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Summer is When to Build a Winter Car Survival Kit

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by Pat McHugh

Summer is the perfect time to build a winter car survival kit. Don't wait until cold weather hits. Put it together now while there's still plenty of time to gather materials.

Here are items every winter car survival kit should contain. It's not exhaustive, but it should get you thinking about the things you'll need if stranded.

Booster cables. These could be for you, but also so you can help others.

A collapsible snow shovel. Good to have in case you have to dig yourself out.

Extra flashlight. Check the batteries often. Batteries lose power quicker in cold climates. You might also consider snap light sticks, or a flashlight with some manual power source (hand crank or shake).

Road flares. If possible, also use a road hazard reflective triangle. These will help warn other vehicles if yours is stranded on a roadside at night. Remember, flares can be hazardous. Use caution and follow the appropriate safety warnings.

Fuel line de-icer.

Door lock de-icer.

Windshield-wiper fluid.

Extra antifreeze.

Extra clothing. These would include pants, gloves, an older pair of boots and a hooded sweatshirt.


Wool socks.

Extra turn signal bulbs.

Basic tools.

Non-perishable, high-energy food. Candy bars containing nuts are a good choice. Keep these in a mouse-proof container.

Cell phone charger. Either for your cell phone battery or a device that can charge your phone independently.

Tin can. Like a coffee can. This can be used for melting snow into water. Don't count on bottled water being liquid during an emergency.

Lighter or waterproof matches. Always a good idea.

Knife. This is the tool with a million uses. Keep it handy.

Tip: Put clothing and blankets in vacuum sealable bags. This will save space in the trunk.

More Survival Kit Tips

For even more survival kit ideas for emergency situations, check out Build the Perfect Survival Kit. It's available at a great discount from

Click here for survival kit tips.

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