If there’s ever a time you need to equip yourself with a car emergency essentials kit, it’s during the winter.
In the United States, most people live in areas that experience a significant change in seasons, facing cold weather and snow for at least three months during the year. And most emergency responders say that the average person is not prepared for an on-road winter emergency crisis.
So you can’t ignore investing in a winter car emergency kit. Investing in one will ensure your safety when you get stuck in the snow or find yourself in a car accident.
Below are 10 car emergency essentials you need in your winter kit. With these items, you’ll be able to drive through even the harshest storms stress-free.
Quick tip before we get started: Store the bulk of your car emergency essentials in the back seat of your car in case the trunk gets jammed or frozen shut.
First aid kit
Make sure your small kit has bandages and ointments for treating small injuries and even supplies for slowing down significant injuries until help arrives. Don't forget to pack any important medication either.
Bottled water and non-perishable food
Make sure the food doesn’t require refrigeration or heat to prepare, such as granola bars and nuts. This is important if you find yourself in a stranded situation where you have to wait for some time for help to arrive.
Cell phone charger
A portable charger or power bank that doesn’t need to plug into your car’s port to work is important to have on hand. You can use it to call for help, especially if you land in a remote location.
Invest in one with a long handle to make it easier to grip and use. This will help remove tough layers of snow and ice from windows, mirrors, and lights to improve visibility as you drive.
Cold temperatures will naturally affect your car batteries. If you already have a weak one, the cold weather can kill it overnight. Should you need to jumpstart your car, jumper cables will make it easier for other drivers to help.
Salt or sand
These car emergency essentials will help you in two ways. First, they can add weight to the back of your car, especially if kept in the trunk, to improve the rear wheel tires’ traction. Second, when poured around the tires, they will get your car moving if it’s stuck in snow, slush or ice.
This includes windshield washer fluid with antifreeze properties, gas and brake fluid. Especially with gas, make sure the tank is at least halfway full. If your tank is less than half full, you risk having a frozen fuel line.
Winter blankets and clothes
Items like gloves and a sleeping bag are important for retaining heat, especially if you are outside pushing snow away from your car or if your car stops working.
It tends to get dark early during the winter months, so if you're stuck outside after the sun sets, a flashlight will be essential not only for inspecting your vehicle but also for signaling for help or making yourself visible to other drivers.
Basic tool kit
Sometimes you may experience minor mechanical problems with your car that you can easily fix by just tightening a bolt. Having a small tool kit will save you time and the headache of having to walk in the cold to get help.
Other essentials to consider for your car emergency kit
Adding more to your car emergency essentials kit will depend on your vehicle, lifestyle and even where you plan to travel. In general, it doesn’t hurt to have a shovel in case you need to dig your car out of a snow pile, or add some snow tires to minimize traction issues on ice.
Finally, don't forget to address any repairs your car may need to avoid further deterioration and costly service in the future. At Mike Duman’s Auto Superstore, not only can we take care of whatever repairs your car needs, but we can also help you get your car ready for the winter and ensure you have the car emergency essentials that support your lifestyle.
Contact us today to get your car winter-ready to ensure you’re safe and prepared for any emergency that could happen this season.