A car emergency kit is necessary for life on the road. Make sure to pack these essentials so you can quickly and easily resolve a variety of car problems!
If you’re heading out on an extended road trip and/or planning to live on the road for a while, you can’t neglect to create a car emergency kit! A car emergency kit will ensure that you can quickly and safely resolve car problems like flat tires or a dead battery. These things are not fun, but they’re even less fun when you’re not properly prepared for them. With that said, keep reading to discover the exact items you should have in your car emergency kit so you can travel with peace of mind!
1. Spare Tire
A spare tire might be one of the most obvious pieces of car emergency equipment and for good reason! Flat tires happen all the time (in fact I just changed one on the day I’m editing this post)! However, with a spare handy and some basic knowledge of how to change a tire, a flat doesn’t have to be a big issue at all. Having an extra tire as a backup means you can be back on the road in as little as a few minutes rather than hours or even days.
2. Car Jack
While having a spare tire is important, you won’t actually be able to change a tire without a car jack. A jack allows you to raise your car off the ground just enough so that you can remove and replace your tire. This is a decently-priced option that works for most cars, but be sure to do your research to make sure the car jack you purchase will work with your car!
3. Lug Wrench
A lug wrench allows you to both loosen and tighten the lug nuts on the wheels of your car making for easy tire removal and replacement. Actually, I shouldn’t say easy tire removal and replacement, because this is a pretty necessary piece of equipment.
4. Tire Plug Kit
A tire plug kit is a super handy, cheap, temporary fix for when you end up with a nail or something similar piercing your tire and resulting in a flat. With a tire plug kit you can “plug” the hole temporarily until you are able to fully replace it. A couple of years ago I ended up getting a flat tire while driving but I was able to pull into a gas station where, thankfully, a few guys helped me plug the hole with their tire plug kit! It saved me a lot of headache which is why this is definitely one of my top recommended emergency products!
5. Tire Gauge Check
Most cars today have automatic sensors that will alert you when your tire pressure gets too low. But a tire gauge check is still nice to have on hand because you might find yourself in a situation where that sensor isn’t working correctly. You know how I just mentioned that flat tire that was saved by a tire plug kit? Well, that incident resulted in my tire pressor sensor staying on permanently even with all four tires being at the correct pressure. A mechanic was eventually able to reset it, but for a while it was pretty inconvenient considering I never really knew when my tires were low. With a tire gauge check at your disposal, you’ll never need to guess!
6. Jumper Cables
Jumper cables can help bring your car battery back to life in the event that it dies. And its important to note that your car battery can die for a number of reasons other than just an old or faulty battery! Some of the most common causes of a dead battery include leaving your lights on overnight and even cold weather. Having jumper cables will allow you to jumpstart your car relatively easily without having to call an emergency service like AAA.
7. Power Supply
Okay, so here’s the thing about jumper cables. They’re a lifesaver, but only if you have another car to connect them to. That’s where an emergency power supply comes in. Something like this portable power station is highly recommended if you plan on traveling anywhere off the grid or where you may be on your own. I think this portable power station is an amazing option not only because it is a jump starter in and of itself (no need for jumper cables or a car to connect to) but because it has an outlet for emergency phone charges AND a built-in flashlight. Talk about an all-in-one emergency tool!
8. Windshield Washer Fluid
You never realize how important windshield wiper fluid is until you run out! Is it an absolute necessity? Probably not. But it is helpful to have because if you’re traveling for a while, chances are you will run out at some point. At the very least, make sure your car is filled with windshield wiper fluid before you leave! Here’s an affordable option from AutoZone, but you can more than likely pick up a bottle from your local gas station or even grocery store.
9. Warning Reflectors
In the event your car breaks down, make sure you stay safe by setting up some warning reflectors around your car. This will alert other drivers that you car is stopped and ensure they don’t hit it!
A flashlight has to be the most classic emergency tool. Which makes sense because, what can you do if you can’t see? This rechargeable flashlight doesn’t use batteries, is small enough to attach to your keychain, and gives of a powerful beam of light, making it the perfect option for a car emergency kit.
Hey, it might sound silly, but you could easily find yourself stranded without any gas and without a charge on your phone. And then what do you do? Hopefully this won’t happen to you (Hint: following the tips in this blog post will help you avoid a situation like this!) but if it does, a compass can really help. By using a compass, you’ll ensure that you head in the right direction, or if you don’t know which way is “right,” you’ll at least know that you’re heading in the same direction.
12. Small Container of Gas
It’s never a bad idea to keep a small container of gas in your car, especially if you’re more of an off-the-grid type of traveler! But really, as long as you’re careful, regular stops at the gas station to refill should be more than enough. Use your best judgement to determine whether or not to bring along extra gas!
13. Car Escape Tool
Every car should have at least one car escape tool. A multipurpose car escape tool can be used to both break your windows and cut your seatbelt if you were ever trapped inside your car. It doesn’t take up a lot of space, it’s less than ten dollars, and it could potentially save your life, so I wouldn’t wait to purchase this tool. I love this option from Amazon because you get a pack of two for just $8!
14. Car Fire Extinguisher
Everyone hopes they never have to use a fire extinguisher, but when the times comes that you need to, you’ll be glad you have one handy. And having a fire extinguisher in your car is for more than just car fires – camp fires can happen too! You wouldn’t live in your home without a fire extinguisher, so make sure you have one in your car, too.
Is there anything else you would add to your personal car emergency kit? Let me know in the comments!