Things to Keep in Your Car

July 29, 2019Car Care and Revamp
Anastasia Hill

Apart from being the next fashion icon, Anastasia is also a freelance writer and expert on moving (and packing clothes).

There are a lot of situations that might leave you stranded on the side of a road if you don’t have all the necessary things to keep in your car. According to AAA, the most frequent problems are dead batteries, flat tires, and people being locked outside of their vehicles. This list of essentials will make you feel safe while driving, no matter if you’re out there with a fresh driver’s license or you’re a master driver. Be ahead of any unfortunate situation with all of the good things to keep in your car.

No matter if you’re preparing for a long trip somewhere, or you’re just headed to work and back, you need to have all the things to always have in your car. It will save you a lot of trouble and driving anxiety if there’s an emergency, and you want to be prepared for the unexpected. We’ll also add some extra tips at the end. Here’s an answer to what are good things to keep in your car.

Give USA Auto Transport an Ask for a Free Quote


The List of Things to Keep in Your Car Shouldn’t Be Too Long

If you were wondering What should you not keep in your car, the answer is quite simple – get rid of all the trash and unnecessary stuff. Especially if you’re driving a small car. Having too many items in your truck, glove department, or in the armrest compartment might cause additional problems if you need something right away.

Imagine opening your trunk to find jumper cables and end up looking for them for twenty minutes. Our list will help you stay organized and safe while not jeopardizing the traffic and causing road rage.

We’ll Help You by Sorting the Things to Keep in Your Car Into Simple Categories

This way, you’ll find it easier to follow through with the list of things you should keep in your car. We’ll start with car repair and maintenance, important documents you must have, a safety kit, and all other stuff that you’ll find convenient.

There is no such thing as asking What every girl should keep in her car – the list is the same for all vehicles and owners – the most expensive cars in the world and the best import cars require the same items as the best cars for women and the best cars for off-road driving.

Man washing car
Keep your list short and clear, and keep your car neat and clean all the time

Pack Just Like You’re Planning to Repair Your Car – Here’s What You’ll Need in Your Trunk

Regardless if you’re driving in Los Angeles, driving in Chicago, or driving in New York City, these are some basic essentials you should always have around. Your car is not a storage or a warehouse, so there’s no need to overpack it with stuff that is not so useful or handy. Take a look at our checklist and make sure you have everything before you go driving around some of the most famous routes in the US.

Essentials You Should Always Have in Your Car

Spare tire

Don’t go anywhere without a properly inflated spare tire. If you have a habit to regularly check the air pressure in your tires on a gas station, then you’re in a safe position already, and you’ll know upfront when you’ll have to learn how to change a flat tire if you haven’t learned. For this adventure, you’ll also require a wheel wrench and a tripod jack. The tire pressure gauge can also help you with maximizing the economy of the fuel and minimizing tire wear. Keep one with you just in case.

Tire repair kit

If it happened that your spare isn’t very functional, or the damage on the tire seems like it’s repairable, you can fix it with a sealer and then use a tire inflater to keep you rolling until the first mechanic you can find. It’s always useful to know how to use a tire repair kit.

Jumper cables

You must have a quality pair of thick, copper jumper cables if your battery goes dead. You don’t have to be a mechanic to learn how to start a car without jumper cables, just if it happens that there aren’t any other cars around. A good tool kit and a multipurpose utility tool are always handy to have in the trunk.

Fire extinguisher

Another crucial thing to have is a fire extinguisher. Even if you have the best car insurance for young drivers, don’t rely just on that. Also, one of the most important tips is to make sure you have the one that can turn out fires caused by both liquids and electricity. Keep some water if your vehicle gets preheated.

Duct tape and WD-40

Good old duct tape can sometimes be a lifesaver in many different situations where a small repair is needed, and so can WD-40 spray. If you’re struggling with a nut or a bolt on your car that you just can’t loosen up, this amazing product can help. It’s always useful to have one in your home and car.

Rain poncho

Rain poncho (disposable or regular) is handy to have if you have to do some work around your car and it’s pouring outside. At least you won’t return to the car seat all wet.

Brake fluid

Keep some brake fluid in your trunk as well. If you see that your brakes are leaking, you have to make it to a safe place and to learn how to add brake fluid. The same applies to antifreeze.

Keep Small Essentials in the Glove Compartment

Get a pair of thicker reusable gloves and keep them in the glove compartment if you have to get messy and you want your hands to remain clean. This is also a place for other essential small stuff such as a cell phone charger for cars, extra batteries, and a flashlight. Keep some matches or a lighter just in case, as well as a compass if you get lost in the middle of nowhere.

A good paper map will also be very useful if you’re out of battery or your internet is poor. You can store some high-energy and non-perishable bars or nuts and some drinking water. You never know when you might get hungry or thirsty.

A Reflective Triangle Is a Popular Tool to Help Your Safety on the Road

If the accident already happened and you have to stay on the road and wait for help, you must have a reflective triangle and brightly colored cloth to make your vehicle more visible. If it happens that you need to walk to get some assistance, you should wear a reflective vest, so you don’t get hit. After all, you probably know from your own experience how much driving stress it causes when someone doesn’t mark their car properly.

Take a Look at This Video for More Tips on Things to Keep in Your Trunk

You can never be too cautious when it comes to this, so a few extra tips from experts are always welcome. Take a look at this video for a brief summary of all essentials you should have with you.

YouTube video

What Documents Should You Keep in Your Car?

Before you get in your auto and go anywhere, double-check if you have all the necessary documents. You must have your owner’s manual, repair contact information in case of emergency, and your AAA card. Take your car insurance forms with you, and don’t forget the copies of your registration. It might sound evident, but don’t forget your license if you don’t already carry it with you all the time.

man in the job interview
Hopefully, you won’t be pulled over, but if it happens, make sure you have all the paperwork

What Should I Keep in My Car? Don’t Forget the First Aid Kit

Every vehicle must have a good first aid kit in case someone gets sick or injured during the drive and you’re far from home or a hospital. What you will find inside is an antiseptic wash to keep your hands clean since there’s no running water and soap. There will be some adhesive bandages and an antibiotic ointment or a cream.

Sterile gauze pads are meant for any open wounds, and medical tape will firm them to the skin. Cut the length of the gauze you need with the scissors you will find inside. If we’re talking about a bruise, you will require instant cold packs and an elastic bandage to fixate the joint or some other part of the body. It’s also recommended to have an aspirin and a thermometer if someone gets a fever.

What to Keep in Your Car if You’re Driving in the Wintertime?

If you’re living somewhere where winters get very cold and snowy, you will have some more items to put on the list of things to keep in the car. Even if your hometown isn’t hit by blizzards, it’s smart to have these items in case you end up somewhere during winter weather.

Keep an ice scraper or a snowbrush to clean your windshield. If you’re headed to a mountain or to a road that still has snow on it, keep snow chains with you. Winter tires are also a must, and cardboard or, even better, a carpet remnant can be helpful if you try to get traction in snow.

black and white car covered in snow
Nonexperienced drivers might have problems with driving on snowy roads

Here’s an Extra Tip – Learn What to Remove From Your Car if You Plan on Shipping It

In case you’re checking out the things to have in your car because you want to move your car to another state, keep in mind that some companies don’t allow leaving anything inside. Maybe some car shipping company you contact can let you leave some stuff in the trunk, but up to a certain limit.

Things to always keep in your car, such as documents, must be removed before getting auto transport services. Also, anything that might bounce in the trunk and spill or damage the interior of your vehicle should be removed. Shipping car cross country should be done only with a reliable auto transport company you trust that offers you both options for car shipping – open trailer and enclosed auto transport.

Enclosed Auto Transport

Read More

Open Carrier Auto Transport

Read More

Decide Which Trailer Is the Best Option for Your Vehicle

Open carrier auto transport is a cheaper option, but if you use enclosed auto transport, you will get full protection of your vehicle, even though the price is higher by around thirty percent. Whichever option you choose, make sure you have all the information and car shipping advice.

The company that transports cars from state to state will also provide you with door-to-door auto transport and terminal-to-terminal car shipping. After that, all you have to do is learn how to register your car in a new state and enjoy your new life in another place.


Get a Quote

    check mark
    Download as PDF

    Moving Checklist

    Get a Free Estimate 855.675.3451