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13 Common Sense Items you Need in a Winter Vehicle Emergency Kit

When looking for great car tips we stumbled upon this article written by Bryan Black for  We think he has some really great tips that can be helpful to our readers!

As I type this, an “arctic air invasion” is pushing its way south to us in Texas, leaving much of the country feeling as cold as a mid-winter’s day. While I’m sitting here thinking of the precautions and preparations I’ll take for the impending cold spell, I wanted to share a list of the most important items I carry with me and how those correspond to preparing for cold weather.

During an emergency is a lousy time to think of all the things you should have been carrying. The important thing is not to wait until the last minute to prepare.

1. Keep Your Vehicle Serviced

This is a pretty comprehensive step, but extremely important, nonetheless. Keeping your vehicle serviced includes ensuring your fluids are changed at the proper intervals and topped off where applicable. This is the mindset portion of this article, take care of your vehicle and your vehicle will take care of you. Most emergencies can be prevented by keeping your vehicle in top condition.

While a list is below of what to check, cold weather makes a few of these even more important, such as ensuring your antifreeze level and type of mixture is good to go, putting a winter-specific “no-freeze” windshield wiper fluid mix into your fluid reservoir and keeping the gas tank as close to full as possible at all times.

One last note on your cooling system is to ensure it’s flushed every few years, the danger here is that after time, the rust inhibitors in antifreeze break down and make the fluid less effective. Flushing will also remove any particles that could potentially clog the system.

Vehicle Checklist

  • Antifreeze and Radiator
  • Windshield wiper operation and fluid check (no-freeze mixture)
  • Heater and Defroster
  • Brakes and Brake Fluid Level
  • Emergency Flashers
  • Tire Pressure and Tread Depth
  • Fuel Level
  • Oil Level
  • Battery Charge and Terminal Cleanliness

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