Can You Take A Subaru Outback On The Beach?

If you own a Subaru Outback and are planning to take your family on a trip to the beach, this is a decision you won’t regret. 

Many people are concerned that AWD vehicles don’t have off-road capabilities and can easily get stuck on sand, but this isn’t the case with the Outback.

The Subaru Outback features a symmetrical all-wheel-drive system that directs some of the vehicle’s engine power to the rear wheels. 

In most AWD vehicles, 100% of the power goes to the front wheel, and the rear wheel only receives power when the front wheel begins slipping.

Can You Take A Subaru Outback On The Beach?

You can take your Subaru Outback to the beach as it features an 8.7 inches deep sand clearance. However, while you drive on the beach, ensure that the areas you move on aren’t too deep or soft by keeping an eye on tire tracks.

When driving your car on the beach, maintain a consistent, low speed. 

One of the distinct differences between the AWD and 4WD is that it lacks the high torque required in off-road conditions like sand driving. 

That said, if you want to avoid getting bogged, be sure to avoid sand that’s too deep.

Key Considerations When Driving Your Subaru Outback On Sand

While you may comfortably drive on the beach with your Subaru, there are plenty of tips and tricks you need to know for a comfortable driving experience.

Here are a few you should know when driving on the sand.

Keep Your Pressure Low

A crucial precautionary measure while driving on sand is to air down your tires.

If possible, consider running down your tires to 15 to 18 psi as it provides your car with grip by widening the tire footprint. 

That said, it’s advisable to have a tire gauge to check how much air you’ve left out.

The other vital tool to have is an air compressor. This tool comes in handy when you want to pump your tires before getting back to the road. 

It’s also not advisable to drive on the freeway if you haven’t re-inflated your tires, as you’ll be putting yourself in great danger. 

Don’t forget to carry a shovel on your trip to the beach, which is an essential gear to have because it can help you get rid of dirt, sand, or snow if you ever get stuck.

Know The Tactics To Get Out Of Sand When Bogged

When driving on the beach, there are chances that you could get bogged. The most important thing to do in such cases is to ensure that you have the appropriate gear.

Some of the items that may come in handy include bow shackles, snatch Strap kit, and traction aids.

Before you use these tools, consider reversing your vehicle. When you’re stuck and try to accelerate, your wheel will keep spinning, and it’ll dig further in the hole. 

Consider carrying a bucket as you can fill it with water from the beach to make the sand firm. 

You can even use it as a stool on your outing to the beach. 

Be Tactful While Driving On the Sand

If you want to avoid getting stuck on the sand, there are plenty of valuable techniques worth considering. 

For instance, the Subaru Outback features X-Mode control, an off-roading system not found on other SUVs.

This system controls your vehicle braking system, AWD torque, transmission, and engine.

It’s beneficial when there’s deep sand, mud, and other wet conditions.

It’s also not advisable to accelerate quickly. If possible, maintain an average speed of 25mph and avoid making sharp turns. 

When you accelerate smoothly and don’t make sudden movements, your wheel won’t dig the sand.

While it’s important not to drive fast, you shouldn’t lose momentum either. Always ensure that you don’t stop until you’re ready to park. 

Additionally, follow the waterline as you travel up and down the coast. The sand is usually firmer when close to the water.

Can The Trip To The Beach Affect Your Car?

Your trip to the beach may affect your vehicle in different ways, but you can take different approaches to prevent excessive damage.

What External Damages Can You Notice?

You should know that saltwater can be corrosive. Remember that salt alone doesn’t affect metal, but it becomes a good conductor when combined with water, leading to rapid oxidation(rust). 

Additionally, the tiny particles pushed by the ocean breeze can cause the paint to scratch and wear down.

If you’ve gone to the beach with your car for a week, deep cleaning it can help manage the mess from the beach.

If you’ve been there for a long time, be sure to wash it at least twice a month to maintain the pain.

Internal Damages After Your Trip To The Beach

When you drive on the beach, sand can easily get under the hood of your car. The tires pick up the sand in the threads then back it up in the chassis. 

Sand can be very abrasive, mainly if combined with any oil or fluid.

Sand can also ruin leather and fabric seats, diminishing your vehicle’s resale value. 

So, after you visit the beach, ensure that you use water to rinse off the debris under the hood.

How Can You Keep Off Sand From Your Car While On The Beach?

When driving on the beach, sand will inevitably get into your vehicle. 

But, there are different approaches you can take to keep it off your Outback.

  • Carry An Appropriate Beach Bag: You may find it convenient to carry your zipper backpack to the beach, but this isn’t necessary. You’ll be trapping a lot of sand that will eventually disperse after your trip to the beach. If possible, consider carrying a straw or mesh bag as you can shake off the sand it traps before you return to the car.
  • A Laundry Basket Can Be Handy: It’s a great idea to carry a laundry basket that fits nicely in your car trunk. This way, you can throw in any sandy clothes or towels you use on the beach.
  • Carry An Extra Pack Of Water: While water is vital in keeping you cool from the hot summer temperatures, it’s still effective in helping you rinse off. You’re likely to attract a lot of sand even after strategically using the outdoor shower.
  • Consider Lining Your Boot: The cargo area of your car is highly prone to sand damage because this is where you throw your towels, bags, and clothes after your trip to the beach. Consider covering it with a trunk liner to prevent it from being riddled with sand particles.
  • Wear Open-Toed Shoes While On The Beach: While on the beach, it’s best to avoid wearing closed-toe shoes because they gather a lot of sand that can be tracked in your car interior and embed deep inside your carpet fibers.

Final Thoughts

Subaru Outback is among the best vehicles to own for anyone looking to take a trip to the beach. 

Unlike most cars, it features X-mode that ensures better handling capabilities off-road such as driving on the sand.

On your trip to the beach with your Outback, keep your pressure low and have the right tools to help you get out of the sand in case you get bogged.

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