It’s easy to think that nothing bad is going to happen, but even the most well-maintained cars can have issues sometimes, and accidents caused by other people aren’t something you can rule out.
To help you, we’ve put together a simple guide to things you should always have in your car – just in case!
Easy to Get To
These things should be kept up front – under your seat, in your glovebox, somewhere you can get to them quickly without leaving the car.
- Sunglasses – summer or winter, the sun can be a visibility killer. Be prepared!
- Car Escape Tool – available from most auto stores, these handy tools can be used to break glass and cut seatbelts in case of an emergency, but their blades are tucked away, so they’re safe to keep out in the centre console.
- First aid kit – basic kits can be brought cheaply from almost anywhere, but ensure its BSI compliant and in date; yes, first aid kits go out of date!
- Hand powered torch – you don’t want to end up in the dark, just to find your torch is dead too. A hand-wound torch means you’ll never have that problem.
- Fire extinguisher – it might sound dramatic, but when you need one, you need one. There are lots of small ones designed for cars; they don’t take up much room and could save a life.
In Your Emergency Box
These items should fit in a box or backpack in your boot, ready and waiting for a breakdown or accident.
- Portable phone charger, or old PAYG phone with credit, charged and turned off – We can almost guarantee that the one time you go out without your phone is the time you’ll need one. Save important numbers, and don’t set a passcode!
- Owner’s manual – It will tell you everything you need to know, from what your warning lights mean to what your tyre pressures should be. And on that note…
- Tyre inflator & tyre change kit – If you don’t already know, learn how to change a wheel! It’s simple and could save you from waiting for hours in the cold for someone else to do it. Digital tyre inflators can be brought at most auto suppliers and are great not only for helping you make it that last few miles on a slow puncture, but regular tyre maintenance.
- 2x Warning triangle – You don’t realise how fast even 30mph is until you’re stood at the roadside with your broken-down car. They act as a warning to other vehicles that there is an obstruction and should be placed both in front and behind the car at a distance of at least 45m – but don’t use them on motorways.
- Fluorescent jacket – don’t just protect your car, protect yourself. Buy a multipack big enough to go over your biggest coat – you want them to fit your passengers, too.
- Toilet paper/kitchen towel/rags – you never know what you’ll need to clean up, and on that note…
- Hand sanitiser – as above, when you’re trying to get a dirty car fixed at the roadside, you’ll probably need to clean up.
- Wellies or solid boots – went for a night out in your nicest heels, but broke down on a muddy country road in the rain? Protect your toes!
- Warm clothes and blankets– cars get cold fast when off, and when waiting for roadside assistance you’ll generally be advised to stay away from the car in case of a collision. Be ready to snuggle up.
- Umbrella – It’s Britain, this seems self-explanatory.
- Gloves – both warm one and protective ones!
- Insurance and breakdown cover details – Could you remember these off the top of your head now, let alone under the stress of an accident or breakdown?
- Emergency contact details – For everything from needing to let mum know you’ll be home late, to giving paramedics in case of something serious.
- Empty fuel can – The walk of shame to the petrol station when you thought you’d make it can be eased a bit by not having to buy a can when you get there.
- Jump leads – good for you, and for being a good Samaritan to others!
- Food and drink (non-perishable) – waiting for a tow truck is hungry work, I promise.
- Ice scraper – Don’t get caught out when winter comes.
- Hand shovel – Got stuck? Dig yourself out!
- Tow rope or strap – Got stuck? Get pulled out!
- Money – Fuel, an emergency taxi, even parking – a small, well-hidden amount of cash is worth having!
If you’ve got any questions about car care, feel free to Contact Us today!