The most basic 4×4 with minimal accessories can ensure the perfect weekend away if you are not pretentious and are good at improvising; however if you go away often, you will learn that your trip will become a lot more comfortable and enjoyable with certain 4×4 accessories. If you organise off-road adventures often, these 10 4×4 accessories or a selection of them will turn out to be an excellent investment in your comfort and peace of mind:
The role of a portable fridge is obvious – it keeps your drinks and food cold as there is nothing worse than a warm drink.
Some 4×4 vehicle owners postpone the decision to buy a portable fridge as they are already using the traditional ice boxes, but we strongly recommend the fridge due to advantages such as maintaining a constant temperatures and being more hygienic. With a fridge you don’t have to clean the box when the ice melts and remove soggy leftovers – the last thing you’d like to do when you get home after an off-road adventure or camping trip!
The ice box does a good job if you are not travelling for more than 3-4 days and stay around civilisation so you have access to top up ice. If you wish to camp in remove place for several days and want to eat more than can food and dry food and enjoy some cold water, then the portable fridge is an excellent option for you!
The bullbar protects your vehicle from any potential objects on the road like animal strikes and stray bushland. It’s not just about preventing scratches to your paintwork, but more about keeping you safe. If you hit an animal like a kangaroo, that impact can cause major damage and even leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere. With your car front protected by a bulbar, you have a good chance of driving on even if you collide with an animal.
The bullbar also offers option to be able to add on other accessories such as driving lights, winches, etc.) Without a bar it is difficult to create a mount that is strong enough for most accessories.
These assist in your 4×4 vehicle performing to the best of its ability, especially off-road when you are going for a trip away. After five years of use, your tyres should be inspected by a professional at least once a year. There are multiple factors that contribute to tyre wear, such as design, driving habits, road conditions, climate, and how much care you take with them. Since there is no exact way to tell for how long a tyre will last, you will have to carefully look every once in a while to your 4×4 and look for the following signs of wear:
- Tread – the car won’t be safe, especially in wet conditions, if tyres don’t have enough tread. In Australia there is a legal requirement that tyres should have at least 1.5 mm of tread and failing to comply will result in penalties.
- Cracks in the sidewall of your tyres – exposure to UV rays breaks down the oils and chemicals that keep the rubber strong and flexible.
- Blister-like bulges – are signs of weakened areas where pressure inside the tyre pushes out.
- Excessive vibration – suggests that a tyre may have suffered internal damage or is bent and is spinning in an imperfect circle.
Vehicles don’t offer much storage solution and this is important when going for a trip away – with drawers you can keep things separated, more organised, and everything will be easier to find. The advantage of having a quality set of drawers in the back is undeniable: instead of frantically sifting through all your stuff just to find a certain item, you always know where to find it in just a couple of seconds. Especially in the case of a medical emergency, having your first aid kit carefully placed in a drawer comes in very handy.
When going away with family, it’s easy for the car to get full – sometimes there’s not enough space for yourself/family AND equipment you want to take. Roof racks allow you to pack all of the bigger and bulkier stuff on top of the car to free up space inside the vehicle.
Roof racks are a must-have if you go camping often and drive off-road for most of the time. Their main disadvantage is increasing fuel consumption, but this becomes a problem if you drive your 4×4 mostly on roads at high speed, instead of driving off-road. Also, roof racks can be unmounted when not used, so you can still ensure fuel economy.
If you are going away for a weekend or longer than a day, you will definitely be driving at nights. You will be able to see a lot better with a set of driving lights, and you can choose from a variety of driving lights, such as spot lights, LED lights, roof lights, and reverse lights. These allow you to see more than you do with regular headlights and avoid collisions with animals or stray bushes. LED lights are more durable than halogen and HID because they can withstand impact better than actual bulbs (they are not light bulbs per se but rather circuit boards).
Off-road driving can put you in dangerous situations and being equipped with essential safety 4×4 accessories is vital. When your car gets stuck in the mud or a ditch, the recovery strap will get you out without having to call a tow truck. Always make sure the recovery strap is in good shape to reduce the risk of breakage – clean it only by spraying with water and no chemicals, store it out of sunlight, and avoid excessive heat.
Air compressors are used in various ways in off-roading even if they perform one simple action – pumping out large quantities of pressurised air. They generate between 100 and 200 psi (pounds per square inch) and run off of the vehicle’s 12-volt power supply. The most common use of air compressors is for inflating tyres, but they are also used for cleaning hard to reach engine parts and for powering air lockers. If you are using your 4×4 for camping, the air compressor will be perfect for inflating camping equipment and river rafts.
Off-roading is anything but predictable and may come with various incidents involving fire, and camping (which is a common hobby among 4×4 enthusiasts) has no charm without a good camping fire. When you stock your car with gas bottles and firewood, make sure you don’t overlook this accessory that can prevent your journey’s untimely end. Stash it alongside your recovery equipment and hope you will never have to use it.
The possibility of having a fire in your 4×4 is higher compared to the chances of setting your car on fire while driving on the road. For instance, if you drive over a dry, grassy field, dry plant material can get caught underneath your car and be ignited by heat from the exhaust or other car parts, with your 4×4 vehicle getting engulfed in fire in a matter of minutes or even seconds. Keep the extinguisher in good working order and read the instructions and learn how to use it before placing it in your car.
Off-roading can involve a lot of dirt and dust and travelling with your family for camping means there may be spills and children wiping their fingers on your 4×4 car seats. Aesthetics may be the last thing you have in mind when going off-roading, but if you like to keep your car clean and neat, a set of compatible and resilient seat covers are among the most useful 4×4 accessories you will ever get for your vehicle.
How many 4×4 accessories from the list do you have in your vehicle and which are on your shopping list? Check our wide range of accessories available at MNF4x4 and customise your vehicle with products fully compatible with your make and model. Phone 1300 663 494 today for professional advice and installation!