Items to include in your car winter emergency kit

You may have an emergency at any time and any place, so you must pack an emergency kit. Below are items you should include in your car winter emergency kit.

Some of a driver's worst fears are a dead battery or alternator, a blown tire, your car running out of gas, and any number of other car problems that leave you stranded on an empty stretch of road. In the following article, we will review items that you must include in your winter emergency kit.

your car emergency

Driving Emergencies

For winter drivers, there is also the possibility of slipping from an icy or very rainy road into a side bank of the road. A quick call to a tow truck or roadside assistance service usually gets you to safety within a couple of hours, but technology can sometimes fail, and there are still parts of the country that are not covered by cell service.

In such scenarios, having a car safety kit with the right components can make all the difference in keeping you and your passengers safe until help arrives. 58% of people have some emergency supplies in their car, but only 30% are confident they have enough if bad weather hits.

Depending on the problem, having the right tools can also get you back on the road as quickly as possible. While some items should be found in every car trunk, not every roadside emergency kit is made the same. You should customize your kit according to the type and condition of your vehicle, as well as the weather in which you usually drive. With the unpredictability of winter weather, even traditional warm-weather drivers may want to consider adding snow and ice safety elements. It is always wise to be careful and include some items just in case.

Emergency items to have in your car.

Here is a list of essential emergency vehicle kits:

1. Flashlights and Lighting

The first and most important safety item to include in your auto emergency kit are reflective flares or triangles, which warn other drivers of roadside hazards, especially in low visibility conditions. And in the event of a breakdown, they should be evenly spaced along the side of the road behind your vehicle. For a reusable, longer-lasting option, invest in battery-powered LED flashlights. A flashlight is also essential, especially the versatile version that flashes.

2. Connection cables

Jumper cables are another essential to include in a car emergency kit. Batteries can rust or tarnish at the least opportune moment, and jumper cables as you start charging your car can get you from your secluded spot to the next service station at least. You should also consider carrying a separate battery pack to start your car when there is no one else around to help you.

3. First aid kit

A first aid kit is a must-have item to include in any emergency kit and is indispensable for treating small everyday injuries and more serious wounds from accidents. You can buy them pre-packed with all the essentials or assemble one customized to your needs. Families with young children should include medications appropriate for their age. Make sure you know what medications are needed for your passengers and pack enough to last you a reasonable amount of time.

4. Spare tire, iron tire, and car jack

A spare tire and tire-changing equipment should be included in your vehicle's emergency kit. You should know how to change a tire if no help is available and you have to do it yourself. Check your kit every 6 months and make sure your spare tire is properly inflated.

5. Mobile phone and charger

Another essential to your safety while driving is having a properly working mobile phone and charger in case the car battery is low or dead. It is important to seek help if you have been seriously injured in a car accident or if something has gone wrong with the car.

6. Water

Besides keeping warm, staying hydrated is an essential component of survival. Keep clean drinking water in smaller plastic containers, which thaw faster with less body heat in the winter than larger jugs. If you are driving in a remote area, you should be sure to bring plenty of water (one professional recommends at least one gallon per person per day for three days if possible).

7. Non-perishable foodstuffs

Packing food in your kit will help feed you in case of an emergency. Non-perishable foods like granola bars, soup, nuts and peanut butter, dried fruits, and cans of tuna are great options to pack into your kit.

8. Vehicle fluids and tools

Flat tires are one of the most common causes of roadside problems, but it is not always possible to change a tire. Including a can of tire inflator and sealant in your kit can get you back on the road at least until the next stop. Other items that may help avoid a roadside crisis and keep running:

  • 1 liter or more of motor oil (make sure it's the correct formula for your vehicle)
  • 1 gallon of coolant
  • Tool set with screwdrivers, pliers, and an adjustable wrench
  • 1 set of windshield wiper blades
  • Good wiper blades are also essential to have on hand, as they can

Good wiper blades are also essential to have on hand, as they can clean your windshield in as little as three strokes without leaving streaks. Keep a set of new blades in your vehicle so you can replace damaged ones quickly and on the go.

9. Winter emergency car kit

Aside from preparing your car for the winter, you should keep certain things in your car to prepare you for a winter emergency. If you know you'll be driving in the weather now, include:

  1. Rain and snow scraper
  2. A spray bottle of washer fluid
  3. Waterproof matches

Store all of your items together in a box or tote bag in the trunk, making sure they are easy to access if you need them quickly. A blanket, sleeping bag, or emergency survival blanket that retains heat is crucial for a cold night, especially in wintry climates. Bottled water and long-life food items like granola or energy bars can be rotated over time.


Driving safely should always be your top concern. So you must know safe driving tips to keep yourself and your passengers safe on the road.


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