the same mirror as old mate towing the fifth-wheel, family of eight, Taj Mahal behind him. It’s horses for courses.
Clearview are aware of this and have taken the time to develop a range of styles and functionality in their mirrors that make them the ones to beat. You can choose from three different mirror platforms and tailor both the looks and utility to your specific vehicle. This means that no matter what you’re lugging behind you, the Clearviews will tick the boxes every time.
A camera just don’t cut it
“But wait, I have a camera hooked up to the back of my van, I don’t need no tow mirrors!”
Hate to be the one to tell ya, pal, but yeah you do. As mentioned, to be legal you need to be able to see down the sides of your trailer, and a camera only shows you what’s happening directly behind you. Not to mention, have you ever tried backing a van into a site ignoring your mirrors and only using a camera? It’s borderline impossible and pretty much guaranteed to have you scratching up your van’s exterior within a few feet.
We’re not saying cameras aren’t any good, they’re an invaluable tool when you’re in reverse, but they don’t replace the need for a solid set of mirrors. Think about a B-Double truck – very few have reversing cameras, all of them have high-quality side mirrors. Says it all, really, doesn’t it?
In the market for a quality set of tow mirrors for your four-wheel drive? Check out what Clearview Accessories has available to suit: www.clearviewaccessories.com.au