Are you one of those people who considers your car a sanctuary? Do you think of road trips in terms of longer is better? We’ve come up with a few accessories every road warrior should have either in their car, or on the shopping list.
Portable Jump Starter
You can’t always depend on the kindness of strangers when you need a jump. Maybe you’re on a back road in the middle of the night when your battery dies and have no idea when the next car will come rolling by.
Today’s portable jumpers are better than ever. They’re so small you can fit one under your seat and many even have USB ports, so you can charge your phone in a pinch.
Car Stereo for a Connected World
The car CD player is dead, and while the nostalgic part of us thinks it’s a little sad, its replacement is undeniably awesome. Pioneer, for instance, has created a feature-rich and affordable car stereo deck that it describes as a “digital media receiver.” Like many new stereos, it features Bluetooth, hands-free calling and audio streaming. It will easily sink up with Android or iOS devices. You’ll get the most out of your new stereo if you hire a reputable car audio installation company to hook everything up correctly.
Blind Spot Mirrors
A small and inexpensive addition can be an actual lifesaver on busy roadways. These little mirrors will help you stay aware of bicycles, motorcyclists and cars that end up cruising in your blind spots. It’s the right thing to do for yourself and others.
Seatbelt Cutting and Window Breaker Tool
You’ll hardly notice this little tool on your keychain, but you’ll be glad it’s there if an emergency strikes. This type of tool is primarily made for escaping when a vehicle becomes submerged in water. It is designed to easily cut through the seatbelt and easily shatter the window. A set of two usually costs less than $20, which is a small investment for something that could save your life.
Fix A Flat
This won’t help you in the event of a full blow out, but otherwise, it might just save you from having to change a tire on the side of a bustling freeway. If your flat tire is caused by a small hole or a leak around the rim, game on. Just spray this into the air valve. It should be enough to get you out of trouble long enough to drive home, or straight to the tire shop.
Having your own dash cam is kind of like an extra insurance policy. Manufacturers like Garmin produce models that will take HD video of the road as you drive. This can come in handy if you are involved in a car accident, especially if the camera you choose features front and rear facing cameras. The Garmin version records sound and audio, so it might be helpful in court either after an accident, or if you are fighting a traffic ticket.
Does it feel like you can’t keep up with the clutter in your vehicle? Whether the inside of your car is starting to feel a little unruly or the trunk is overflowing with a cluttered mess, there’s an organizer out there for you. For the inside, one popular option is a leak-proof litter basket. Keeping all that trash in one spot will make life on the road a lot more enjoyable.
A visor organizer is also a great place for sunglasses, maps parking garage access cards or any other item you regularly need access too, including toll booth tokens. For the trunk or hatch, try a cargo organizer. This will save you a lot of headache when it’s time to dig out that spare tire or locate your trusty bottle of Fix A Flat.
In the age of cell phones and GPS devices, the map has taken a back seat to more convenient methods of navigation. Yet, most of us who rely on Google Maps or iOS navigation can think of at least one time when we were steered in the wrong direction, or had no signal at all. Having a map around (and knowing how to read it) is essential. It will get you out of a jam when you can’t get a good signal, or will help provide some peace of mind when you cross-reference the atlas route with your GPS device.
About the Author
Rob Mundell is an experienced mechanic and auto accessory installation specialist. He owns and operates Streetfighter Motorsports in Phoenix, Arizona. You can find out more about the company at http://www.streetfightermotorsports.com/.
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