Between the icy roads, mounting snowflakes, and daylight hours becoming virtually non-existent, driving during the winter season can prove to be quite challenging and requires extra safety precautions.
While we may not be able to escape the frigid chill of Mother Nature, there are ways to improve your car during the cold months and to ensure you will be prepared no matter what weather conditions come your way.
Here are 8 must-have accessories that’ll make your driving experience safer and less miserable in the dead of winter.
Accessories to Add to Your Car
#1. Remote Starter
Imagine hopping into your car to leave for the office and your car is just as cozy and warm as your bed was when you woke up? Well, a remote car starter can do just that! You can fire up the engine and turn on the heat a few minutes before you plan to leave - all from the comfort of your home.
A cozy interior plus heated seats? It sounds like the perfect place to kick back and binge-watch Netflix. Remote starter kits can be installed DIY and are simple to use. Some companies even offer a smartphone app you can pair it with.
In addition, you’ll receive detailed instructions and even video tutorials to help you get set up so you don’t have to pay for costly labor at the dealership or auto body shops.
#2. Windshield Ice Melter
There’s nothing more dangerous than trying to hit the highway with a frozen windshield. As a pro tip, if you can’t see clearly out your windshield, you shouldn’t have your foot on the gas pedal.
The solution? Grabbing a can or two of windshield ice melter. It’s the perfect investment for enjoying an ice-free windshield and ensuring you’re protecting yourself while out on the road.
Windshield ice melters are formulated with a special liquid to effectively remove ice from your windshield. Plus, it’s safe and works quickly. That means no more using an ice scraper like a hacksaw to remove unwanted ice.
Or fumbling with a credit card to get the job done...it’s happened.
#3. Heated Car Seat Covers
If you’re driving a vehicle that’s sporting vinyl or leather seats, then you know the pain of plopping down on the excruciatingly cold surface of your seat in the winter. Rather than torture yourself, get things toasty with some heated seat covers for your car.
They are a very cost-effective addition when compared to costly built-in heated seats. And the best part? They’re readily available for purchase from online retailers and automotive stores.
#4. Jumper Cables
Getting stranded in the frigid cold surely isn’t what you’d consider a fun night out. One of the more common car issues people face is a dead battery. So, to keep you safe, always have a pair of jumper cables available in your car - it’s a must!
Whether the chilly weather depleted your battery, or you accidentally left your lights on (it happens to the best of us), jumper cables will help breathe some life back into your car.
#5. Cat Litter
If you’re laughing right now, I promise there’s a reasonable explanation for having this on hand. You’ve probably experienced that awful feeling of being stuck in the snow, tires spinning, to no avail.
Even if you recently had a new set of tires installed, many cars can still lose traction when the roads get slick and snow-covered.
That’s where cat litter comes in. Simply, toss the litter underneath your tires and you’ll be out of your slippery situation in no time. Sure, you may not have a little furball meowing for you back home, but you can grab litter for cheap on Amazon, at the supermarket, or your local pet store.
#6. Safety Triangles
Reflective red triangles are a winter necessity that you should keep stocked in your car. If you’re stuck or stranded and waiting for help to arrive (which, let’s face it, can take hours in bad weather conditions), you want to protect yourself and your vehicle from other drivers.
This is especially true in low-visibility conditions. Using reflective safety triangles is a smart way to alert drivers to your presence and steer clear of your car.
#7. Hand Warmers
While driving with gloves will surely help keep your hands nice and warm, the extra - oftentimes heavy - fabric can interfere with your grip and control of the steering wheel. For an easy, inexpensive fix, you can pick up a few sets of hand warmers to stash in your car.
You simply unwrap the warmers from their packaging and hold them tight for a minute or so.
The heat that radiates from the warmers will quickly get rid of any chilly fingers and ensure your hands remain toasty for the remainder of your commute.
#8. A Warm Blanket
It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, getting stranded is certainly not synonymous with the word “enjoyable.” But, during the winter months, it’s a much larger issue than just being an inconvenience. If you break down and there’s chilly weather outside, your warm car will quickly begin cooling down.
There’s a possibility that you may have to tough it out for a few hours before help arrives and it’s essential that you’re equipped to stay warm. A thick or fleece blanket is a perfect item to keep in your truck in case you’re faced with an unexpected, but dire, need for one.
Now that you have some ideas for how to make your experience driving during the winter months much more comfortable and safe, it’s time to do some shopping, so you can add these accessories to your car. Do you feel more prepared for the winter road conditions?