Skip to main content

Car Sense

What to Include in a Car Emergency Kit

Stranded, cold and hungry along the highway is nowhere you’d want to be. A well-stocked emergency roadside kit could help you get back on the road quickly and safely. (And if you’re stuck, at least you’ll be stuck with a snack and a warm blanket.)

Pre-assembled kits are available to purchase, but you might want to assemble your own or customize a purchased kit. Consider including:

The Basics

  • Cell phone and car charger, with a list of emergency numbers
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Two roadside flares
  • Quart of oil
  • Small first aid kit
  • Flashlight
  • Multipurpose tool or pocket knife
  • Tire pressure gauge
  • Tire inflator
  • Duct tape
  • Rags
  • Your car’s manual
  • Pen and paper
  • Help sign

Extras

If your car has more trunk space, or if you’re planning a long trip, add these to the mix:

  • Jumper cables or a portable battery booster
  • Gallon of antifreeze
  • Extra fuses
  • Extra flashlight batteries
  • Basic tools: Phillips and flat-head screwdrivers, pliers, adjustable wrench
  • Spray bottle with washer fluid
  • Ice scraper
  • Granola or energy bars
  • Bottled water
  • An approved gas container
  • A road atlas

Additional Items

Think about the weather, too. Will you need extra water or a warm blanket? If icy roads are likely, a bag of sand or cat litter could provide traction for a stuck tire. You might also be glad to have a folding camp shovel or warm gloves and hat.

Think about your passengers, too. If you have kids and they ride in your car often, think about having items in the emergency kit that will keep them occupied if you're stopped for awhile. Also consider additional blankets and snacks.

Check your kit occasionally to make sure it’s shipshape, the spare tire is inflated, batteries are charged, first-aid supplies are stocked, water is fresh and food is dry. Be familiar with how each tool works before you need to use it in an emergency. Also remember that the most important tool you have is common sense; stopping to change a tire in the fast lane is an accident waiting to happen.

One other important tool for your kit: an ERIE auto policy. Check in with an ERIE Agent and make sure you're covered for wherever your travels take you.

Make sure you have the essentials if you find yourself stranded or stuck in your vehicle. /blog/car-emergency-kits Erie Insurance https://www.erieinsurance.com/-/media/images/erieinsurance/erieinsurancelogo.png

ERIE® insurance products and services are provided by one or more of the following insurers: Erie Insurance Exchange, Erie Insurance Company, Erie Insurance Property & Casualty Company, Flagship City Insurance Company and Erie Family Life Insurance Company (home offices: Erie, Pennsylvania) or Erie Insurance Company of New York (home office: Rochester, New York).  The companies within the Erie Insurance Group are not licensed to operate in all states. Refer to the company licensure and states of operation information.


The insurance products and rates, if applicable, described in this blog are in effect as of February 2018 and may be changed at any time. 


Insurance products are subject to terms, conditions and exclusions not described in this blog. The policy contains the specific details of the coverages, terms, conditions and exclusions. 


The insurance products and services described in this blog are not offered in all states.  ERIE life insurance and annuity products are not available in New York.  ERIE Medicare supplement products are not available in the District of Columbia, New York and Wisconsin.  ERIE long term care products are not available in the District of Columbia and New York. 


Eligibility will be determined at the time of application based upon applicable underwriting guidelines and rules in effect at that time.


Your ERIE agent can offer you practical guidance and answer questions you may have before you buy.