With the average lifespan of today's cars at north of 11 years – a record high – motorists are getting the most out of their car-buying buck. When adhering to the recommended service intervals, or the time that manufacturers' recommend scheduling a tune-up, drivers can really rack up the miles without having to worry too much about breaking down.
However, as anyone who has driven for at least a little while knows, cars are far from perfect. Even when all the t's are crossed and i's are dotted, problems still arise, hardly ever at a convenient time.
That being said, with the proper tools on board, you can adequately address these fixes as they happen. Whenever you go out for a drive – no matter how short the trip may be – make sure these six items make the trip with you:
Appropriately named, the LifeHammer could wind up saving your life in worst-case scenarios. Imagine being trapped in your vehicle after an accident. It's a scary thought, especially if there's an urgent situation that requires you to exit immediately. If the doors won't open, your next best bet is the passenger window. That's where LifeHammer comes into play. By firmly pressing the tool on the base of glass, causing it to shatter, you can escape to safety.
Few things are more frustrating than a cap that won't come off, especially those that won't budge no matter how much twisting you do. A quick shot of some loosening liquid can do the trick. WD-40 can be safely used to lubricate a variety of engine parts and may also be effective at preventing loud noises, like the racket a loose fan belt can create.
There's a reason why duct tape is considered the all-in-one wonder of adhesives. It can be used on almost anything, though mainly as a temporary solution to problems that arise, like a hole that needs to be patched or to prevent chipped paint from expanding further.
Though humble in their construction, jumper cables are highly impressive in capability, serving as the medium through which a dead battery is reinvigorated with life. Your nearest automotive retailer should have the cables you need to get your car up and running again should your car's energy supply run out of juice. Just be sure you know which connectors correspond to the right terminals.
When you don't have an extra set of hands, zip ties can serve as a good alternative. These plastic fasteners – found in big box retailers like Wal-Mart, Lowes, and The Home Depot – can hold cables and wires together when you need a temporary solution.
No toolbox is complete without a multi-tool. Putting the "multi" in multifaceted, these instruments are all-in-one handheld devices that have various grips depending on the job required. They may include needle-nose pliers, corkscrews, ratchets, blades, and several others functions, depending on the brand.You never know when you'll be in caught up a pesky predicament. These tools can help you out – in more ways than one.