How to prep your car for winter safety


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Preparing for driving in the winter can be nerve-wracking. But with these essentials, you’ll be set for all winter driving circumstances. 

Rachel Kleszyk

You know that saying, “You’d rather be overpacked than under-packed?” Turns out those wise words can be applied to preparing for a roadside emergency, not just packing for a tropical vacation. Build your own essential car kit for the winter with these materials, all found on Amazon. 

Collapsible Snow Shovel 

The first, and arguably one of the most important, tools to include in a winter car kit is a durable snow shovel. This collapsible shovel is: “lightweight, compact, comfortable, multi-functional and heavy-duty.” Able to adjust to three different sizes, it can be stored in any vehicle necessary.  

Jumper Cables & Emergency Tool Kit 

You never know what kind of roadside repairs these frigid months will force, which is why jumper cables and a tool kit are essential in every car. These jumper cables are rated 4.8/5 stars on Amazon and could come in handy for yourself or others year-round. Similarly, a car tool kit could be needed by anyone at any time.

Snow Scraper 

Another season-long necessity is an ice-scraper. This dual-sided car scraper is equipped for both ice and snow and is also detachable, making it compact and versatile for everyday use.

Traction for Snow and Ice

In the moments you just can’t manage to get your car over the ice and snow, Walk on Ice by Traction Magic helps you gain traction. Old towels, floor mats or an extra bag of kitty litter you have lying around will help in these times of despair, too. 

First Aid Kit

Easy-access first aid supplies are invaluable for daily life and emergencies. This first aid kit comes packed with materials to treat “minor cuts, scratches, burns and sprains.” Designed to be taken on the go, each case is durably made to “preserve the highest quality and sterility of medical supplies.” 

LED Flashlight & Batteries 

A source of light is imperative when attempting to perform any car-related task. This “long-lasting” LED flashlight is “zoomable and portable,” making ideal lighting available in any instance. Don’t forget to stock your kit with extra batteries for the flashlight as well.

Hand and Foot Warmers 

Though a small item in this winter car kit, a very useful one – hand and foot warmers can keep you warm in the event, your vehicle unexpectedly stops working. These packs are “air-activated,” which allows them to heat up without any power source. 

Road Flares

In an emergency, road flares create a safety zone that improves the security of a stopped car, and more importantly, its passengers. This highway kit includes six flares, which are the “universally understood distress signal.” They also “store safely in the trunk,” making them a great addition to any vehicle. 

Reflective Safety Vest

Another precautionary piece is a reflective safety vest. Available in neon orange or green, this safety vest increases the visibility of your placement and movement in times of emergency. 

Food with Long Shelf-Life & Water 

If ever stranded in your vehicle, food would be vital for survival. Emergency food bars ensure a source of protein and nutrition in moments of desperation. With a shelf-life of 32 months, these ration bars don’t require frequent purchasing to stay fresh in your trunk. 

Spare Materials

In addition to the supplies listed above, random spare items lying around your house could be deemed crucial in an emergency. Warm clothes like hats, gloves and sweatshirts can be used to layer if experiencing heat loss. When you get new windshield wiper blades, save the old ones and add them to this kit, just in case. Extra cell phone chargers also prove useful at unexpected times.