|Topic: Watch for Tree Stumps and Big Rocks|
bigger than a football on the highway or along 4 wheel drive dirt roads
could damage the underside of your Sport Utility Vehicle or 4 wheel
drive pickup truck. Be especially watchful for rocks and tree stumps in
tall grass and weeds.
Try this experiment at home. Get a softball, a football, and a basketball and take them out to your driveway. Get down in front of your SUV and place the softball and football under the lowest part of the vehicle. The softball will clear all of the lowest parts and the football probably will too. Now take the basketball and try the same thing. It probably will not clear the lowest hanging parts. Do the same thing at the rear of your SUV. WARNING: Be sure your transmission in in Park, that the parking brake is set, and that the engine is not running in your SUV before you try this experiment. You want to assure that the vehicle does not roll over you! If you don't have a softball, football and a basketball, find some objects about the same size to use for this experiment.
Now place the softball, football and the basketball out in front of your SUV, where you can see them while you sit in the drivers seat. Look at how tall they each are (don't worry so much about their width). This will give you a good sense of how tall the rocks will appear as you approach them while you are driving off the road.
Notice the yellow line we have drawn on the bottom photograph. This line roughly follows the rear axle housing and drops down to account for the lowest hanging parts. The blue arrows point to the lower ends of the shock absorbers and the red line points to the differential housing (the roundish big ball looking thing in the center of the rear axle housing). Learn where the parts that hang down the lowest are under your SUV and you will be able to pass over rocks without hitting those parts by driving a little to the left or right.
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