Maybe you are one of those people who know all the things that they need to have in their cars. Quite a good number don’t know what they need and some don’t care. No matter how well you maintain your automobile, things could go wrong anytime, especially when you least expect things to go wrong. There’re a lot of things that you could carry in your car when you are traveling. Different people will suggest different things that you should carry. If you listen to everyone, you’ll end up carrying almost all your home accessories and all your workshop tools in your car. This article will help you to know the most important things that you need to carry and why you need those things.
Before you set off for a trip, fill a few bottles with clean water for drinking. Alternatively, buy a couple of clean water bottles from your nearest supermarket or a trusted shop. This is one of the things you should not forget. This will help to keep you well hydrated as you drive. You need to make sure that you drink about two liters (8-ounce glasses) per day. This water is not only meant to keep you hydrated but it could be used in many different ways depending on the situations that you may encounter on your way. For example, you may want to clean your hands at some point.
First Aid Kit
You can buy first aid kits as a package which is already assembled or you can assemble one for yourself. You could also buy a ready package then you top it up with things that you feel are very important. Whichever route you take, ensure that you have the following in your kit:
- Antiseptic wipes
- Sterile absorbent packets
- Sterile pads
- Tweezers and scissors
- Antibiotic ointment
- Disposable gloves
- Roller bandages
- Non-glass/non-mercury thermometer
- First aid booklet
It is advisable to add more items which are relevant to you or your family. For example, for Asthma patients, you may want to add Asmol, Ventolin (Albuterol), or Airomir inhaler (consult your doctor). Do not wait to read the first aid booklet until you are in trouble. Read it in advance. You can also go ahead and take an online first aid course!
If you take good care of your automobile, you don’t expect fire, at least not in your car. Regular car maintenance will do a good job to keep you away from fire outbreaks. However, in an accident good maintenance or expecting no fire won’t do you any good. You need to have a fire extinguisher that can extinguish fires that are caused by flammable liquids such as fuel, as well as fires caused by electrical fault. For personal car, 2lb/1kg to 5lb/2.3kg cylinder would be enough; you don’t want to stuff your car with extinguishers. Always service the fire extinguisher; at least as often as you service your vehicle.
Fully charged phone
It is a good practice to charge your phone at night when you are not using it, such that you always have your phone fully charged every morning before you go to your work place. You should also have a charging cable and a power-bank device in your car which can charge your phone in case the battery goes low. In addition to this, you should have another phone (it doesn’t have to be Smart) which is fully charged and switched off. This comes in handy when you are in trouble and all the above options have failed. Switching off ensures that it takes the longest possible time before discharging. This phone shouldn’t have passwords and should always be in your car.
These are two insulated copper cables (usually red and black) with crocodile clips at the ends. If, for some reason, your car battery goes low when you are in the middle of nowhere, it will be easy to get help from a Good Samaritan. Using these cables, you tap power from the Good Samaritan’s car battery and that will help you to bring your car back to life. You could also be the Good Samaritan, but don’t give away your cables! They should always be in your car, unless you know what you’re doing.
Set aside some good amount of money and hide it safely in your car. This money should only be used during emergencies and not normal day to day activities. The actual amount varies widely depending on your status; otherwise any value from $100 to $1000 could turn out to be very helpful some day. There is no need to keep more money in your car than you can manage or maintain. You don’t want to keep thinking about the amount of money which is hidden in your car.
This should be well inflated and in good condition (ready for use). Spare tires usually go hand in hand with car/tire jack. You should know how to change the tire otherwise carrying these things may not help you. Under this category, also carry a small pressure gauge, a tire inflator, car manual, gloves and a tire sealer (fix-a-flat). These items will help to keep you on the road in the event of an accident or an incident involving the tires.
These triangles are also called hazard triangles. They are usually made of red reflective material. You should have at least three of these. If your vehicle develops a problem by the road, on a straight two lane highway, you normally switch on the 4-way emergency flasher lights then place one of the hazard triangles about 10 feet on the traffic side of the vehicle (behind) and the other two about 100 feet away from the vehicle; one in front and the other one behind the vehicle. All this should be done within 10 minutes (check with your local traffic rules).
You don’t have to carry a whole toolbox in your car, but at least you need a multi-tool. This is an all in one tool that contains assorted tools assembled as a single compact tool. A good example is Ganzo G302B which is a 16cm long compact tool having 12 pieces of different screw driver heads, pliers, knife, saw, scissors and others; all as one package. If you don’t want to carry a tool box, at least you should have this tool.
So there are 9 important things to carry? Of course there are many other things you could add in your car. Things like blanket, spare bulb, spare fuses, magnetic flashlight, and fuel siphon pump. Feel free to add as much as you want but make sure that you remain organized, utilizing the least space possible. You can purchase a few boxes or fire resistant bags to keep related items organized and in one place. When you are doing your regular maintenance, be sure to remove things that you no longer need or add things that have become very important.