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john65pennington's avatar

Which do you call it......a tow truck or a wrecker?

Asked by john65pennington (29235points) February 20th, 2010

Tow trucks, wreckers…..the two names impy the same vehicle, but which do you call it? is its name significant with the geological locations of the U.S.? the very first tow truck or wrecker was built in Tennessee. the inventor named his invention as a “wrecker”. if this is the case, then how did tow truck come to be? Holmes wrecker.

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19 Answers

Steve_A's avatar

I call it a tow truck, I have never heard it called a wrecker before though. Maybe it depends on where you live..?

DeanV's avatar

I call it a tow truck. To me, a wrecker implies that it wrecks cars, not tows wrecked ones away.

Also, I live in Northern California.

LunaChick's avatar

I live in PA and we call it a Tow Truck.

john65pennington's avatar

In the south, we call it a wrecker. i can only assume this is because the very first was built in Chattanooga, Tn.

ucme's avatar

Tow Mater.Shoot, no tow is too far.

tedibear's avatar

I live in NE Ohio, grew up in Western NY and I call it a tow truck. When I heard the word “wrecker” I though of the commercial wear the pothole with the southern accent offers to call a wrecker.

Is it just me or does that pothole sound an awful lot like Kelly Pickler?

TheLoneMonk's avatar

In Wisconsin it’s a toe truck

laureth's avatar

Tow truck. Michigan.

AstroChuck's avatar

Wrecker? I hardly knew her.

I have never heard a tow truck called anything but a tow truck.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I usually call it ‘Dammit!” ;)

tinyfaery's avatar

Tow truck. CA

TheLoneMonk's avatar

I always think of a wrecker as being one of those mammoth trucks that hauls disabled semi trucks and tow truck as one that tows cars.

phoebusg's avatar

I used to call it a tow-truck, but now I can’t help it but call it the wrecker, thanks ;)
Definitely more fun.

dpworkin's avatar

I don’t know why, but I call it a Roll-Back. I guess because my car is AWD so I only see roll-backs.

Sarcasm's avatar

Tow Truck here in southern CA.

If I heard someone say they were waiting for a wrecker to come for their car, I’d assume that it was something with a huge wrecking ball attached. I’d ask to watch. I think they’d be confused, and I’d end up being very disappointed.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

In Canada, I’ve only heard it called a tow truck. I’ve never needed one in any place where they call it a wrecker although I am familiar with that term.

dpworkin's avatar

No one else ever calls them roll-backs?

CyanoticWasp's avatar

In the South (in my limited experience) anything that involves two cars colliding (regardless of the amount of damage done or subsequent drive-ability of the vehicles) is called “a wreck”. So if you misjudge a turn into a parking space and touch the parked car next to yours, you have “caused a wreck”. So I’m not surprised that the truck that might be used to tow one of those vehicles is called a wrecker.

In the North (in my much wider experience) we often need a tow for reasons unrelated to collisions, including being stuck in snow (among other mechanical problems that can develop from time to time and prevent driving). But we call them wreckers or tow trucks interchangeably.

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