You never know what may happen behind the wheel, but being prepared can help you get through even the most unexpected of times.
No matter where you’re heading, don’t hit the road without these 10 car essentials.
1.Your car manual
Though often lost or forgotten, you’d be surprised how frequently your car manual will come in handy, particularly when those strange lights start flickering on the dashboard. If you can’t find yours in the trusty glove compartment, search for it on Manuals Online.
2. An external battery charger
Your mobile phone is a must-have in emergency situations, like if you end up stranded somewhere needing to call roadside assistance. Make sure yours is ready to go by keeping a fully charged external battery charger on you.
3. Printed maps
Although it’s easy to rely on your mobile phone or GPS for directions, sometimes technology can fail or you may end up in an area with limited to no reception. Keep some good old fashioned maps stashed in your car along with a flashlight, should you need to pull over to orient yourself.
4. Jumper cables
Dead batteries happen often on the open road. Sometimes you’ll need a good Samaritan to jump start your engine and other times you’ll need to be that good Samaritan yourself. Either way, keeping a pair of jumper cables in your boot can save the day.
5. A spare tyre, socket wrench and jack
Luckily a flat tyre is one of those car problems you can easily fix yourself, so long as you keep a spare tyre, socket wrench and jack in the boot. If you're not sure how to change the tyre or just need a refresher course, your owner's manual should have you covered.
Whether you're stuck in traffic, waiting for roadside assistance or just have a long drive ahead of you, keeping a bottle of water in your cup holder is essential for staying hydrated and alert on the road. Just remember to refill it whenever you visit a rest stop.
7. A flashlight
If you thought breaking down or changing a flat tyre midday was tough, imagine doing so in the dark. Small, powerful flashlights and torches can help out in emergencies like this - just be sure to keep some spare batteries on hand.
8. A hazard triangle
Have you ever opened the boot of your car, seen a reflective sign and wondered "what's that?" It's a hazard triangle, and every car should have one. Much like a flashlight, a hazard triangle makes roadside repairs safer by providing a reflective surface that lets other drivers know you're there. This is especially important if you need to get a jump start and your lights are out.
9. Your insurance information
No matter how carefully you drive or how well you maintain your car, you can't control the actions of other drivers on the road. To ensure you're prepared in the event of a collision, keep the details of your car insurance policy in your glovebox and read up on what to do after an accident.
10. A first-aid kit
In the unfortunate event that you are in an accident or you spot one and pull over to help, you'll want to have a first-aid kit on hand in case there are any injuries.
Those are our must-have car essentials. For more advice on staying safe on the road, keep browsing our blog.