Planning to go off-roading? If you have gone on an off-road adventure before, then you should know that not everything happens according to plan. In fact, I think that one of the attractive features of an off-road trip is how unpredictable the experience can be.
A lot can happen – most of which are little problems and hiccups that need quite an insight to prepare for. Having the right tools and toys in any of such situations can be the difference between a fun, successful and awesome trip and a total disaster of a ride.
That is why you should take the essential off-roading gears with you to return home safe and sound after each trip.
Before hitting the off-road, you should fill your toolbox with these gears if you want to make the most of the trip. These tools will ensure that you are ready for any little problem that you might encounter along the way.
Essential Tools for Off-Roading
1. Winch and Accessories
A winch is an essential off-road tool. When it comes to recovery, a winch is a good friend to have. If your vehicle gets on stuck sand mud or water, you will need a winch to recover yourself.
To do your recovery work properly, you’ll need a winch kit which at least includes a tree strap, a pulley and a few D-rings.
Nothing makes an adventure less exciting than having your trusty vehicle stuck – because then it is not an adventure. It will be just you in the wilderness, alone, stranded, alone, maybe a little scared – but definitely alone.
But if you bring a winch with you, that little misadventure becomes more exciting. Whether you admit this to yourself or not, seeing a winch at work, pulling a vehicle out of a ditch or something, that is quite a view.
With the proper winch, you can get easily back on the road in no time.
I recommend you to buy a winch from a renowned winch brand such as Warn, Smittybilt, x-bull , Mile Marker, Superwinch, Engo, Runva, Speedmaster, Champion, Badland etc. If you want to buy a portable winch, then read this reviews of portable winches. If you are on a tight budget but want a good electric winch, then check this review.
2. Tire Repair Kit
Tires are the frequently damaged parts of your vehicle. A good quality tire kit will enable you to repair damaged tires. A tire kit should include a tire gauge, a deflator and a plug kit.
If any sharp object penetrates your tire, you will be able to fix it if you have a tire repair kit with you. And if there is one thing the outdoors is full of, it is sharp objects (this is my own personal and unbiased opinion – don’t google it). So having a tire repair kit handy every time you venture out in the wild world is just plain old smart.
3. Hi-Lift Jack
Hi-Lift jack is extremely useful for off-road recovery and tire repair. They’re exclusively designed for off-road use. It can be used for various stuff:
- Vehicle recovery
- For changing tires
- Doing emergency repair on the road
When your vehicle gets stuck and you don’t have a winch with you, then the hi-lift jack can be used as a come-along. You should learn how to use a jack properly. A serious accident can happen if they’re not used properly.
The only downside of the hi-lift jack is that the lifting point is straight and flat. So, this jack doesn’t work with round or curved bumpers. While choosing a hi-lift jack, always go for high-quality models.
4. Air Compressor
You can easily add traction off-road by dropping the air pressure of tires. At the time of driving in a desert, deflating the tires to the safe minimum pressure will help to get the maximum surface width.
But when you get back in tarmac, you’ll need to re-inflate the tires. You can do it easily by using an air compressor. So, it’s a good idea to always keep an air compressor in your vehicle.
There is a minimum air pressure within tires that is considered safe and healthy. That pressure ensures that your tire will last, that it can endure more travel, and it enhances your tire’s general performance.
But in certain terrains, it is better to slightly deflate the tires to maximize traction. However, it is very crucial to remember to re-inflate your car tires to its optimum pressure once back in normal terrain to avoid possible damage on your tires.
When it comes to the air compressor, there are various options you can choose from. Go for a model that taps directly into the vehicle battery. Don’t go for those models which are designed to be plugged into the cigarette lighter. Because they take too long to operate
I have also reviewed 5 high-quality off road air compressors. You can check this if you ever plan to buy a compressor.
5. Tow Strap
This is a must-have tool for hitting the trail. A tow strap will come in handy when the slope gets too sketchy, the muds get too deep and tires get wedged. You will need a tow strap if you need pulling out of a sticky place.
When you have a tow strap with you, this won’t only unstuck you but also help you to earn some extra money by pulling others out of trouble. They’re far better than tow chains as they weigh less and won’t damage your vehicle’s body panels.
6. Fire Extinguisher
When you drive on off-road, your vehicle will be in extreme climates, extreme temperatures and extreme conditions. Keeping a fire extinguisher in your vehicle can save both you and your vehicle from major accidents. Setup the extinguisher securely so it doesn’t bounce around. Keep the fire extinguisher within your hand reach. You can attach it to the roll cage (if your vehicle has it).
It is important to remember that what you are essentially doing is venturing out in the unknown. And it does not take an Einstein to figure out that you need to prepare for ANYTHING in this event. Having a fire extinguisher certainly fits my “prepare for anything” perspective.
7. Basic Tools
Before hitting the off-road, take a good number of basic tools (Wrench, Pliers, Screwdrivers and etc.) with you. It will be-be great if you take a high-quality multi-tool with you.
Although you should first carefully examine your vehicle for safety and performance issues, that does not guarantee a totally safe and problem-free trip. There are just a lot of taking chances in an off-road trip. A set of basic tools is necessary if minor repairs are needed.
Let’s watch a short video.
8. Heavy Duty Flashlight
A flashlight will help you search for your lost items at night. Sometimes you may need to do an emergency repair of your vehicle at night. A good quality flashlight will be your best friend at that time. Look for a flashlight that is water-resistant.
This is one of the neglected things by off-roaders. But it’s a very important thing to have for vehicle recovery and other repair work.
It can be painful to do any winching while the hands are unprotected. Gloves will protect your hands at that time. When you work in hot and small areas, it will give you additional protection and grip. That’s why it’s important to keep high-quality gloves in your vehicle.
10. First Aid Kit
A first aid kit will enable you to do the primary treatment. Fill your first aid box with necessary items such as gauze, bandages, aspirin, scissors etc.
It is not only your car that breaks down during an off-road ride. Sometimes, even your body gets damaged. In case something goes wrong in one of your repairs, or an accident happens while winching – you will be thankful you have a first aid kit to patch yourself up with.
Extra Tools (Not required, but good to have)
11. Roll Cage
If you’re an extreme off-roader. Install the roll cage as an added safety feature.
12. Dry Bags
Dry bags will keep your clothes and other gears protected from muds, water and sudden rain showers.
Let’s start building your off-roading toolbox with these essential tools and prepare yourself for a great off-roading adventure. And don’t forget to share your off-roading experience with us.
Are there other equipment in your off-road arsenal that did not make our list? If so, comment below!
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