Tips for Driving Your Nissan Qashqai on Sand
We have some fantastic beaches in WA, so it is understandable that when you’ve bought a new Nissan Qashqai, your first instinct may be to hit the sand. This can be intimidating for those new to SUVs, but with some tips and tricks, you’ll soon have complete confidence.
Drop Your Tyre Pressure:
Read any Nissan Qashqai review, and it is sure to mention that the model is equipped to cope with more challenging driving conditions, but what won’t usually be mentioned is that to accomplish the really tricky conditions, you need to adjust your tyre pressures. This is the case with driving on sand. Dropping the tyre pressure creates a larger tyre footprint, which aids traction and makes it far easier for driving. The typical tyre pressure on standard bitumen roads is approximately 30 psi, but on sand, this will need to drop to approximately 18 psi. There is no hard and fast rule for the precise tyre pressure, so you will need to learn what works best for your Nissan Qashqai. It’s well worth investing in a good quality gauge, so you can avoid getting bogged down. Don’t forget that if you want to go from sand to road, you’ll also need an air compressor to reinflate your tyres.
Although it is tempting to really go for it, when your tyre pressure is lowered, you must drive with more care. Lowering the tyre pressure does compromise the handling, so fast or sharp turns could roll the tyre from the rim. You also need to be aware that your braking distances will also be affected.
When you’re driving on sand, momentum is the key to a great driving experience. This doesn’t mean gunning the engine and going hell for leather, rather steady throttle to maintain steady, forward progress. You should err on the side of caution and remember that in populated areas of beach you will need to slow down to a very leisurely pace.
Know What To Do When Bogged:
Whether you try to stop on a dune or simply misjudge your speed, it is quite easy to become bogged, so you need to know what to do. The key to this is not rushing; take your time to assess the situation so you can formulate an action plan. Usually dropping the tyre pressures further will give you enough traction to get unstuck, but it is a good idea to carry vehicle recovery tracks, just in case.
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