Car Essentials

Car Essentials

by | Apr 25, 2024 | Car Care, Driving

Whether you are driving your car to work, a friend’s house, a night out or a road trip, there are car essentials that you should always carry in your ride. We polled our employees to find out what items they named as necessary for any driver.

Must Have Car Essentials

Our employees are spot on about this section of our list of car essentials:

  • Proof of Insurance
  • Jumper Cables
  • Ice Scraper
  • Spare Tire and Tire Changing Kit

Every state in the U.S. requires some form of proof of insurance in a vehicle, except for New Hampshire and Virginia. (However, they do require that you meet other financial responsibility requirements.) So, consider proof of insurance as the first of the “Must Haves” in your vehicle.

A good set of jumper cables, in our opinion, should be in every vehicle, including all electric cars. While jumping an electric car is more complicated, they still have a 12 V battery that powers the electric starter to crank the engine. Plus, our cold Colorado winters can take a toll on battery life. Jumper cables and a good Samaritan can help get you going again, at least far enough to get any larger issues fixed.

And speaking of winter, an ice scraper should also be in every car in Colorado. Even the lightest film of ice on our windshield can be a safety hazard.

Many cars today only come with run-flat tires, self-sealing tires, or a tire inflator/repair kit. Most don’t have a tire changing kit (jack, tire iron, etc.) either. Check your vehicle to see if you have a spare tire, and a tire changing kit. If it doesn’t, it’s a wise investment to purchase these for your car or truck. If you have the room, consider getting a full size spare. That way, if you get a flat, you can change tires, get back on the road, and get the flat fixed at you leisure.

Safety Essentials

  • Pepper Spray
  • Phone Charger
  • Spare Water

While it’s not pleasant to think about, there are some safety essentials that you should have on hand in case of an emergency. Pepper spray is an easy to use, effective deterrent for both people and animals. If you choose to keep pepper spray in your car, be sure to purchase a type that has the largest temperature range so it won’t explode with high or low temps. Keep it in your glove compartment or the side pocket of the driver door. If your worried about it exploding, consider a key-chain canister that you can carry with you.

It’s also very smart to keep a spare phone cable and charger in your car. While most new cars have USB ports or remote options that allow you to charge your phone using the car’s battery, you should have a backup charger that you can use in case your vehicle battery is nonfunctional. It’s a true worst case scenario to be stranded somewhere with a drained phone and a dead car.

Keep a spare jug of water in your car. Not only can this be used for drinking water if you find yourself stranded somewhere off the beaten path of Colorado, but it has a multitude of other uses. Be sure to keep it in a sturdy container that can take the rigors of freezing, heat, and bouncing around in the car.

Convenient To Have on Hand

While these car essentials are not, necessarily, essential to driving your car, they will make your driving experience much more pleasant. Along with a trash can or trash bag receptacle, consider setting up a small travel container somewhere in your car with these and other conveniences that you would like to have on hand:

  • Sunglasses
  • Chapstick/Lip Balm
  • Gum
  • Tissues
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Mini Garbage Can

With a little time and effort, you can prep yourself and your car to handle a lot of the unexpected hurdles driving can throw at you.

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