First time off-roading! - Jeep Commander Forums: Jeep Commander Forum
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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 12:19 AM Thread Starter
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First time off-roading!

So this sunday I plan to go off-roading for the first time behind the wheel and to lessen my chances of getting stuck what settings would be optimal?

I don't think there's gonna be any really deep mud but it is suppose to rain the day before. Also probably some rocks and loose sand.

Should I just hit the gas and go? 4wd Low? ESP all the way off?

To be honest i'm not even sure what all those options do. All I know it my jeep is stock. Stock suspension, stock wheels, no skid plates, nothing. I have a 4.7 V8 flex fuel rocky mountain edition so i'm not sure if I have QD2 or QT2.

I plan on off-roading on occasion nothing too serious. I definitely don't want to break anything so if theres a don't break setting please let me know.

So what combination of settings do you use or think would be the best?
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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 04:26 AM
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I always turn ESP all the way off while wheeling.

4low is dependent on the situation. I very rarely use it... but i live in a flat area of the country. If you're climbing up rocks and or very steep hills, the gear reduction comes in handy.

-Matt
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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 05:59 AM
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Some great info here.
http://www.jeep.com/en/4x4/index.html


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2007 Overland with all the options (including boulder-kissed bumper)
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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 06:16 AM
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Use this link to tell what drive system you have How to tell what 4 wheel system you have Each situation is different and you must adapt your settings as you go along. You should purchase at least the OEM skids if you plan on wheeling.

XK Skid Plates full protection
1) Front Guard: $249 From 4xguard
2) Belly Guard: $199 From 4xguard
3) T-Case Skid Plate: $47 From jparts
4) Front Susp Skid Plate: $47 From jparts
5) Fuel Tank Skid Plate : $180 From jparts

From XK-Parts Link


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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 08:21 AM
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Brendenv,
As Sal has mentioned, every situation is different, but in general, you can turn the ESP totally off and run in HI range. Judge your speed for what is necessary, but generally you don't want much speed. Judge the line you want to take based on obstacles, low spots etc.

Take a look at Bobula's pics in his signature above. Two very different conditions. I would stay away from areas with rocks and stumps if or until you get skid plates.

I don't know if you have tow hooks up front and in the rear or not, but at least one tow hook for extraction is generally considered a must. Carry or go with someone who has a snatch strap or winch. Never 4 wheel alone.

Have fun out there.

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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 09:12 AM
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Great advice as mentioned by GPinTheMitten, never go wheeling alone, especially since it'll be your first time. I unfortunately did go alone the first couple of times and there were situations where I wish I didn't go alone but I always managed to find a way out. I feel that the learning curve for wheeling is not so high, it takes common sense to make the right choices as far as your line goes and just be aware of your vehicles capabilities. I have a V6 XK without 4LO and I've gone wheeling a few times and have not needed the 4LO range yet and I have taken on some steep climbs. The first time I went off-roading my XK was completely stock and I was able to handle everywhere I wanted to go but I was being a little cautious and realistic as far as choosing my lines/routes. Last time I went off-roading I was sporting my new tires and it made a difference for steep climbs. Definitely go "all off" on your ESP as recommended by our manuals, this will give you what you need for off-roading.

Have fun out there and share your experience and post some pics.

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Mods: AFE Magnum Force Stage 2 CAI, OME HD Lift w/OME Shocks and Struts, Goodyear Wrangler All Terrains w/Kevlar 255/70R17, JBA Gen 6.7 Upper Control Arms, Hypertech Speedo Calibrator, Magnaflow cat-back system, Custom Retrofit HID Projectors, LED Conversion Kit for Fog Lights, Rigid Industries D2 LED Driving Lights


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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 10:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrendenV View Post
So this sunday I plan to go off-roading for the first time behind the wheel and to lessen my chances of getting stuck what settings would be optimal?

I don't think there's gonna be any really deep mud but it is suppose to rain the day before. Also probably some rocks and loose sand.

Should I just hit the gas and go? 4wd Low? ESP all the way off?

To be honest i'm not even sure what all those options do. All I know it my jeep is stock. Stock suspension, stock wheels, no skid plates, nothing. I have a 4.7 V8 flex fuel rocky mountain edition so i'm not sure if I have QD2 or QT2.

I plan on off-roading on occasion nothing too serious. I definitely don't want to break anything so if theres a don't break setting please let me know.

So what combination of settings do you use or think would be the best?
Read your Owner's Manual. It will help you understand the settings and when to use them.

2006 Steel Blue 5.7L HEMI Limited 4x4 Build Date: June 9, 2006 Hour 14
Interior: Dark Slate/Light Graystone with Saddle Brown Leather Seats
Quadra-Drive II, NAV, DVD, Trailer Tow Group IV, Off-Road Group II, Remote Start, UConnect, Rear Backup Camera, Chrome Wheels,
Magnaflow cat-back exhaust, Daytime Running Lights enabled, 2" Rough Country Lift with 265/70R17 Goodyear Wrangler AT/S
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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 12:25 PM Thread Starter
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Looks like I've got GTII. I was hoping for QDII but oh well. Definitely some good tips. The skid plates will have to wait. At 15mpg money is kinda tight right now. If 4Lo is never needed why is it even there and doesn't 4Lo do something along the lines of locking the wheels so they all spin together?

Also what does turning ESP off do?
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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 12:30 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GPintheMitten View Post
Brendenv,
As Sal has mentioned, every situation is different, but in general, you can turn the ESP totally off and run in HI range. Judge your speed for what is necessary, but generally you don't want much speed. Judge the line you want to take based on obstacles, low spots etc.

Take a look at Bobula's pics in his signature above. Two very different conditions. I would stay away from areas with rocks and stumps if or until you get skid plates.

I don't know if you have tow hooks up front and in the rear or not, but at least one tow hook for extraction is generally considered a must. Carry or go with someone who has a snatch strap or winch. Never 4 wheel alone.

Have fun out there.

Thanks for your help. I've got front and rear tow hooks. I'm planning on going with a friend.

I'm not planning on anything serious like huge boulders or stumps. Looks like it'll be mostly mud and water.

What would happen if I left ESP on?
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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 05-12-2011, 12:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrendenV View Post
If 4Lo is never needed why is it even there and doesn't 4Lo do something along the lines of locking the wheels so they all spin together?

Also what does turning ESP off do?
Do you have an Owner's Manual. Your questions are covered in it. If you do not have a manual you can download one for free from the Jeep website. Here is the link---> http://www.jeep.com/en/owners/manuals/index.html

2006 Steel Blue 5.7L HEMI Limited 4x4 Build Date: June 9, 2006 Hour 14
Interior: Dark Slate/Light Graystone with Saddle Brown Leather Seats
Quadra-Drive II, NAV, DVD, Trailer Tow Group IV, Off-Road Group II, Remote Start, UConnect, Rear Backup Camera, Chrome Wheels,
Magnaflow cat-back exhaust, Daytime Running Lights enabled, 2" Rough Country Lift with 265/70R17 Goodyear Wrangler AT/S
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