No car is completely immune from a breakdown, whether it’s a brand new model or a salvage car from an online car auction. And since the vast majority of people who end up on the side of the road have (almost by definition) ended up there expectedly, if you don’t want to end up in the same situation then it’s always a good idea to be prepared. This week, we’re giving you a quick heads-up on the best way to do that here at RAW2K, with the 7 tools, accessories and sundries you should always have in your car.
1. Empty fuel can
It’s arguably pretty difficult to run out of fuel these days - after all, even the oldest cars now tend to give their drivers plenty of warning, and most vehicles are capable of running ‘on fumes’ for a little while before they finally sputter to a halt. But we’re all capable of the odd misjudgement, so running out of fuel can and does happen. In that case, an empty fuel container can be worth its weight in gold, as you can simply make your way to a petrol station and bring enough fuel back to your car to get it limping on to get fully fuelled itself. It may even save you an expensive and possibly needless rescue callout.
2. User manual
It might not make for terribly light or engrossing reading, but your user manual is undeniably useful as a source of stuff you should know about your car, which can make it very helpful for working if there’s a problem with your car. (The internet is always an alternative solution, but not a perfect one, as it’s not always useful for finding specific solutions for specific models of car.)
Once you’ve worked out the problem, you can then take steps to fix it yourself if you’ve got the mechanical knowledge, or at the very least you’ll be able to give a useful heads-up to the professional who takes a look on your behalf.
3. Tyre pressure gauge
Poorly maintained tyres are a major problem on UK roads, and many end up being key factors in some devastating accidents. It’s estimated that as many as one in four of all cars could be running with at least one illegally under-inflated tyre. Make sure you’re not one of them. Keeping a tyre pressure gauge on you at all times can help you ensure that your tyres remain inflated to a proper depth (2mm is the minimum requirement).
4. De-icer or scraper
This one is particularly important now that we’re moving into winter weather. A proper dedicated de-icer can help you clear the windscreen effectively and ensure that your vision isn’t dangerously obscured. It also saves you from trying to get the job done by improvising with something ineffective and unreliable, like an old bank card.
5. High-visibility gear and warning triangles
Breaking down is dangerous enough on its own, but that danger can be compounded when it’s happened to you in the dark or pouring rain (if you’re particularly unlucky, perhaps even both). Having a high visibility jacket and two warning triangles to place around your car - one at the front and one at the back - can do wonders for helping other motorists to see you in a lot more time, potentially averting an inconvenient situation from turning deadly.
6. Jackets, shoes and other clothing and accessories
Breakdowns can happen in any weather, so it’s a good idea to make sure you’ve got some spare clothes prepared in case you end up waiting by the side of the road, or having to go for help. Heavy jackets and boots can make that a much safer and less unpleasant job in winter, and gloves can be handy (if you’ll pardon the pun) for maintaining your dexterity in icy conditions too. Sunglasses are also useful accessories for all year round, especially when the sun is lower in the sky in Autumn and Winter, as they help to minimise the dangerous effect of the its glare when you’re driving towards it.
It's important for us to say, though, that this isn’t an exhaustive list - just a few of our major suggestions. If you’ve got any more ideas for what would help you to feel safer and more comfortable, don’t hesitate to find a place for them within your vehicle. Better safe than sorry!
And if you’re still looking for a brilliant bargain on your next car, or you’re thinking about replacing your current one, then you’re in exactly the right place. We’ve got a whole range of choice here at RAW2K, with our online car auctions containing models from leading brands like Peugeot, Vauxhall and Volkswagen. They’re refreshed on a daily and weekly basis - so you’ll always have plenty of choice!
Why not take a look around, and see what you can find?