5 Ways to Modify and Upgrade Your 4WD
If you own a 4wd and have found its limitations off-road, you may want to modify and upgrade your vehicle to get even further off the beaten track and more importantly, back again. Modifications not only make your vehicle more capable, but make it safer as well.
Here are 5 modifications you can make to your vehicle that will help make it safer, and get you further off road than your even been before.
Find the right tyres to suit your terrain
• A good set of tyres that are suited for the type of driving you will be doing will make a world of difference off road.
• A mud terrain tyre or any tyre with an aggressive off road tread will provide more traction in most situations off road.
• Larger tyres will also make a big difference as a big tyre will roll over rocks and ruts much easier than a smaller one.
• Before you go putting a set of 35’s on your 4wd check with a mechanic about how big the tyres your vehicle can handle are. In some cases you may have to lower your diff ratio’s as larger tyres will decrease your power and torque, as well as put your Speedo out.
• Also check with your state road laws and insurance company before making any changes to wheel size.
• I use a separate set of 6 Mud terrain tyres 1 size bigger than standard that I put on specially for trips away.
Upgrade your suspension
• A suspension upgrade will make a big difference to your vehicle capability off road.
• Not only will it be stronger and take more punishment from corrugations, but it will carry heavy loads better and provide better performance off road.
• Typically most vehicles will benefit from a heavy duty 2 inch lift suspension kit which will give your vehicle more ground clearance and wheel travel.
• This will make a big difference when you’re flexing it up through big ruts and big holes!
Install a long range fuel tank
• A long range fuel tank will allow you to carry a lot more fuel which can be a big help when doing remote area trips such as the Canning Stock route.
• Fuel in a long range tanks is much easier and safer than carrying jerrycans and will definitely help you get off road and stay off road for longer.
Talk to your mechanic about powering up your engine
I have recently added a Roo Systems power chip and a 2.5inch straight through exhaust fitted by Pro 4X4 in Adelaide. This has made a huge difference climbing sand dunes and over taking is a lot safer on the highway with all that get up under the hood. I now have 45% more power and still within safe standards for my vehicle.
• Most vehicles, especially older ones, can benefit from a little extra power for both highway and off road use.
• There are a few different options for power upgrades so it’s best to talk to your mechanic about how to squeeze a few extra horses out of your engine.
• Of course not all vehicles will need more power and some may not be safe to upgrade but if it’s safe and possible.
• Extra power can have a massive effect on your vehicles performance especially in the sand and mud!
Get the most appropriate difflocks for your vehicle
• Lastly, difflocks are possibly the single best modification that will literally get your vehicle further off road.
• The ability to lock both front and back diffs together will give you TRUE 4WD with all 4 wheels turning evenly together.
• This means that even if you have just 1 wheel with a good amount if traction it will grip and move you vehicle forward.
• There are a range of auto lockers, air lockers and electrical lockers on the market so speak to a 4wd mechanic to find out what the best options are for your vehicle.
No matter how many mods your vehicle has, it wont make much difference if you don’t know how to use them or even use you 4wd correctly. A lot of newer 4wd’s are more than capable stock standard but many people do not know how to use their vehicles correctly.
Experience and advice are so important when learning to use your 4wd so why not book into a 4wd training course where a qualified instructor can take you through how to use your vehicle correctly off road. With a bit of careful driving you can get your standard vehicle a surprisingly long way off road without any mods at all!