winter raodsCredit: deposit photos

Few things are worse than being stranded in a car unprepared. Take the time to see how prepared you are to face winter driving this year.

1. Get your battery checked

A perfectly sound car will not start if the battery is defected in any way. Make an appointment with your local mechanic to have your battery tested for proper function. It’s a simple test, and often free, which could save you time, energy, and money.

2. Flashlight

Flashlights come in handy for all kinds of reason, especially if your car breaks down on an unlit road. Having a flashlight can help you locate jumper cables in your trunk or where the jack is to fix a flat. A flashlight is also a comfort while you wait for a tow truck to arrive.

3. Cell phone charger

Cell phones have the unfortunate ability to lose power just when they are needed most. If you have a cell phone charger in your car, then the battery life can be extended through the battery of the car. (Unless of course, the car battery is dead, but you already took care of that, right?)

4. A functioning spare tire

A flat spare tire doesn’t do any good so it is vital to check the air pressure once every three months. It would be a good idea to schedule a check on your spare tire when you schedule to have your battery tested.

5. Chains

Inclement weather can be vicious and sudden when you are unprepared. Carrying chains in your car will give you the ability to adapt to the environment quickly and safely. Practice putting the chains on and off of your tires so you will be ready to act when the time comes.

6. Flares

Flares are a safe way to let motorists know that your car is disabled. The light is a caution that will help drivers to avoid possible collusions with your vehicle. This also gives you a safe berth for changing a flat tire and lets safety vehicles know exactly where you are.

7. 72-hour kit

It’s not always possible to solve a car issue quickly. When you are prepared with a good 72-hour kit, you will have food, water, clothing, and warmth within easy reach. Rotate food and water often to keep it fresh, pack warm clothes, and keep an emergency blanket to ward off chilly weather.

8. Jumper Cables

During the winter season, your car headlights can be left on by accident. This drains the battery and to recharge you will need a jump start. If you have jumper cables, it will be easier to ask a coworker or Good Samaritan to help you. You may be able to return the favor someday.

9. Ice scraper/snow duster

It can be a startling experience to park your car without a snowflake to be seen only to return to it covered by an avalanche. When you have an ice scaper/snow duster tool, your car will be snow free with a few deft strokes.

10. Entertainment

Stash a book or word find in your glove compartment to keep you busy while you are awaiting rescue. Time drags on when all you have is the sound of rain tapping on the windows and children crying in the backseat.

It’s worth the time and trouble to be prepared for winter driving. What would you add to your car winter list?

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