The Top 10 Accessories for Your 4x4
So, you’ve taken your 4x4 off road and are putting it through its paces.
On the whole, you might be feeling pretty good about life and your vehicle - and that continues right up until you suddenly think “Oh heck, I don’t have an XYZ with me”!
If you’re lucky, your mate might have one to lend you – assuming they’re within reach. If you’re not, then you just going to sit there waiting for help whilst fuming that you hadn’t thought of it sooner and purchased one.
So, here are our top tips for the top 10 accessories you might want to consider for your 4x4 when off-roading.
- A first aid kit. Yes, it sounds basic but it’s amazing how often when you’re out and about you end up wishingyou had a bit of bandage and some antiseptic.
Don’t penny-pinch here. Spend a few extra dollars on a good quality and well stocked kit. In some cases, it might prove to be invaluable. Oh yes, make sure every trip that nothing in it is past its sell-by date.
- A tow-strap or similar device. It doesn’t matter how big and powerful your 4x4 is, it can still get stuck and need the help of another. If neither of you has any way of towing your vehicle, you’re going to regret not having one of these – and of course it might also help you to get someone else out of trouble at some time.
- A fire extinguisher. Let’s hope you never have to use it but if something goes wrong, knowing that there is a fire extinguisher in that garage 30 kilometres away won’t be any consolation whatsoever. They’re not that expensive and should be regarded as essential.
- A jack. You might be amazed at how many people have brilliantly equipped 4x4s, only to find in an emergency that they have no way of changing a tyre. It’s typically necessary to have a good heavyweight jack that will lift your vehicle well clear of the surface when you are changing a tyre. This is another area where “economy” might be a poor idea.
- Appropriate spare tyres and wheels. You might imagine in Australia of all places, the importance of this when off-road shouldn’t need to be stated. Well, you might imagine so but ….
Remember also that having a spare that is essentially a road tyre when you are way out in the wild in rough country, with three off-road tyres, isn’t likely to be a lot of good. They’ll be all sorts of clearance issues and potentially you risk damaging your vehicle.
- A good and appropriate air compressor for your tyres.
It’s amazing how many people go seriously off-road with their 4x4s, having absolutely no way of inflating their tyres in the event they need to do so. Carrying an air compressor with you will make the job of inflation relatively effort-free.
- An emergency tire repair kit. This should be considered absolutely essential because if you have already used your spare and suffer another problem, you’re going to be out of options unless you have one of these available with you.
- Light bars (LED). Being off road once the sun has gone down or is going down, might not be much fun if you are struggling to see where you are going. Unless you enjoy the thought of spotting that tree only after you’ve already hit it, investing in some high intensity LED light bars might be a sensible safety move.
- Seat covers. No, this isn’t suggesting that you are getting décor-conscious in your old age or unduly fussy. It’s a simple practical measure to reflect the fact that if you get back into your vehicle covered in mud, dust and various other detritus, you might prefer that to be going onto washable seat covers rather than on your potentially pristine upholstery.
- A decent toolkit. It’s staggering just how easily you can be stuck with a useless vehicle simply because you don’t have an appropriate screwdriver or socket spanner with you. Make sure you have an up-market set which provides all the basicswith you and again, don’t economise here by purchasing cheap sets that are likely to sheer or round the first time you use them. Purchase quality steel items only.
These are all very basic things but they just might enable you to avoid the embarrassment of needing to call for help instead of enjoying your off-road experience!