Whether navigating city streets or highway roads on a long drive, having the right auto accessories in your vehicle can mean a smooth journey and a frustrating breakdown. Urban roads present unique challenges like traffic, construction, and unfamiliar routes that increase the odds of issues. However, by stowing some key spare parts and tools in your car, you can be well-prepared for common problems during self-driving. This includes jumper cables, fuses, light bulbs, wiper blades, fluids, and more. Having the needed accessories within reach can save you time, money, and hassle when issues pop up on the road. This article will explore common auto accessories you should keep in your vehicle to prepare for self-driving on busy urban roads.
- Spare fuses: Carry extra fuses that match your vehicle's fuse box for replacing blown fuses on the go.
- Triangle road warning signs: Use these to warn other drivers if you break down or have a flat tire.
- First aid kit: A small first aid kit can treat minor cuts, scratches, and other injuries that could occur.
- Fire extinguisher: A small extinguisher can help prevent engine fires and prevent them from becoming dangerous.
- Jumper cables: Heavy-duty cables allow other vehicles to jump-start your car if the battery dies.
- LED/safety flares: Use as additional warnings at night or in low-light conditions to improve visibility.
- Blanket: A small blanket can provide warmth if you're stranded in cold weather while waiting for help.
- Collapsible shovel: Useful for digging out tires stuck in snow, mud, or sand on the side of the road.
Safety accessories like these can help provide aid, warning, and protection during an emergency or breakdown while driving, especially on busy city roads. Consider stowing a basic set to have peace of mind during longer trips.
Here are some recommended navigation accessories to keep in your vehicle:
- Map book or atlas: Provides paper map backups if your GPS or phone fails.
- Portable GPS: A dedicated GPS can continue navigating if your phone dies or loses service.
- Car phone charger: Ensure your phone remains charged to use GPS navigation apps.
- Backup battery - Charges dead phones to access maps and directions when needed.
- Roadside emergency app: Apps like AAA and Allstate provide assistance numbers and feedback from other motorists.
- Magnetic Dash/windshield mount - Securely holds your phone for hands-free navigation.
- Travel adaptor - Charge devices in foreign outlets if driving outside your home country.
Navigation accessories can help you find your way if you get lost while driving, especially on unfamiliar city streets. GPS systems, paper maps, offline GPS devices, and charged phones can provide valuable backups. Consider the essential navigation tools for your specific needs and vehicle, then keep them handy while driving. The simpler you can make finding your destination, the less stress you'll experience while on the road.
Here are some comfort accessories to keep in your vehicle:
- Tissue box/wet wipes - For cleaning up spills, wiping hands, and general sanitation.
- Bottled water: Stay hydrated during long drives, especially in hot weather.
- Snacks: Energy bars, nuts, trail mix, and other non-perishable snacks curb hunger between stops.
- Travel pillow/blanket: Provide support and warmth during rest stops to maximize comfort.
- Auxiliary charger - Power multiple devices simultaneously to keep passengers entertained.
- Sunshade - Shields occupants from direct sunlight for a cooler cabin temperature.
- Car air freshener: Freshens the air and removes odors that can increase fatigue.
- Car seat protector - Provides a clean, sanitized surface for the driver and passengers.
- Pain relievers: Like aspirin or ibuprofen, they can help alleviate aches and pains from long drives.
Comfort accessories in your vehicle can make even mundane commutes and errands more pleasant, but they become especially valuable on longer drives while navigating busy city traffic. Simple items like tissues, hand wipes, water, snacks, and medicines can combat common discomforts that arise, allowing you to focus your full attention on the road. Extra chargers, sun protection, and seat liners add even more comfort for you and your passengers. Keeping these low-cost basics on hand ensures a more enjoyable driving experience.
Here are some important maintenance accessories to keep in your vehicle:
- Motor oil - For topping off oil between oil changes or in emergencies.
- Windshield wiper fluid: Top off or replace depleted fluid to maintain clear visibility.
- Coolant: Top off coolant levels to avoid overheating, especially in stop-and-go traffic.
- Headlight bulbs: Spares can replace broken or burned-out headlights to improve visibility.
- Jumper cables: Essential for jump-starting your car if the battery dies while driving.
- Ducktape/bungee cords: Use as a temporary fix for loose parts, hoses, or draining fluids.
- Tire repair kit- Patches small holes and leaks to get you to the nearest tire shop.
- Tire gauge: Checks tire pressure, often dropping while driving through busy cities.
- Shop rags: Absorb spilled fluids and help wipe up general vehicle messes.
These basic maintenance accessories can address common driving issues, such as fluid leaks, burnt-out lights, depleted fluids, and minor tire repairs. Most are inexpensive but can solve problems that could otherwise leave you stranded, costing much more in towing or repair fees. Keeping a full set in your vehicle preemptively ensures you'll have what you need for minor fixes to quickly get you back on the road with minimal hassle.
In conclusion, you should keep various essential auto accessories in your vehicle to prepare for self-driving on busy urban roads. From safety items like warning signs and first aid kits to navigation aids like maps and chargers, the right accessories can help you find your way, remain safe and keep comfortable even during challenging drives. Maintenance items like jumper cables, spare fluids, and tire repair kits address common issues that often arise in traffic-heavy areas. By stowing a basic but thoughtful set of necessities ahead of time, you'll feel more confident and prepared for whatever situations may crop up while navigating city streets. The peace of mind from having the needed accessories within reach can offset some of the stress of driving in busy urban environments. So consider the issues you're most likely to encounter, then equip your vehicle appropriately to prepare for self-driving on city roads.
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