A short guide for Filipino drivers to safely drive in the mud

Updated Jan 22, 2019 | Same topic: Let's Drive Smart!

Learn about what to do if your vehicle gets stuck in the mud.

In many unforeseen circumstances, you will be forced to drive through muddy areas. In those situations, some of the following skills and techniques will help you someday.

1. Drive at a slow speed

One of the basic skills in driving through the muddy area is to move at a slow speed. If you drive at a fast speed, you may lose the control of your vehicle. To handle difficult driving conditions, set the car at low gear to keep it at low speed with more torque.

shift knob

Drive at a slow speed

2. Apply the gas pedal reasonably

In the event of losing control of your car or getting stuck in thick mud, you should not forcefully press the accelerator pedal when moving up a hill or carelessly release the pedal when moving down a hill. As this habit may cause the wheel to sink deeper and the car to get stuck in the mud more and more serious.

release pedal

Apply the gas pedal reasonably

3. Carry along stones and wood

Bring some pieces of rock and blocks of wood if your car still has some space; because they will be your savior in the event your car gets stuck into a quagmire.

car bed trunk

Carry along stones and wood

4. Use tires with low pressure

When driving on normal asphalt, tires with high pressure are ideal. However, soft tires will be much better if you are stuck in a muddy puddle. When the car is stuck into the mud, release the tire pressure a bit to get the car out of the area easier.

5. Apply brakes in a sensible way

When going down a hill, you should not keep your feet on the brake pedal at all times. One of the reasons why drivers lose control of their vehicles on the muddy roads is that they brake too hard while the car is running at high speed.

car stuck in the mud

Apply brakes in a sensible way

Press and release the brakes intermittently rather than applying the brake pedal continuously. This will make your conventional braking system behave like a brake with ABS.

6. In case of getting stuck in the mud

In case your car falls into a quagmire and cannot escape, calm down and evaluate the situation. Use wood planks, stone bars, or tree branches to line the rear of the wheel to make it have a better traction to get out of the muddy situation.

You should set the rear transmission and lock the center differential and the front transmission if your car has these systems. For vehicles with lock for the front and rear differentials, remember to lock the rear differential and open the front differential to make the control more accurate. Set the car in the first gear to make it operate in the strongest mode. Drive slowly and keep the steering wheel straight to maintain a keen awareness and be able to handle the situation promptly.

drive in the mud

In case your car falls into a quagmire and cannot escape, calm down and evaluate the situation

Do not release the accelerator pedal completely when the wheel is slipping. Instead, you should slowly disengage the pedal to reduce the vehicle momentum and make the slippage decrease. When the car goes into a skid, you have to turn the steering wheel toward the skid and release the accelerator pedal to regain control before gently applying the accelerator pedal. You can turn the steering wheel gently to the side when moving on a road with a hard layer of mud to make the tire rub against the mud and have a better traction.

The safest way to move on roads with large mud tracks is to keep wheels of one side on the track while holding the steering wheel tightly but slightly toward the opposite wheel. To easily get through the muddy ground, you should reduce the tire pressure by half or to under 20 psi.

7. If the quest of getting out the mud fails

If you cannot get out of the mud on your own, do not worry too much because your car is not an off-road vehicle anyway and you are not an expert on this situation either. When trying everything and things are not going well, get off the car, find a safe place to stand and call for rescue.

call for rescue

Get off the car, find a safe place to stand and call for rescu

In general, to prevent your car from being stuck in the mud, you should consider replacing tires that have a better traction on the road if you have to drive through muddy roads on a regular basis. Alternatively, consider buying a four-wheel drive vehicle or make some necessary upgrades with experts’ permission.

car on the road

Replacing tires that have a better traction on the road

Finally, do not forget to visit Philkotse.com every day for more tips and advice on safe driving.