DIY Roadside Assistance Kit: 6 Must-Haves in an Emergency

Dead battery, flat tire, overheated engine…you never know what type of car troubles you’ll encounter on the road, or where a breakdown might leave you.

No matter what the situation though, an emergency kit can play a crucial role in helping you get back on the road safely.

That’s why it’s a smart idea to never leave home without these must-have tools and supplies in the car:

 1. Tire SOS:

Did a pesky nail or pothole puncture your tire? Flat tires happen…and they always seem to happen at the worst possible time! That’s why it’s smart to carry tire sealant or a portable air compressor kit.

A simple bottle of fix-a-flat, for instance, can help patch up and inflate a leaking tire in minutes, so you can make it to the nearest tire repair center.

 2. Jumper Cables:

You’re nowhere close to home. You crank the engine and… nothing, not even a splutter. Oops! Your battery died.

It’s time to reach for your jumper cables. As long as you can find another car to hook up to, booster cables can help resuscitate your battery and have you back on the road without needing to call roadside assistance. That’s why they’re an essential item for every trunk.

Quick tip: Cheap cables have a tendency to fail when you most need them. It’s always a good idea to invest in high-quality jumper cables.

 3. Flash Light:

For those scary situations, when your car breaks down in the middle of nowhere and its pitch dark out, a flashlight can come in handy. Consumer Reports suggests buying one with a mount, so you can keep your hands free to tinker under the hood, or change a tire. An even smarter option: Look into buying a headlamp.

 4. Fire Extinguisher:

Although it may seem extreme to keep a fire extinguisher in your car, vehicle fires happen more often than you think. In some cases, an extinguisher can help douse a small fire and prevent further damage. (Gauge the severity of the situation though and put yourself out of harm’s way first.)

 5. Road Flares or Hazard Triangles:

Getting stuck on the highway is not only stressful but also extremely risky. Poor visibility and high traffic can put you in danger just checking your tires and engine on the side of the road. Always keep a set of road flares or reflective triangles on hand, so you can warn other motorists of your presence and create a safety zone between you and oncoming traffic.

 6. Clothes, Food, Blanket, and a first Aid Kit:

Put all of these at the top of your packing list. Car breakdowns can sometimes leave you stranded for hours and test your survival skills. Warm clothes, granola bars, water bottles, and a blanket can make all the difference, especially in frigid weather.

Don’t forget your first-aid kit either! It can come to the rescue when you need to treat minor bruises and burns.

If you find yourself dealing with a car that won’t budge (and a full-blown panic attack), take a deep breath! Follow these 10 Steps for Handling Common Roadside Emergencies. Keep in mind, Farmers offers 24/7 Roadside Assistance as an optional coverage to our auto policy holders.

At Farmers, we can’t protect you from car failure, but we provide coverage for all sorts of accidents, injuries, and mishaps on the road. Speak to a Farmers agent about an Auto Insuranceplan that’s right for you.

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