If you have a company vehicle or a vehicle you use for your business, it is a good idea to have a car emergency kit. Just like you should always have your driver’s license, registration, and insurance card when driving, you should also never leave work or home without emergency items or an emergency kit in your vehicle. A car emergency kit consists of certain items you should always have in case of a breakdown or accident.
With winter approaching, we compiled a list of the top 10 items you should have in your car emergency kit this winter. Wintertime brings bad road conditions and low visibility. The items featured in our article can greatly assist you if you were to have an emergency on the road.
10 Car Emergency Kit Must-Have Items for Winter
The following is a list of 10 important items you should have in your vehicle in the winter. This is not a comprehensive list; rather, a guide to keeping yourself as safe as possible when the weather is bad. For more information and suggestions about vehicle safety kits and other safety tips, please visit www.nsc.org.
Lifehammer Brand Safety Hammer
This vehicle escape tool has a double-sided steel hammer head on one end that can break windshield glass in case of an emergency. On the other end is a sharp tool that can cut through a seat belt.
Battery Tender 3 AMP Car Battery Charger
Car batteries often die in cold weather. Having a battery charger like this one by Battery Tender can quickly and easily get you out of a jam if your battery dies. This model provides a full charge to your car, SUV, or truck battery, then switches to float mode to maintain the proper voltage.
Cartman 39 Piece Tool Set
Keep essential tools like pliers, screwdrivers, and wrenches in your vehicle for quick and easy access whenever you need them.
First Alert EZ Fire Spray
This portable fire extinguisher is actually an aerosol can that can put out fires just as well as traditional fire extinguishers and are safe for having in cars. You get a pack of 2 from First Alert – the formula is biodegradable, non-toxic, and wipes clean.
Waterproof Car First-Aid Kit
It’s always a good idea to have a first-aid kit in your vehicle! This one has 273 pieces of essential first aid items, such as bandages, an emergency blanket, a tourniquet, sterile wipes, a flashlight, and more.
Energizer Heavy Duty Jumper Cables for Car Battery
Even if you have a car battery jumper like the one above, it’s not a bad idea to have a regular set of jumper cables as well. Just make sure you get the correct gauge for your vehicle.
Twinkle Star Emergency Roadside Flares Kit
Whenever possible, you should use flares when you’re pulled over in your vehicle. These emergency flares are battery-operated, so they can be used over and over.
Jack Boss Scissor Tire Jack
A flat tire can happen to anyone at any time. In addition to always having a useable spare tire, you’ll need a jack to help you change a tire. While there are electric jacks on the market, we prefer manual ones, like the Jack Boss Scissor jack, in case of a situation where electricity isn’t available.
Rhino USA Recovery Tow Strap
If your vehicle breaks down and you need to be towed, having your own tow strap is extremely convenient. Make sure the tow strap or chain you purchase is not only strong but can also withstand harsh weather, like our pick from Rhino USA.
GARAGE BOSS Press ‘N Pour Gas Can
Another item you should always have in your vehicle is a no-spill gas can. It is recommended that you carry at least a 3-gallon gas tank – this one actually holds 5 gallons. It is equipped with a simple press-button operation for flow control and no spills.
Birdrock Folding Emergency Snow Shovel
Last but definitely not least, an emergency snow shovel can be incredibly helpful in your vehicle. This one by Birdrock is 34.25 inches long when fully extended, and folds in half for easy storage.
Jumper cablesJump-starting a dead battery.Ensure they are of good quality and length.
Spare tire, jack, and lug wrenchChanging flat tires.Regularly check the tire’s air pressure.
Multi-tool or basic tool kitMinor repairs or adjustments.Should include screwdrivers, pliers, adjustable wrench, etc.
Duct tapeQuick fixes for hoses or other parts.Multifunctional, but temporary.
Reflective triangles or flaresWarn other drivers of a stopped vehicle.Set up a safe distance behind the vehicle.
First aid kitTreat minor injuries.Include basics like bandages, antiseptics, pain relievers, etc.
Flashlight with extra batteriesNight-time visibility and signaling.LED flashlights last longer.
Safety vestEnsure you’re visible to other drivers.Preferably with reflective strips.
Non-perishable foodSustenance if stranded.Energy bars, canned food, etc.
Bottled waterHydration.Rotate regularly to ensure freshness.
Blanket or emergency thermal blanketsWarmth in cold situations.Compact emergency blankets reflect body heat.
Rain ponchoStay dry in wet conditions.Compact and lightweight.
WhistleSignal for help.Can be heard over long distances.
Portable phone chargerEnsure your phone is operable for emergencies.Solar-powered chargers can be useful.
Local mapsNavigation when GPS or mobile data is unavailable.Physical maps don’t rely on electricity or signal.
Tow rope or strapIf the car needs to be pulled from a ditch or snow.Ensure it can handle your car’s weight.
Fire extinguisherPut out small fires.Ensure it’s rated for automotive use (Class B & C).
Ice scraper and snow brushClearing windshield and windows in cold climates.Essential for winter driving.
Some companies provide a pre-assembled car emergency kit. These can be helpful, as many of them contain some or most of the items above. They also come with a bag or box for storage, which is also convenient. Here are 3 of the best ones we found:
AUTOGEN Car Emergency Kit – Includes jumper cables, tire inflator, reflective triangles, and bungee cords.
First Secure Car Emergency Safety Kit Bag – Includes tire pressure gauge, multitool, tow rope, and work gloves.
General Medi Roadside Car Emergency Kit – Includes first aid supplies, a light stick, a windshield scraper, and an emergency blanket.
Remember to always follow the rules of the road, drive with caution, and refrain from driving if conditions are too harsh. But when you must drive in bad weather, or when winter weather happens unexpectedly, having a car emergency kit for the winter can really help you out if an accident happens.
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This article, “Car Emergency Kit: Must-Have Items For Your Vehicle” was first published on Small Business Trends