Your car can lug home your groceries or propel you across the country to enjoy new vistas with old friends.
But it can also leave you stranded in the middle of nowhere or worse, injured and trapped in a tangle of glass and steel. There’s no shame in calling for help to get you out of a bind. But, with the right hardware stashed away in your glovebox and trunk, you could save yourself the expense of a roadside assistance call, or even rescue yourself or another motorist.
Not sure of where to start? We’ve got your back. We spent days testing these 11 pieces of hardware and found them to be not only reliable, but easy to use.
1. Reusable flares to prevent collisions
Road flares are great for ensuring that you get the amount of visibility you need to stay safe at the side of the road. But when you light up a single-use magnesium flare, you’re throwing away money and risking your eyebrows. After testing them against OG magnesium flares, we found Wagan’s reusable EL2639 LED flares are a smarter option. They’re bright, rugged, and waterproof, and they can run for up to 38 hours off of three AAA batteries. You can buy them individually or in a pack of three.
2. Cut-resistant gloves that can handle broken glass
Changing a flat or, should it come to it, breaking a car window to escape to safety, won’t do your delicate meathooks any favors. A pair of Mechanic Original CR5A3 Cut Resistant Gloves will help keep you from denting your digits. The palms and fingers of the gloves are lined with Armortex a cut-resistant material that’ll keep you safe from most sharp surfaces.
Despite the protection they afford, we found that these gloves still offer the dexterity you’ll need in order to repair your vehicle or extricate yourself and others from a wreck. Plus, their high visibility color pattern will help other drivers to see you while you’re working at the side of the road.
3. A headlamp to keep your hands free while you work
Chances are, if you’ve got a roadside emergency to contend with, you’ll want both hands free. Keeping a good headlamp in your glovebox is the ideal solution. The Nite Ize STS Headlamp’s bright white LED light (or red, if you’re into preserving your night vision,) is bright enough to illuminate almost any task. And, as it can run off the included rechargeable battery pack or 3 AAA batteries, it’s easy to keep juiced up and ready to go.
4. A way to call for help in cellular dead zones
If you run into car trouble in an area without cellphone coverage, the SPOT GEN3 GPS Messenger (service plan required) could save your bacon.
Read more of the original article at USA TODAY