When driving off the beaten track, most people will recommend buying an SUV. But you don’t have to replace your current cruiser for a pick-up. With a few mods and tweaks, your car could be turned into an off-road-worthy beast. If you’re considering making the change, here are a few steps you can take.
Don’t tire your tyres
Standard tyres won’t have the grip you need for going off tarmac. Replace your road rubber with deep tread tires that are more suited to the snow, mud and sand. You can find selections online at reliable tyres manufacturers such as Goodrich: http://www.bfgoodrich.co.uk/gb/ranges/4×4-Range. Dodging the big makes, you may be able to find much cheaper second-hand tyres but you should be wary about buying these without giving them a full inspection for wear and tear. Even more important than when on the road, always keep a spare tyre handy to prevent getting a flat where emergency vehicles can’t reach you.
Protect your paint
When going off-road, you’re likely to kick up a lot of salt and gravel that can cause nasty rust and chips. There are all kinds of sealants available on the market – as this site www.clearautobra.com/bras/stone-and-chip-protection/ shows – that can protect your body work including headlamps and rocker panels. Regularly coating your vehicle in baking soda is thought to also prevent it from becoming a rustbucket, although won’t have the same anti-chip qualities of a sealant.
Hitch your ride
Fitting a hitch to the back of your vehicle can not only serve as a useful place for storing a bike, but also as handy grip for towing or being towed by someone. You can go the extra mile and get a winch fitted to your car if you’re planning on tackling particularly tricky terrain. Other modifications such as a bull bar and skid plate can also help tackle uneven ground.
Fix your suspension
Your suspension is well worth amending if you don’t want to get stranded. Polyurethane bushings and high-tensile-strength bolts will ensure a less rocky ride. This site http://www.ridefox.com/subhome.php?m=offroad offers a few advanced options for those wanting to make major changes to their suspension. You can also give your vehicle a lift to prevent the undercarriage getting caught on ridges and mounds. This side of off-roading modding can be costly, so try not to go too crazy unless you’re really committed.
Get tooled up
What you carry on board is just as important as exterior modifications. As already, discussed spare tyres are a must, but you can also take a puncture kit with you to further safeguard your tyres. If you haven’t got a winch, having some form of rope is useful for pulling you out of those undesirable situations. A shovel can also be handy for digging yourself out of a ditch or removing a mound.
For times when you are stranded it may also be useful to bring a flashlight and a portable charger to ensure your phone doesn’t go flat.