Top 10 things you should ALWAYS keep in your car

Top 10 things you should ALWAYS keep in your car

You’ll no doubt have seen articles like this before. Lists detailing a vast array of (often obscure or unusual) items that you should supposedly keep in your car at all times. Let’s be realistic, though: how many of us actually store a week’s supply of food and a wardrobe full of hi-vis clothing in our car’s boot? Not many, we’re willing to bet.

We’ve decided to put together a list of our own, but instead focusing only on essentials. The following 10 items should be kept in your car at all times, not only to keep you safe, but to help ensure the safety of other road users too.

What do you need to keep in your car?

1: First aid kit
You never know what might happen on the roads. You could be the first motorist on the scene of a life-threatening accident. You could be involved in one yourself and need medical assistance. We all think things like this will never happen to us, but they can – which is why you should always keep a first aid kit in your vehicle, just in case.

2: Warning triangle
The same goes for breakdowns; we often see broken down cars, but assume our car will be fine! But if your car conks out on a busy stretch of road at night (something that happens surprisingly often), you will want to have one of these in your car. Placing a warning triangle behind your vehicle will make it much more visible to passing motorists, reducing the risk of an accident.

3: Phone charger
We’ve become increasingly reliant on technology to get around. You’ll need your phone for directions or to call for help, so make sure it’s charged at all times. We’d recommend getting yourself a 12v USB adapter or a portable power bank.

4: Jump leads
Even if you don’t know how to use them or don’t feel comfortable doing so, chances are there will be a good samaritan nearby who does. Jump leads (or a battery booster) can help restart your car if the battery dies, helping you reach your destination with little delay.

5: Spare wheel
Many cars nowadays don’t come with a spare wheel, which is a shame. It’s always a good idea to carry one and learn how to fit it. If you get a puncture, changing the wheel yourself could save you hours!

6: Jack and toolkit
You won’t be able to do anything with your spare wheel without a suitable jack and a wheel brace. Carrying a full tool kit is also a smart idea – you may be able to fix small problems at the roadside if you have the right sockets and spanners at your disposal.

7: Water
You can survive for weeks without food, but water? Less than a week in most cases. Although it’s highly unlikely you’ll ever be stranded in a remote location for this long (unless you’re traversing the Australian outback or the Antarctic wilderness), it’s still important to stay hydrated. If your car overheats, you can also use the water to top up your radiator and make it home.

8: Change
Although many car parks nowadays accept card payments (most of them, in fact), you never know when you might need to use change instead. If the machine doesn’t work correctly or your card plays up, you’ll wish you had some coins in your car.

9: Coat or jacket
Breaking down in the winter can be truly miserable, especially if you haven’t brought a coat with you. If your engine can’t start to keep the car warm, you’ll need an extra layer handy instead.

10: Owner’s manual
Seen a warning light you’re not familiar with? Not sure where or how to top up your washer fluid or oil? Keep your owner’s manual in the glovebox just in case, as it’ll be packed with all the information you need.

Honourable mention: Breakdown recovery details

If you need assistance, it’s important to know who to call. Our vehicle recovery services cover Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk – make sure you save our number into your phone!

Proud owner of Cambridge Car Solutions, a family run business offering both Vehicle Recycling & 24/7 Breakdown Recovery.