How to Make the Ultimate Car Safety Kit  

An emergency kit for your car is the best example of something whose importance you won't appreciate until you need it. When misfortune befalls you, your car safety kit is the difference between a nightmare experience and a frustrating but tolerable one. You'll need to do more than simply throw a safety kit in your car, though. You need to fill it with the right items. Here's a guide on how to make the ultimate car safety kit.

First Aid Kit

 How to Make the Ultimate Car Safety Kit

Image via Flickr by DLG Images

If the worst befalls you, a simple first aid kit could determine whether your situation is frustrating or dangerous. Properly treating wounds as soon as they occur lessens the chances of suffering infection. You should have a ready supply of gauze, rubbing alcohol, and sanitizer to treat any wound. Fortunately, you can stock a surprising number of health care items in a small package.

The important aspect of packing a first aid kit is that more than any other item, you must have easy access to it. Otherwise, even when you need it, you might not be able to reach it. If you build your own first aid kit, remember a few important components. You'll need painkillers to reduce discomfort. Anti-nausea medication is also critical in some circumstances. While you're trapped in your car, you don't want to vomit in it. Finally, sunscreen can save the day in warmer weather. Otherwise, you'll have an unfortunate memento of your incident.

Food and Water

Travelers find themselves trapped on the road more often than you might realize. Construction, inclement weather, and multicar accidents can shut down roads, even if nothing untoward happens to you in your vehicle. As minutes turn into hours, you'll need to satisfy your basic human needs. That means you need an emergency supply of food and water.

Always keep a few bottles of water in your safety kit. Also, add nonperishable foods such as crackers, preferably unsalted ones to avoid making yourself too thirsty. Protein bars are another good idea since they pack a lot of punch without taking up much space in your kit.

Blankets and a Flashlight

Should you wind up stuck in colder weather, your body temperature must remain steady. Always keep enough blankets handy that you can cover yourself as well as the maximum number of passengers in your vehicle. The flashlight is something you might not consider if you're in the habit of using your cellphone. The problem with this plan is that your smart device might run out of juice. That'll leave you in the dark. A small flashlight with fresh batteries guarantees you maintain visibility in any situation.

Fire Extinguisher

Did you know that car fires represent 20 percent of all reported fires in the United States? It doesn't take much for the situation to escalate, either. If any part of your engine catches fire, you risk discovering the true meaning of an internal combustion engine. At that point, your car will seem like a fireworks show. That's cause enough to want to store a small fire extinguisher in your safety kit. It's something you hope never to use, but you'll feel better knowing it's there.

Reflective Warning Triangles

The first step you'll take if stranded is to turn on your hazard lights. That's not enough, though. Since you likely won't get to choose where your car stops, there's no guarantee that other drivers will see these lights. That means your situation can go from bad to worse if somebody plows into you while you're stuck. A trio of reflective warning triangles placed at the front, back, and side of your car will provide a better early warning signal for incoming traffic. They'll know to slow down and look out for your stopped vehicle.

Tire Repair Gear

One of the most likely causes of car breakdown is a flat tire. When that happens, you'll want to have all the supplies on hand to address the problem immediately. The first key item is a tire gauge. You'll use it to identify whether your tire has the appropriate pressure in it. If you already know the answer, you'll still come back to your tire gauge.

Before that, you'll want something else, though. That's foam tire sealant. This is a quick and dirty solution to a flat tire. You spray it in the affected area, and your tire hole disappears. At this point, use your tire gauge to verify that you have enough air in your tire. At a minimum, you need enough to reach a gas station or other place where you can fill the tire fully. That's where the final item comes into play. A tire air pump can solve your pressure woes, getting you back out on the road.

As you can see, there's a lot to consider with a safety kit. Add all the items suggested above. Then, you'll never have to worry if you do become stranded on the road.