Nobody likes being caught short, so always carry the right essentials to stay safe in a breakdown.
Right, you’re packing a breakdown survival kit: snacks deodorant, fresh pants… Stop right there! This is about carrying the right basics to survive a breakdown, flat tyre, or even get snowed in.
Torch A lifesaver if your car’s electrics go, and for poking around in the engine. If you break down at night your torch will be like a hazard light to other drivers.
Jump leads If your battery’s flat you can clip these on to a mate’s motor and juice up your engine in minutes. You’re back on the road!
Glowsticks Nothing do with clubbing away your boredom in a breakdown. Glowsticks provide hours of light. A luminous warning triangle will make your car super visible, too, and remember a hi-vis jacket.
Tyre pressure gauge Use this so you can regularly check you’re cruising on the correct tyre pressure.
Spare tyre, wheel wrench and jack Make sure you know what to do with the tools, so you can change a flat tyre and be on your merry way in minutes.
Gloves A pair of rubber gloves will keep dirt and oil off your mitts if you have to top up your oil or change a tyre.
Road atlas You never know when you’ll take a wrong turn, especially when your sat nav’s packed up
Old towel or rag You don’t want to use that nice Fred Perry shirt to clean mirrors or grip on to wheel nuts.
In-car phone charger Plug one of these into your car’s cigarette lighter and you can charge a dead mobile, so you won’t lose touch in an emergency. Costs just a few quid, remember not to use your mobile whilst driving.
Ice-scraper Better than a bank card for scraping your frozen windscreen clear. Some scrapers have a glove attached so your fingers won’t freeze off.
Water Carry a bottle of water for yourself and in case the engine overheats.
Oil keep it on board just in case you’ve forgotten to check your engine levels recently.
Blanket Have one to keep you toasty if you’re stranded overnight or in the winter.