The best thing about owning a Jeep is you can go off-roading any time you want. Unfortunately, driving off-road is not as easy as it may seem. It involves maximizing your Jeep’s capabilities while expertly navigating deceptively treacherous courses. If you are not careful, you may end up putting your Jeep (and your life) in danger. Here are some tips that can help you stay out of harm’s way.
- Do your homework
Off-roading is very different from the usual road trips you’ve taken. Before heading out, make sure you are well-versed in driving on rugged terrains. If you have never tried it before, a RAM dealership in Las Cruces, NM recommends that you take your Jeep for a test drive on inclines, dirt roads, gravel roads, and, if you can, creeks.
- Understand the road types
Different road types require basic understanding to tackle. If you are driving up or down a hill, Dodge dealership in El Paso, TX suggests driving in a straight line. Driving at an angle increases your risk of rolling over. If you are to drive over rocks, let go of the throttle and drive into a crawl. Never drive on terrains that you are not completely confident that you can pull through as it might make things worse for you.
- Know your Jeep
Is your Jeep 4WD or AWD? Can you predict needing more traction just by looking at the terrain ahead? Does your vehicle have crawl control, hill descent, ATRAC, or 4H and 4L? If you have trouble understanding all these acronyms, then you might want to delay off-roading and start reading your vehicle’s owner’s manual. You need to fully understand what your vehicle is capable of before attempting to take on the wilderness.
- Prep your Jeep
Imagine getting stuck on some isolated terrain without the proper tools and equipment to get yourself out. Or having all the right tools and equipment with you but having no idea how to use them at all. Aside from the usual preventive checkups, prepping your Jeep means you need to anticipate the necessary tools you might need in case of a breakdown. Sometimes, your vehicle might need to undergo some modifications before it can be used off-road. Understand what your Jeep needs, get some technical knowledge on fixing things, and upgrade your vehicle accordingly.
- Never go alone
It is always nice to know that if ever you get stuck somewhere while off-roading, there is someone you fully trust with you to help you out. Experienced off-roaders follow an unwritten Buddy System rule. It means you need to have another Jeep with you when you go off-roading. Not only because off-roading is fun when shared with friends, but the other vehicle is your way out in case your Jeep gets stuck or irreparably damaged while you were out in the wild.
- Slow and steady is best
In many cases, off-roading requires that you don’t go over the 5km/h speed. Speed and power are useless when driving off-road–especially if you are facing an obstacle. In these cases, patience is a virtue. Carefully navigate yourself out of that situation and continue on your merry way.
If you are really set on going on an off-road adventure despite not having the adequate experience, you can always enroll in a 4×4 driving course to physically and mentally prepare yourself for what’s to come. Check out Viva CDJRF for more helpful tips.