A well-equipped car emergency kit is the first step toward staving off disaster. Ensure your car’s trunk is packed with the proper tools and supplies so that you’re ready to tackle whatever the road throws at you. Here are some of the most important things to keep in your car’s tool kit in the event of a flat tire, low oil, or worse.
An Empty Gas Can
One of the most disheartening sounds in the world is the slow sputtering of a car using its last few drops of gasoline. Walking to the nearest gas station is rarely fun, but it’s better when you bring your own can. Keeping an empty gas can in the trunk is better than paying for a can or a tow at a gas station you’re unfamiliar with. Naturally, the only place you should keep gasoline in your car is inside the tank. Instead, pack an empty gas can to ensure you’re ready to make filling your vehicle back up an easier endeavor.
Tire Fixing and Changing Tools
It’s best to catch tire problems before they worsen, but in a pinch, you’ll need a set of tire tools. Your car should already come with a spare tire, jack, and tire iron, but consider investing in an upgrade. A four-way tire iron will give you extra grip and leverage when removing those tightly secured lug nuts. Your tire jack should provide enough power to hold up the car, but there are more portable and lightweight tools available that make this process even easier. A can of tire sealant is a good thing to have as well, as it provides a temporary seal until you reach the garage. And if you’re handy and stuck in the middle of nowhere, a tire repair kit has its benefits.
The only thing worse than the sputtering sound a car makes as it runs out of gas is when it makes little to no sound at all starting up. Perform regular inspections and maintenance on your battery and replace it before its working life ends and you get stuck. When your vehicle fails to start because of cold weather, you’ll want a set of jumper cables at hand. Consider packing a small adjustable wrench as well, in case the issue is due to a loose connection. Otherwise, jumper cables can keep your car going or make you someone else’s hero when their car won’t start.
Let There Be Lights
One of the most important things to keep in your car’s tool kit is a means of illumination, as this will be extremely helpful if your car stops, stalls, or otherwise needs to pull over. When awaiting help, especially at night, set up a series of road flares, flashing signals, or reflective safety triangles to warn other drivers that you’ve stopped and to alert police and highway patrols that you require assistance. Keeping a flashlight handy is a must as you try to fix a flat, work on the engine, or otherwise flag down help in the evening. Don’t leave home without one!