My Blog List

Friday, May 30, 2014

Starter List: Essential Items To Keep In Your Car

Whether you’re a newly minted car-owner, or need some help brushing up on the basics, knowing what to keep in your car in case of an emergency is infinitely useful. Here are a few useful items that every car-owner should have at hand:

Spare Tire and Related Tools

Keeping a spare tire in your trunk is absolutely essential. Make sure that you’re checking it periodically to make sure that it’s in good, working condition. If you don’t know how to change a tire, now is the perfect time to learn. Here’s a handy resource to get you started. A tire jack and lug (or spider) wrench will complete your kit, allowing you to change your own spare, if the occasion should arise.

Emergency Kit

Start with an Auto Emergency Kit such as this one from Interamer and work your way outward, expanding it with other ICE (In Case of Emergency) items. This kit includes emergency blankets and ponchos, along with a first aid kit. A great feature of this kit is the fact that it comes with jumper cables, an absolute necessity for any car.

Additional items you might want to consider keeping in a more easily accessible place, like your glove compartment would include a glass and seatbelt cutter, both of which would be useless if tucked away in your trunk. A smaller first aid kit with the basics and a second flashlight might be good to keep on hand up front too.

Phone Charger

Smart Phone batteries are notorious for their short life spans, so having a spare battery source readily available is always a good idea. Chargers that connect and charge through the lighter will do in a pinch, but a better one to have would be something like this one by Juicebar, via Tiger Direct. Holding a charge for up to 30 days, this charger charges by USB port, giving your phone a full-battery’s worth of juice. Set a reminder to check on this charger about once a month to ensure that you’re not caught with a non-functioning spare battery when an emergency hits.

Weather Related Tools

The aforementioned Auto Emergency Kit contains a three-day food bar, which would come in very handy should you get stranded. Depending on your location, some seasonal materials are necessities in your trunk. For areas hit particularly hard by snow, sleet and hail in the winter months, make sure that snow brushes, ice scrapers and shovels are in the trunk from about mid-October to mid-May. Sand and/or tire chains are also very useful in the winter months.

Useful in all seasons, but especially in areas hit by excessive heat and humidity, would be bottles of water. Bottled water does have an expiration date, so if they’ve been rolling around in your trunk for 12+ months, it’s time to replace them. 5-Year Shelf Life purified waters like Aqua Blox might be your better bet here, though another option would be a bottle of germicidal tablets to clean suspicious water. Ponchos, plastic bags and umbrellas come in handy year-round, but especially in the rainy months.

The Extras

These are likely items that are already in your car in some capacity, but they bear reminding: extra tissues, baby wipes, feminine hygiene products, pens and a pad of paper are all useful items that should be at arm’s reach in your car.

For some this may seem like an excessive number of things to keep in your car, but you’ll be happy to have them in a pinch. For those who feel like we missed out on something essential, be sure to let us know in the comments what else you’ve included in your car’s emergency kit.

Share this post! Click the Twitter, Facebook or Google+ icon below, and let your friends know!
Copyright 2014 Bison Risk Management Associates. All rights reserved. Please note that in addition to owning Bison Risk Management, Chief Instructor is also a partner in a precious metals business. You are encouraged to repost this information so long as it is credited to Bison Risk Management Associates.

No comments: