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Driving isn't all fun and games. Owning a car can be great, but it does need attention and maintenance. Automobile maintenance can be extremely costly, especially when you rely on others. Don't worry, Alt_driver's got you covered with 12 essential items that you need in your car to keep it looking good and running better.
12 Car Essentials Available on Amazon
A jump starter is one of those car accessories that you'll be happy to have when you need it. Whether you're on a lengthy road trip or a quick drive to the grocery store, a dead battery is a dead battery. You can own a brand new car or a beater, but batteries live and die the same way. Forget to turn your headlights off, and you will a jump starter, especially if you don't feel like calling AAA and want to go the DIY route instead.
Cell Phone Car Charger
Even if your battery life is great, this provides peace of mind. Make sure your car has a USB port for it as well, or it's useless.
Tire Pressure Gauge
Let's be honest, we can tell when something is up with our tires. The gauge is good to verify our sixth sense, though.
Sometimes you just need some air instead of a patch or complete tire change. This will save you a lot of time and worry.
Life is full of bumps and potholes. We make it through, but we're bound to catch a flat tire or two along the way. A spare tire can save you A LOT of money on a tow, and it doesn't need to be high quality, either.
First Aid Kit
Sometimes, certain things require immediate attention -- and we're not just talking bathroom breaks. A car emergency kit is extremely handy to keep in the glove compartment, because accidents happen, and you never know when you may need an awesome-themed band-aid.
This seems obvious, but not everyone is accustomed to long drives or road trips. Picture this: You're headed to a relative four hours away during a sweltering southern summer, and you hit traffic. Do you really want to be the person delaying the trip to grandma because you "needed" a slurpie?
Seat Belt Cutter and Window Breaker
This may sound extreme, but accidents have been increasing in America, thanks to our beloved smartphones and the distractions therein. Some goof texting and driving could have your car flipped like a turtle on its shell in an instant. You could wait for help -- because accident scenes are SO approachable -- or you could help yourself and your passengers out of a sticky situation with an on-hand escape tool.
Paper Towels/Hand Sanitizer
I got one word for ya: "Achoo!" These things may not be as essential as, say, a first aid kit. But, depending on who you ask, but it would be pretty unsanitary to not keep some hand sanitizer available or a roll in your back seat, just in case. In the pandemic age, sneezes will clear a car out faster than beans.
My fellow beater/hoopty road warriors feel me on this one. Duct tape has saved many a side mirror and should not be underestimated.
Snow Brush With Ice Scraper
Being able to see while driving during the winter months is everything. Make sure both windshield and all your mirrors are cleared of snow and ice with a quality snow brush/ice scraper combo.
You're not yourself when you're hungry. Keep an energy bar or two stocked in the glove box to avoid road rage.
If you keep your car stocked with these essentials, you can avoid a lot of issues and enjoy the smoothest ride possible.
This post was originally published on May 24, 2021.