January 06, 2020

Vansdirect’s 5 top tips for off-road driving

Ford Ranger pick-up

Despite being designed for off-road use, many users of pick-ups work their vans hard on the streets doing their day to day activities and don’t actually drive them off-road. There’s worries about breaking down in remote areas, others worry about getting stuck. This doesn’t have to be the case, Vansdirect brings you top tips for off-road driving!

Here are our top tips for off-road driving!

1. Use off-road tyres

The tyres that come with most pick-ups are more often than not designed for all-round use and are not specifically designed for serious off-road challenges. If you are going to go off the beaten track then getting replacement tyres offering higher levels of traction and grip in more challenging conditions are definitely recommended. Also keeping a space tyre in your pick-up is vitally important, particularly if you’ve changed the tyres from those of the original factory specifications.

2. Jack & lug wrench

A jack is a crucial tool for changing a tyre and the standard units offered by manufacturers are poor when attempting to lift two tonnes of laden pick-up off the ground. Check the jack and lug wrench originally supplied with your pick-up to see what you already have before heading off-road. You may wish to consider an electric jack which will make changing a tyre and easier job and can run off your 12-volt power socket or cigarette lighter. We’d also advise investing in a heavy-duty lug wrench to loosen and tighten the lug nuts when changing wheels.

3. Flat-bed storage and vehicle protectors

Investing in headlight protectors for your pick-up could be particularly handy, it is common for debris and stones to fly up and damage the headlights of pick-ups, meaning you could be left in the dark. Plastic bonnet defenders can prevent costly dents and scratches to your pick-up and are a far more cost effective than repainting or repairing your bonnet.
Your pick-ups may bounce around more on more challenging terrain, this can mean your cargo can be spilled or damaged on route or even bounce out of the bed altogether. To prevent this, we advise getting some tie-down straps which can be a cost effective option and are more useful than just using rope. There’s also storage boxes for your cargo bed that can keep smaller items more secure.

4. Satellite navigation

Imagine being so far off the beaten track that you lose your bearings and become lost, you may have the saving grace of your smartphone with built-in mapping, however this may not be helpful if you’re out in the countryside with no signal. However if you opt for one of the many pick-ups with built-in satellite navigation or invest in one of your own, then you can follow the directions on screen and get back on track. You should also have a traditional map with you if the battery dies on the sat nav or malfunctions.

5. Mobile phone

An essential before embarking on any journey, particularly off-road, so you can contact family, colleagues and even the emergency services if all goes pear shaped. Most mobile phone networks have relatively extensive coverage across most of the UK, however check your coverage before going abroad. Finally, don’t forget your mobile phone charger, you may have the best phone in the world but it’s nothing more than an ornament if you can’t use it.

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New pickups for sale

Along with tips about pick-ups, Vansdirect has a massive range of brand new pick-ups in stock and ready to go, you can check out our range here! We have also have cheap van finance options for everyone’s needs including van leasing, contract hire and hire purchase, interested? Simply fill in a contact form or call us on 0800 169 6995 to get the ball rolling today!