5 Items You Should Always Carry in Your Car

Updated March 28, 2014

Although most people don’t head out in the expectation that they’ll end up running into trouble, it helps to be prepared in case disaster strikes while you are caught out on the open road. After all, insurance is helpful for handling the aftermath, but it is not going to be all that useful getting you through roadside emergencies. Being prepared means being prepared for all aspects of the problem.


Here are five of the items that you should always carry in your vehicle if you head out on the road:


Emergency Blanket


Made of thin plastic, coated in a chemical agent, designed to reflect the sunlight, emergency blankets are one of the most common items found in survival kits. In part, this is because emergency blankets are not heavy and can be folded up into small packages, which make them easy and convenient to bring. However, emergency blankets are also useful under both hot and cold conditions. Individuals can shelter beneath emergency blankets in hot conditions because their surfaces reflect sunlight, while conserving their body heat in cold conditions because of reduced convection.


First Aid Kit


Although their exact contents should change to some extent based on the medical needs of the individuals who can be expected to use, most first aid kits contain both the tools and supplies needed to treat minor injuries incurred while far and away from the closest medical care provider. As such, they are invaluable to individuals who might end up getting hurt because of vehicular accidents and other problems while out on the road. Supplies contained in first aid kits can sometimes end up being used for other purposes under survival situations.


Flares and Other Roadside Hazard Warnings


You’ll need flares or some other source of strong light if you are heading out on the road. In case you ever run into trouble, the brilliant light from flares and other light sources can cut through the gloom of night to alert other vehicles passing by that there are obstacles on the road. Similarly, having access to flares provides a useful way to attract attention and get the help that you need should you ever end up getting stranded.


Jumper Cables


One of the most common problems on the road is a dead car battery. Having jumper cables on hand gives you the opportunity to jump your car battery, provided that the battery is still usable. Bear in mind that jumper cables need a second, still functioning battery to jump start a dead one. However, that problem goes away if you made the decision to bring along a battery booster pack.


Tire Repair Kit


Similarly, a flat tire is another common problem that can bring your progress to a halt. Although having a spare tire and the tools to change it can help, there are also cases where you can patch up the problem using a tire repair kit until you can get the wheel replaced. A tire sealant can help seal small punctures sufficiently to get your vehicle back on the road, but it is not meant to be a long-term solution.




Being prepared and having the right tools on hand to get through disasters can help reduce the stress of the situation, get you through the situation faster, and ensure your general wellbeing in the process.


Taylor Ritchie is a travel writer that spends a lot of time on the road. She is always looking at making her driving experiences more comfortable and she shares her insights and stories on various blogs. Visit for more information.



Chris Riley
About Chris Riley

I have been wrecking cars for as long as I've been driving them but I keep coming back for more. Two wheels or four, I'm all in. gives me a chance to give something back to the automobile community.

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