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It is the Christmas season and traditionally families hit the beach for a holiday. However, why not forgo the usual beach holiday and take a 4X4 trip not only will you see something new, but it will give you a chance to get back into nature and see something completely different.

A 4X4 trip is a fantastic trip for those who are not keen beach people or simply those of you that are looking for a change of scenery. However, when driving off-road, you need to ensure that your vehicle is in the best possible shape to handle he challenges that you may face.

Here are four facts that you need to know about off-road tyres:

Number One – A Taller or wider tyre?

A taller tyre will give you more clearance under the differential and chassis, making it easier to manoeuvre over obstacles. On the other hand, a wide tyre will give you that extra tread and traction for the slippery surfaces you may encounter.

Before leaving on your trip, speak to a local near the course or someone that have been on the course and find out which type of tyre is better suited for the trail. Furthermore, if you are unsure, speak to the vehicle manufacturer and find out which type of tyre would suit the vehicle best.

Number Two – Reducing The Air Pressure

There are two things you need to remember when reducing the tyre pressure: One, you need decrease the ground clearance of the vehicle. This means that your sidewall is more susceptible to damage. Second, airing-down the tyres will help you move over obstacles easier.

Number Three – Replacing Tyres

If you are only planning on buying two tyres at a time, always put the new tyres on the rear axle. It is a common myth that putting the new tyres on your drive-wheel position will give you the most protection. It in face leaves the vehicle more susceptible to over steer (fishtailing or swinging out during fast cornering).

Number Four – Checking The Pressure

To get the most accurate reading on your tyres, ensure that you check your tyres when they are cold. This means before driving off or your day trip. It is recommended that if you are driving in rough terrain, that you check your tyres on a daily basis. This will help detect slow punctures and minimise the risk of you getting stuck in the middle of a difficult course with a flat.

In conclusion, ensure that you have the right tyre of your trip, including your spare, as poor quality tyres will leave you more susceptible to having an accident or puncture. Furthermore, it is recommended that you change to new tyres before you leave, thus giving you the best grip possible for the obstacle course you are about to tackle.

I am Greg Jones, an isuzu canopy 4×4 driver and lover of nature. When traveling on off-road courses, ensure that your goods are all tied down under the bakkie canopy as nothing is more annoying that a constant rattle from the back.