Is off-roading bad for your car?

By: Leon Rhodes

Minor body damage is pretty much accepted by hardcore off-roaders. You're not going to tear through the woods, gravel paths, and tough hills without putting some scratches and dings on your vehicle. Still, you should consider having your car touched up every once in a while.

Is off-roading bad for your car?

Overall, driving off-road isn’t necessarily harmful to your vehicle. Minor problems with your car and truck are common while going off-road, but if you take the right precautions and drive safely, you’ll make it home without any broken parts.

For those still in the dark, off-roading is a sport that involves driving your vehicle on extremely rough roads or surfaces such as gravel, sand, or even rocks. Though this kind of activity may sound dangerous, it is safe to say that quite a few enjoy it.

Is off-roading bad for your car? Well, the short answer is yes, however, the damages sustained through off-roading depend on how aggressively the driver chooses to drive.

Here are some things to expect when going off-road and a bit of quick advice on how you can prevent such incidents from occurring.

1. Flat Tires

Though flat tires cannot be entirely prevented during the process of off-roading, you can prepare yourself for it. To deal with this problem, always pack a spare tire for when the inevitable happens, you can be ready to handle it.

2. Transmission Problems

The last thing any off-roader wants to experience is transmissions problems, especially in the middle of a good run. They are quite common for off-roaders so the best thing that you can do is to educate yourself on how to lessen the likelihood of it occurring.

Before you go off-roading, check your transmission fluid. Always bring an extra bottle of transmission fluid in case you may need it.

Even if you don’t experience any transmission problems, your chances of transmission problems eventually happening are good.

3. Exterior Damage

Be honest! After a few hours of driving it off-road through rough terrain you can expect your car to have at least a few scratches on the outer surface.

Though driving carefully won’t necessarily prevent scratches from occurring, it goes a far way in minimizing those scratches and helps to avoid excess damage to the outer portions of your car.

4. Undercarriage Damage

Arguably, the most affected area of your car during off-roading is the undercarriage. This is the area that comes into contact with most of, if not all, the debris. Before going off-road make sure that your vehicle has enough ground clearance.

How dangerous is off-roading?

Getting ejected from an off-road vehicle is only one of the many dangers of riding such vehicles on off-road terrain. Other dangers include rollovers, performing stunts, inexperienced driving, and operating in unfamiliar areas or terrain.

Does off-roading affect alignment?

Mild off-roading really doesn't effect your alignment. You would really have to hit hard from say a big jump or hit the wheel on the side against a rock. You should be fine with some moderate wheeling. If you are that worried, here is what you can do.

Is 4x4 necessary for off-road driving?

One of the biggest advantages to taking a 4WD vehicle off-road is increased traction and the ability of the wheels to cling to the ground, no matter how rough the terrain is. 2WD vehicles get stuck more often than 4WD vehicles, by far.

What is the point of off-roading?

A chance to leave the city, get dirty, and conquer things put in your way. Off-roading is a wide-ranging term that has many categories from hill climbing to mud bogging and each appeals to a different audience.

When all is said and done off-roading damages your car, but the damage can be minimized by following some best practice guidelines.

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