Advice for Off-Roading with Your 4×4 Vehicle

off roadingOne of the best times of the year for off-road adventures, summer is when you get to spin your tires in the mud and test your vehicle’s rock crawling abilities. Whether you have years of off-road experience or are just getting into this exhilarating activity, there are few things PermaPlate recommends you keep in mind before going on your next excursion.

Know When to Use Traction Control

Great for rock crawling and making your way across packed snow, traction control can make it more difficult for you to get through mud and sand without incident. While some vehicles automatically switch traction control on and off, others do not. If your off-roading truck is one of the latter, be sure to pay attention to when this driving aid is on, turning it off to maintain full engine power and allow for some slipping and spinning when you’re on muddy, potentially sticky turf.

Don’t Floor It When You Get Stuck

Almost every driver’s initial reaction when their vehicle starts to get stuck is to put their foot down on the gas harder. Flooring it is never a good idea though, as it will only get your tires stuck deeper in the mud. Instead, ease on the throttle to bring your vehicle out slowly, refraining from cutting engine power. For the trickiest of situations, you might want to employ the tools listed below.

Bring the Right Tools

It is important to be ready for anything when heading off road, which is why Popular Mechanics recommends bringing along these six items on every trip. Perfect for helping you get out of the deepest mud and sand, these tools will help to ensure your upcoming trips are spent driving, not digging yourself out of mud.

  • Shovel
  • Carpet/Cardboard
  • Hi-Lift Jack
  • Tow Strap
  • Winch
  • Snow Chains

Always Perform an Inspection before Heading Home

When the off-roading fun is over and you are ready to head home, we recommend taking some time to inspect your vehicle first. Ensure that it is in proper driving condition by reviewing the underbody for problems. Check to see that there is no debris covering the radiator, that no brush is caught up near the exhaust, that your wheels are clean, and that there are no leaks in the break or fuel lines.

With these checks complete, you can head home safely, which is always of the upmost importance when you get behind the wheel of a vehicle.


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