Best Winter Car Emergency Kit + Other Essentials

Do you know what things to keep in your car in winter? A winter car safety kit is a must for every driver in areas where there are freezing temperatures. Most people know to pack water and a little food. However, there are several other winter car accessories that can help keep you, any passengers, and your vehicle safer. Learn why an emergency kit is important and what you need to keep in your car for winter. 

Why Do I Need a Winter Car Emergency Kit?

In rural areas, having a comprehensive winter safety kit can save your life. With the right essentials for your winter emergency car kit, you and your passengers can stay warm. As long as there is cellular service, you can also make calls. In most cases, it can help provide enough food and water until help arrives. Also, you may be able to avoid getting stuck with the right essentials. Additionally, your car will be optimized for winter driving and a potential delay.

What Do I Need for My Car in Winter?

If you get stuck or stranded, these are some important things to have in your vehicle. At the end, there are a few suggestions to make winter driving more comfortable as well.

Candle Heater

One of the best winter accessories is a candle heater. If you get stuck in a rural area, you’ll want to conserve gas. You can find these heater kits in some places. Alternatively, you can use an empty metal coffee can or a similar canister made from metal. Have a few multi-wick candles or larger candles on hand. Be sure to buy high-quality candles that have longer burn times. You can usually see the average burn time listed on the candle’s back or bottom label. Simply light the candle, and keep it inside the metal tin for heat if you need it. Have matches and a lighter handy as well.

Emergency Warning Devices

What should you have in your car for a snowstorm? This is one important consideration since blowing snow and fog reduces visibility. Emergency warning devices like flares or triangles help alert others that you’re on the side of the road. If you get stranded and need to stay there for a while, a cone is helpful. Its bright orange color or reflective components help protect you longer.

Portable Shovel

In some cases, a snow shovel can help you avoid using your emergency supplies. If you get stuck, you can use it to dig out a path. However, if you need to park for a while until a blizzard passes, you can use it afterward.

First Aid Kit

This is one of the most important must-have winter car accessories. If you get hurt shoveling, jumping a battery, or doing something else, a first aid kit helps. Severe infections can potentially happen to people with even the smallest untreated cut.

Phone Charger

For any road trip or winter driving, a reliable charger is important. If you’re traveling in rural areas, you may want to bring a power bank as well. 

Warmth Aids

Warmth aids are some of the best winter car accessories for anyone. Bring enough mittens, hats, socks, and blankets for everyone traveling in the vehicle. When you need to use a candle heater, be sure to keep it at a safe distance from blankets.

Flashlight and Batteries

Choose a high-quality flashlight that can tolerate the cold. Also, be sure to pack plenty of extra batteries.

Ice Scraper and Snow Brush

You can sometimes find handy combination tools that include both of these important car accessories. Be sure to clean off ice and snow before you drive. Also, if you must park to wait out a snowstorm, these accessories are great to have afterward.

Food and Sanitation Items

Pack plenty of non-perishable foods that are high in protein and nutrients. Jerky, dried fruit, energy bars, and protein bars are some examples. Keep enough water for yourself and every passenger to have enough to drink for a few days. Also, be sure to keep hand sanitizer, toilet paper, tissues, and wet wipes in your kit.

Jumper Cables

A snow kit for a car should include jumper cables. If another car stops to help you and doesn’t have them, you’ll be prepared. You can help others who are stranded as well. There are also portable battery starters that you can use on your own battery. However, if you get one, you’ll need to keep it charged.

Portable Air Compressor

This is one of the best car accessories if you have low tire pressure. A portable air compressor plugs into a 12V car outlet and can fill your tires. When temperatures outside fall quickly, it’s common for tire pressure to drop. For every 10-degree drop, your tires can lose up to a couple of pounds of pressure.

Flat Tire Fix

There are products you can find in hardware stores to temporarily fix flat tires. These are usually in cans. If you have a flat tire instead of low pressure, this can be a lifesaver. Keep a few cans on hand.

Safety Absorbent

As one of the top winter car essentials, safety absorbent is a substance that helps you gain traction. If you get stuck and need to get back on the road, it’s especially valuable. Simply scatter it in a path in front of your tires. Cat litter also works as a substitute. 

Basic Tool Kit

Tools are important items to keep in your car for winter. Pliers, screwdrivers, a hammer, duct tape, and a tire pressure gauge are a few helpful winter tools for a car. They can be useful in many situations.

How Do I Make My Car Cozy in the Winter?

If you get stuck, it helps to have an optimized interior to keep you and any passengers more comfortable. For example, a winter car seat cover is great for a leather or vinyl seat. It can help keep you warmer if you get stranded. Car windshield snow covers and car window covers for winter can help keep in the heat. You may also want to look for the best winter floor mats for an SUV if you have one. It helps to have floor mats and other cozy interior accessories that help retain heat in larger vehicles.

What Does a Car Need to Drive Safely on Snow in Winter?

What are five things you can do to prepare your car for winter driving? In addition to having a kit with the right accessories for a car, these are some important preparatory steps:[8]

  • Check your tire tread depth and air pressure to ensure they’re adequate for winter driving.
  • Lube your window tracks, door locks, hinges, latches, and weather stripping.
  • Check your car battery, clean the terminals, and protect them.
  • If your heater needs work or an inspection, have that done ASAP.
  • Check your car’s fluids, and have the oil changed.

Now that you know what to keep in your car for winter, you can start preparing. Head to your nearest True Value store to find the right car accessories for your winter emergency kit.