Emergencies happen when you least expect them. When you’re prepared for them, it makes dealing with the situation much easier. A flat tire on the road, a loose belt, or a dead battery is a minor emergency that can be inconvenient if unprepared. There are also dangerous situations where having the right tool in your car could mean the difference between life and death. Here are the best tools to keep in your car should you ever have to face trouble or danger on the road head-on.
- Jump Starter or Jumper Cables – A drained battery happens without warning. Be prepared for this inconvenience by equipping your vehicle with jumper cables or a jump starter. A jump start will help breathe some temporary life into your battery, enough to get you to the nearest service station for a replacement. When purchasing jumper cables, select heavy-gauge spring-loaded cables for more durability.
- Jack and Lug Wrench – A flat tire can happen virtually any time in any place. The worse time would be if you didn’t have a jack to lift up the car or a lug wrench to remove the lug nuts to put the spare tire on. For quick access, keep them with or near your spare tire.
- Screwdriver and Sockets – Going over bumpy terrain and constant movement and vibration in your vehicle can knock certain components loose. In some cases, a simple fix for a breakdown just requires the tightening of a belt, loose battery cable connection, or other adjustments of mechanical components. Look for socket sets with multiple sizes as well as a variety of screwdriver heads. Having different sizes of these handy tools give you the flexibility to make adjustments on just about anything.
- Flashlight – A flashlight is a must, even though many mobile phones have flashlights these days, they can quickly drain the battery leaving you in the dark, literally. Flashlights with multiple functions including a flashing strobe light can help alert other drivers to your location on the road. Additionally, seeing some areas under the hood may be difficult without some sort of light source. We recommend keeping your flashing in the center console or glove compartment for easy access, along with a spare set of batteries.
- Car Window Breaker – Often sold as a 2 in 1 or 3 in 1 item, these handy tools can help if, worst-case scenario, you are trapped in your vehicle. Whether submerged underwater, overturned, or in an otherwise precarious situation, this car window breaker and seatbelt cutter tool should be in every vehicle on the road. When your vehicle is filling with water, on fire, or in other dire circumstances, seconds count and you’ll need to be able to exit as fast as possible. This tool will help free you from your seatbelt and allow you to escape through the nearest window with a rap on the glass. Adhere this tool within reach of the driver’s seat with Velcro or duct tape for quick and easy access.
Keep these items in your car where ever you go to prepare for situations on the road. Having these things in case you need them or if other motorists are in need of help, you’ll be happy you were prepared ahead of time. In addition to the items above, create an emergency car kit to keep in your vehicle for any situation you may encounter on the road. Here are some things you may want to use to create your own emergency road kit:
- Fluids such as oil, coolant, transmission fluid, and others
- Gas can
- Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
- First Aid Kit with antiseptic and bandages
- Cell Phone and charger
- Fire extinguisher
- Tow straps or chains
- Seasonal clothing, spare clothes
- Drinking water – 1 gallon per person
- Non-perishable foods such as granola bars or meal replacement bars
- Reflective markers or flares
- Toiletries such as paper towels, wipes, toilet paper, tissues, soap, etc.
Hopefully, you won’t encounter any trouble on the road that would necessitate any of these items, but when you expect the unexpected by being prepared, difficult situations become more manageable. Having any of these items in your car could save your life. When you’re prepared, you’re less likely to worry about the “what ifs” that happen on the road, which means you’ll be able to enjoy your ride whether it be the commute to work or fun-filled road trip!