So, you just bought a truck or Jeep? Congratulations on buying some of the finest vehicles on the market today! You can now haul around all kinds of equipment like a champ or cruise through the wilderness as you take your vehicle off road.
From deep, sprawling forests to the open plains of the midwest, trucks and Jeeps were designed for the great outdoors, although you’ll need to make a few modifications such as adding truck and Jeep lift kits. You can explore new areas of the country that you never thought possible, all while cruising around in a beautiful piece of machinery that’s sure to turn heads in your neighborhood.
But driving a Jeep or truck isn’t the same as driving a normal car. Learn everything you need to know about owning a truck or Jeep, so you can make the most of your new investment.
Adjusting Your Driving Habits
First and foremost, let’s talk about how driving a truck or Jeep can throw some new drivers for a loop. If you’re used to driving a sports car or an SUV, you’ll need to adjust your driving habits to make sure you stay safe behind the wheel.
- Driving a Pickup Truck
One of the first things you’ll notice about driving a pickup truck is the sheer weight of the vehicle. The average difference in weight between a car and a pickup truck is an astonishing 2,000 lbs. That means it can take a little more for acceleration and braking. It might take you a few extra seconds to accelerate on the highway. And give yourself plenty of time to brake. Increase your stopping distance and put a little extra room in between you and the cars ahead of you.
- Driving a Jeep
When it comes to driving a Jeep, you’ll quickly notice how much fun it is to drive at low speeds, including off-road terrain, but Jeeps can’t go as fast as other vehicles on the highway. Jeeps have a high center of gravity with a rear-wheel-drive bias, so you won’t be able to maneuver as quickly in an emergency. Jeeps aren’t as light on their feet, so practice steering, taking turns, and braking in a safe environment.
With either of these vehicles, give yourself plenty of time to practice driving before making a long trip or hauling a bunch of equipment on the road.
Pickup trucks and Jeeps come with their fair share of blind spots, so you might have to increase your visibility behind the wheel. For pickup trucks, the challenge is usually seeing directly behind your truck bed, especially if you’re carting around a bunch of bulky equipment. You can get around this by installing a quality backup camera. Surprisingly enough, many truck models don’t offer this feature, so it’s a wise investment, especially if you need to get in and out of tight spaces.
For Jeeps, you may have some trouble seeing out the back, so finding a Jeep with a backup camera or blind spot warning system will come in handy. Lots of drivers also complain about the large pillars in the front obstructing their view of oncoming traffic, so consider installing larger, rounded side-view mirrors, which will give you a better view of your surroundings.
Taking Your Truck or Jeep Off Road
Going off road is one of the best reasons to invest in a pickup truck or Jeep, but, before you do, you’ll need to choose from one of the many truck and Jeep Wrangler lift kits on the market today. A lift kit raises the suspension of your vehicle, which gives you room for larger, more aggressive terrain patterned tires, which provide traction and stability in all outdoors situations.
This also gives you more ground clearance, so sticks, bushes, and rocks won’t hit the underbelly of your car. You’ll also sit up higher behind the wheel, which asserts your dominance on the road.
It’s also a good idea to install a body plate or skid plate, which will further protect the underbelly of your vehicle as you run over all kinds of debris. You can also install a grille guard or guard rail on the front of your Jeep or truck to protect against forward-facing collisions. If you’re in the middle of the wilderness after the sun goes down, upgrade your factory lighting system by investing in a lightbar.
You may also need extra room for storage as you head out on the trail. Considering adding a roof basket or roof racket, so you can easily strap equipment to the top of your vehicle. You’ll have everything you need to sleep under the stars.
Joining the Off-Road Community
Now that you’re the proud owner of an off-road truck or Jeep, you should consider looking into a local or regional off-road community group.
You can find tons of fun-filled off-road events all over the country where off-road enthusiasts and manufacturers show off some astounding custom builds, rock crawling competitions and mud races, and just about anything off-road you can think of. Get to know this friendly community of off-road enthusiasts and show off your vehicle today.
There’s nothing like owning an off-road truck or Jeep. You can drive on almost any kind of terrain, as long as you’ve made the proper modifications, explore some of the most beautiful parts of the country, and join thousands of like-minded drivers who love going off road just as much as you do. Search for truck and Jeep lift kits, upgrade your factory model, and leave the pavement behind. These are just some of the many benefits of buying a truck or Jeep.