How I am going to avoid getting stranded when my car has a dead battery or flat tire

Having lived in a big city for the past 10-years of my life, I’ve encountered a number of unpleasant things when I’ve been out and about. A few weeks back I hit one of the most frustrating ones of my life when a nail punctured one my tires while I was running errands. This shouldn’t have been an issue, but alas my spare tire was on the low side and I didn’t feel comfortable driving with it. With no gas stations in sight the feeling of “oh crap” came over me.

After spending 30 minutes on the phone with my insurance company, the agent told me that my insurance policy included roadside assistance. Thank goodness! They showed up an hour later and filled my spare and changed out my flat. After thanking the assitance guy 50 times, I proceed to head to a automotive shop to get my flat tire patched.

This experience got me thinking about ways to prevent this in the future, and after doing a bit of research I came across the Wagan 400-Watt Power Dome EX jumpstarter with built-in air compressor. This nifty little device comes with a number of useful features:

– Built-in battery charger
– Air compressor
– Flash light
– USB charger
– AM/FM radio

I tested out the radio, light and air compressor after my unit arrived from Amazon, and they all worked as advertised. This past week one of my co-worker’s had a dead battery in her car, so I got to verify the jumpstarting feature worked. Jumpstarting her car worked flawlessly, and I have since stashed my powerdome EX in the trunk of my vehicle.

This crappy experience has taught me a couple of valuable lessons. Cars are just like servers. They fail when you don’t want them to, and sometimes the easiest problems become the most difficult ones to solve. I’m planning to pick up a few more gadgets for my car to avoid getting into a similar situation in the future! If you keep anything in your vehicle to help out with emergencies, please let me know! I’d like to be better prepared for future events.

4 thoughts on “How I am going to avoid getting stranded when my car has a dead battery or flat tire”

  1. Hi, that jumpstarter looks great!

    I always have gloves and some knee protectors in case I need to change a tire. I plan to get one or two of those reflective triangles…

    Craconia

  2. I keep a heavy duty star lug nut wrench in every vehicle I own. The crappy factory ones that come with the cars have broken and left me stranded twice.

  3. Becoming more and more mission critical with modern cars: spare fuses.

    We once had to decide whether we want light or using the windshield wiper. Of course it was dark *and* raining ;-)

  4. Kit I should have with me in the car (but I admit I might not always this complete list).

    1. Mobile Phone
    2. Roadside assistance details
    3. Jack and Lug wrench
    4. Screwdrivers
    5. Plank of wood for under the jack (Can not always be that the service can take the jack).
    6. Adjustable spanners.
    7. Jumpkit.
    8. Hi Vis jacket and also a triangle.
    9. Tow rope

    Other than that, modern cars are these days to difficult to deal with on the road side unless you have the diagnostic computer and plugin interface to tell you what the problem is. (hence the first two requirements). Due to the areas I drive in, also thinking of installing a CB radio as mobile coverage can get a bit iffy.

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