Are you planning a journey in your 4×4 vehicle this summer? It’s essential that you inspect your vehicle and its various components to ensure it’s in tip-top shape for the travels ahead. Checking your vehicle beforehand is the only way to guarantee your journey will go according to plan. Here are some of the components and accessories you should get inspected before going on your summer trip:
1. Oil And Coolant
Maintaining the correct oil level is essential when it comes to cooling, cleaning, and protecting your 4×4 engine. Engine oil prevents the vehicle from breaking down or causing unnecessary problems on the road. It’s possible to check your engine oil yourself by removing the engine dipstick and ensuring the oil level is between the two lines scribed on the dipstick. Make sure your engine is turned off and cold before checking oil levels.
If you’ve never checked your engine oil before, you may wish to recruit the help of a mechanic. The same goes for when you check your coolant levels. This is a vital liquid that will prevent your 4×4 from overheating – something that’s crucial for 4x4s that oftentimes venture over difficult terrain. The coolant should come up to the line on the reservoir marked ‘cold.’ If it’s below this line, it needs filling up.
You don’t want to have to call out vehicle maintenance services whilst on the road, so be sure to check your vehicle battery before leaving for your summer holiday. Batteries are important vehicle components that need to remain in good condition if they are to withstand the summer heat. Batteries in 4×4 vehicles need replacing every few years, so it’s very likely it may require your attention.
Checking your vehicle lights is a simple process, but one that can save you loads of time should problems occur on the road. Simply turn on your 4×4 and switch on the headlights. Walk around your vehicle to make sure the lights are on. Do the same for your reverse lights and taillights, and hazard lights. The lights allow you to communicate with other vehicles on the road and follow road safety guidelines. Your hazard lights are another important feature you need to check before travelling as they serve you in the event of an unexpected breakdown.
It’s crucial that you check the condition of your tyres before you get going for the summer. This involves checking that the pressure and tread depth is appropriate for the vehicle to function properly. If one tyre on your 4×4 is non-compliant, you may have to change all the tyres so as not to damage the vehicle system when travelling on difficult terrain. The difference in tread between old and new tyres should never be more than 3mm. Australian road standards state that tread depths, in general, shouldn’t be less than 1.6mm.
GVM is an acronym that stands for gross vehicle mass. This refers to the maximum permitted mass of the vehicle when including the driver, passengers, loads, cargo, and fluids. GVM also includes the Tow Ball Download if you’re towing something. The GVM is usually specified by the manufacturer of the vehicle and available in the manual. Make sure that your vehicle’s GVM is distributed evenly to avoid problems when taking turns on the road.
The suspension is the component that connects a vehicle to its wheels – thereby allowing for motion between the two. This element of the vehicle supports the quality of the ride and helps drivers maintain control whilst on the road. If you fail to repair your suspension, this could lead to costly repairs down the line. Most notably, a bad suspension leads to uneven vehicle height, sagging, and instability.
Need a 4×4 vehicle check before kicking off the summer holidays? Southlakes 4×4 has several components available for you to browse. We also have a 4×4 mechanic to carry out vehicle checks for clients in Morisset NSW. Call us today for more information.