How to Protect Your Car While Off-Roading

Are you an off-roading weekend warrior? Love taking your truck or SUV on the trails less traveled? If so, then you already know about the battle scars tough terrain can leave on your vehicle.

All of that mud, dust, sand, and gravel can take a toll on your truck’s paint. In addition to buying off-road tires and beefy aftermarket shocks, you should also consider investing in paint protection film (PPF). This wraps your vehicle in an invisible shield of protection, safeguarding your paint from scratches, scrapes, and rock chips.

Curious to learn more? Here’s how to keep the paint pristine on your lean, mean, off-roading machine.


Does Off-Roading Damage Your Car? 

Driving through mud and water can be fun, but it can also damage your vehicle. In addition to tire punctures and suspension problems, your SUV’s paint will also suffer. Flying debris, large boulders, and tree branches can leave scrapes and scuffs on your vehicle’s exterior surfaces. Dirty water from streams and swamps can also leave water marks and streaks.

Pinstripes are the most common culprits of off-road scratches. These are small scrapes along the sides of your vehicle left by vegetation. If you’re driving through thick forests or deep underbrush, you may have already noticed some pinstriping.

If you don’t care that much about your 4×4’s appearance, this may be no big deal. However, if you also use your off-roading monster as a daily driver, you may want to protect its paint. 


How Do I Protect My Paint While Off-Roading? 

Fortunately, there are several ways to protect your 4×4 from paint imperfections, including:


Using Quality Wax

Coating your 4WD with high-quality wax can reduce the impact of branches, sticks, and thorns. They’ll slide across your bodywork like butter.


Edge Trim

Your truck’s door edges will bear the brunt of the off-roading damage. Install door edge guards to give these vulnerable areas an extra layer of protection.


4WD Body Armor

Another smart investment is reusable paintwork body armor. This seamlessly attaches to the bodywork of your 4×4 and protects your paint while you’re on the trail.


Sidesteps, Brush Bars, and Fender Flares

These aftermarket parts help to push vegetation away from your vehicle, reducing the risk of direct scratches.


Magnetic Sheets

These protect your vehicle’s flat panels, including the doors. Magnetic sheets are easy to apply and remove. However, always wash your 4WD before applying them. If you don’t, they can damage your paintwork.


Paint Protection Film

Installing PPF on your SUV or truck will preserve your paint. This transparent layer of urethane acts as a second skin on the body panels. Not only will PPF protect your paint from scratches, but it can also shield it from damage caused by corrosive contaminants and fading from UV exposure.  It is designed to be the sacrificial barrier that takes the damage so your paint wont.


How Do I Protect My Car from Dirt Roads? 

Are you planning on off-roading on deserted dirt backroads? If so, you need to get your vehicle off-road ready. Use the following tips to protect your car from dirt road damage:

  • Waterproof your windshield to prevent dirt from sticking to it
  • Rotate and air your tires to reduce the amount of mud you sling up if you get stuck
  • Buy covers and floor mats to protect your truck’s interior from dirt and debris 


Invest in the Best Off-Road Paint Protection 

American Wrap Company can help you protect your 4×4. We specialize in paint protection solutions for off-roading vehicles. With PPF, you can efficiently protect every surface of your truck, including the hood, bumpers, rocker panels, doors, and more.

We are proud to use XPEL PPF in our shop. This innovative film features self-healing capabilities, is stain resistant, and is backed by a 10-year warranty.

To learn more, contact us today by calling (661) 878-5587. Our PPF solutions are tough enough for any trail and stand the test of time.

Tyler O'Hara