Off-Loading with Broken Ball Joint or Missing Wheel

Equipment Needed
Work Gloves
Ratchet Straps
Bridal Chains
Ball-joint block
Aluminum Jack


In this part 2 of 2 lecture, we’ll be demonstrating how to off-load the vehicle with a broken ball joint, or missing wheel. This won’t contain many more steps than what’s included with the on-load, but of course it’s equally as important to master the process. Practice, practice, practice.

Step 1: Engage the PTO. 

Step 2: Tilt the bed back.

Step 3: Begin un-doing your straps one by one. Remember to always re-stage your straps as you go for the next tow. Creating this habit will make you a more efficient tow truck operator. 

Another note, always leave one of the front straps on the tire as you begin to tilt and slide your bed into position. This is your safety strap in case the winch fails.

Step 4: Once the vehicle’s front tires have reached the concrete, it’s likely the ball joint will not slide off. If this is the case, then you’ll need to execute similar steps that were performed in the previous video. (See below)

Step 5: Using your aluminum jack-stand, jack the front of the vehicle off the ground. 

Step 6: Un-hook the vehicle. (It’s now safe because you have it in park and on a ball-joint block. It’s not going anywhere. 

Step 7: Now, go back to your bed controls and slowly work the bed out from underneath the vehicle. (Note: Chain may want to scratch the front end as you pull the bed out. A way to avoid this is to raise up your jack-stand even more so the chain has room for clearance)

Step 8: Once the vehicle is off-loaded, you do not have to put the tire back on. Put it somewhere safe and out of the way, then communicate that with the customer. 

Step 9: Re-stage your truck and prepare for the next call. 

That’s it for this lesson. My goal is to provide you with towing education that keeps you safe and helps you become a much better tow truck operator. Stay tuned as we cover plenty of topic that will take you and your skills to the next level.