Have you ever seen the family headed off on holidays in the 4wd with more gear on the top of the truck than would ever fit inside it. The rear mudflaps have smoke coming of them from rubbing on the road and only suspension effect comes from the massively bagged out tires because the bump stops take all the weight now? Well maybe I exaggerate a little, but knowing how to correctly load our vehicles is critical for safety and trouble free motoring.
- I use one overarching principle when loading for any trip and that is will this item be secure and as safe as possible if I have an accident at high speed? If you start to apply this when your loading you’ll be surprised at how often you have a rethink of how you just loaded a particular item.
- The next principle is to keep all the heavy stuff as low and as far forward as possible. So in my truck heavy recovery gear goes on the floor against the cargo barrier as this is the heaviest stuff I carry. Next might be water and canned food items. Maybe some of the vehicle spares and tools would be in this area as well. Up high and towards the rear will be sleeping gear and cloths.
- For me I avoid roof racks unless I need them, for a number of reasons. They cost a bomb in fuel even when empty because they affect the air flow around the vehicle at high speed. Also they make the vehicle top heavy and therefore more likely to tip over when off road or at high speed on road.When putting a load on the rack always keep it light and spread across the load mounts so that the total load is spread across the whole roof. Make sure your rack is mounted correctly and that all items are well secured to the rack. Know how much your rack and 4wd are designed to carry on the roof.
- The only other thing I would recommend is that you give consideration to what you actually take with you. How much stuff do you take and never use? Just because you can fit it in is not a good reason to take it. The reason this is important is that it all adds weight to the vehicle which adds to the wear of the vehicle and increases the likly-hood of a failure out bush.
I’m Mad att stay safe on the trails now that your correctly loaded!