9 Things to Keep in Your Car During Winter

Most of the time we get into our cars, turn on the engine, and drive where we need to go with little thought as to what would happen if things went wrong. In the winter months, however, it is worthwhile spending a bit of time considering whether or not you are prepared for the unexpected.

For example, what would happen if you get a puncture while driving home on a cold winter night with sleet falling outside? If you have a car with run flat tyres you will probably be okay, but not everyone does. You might also have roadside assistance which you can call on, but what about the period of time while you wait for help to arrive? If you were to change the tyre yourself, would you be able to see what you were doing and would you be able to stay warm and dry?

Here is our list of nine things that you should consider keeping in your car during the winter months. They don’t include things that you should consider keeping in your car all year such as a phone charger, first aid kit, jump leads, a torch with spare batteries, and spare change. All the items on this list are specific to winter.

1. Ice scraper – it is helpful to keep an ice scraper in your car even if you use de-icer to clear your windscreen and other windows. After all, an ice scraper doesn’t run out.

2. De-icer – it is dangerous and illegal to drive your car when you can’t see out of the windscreen properly. Unless you want to wait for long periods of time for your windscreen to clear, keep de-icer in your car.

3. Gloves – you may not always take gloves with you when you are in your car, so it is helpful to keep a pair in the glove box. If you have a breakdown or another problem, you will be thankful for them.

4. Other items of warm clothing – following on from the last point, it is also helpful to keep other items of warm clothing in your boot. This could include a warm jumper, spare socks, and a coat.

5. Waterproof clothes and footwear – Irish winters are wet but we don’t always get into our cars wearing waterproof clothing. This isn’t an issue the vast majority of the time, but waterproof clothes and footwear will help if you have a problem that means you have to unexpectedly get out of your car.

6. Blanket – a blanket is useful in a number of situations, but particularly if you break down and cannot use your car’s heater.

7. Shovel – most of us don’t see a lot of snow during the winter, but that should not lull us into a false sense of security. When it does fall, it is easy to get stuck – in fact, a parked car can get stuck in snow in a short period of time. A shovel will help you in situations like these.

8. Food – this is for occasions when you might be stranded in your car, such as if you break down. Non-perishable food is usually the best option.

9. Extra screen wash – you use your windscreen washers in the winter more than in the summer because of the extra grime on the road so it is good to keep some extra screen wash in your car to make it easier to top up.

There are some items on this list which you will use regularly and some that you may not use at all. However, it is better to be safe than sorry.

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