Whether you’ve got a long journey planned or you’re just using your car for commuting and getting around, there are a few essential items you might want to keep in your car all the time. Some of these you might rarely use and some might come in handy regularly.
A torch is always helpful to keep in your vehicle, even more so during winter. Though mobile phones have a torch these often aren’t bright enough or very practical when they matter – and you might need to conserve your phones battery.
First Aid Kit
Many vehicles come with a first aid kit from factory – or will have a compartment for one at least. We recommend checking your vehicles compartment to ensure you have a complete first aid kit onboard. If you plan to travel through Europe you’ll legally need to have a first aid kit in your car.
A blanket is useful in a variety of situations; to keep you warm in the case of a winter breakdown, to protect your upholstery when carrying something grubby or even just as a picnic blanket in the summer.
Gloves can come in handy (pun intended) during the cold months, but are also useful if you do need to fix your car at the roadside to help keep your hands clean or provide extra grip.
Tyre Inflator/Pressure Gauge
As we’ve emphasised in the past, it’s important to maintain correct tyre pressures. Most tyre inflators have a built in pressure gauge and many vehicles come with tyre inflators in place of a spare wheel. Check under your boot floor if you’re not sure whether or not you have one.
Spare Tyre or Puncture Repair
Many new cars don’t come with a spare tyre and will often have a puncture repair gel alongside tyre inflator in it’s place. These can have expiry dates so it’s always good to check your tyre inflator works and the puncture repair is still usable. If you have a spare tyre make sure the tyre is in good condition and still suitable for use.
If you do have a spare tyre and find yourself needing to use it, you’ll have to have a car jack as well. Again, most vehicles come with one of these and they’re often kept under the boot floor.
Basic Tool Kit
Again some vehicles come with a few necessary tools, if you don’t have the factory tool kit you might want to pack your own with a two screw drivers (Phillips and Flat Headed), a wheel wrench or torq wrench and some pliers. A multitool or Swiss army knife can also be a compact way to carry some tools you might need.
Useful in a myriad of situations, duct tape can be used to seal a leaking window or hold some parts together until you can reach a garage.
A packable waterproof jacket is useful to keep in your car, it takes up very little space and is ideal if you get caught out on a wet or windy day. It would be worth including a warmer jacket during the winter months.
A fresh bottle of drinking water can serve as more than just a means of staying hydrated. Water is useful to keep on board if you ever need to top-up your coolant or washer jets.
Ice Scraper & De-icer
During the cold months, an ice scraper is vital. De-icer can be very useful to save yourself a little time and effort under icy conditions also. Just be sure your windscreen is completely free of ice and delisted before setting off.
A USB charger that plugs into your vehicles 12v socket is a must these days to keep your phone charged, or any other electronics you might need – just make sure to take your charger cable with you, or keep on in the vehicle as well.