Inevitably, when you head off-road in a 4WD you will get stuck. It might not be straight away, and it might not be for months, but one day, you’ll sink down and need a recovery, and that’s when the risks really kick in.
Sadly, there’s been a number of people killed in Australia recovering 4WD’s, and often its when something breaks off a vehicle and comes flying towards the person at a huge rate of speed. As a result of this, there’s been a huge push towards using suitable recovery attachments. If you try and pull a 4WD out using an attachment point that is not suitable, it can (and often does) break and badly hurt or kill someone.
As such, one of the first things that we recommend before heading off road is getting some rated recovery points. You need at least one on the front of your vehicle, and one on the rear (the tow bar often suffices). So, it begs the question; where do you get your recovery points from?
Where can you buy Recovery Points?
Generic 4WD shops; Coastal 4WD, Lifestyle 4WD, Offroad Equipment etc
Make sure they are rated
Before you buy anything, make sure its stamped with an SWL, or safe working load. If it doesn’t have this, its not rated and it should not be bolted onto your 4WD. Have a good think about where its attaching to, and whether its a complete, engineered solution or just a lump of steel with a stamp on it.
I’ve seen hooks pull out of chassis because whilst the hook is strong, the mounting point isn’t.
Make sure they suit your Bull Bar
In our Bull Bar buying guide, we mentioned something that so many people get caught out by. Rated recovery points are generally not designed to work with all types of Bull Bars, and if you buy one brand Bull Bar and a different brand recovery point, there’s a pretty good chance that they will not work together.
This is a right pain in the backside, and something critical to investigate before you buy either a Bull Bar, or recovery points. If you stick with the same brand you’ll be right, or else find someone who runs the same combination as you for your year model before proceeding!
How much do they cost?
Rated recovery points start off at about $50 for a basic hook (not engineered for any particular location) and work their way up to around $300 each for the most expensive ones.
I have seen people make their own by getting them laser cut and folded, which is possible if you have the skills!
Don’t take any risks
As mentioned above, people have died from 4WD recoveries gone wrong. Please don’t take any risks. Don’t use tie down points, or tow balls or anything else to recover a 4WD. It’s not worth the risk!
What recovery points do you run? Are you happy with them?