9 Must-Have Items You Should Keep in Your Car (and Probably Don’t)

Oct 04, 2018

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9 Must-Have Items You Should Keep in Your Car (and Probably Don’t)

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From matches to duct tape, make sure you keep these essential items in your car.

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From matches to duct tape, make sure you keep these essential items in your car.

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Despite our best efforts, emergencies happen. And while any OnStar Member can contact an Advisor for Emergency Services,*16 it’s still a good idea to keep your vehicle stocked with essential items.

Of course, there are the obvious supplies — a windshield scraper and brush, snow shovel, flashlight, jumper cables, first-aid kit, bottled water and tire gauge. But here are some things that may not be so obvious.

  1. Disinfectant wipes: An absolute must-have, this versatile tool can pick up spills, clean dirty hands and dust your dashboard.
  2. Map: While an OnStar Advisor can provide you with directions,*1b it’s always good to have a physical backup on hand in case of emergency.
  3. Kitty litter: It’s great for absorbing and eliminating odors quickly if a child or pet gets sick in the car, but you can also spread it on ice or snow for traction during winter.
  4. Nonperishable snacks: Highly caloric and protein-rich, energy bars and nuts can make a long road trip bearable and provide some energy if you’re waiting for help to arrive. Keep a supply of bottled water as well, but replace it periodically to ensure freshness.
  5. WD-40®*114: Not only can you loosen a lug nut or lubricate a door latch with it, you can also remove stuck license plate bolts and screws, and even remove dog slobber from your seats and dashboard.
  6. Duct tape: This miracle material can fix just about anything, whether it’s holding your muffler in place, reattaching a mirror or simply getting dog hair off your seats.
  7. Utility knife/multitool: A multipurpose tool can get you out of many sticky situations. Look for something that can also be used to break a window or cut a jammed seatbelt.
  8. Matches: Store some safety matches in a freezer bag so they’ll stay dry. Be sure not to get the strike-anywhere matches, as you don’t want to cause an accident.
  9. Blanket: The value of a warm blanket is obvious in a cold-weather climate, but having a blanket available for a medical emergency can also be vitally important.