Around this time of year, we invariably find ourselves darting from store to store, buying Christmas gifts for the ones we love. Faithfully transporting us along the way are our vehicles. Wouldn’t it be nice to return the favour by outfitting our vehicles with some winter driving essentials? It’s sort of like stocking stuffers for your car.
Like many gifts, sometimes the simple ones are the best. By furnishing your car with several low-cost items, you’ll enjoy a safer, more convenient driving experience.
1. Box of Tissue
When travelling with kids in tow, you’re bound to encounter runny noses at some point in winter. Having Kleenex on standby is a must. Tissues can also be used to:
- Absorb spilled liquids
- Wipe smudged mirrors and windows
- Tidy up after eating in your vehicle
2. Ice Scraper
If you don’t have the luxury of parking in a garage or carport, it’s inevitable that your vehicle will get covered in snow and ice. Rather than scrounging for a credit card to chip away at your windshield, invest in a decent ice scraper. Some of the features to look for include:
- Long enough to reach the centre of your windshield
- Soft, comfortable grip
- Bristle brush at one end to sweep snow
3. Trash Can
Keeping vehicles tidy requires constant vigilance (especially if you’re burning through the aforementioned Kleenex). To assist in your efforts, place a mini garbage can in an easy-to-reach area. There are many different options, including ones that mount on your seatback or console.
4. Winter Survival Kit
Canadian winters can be as harsh as they are unpredictable. It’s important to be prepared for unexpected road conditions, accidents and anything else that might leave you out in the elements for extended periods.
Winter survival kits do exactly that. At the very least, they should contain things like:
- First-aid kit
- Flashlight (with fresh batteries)
If you’re going on an extended trip, it’s also a good idea to pack plenty of food and water for the journey.
For a more detailed list of winter driving essentials, read: Winter Survival Kit Must-Haves in Your Vehicle & Your Trunk.
5. Jumper Cables
Car batteries don’t like extreme cold one bit. And there’s nothing worse than turning the key in the ignition and being met by silence. At least if you have a set of booster cables, you’ll still be able to drive home, or to the nearest service centre.
6. Washer Fluid
It never hurts to have a jug of winter washer fluid handy in your car. With the amount of salt, road grime, and snow we encounter, it’s easy to go through it at a surprising rate. If you run out, your ability to navigate the roadway can become severely impaired.
7. SnapSkan Digital Tire Scan
So this one won’t quite fit in your car’s stocking, but it’ll appreciate a note to say you’re going to do it if and when this comes to Canada, as it’s only just launched in Finland.
Nokian just came out with SnapSkan, which instantly and accurately measures the tread depth left on your tires as you drive over its digital scan. SnapSkan then sends a report to your mobile so you can see your results and what they mean for your safety.
See how it works:
To make sure your vehicle is prepared for winter driving conditions, visit your local Kal Tire store. From tire chains to winter windshield wipers, we have all of the winter driving essentials to keep you safe on the roads.