Simple Winter Car Survival Kit – Final Prepper

Simple Winter Car Survival Kit

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There were lots of times when people were stranded in their cars, forced to sleep in the floors of local stores and cities that looked virtually unprepared for any winter event. Its times like this that I wonder how things would have been different if everyone involved had taken the time to prepare a simple winter car survival kit. I think that there are certainly factors that would have made this little amount of snow something to contend with anyway, but the lives of a lot of people could have been much better with a little planning and preparedness. This type of road incident isn’t unheard of and it simply makes good sense to have supplies in your car that you can count on if you are stranded.

The weather may force a lot of people to wait in traffic for hours due to accidents or road clearing operations. Having simple preparations ahead of time (even more so with the threat of inclement weather) would make these delays more tolerable and could ensure that more people can make it home to their families instead of spending the night on the floor at CVS.

What do you need for a winter car survival kit?

Before I get into the actual content list of items to store in a winter car survival kit, I should bring up fuel. It can’t be said enough that you should have no less than a half a tank of gas at all times. Why? Because if for some reason, you aren’t able to fill up, a half a tank will last longer and get you more places that sitting on empty. For those people who must sit in their cars for hours, a half a tank of gas could keep them warm and more importantly moving.

So on to the list. The items below should be in everyone’s car if you go anywhere in the winter. Some of the winter car survival kit items are just as important in the summer and can be considered as core. We’ll list off the items that are specific to Winter, but it will be obvious.

Core- Car Survival Kit items.

Winter Car Survival Kit additions

  • Wool Blankets – 2
  • Survival Bivvy – 2
  • Boots or hiking shoes with good gription (yes that is a word)
  • Small Camping shovel – necessary in some locations more than others
  • Windshield scraper
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Wool or Fleece hat/gloves
  • Spare fleece pullover

What could you sub in there for Summer? Certainly more water and perhaps sunscreen or shading devices. I am sure we will write on this topic for the summer also. Stay safe by making sure you have these basics with you. They do take up a little room, but you can fit all of this in a decent sized plastic bin and forget about them. You will be happy they are in the back when you need them.

Is this list the end all be all of survival necessities? Nope, but it is the basics and you have to start somewhere.

If you want to print this list out, just click on the Print button at the top of the page.


  1. Rod

    December 14, 2017 at 5:18 pm

    I keep a small bag in our Jeep at all times. I also carry a .22 handgun or a take-down rifle in or with that bag. We live on the edge of a small town in a very rural area; there are coyotes, an occasional black bear and even a mountain lion have been seen here recently. A break-down can have you walking 6-8 miles to the nearest small town or community so it is very comforting to have a firearm; if you don’t have a CCW permit, I suggest getting one. I wouldn’t be without mine.

  2. kettlekrik

    December 21, 2017 at 3:32 am

    There were 2 items missing from this list. 1 is a year round item. I wouldn’t go past the end of my driveway without, a 16’+ tow chain. I suggest one end have an open hook and the other a standard hook. The open hook will allow you to hook to a sway bar, and slide tight when hooked elsewhere. A definite plus when you are in a snow bank. A winter must have is a couple cans of Sterno. I once had a heater blower quit 150 miles from home on a Sunday at about 20’s. It wasn’t balmy, but it made the trip home tolerable. A Yankee candle setting on the floor between yours legs with a blanket over your lap is amazingly warm and efficient for everything but your feet.

  3. Rik

    January 6, 2018 at 12:39 pm

    If you are ever in a whiteout sunglasses will help a lot by reducing the glare and increase your visibility significantly.

  4. Clergylady

    December 1, 2018 at 1:39 pm

    I usually carry your list plus extra clothing so I can stay warm and dry with 2 pr extra wool socks, thin long underwear and a sweatshirt, kitty litter, carpet scraps and rock salt. The last three to handle ice and snow or to get back onto pavement if necessary. I also have a good flashlight and headlamp in the glove box. Extra blankets and an old thick comforter are closed with the extra clothing in a vacuum bag that saves space. One car has an under deck large storage compartment that’s about full of winter survival items. An old backpack holds the water bottles. Other car has a trunk organizer from Wal-Mart filled with necessities. Keeps it together and neat. Truck has back of seat pockets hung to hold most items while tools and blankets go behind the backseat with the Jack and carpet samples. Its a crew cab so the space is a plus.
    My husbands daughter works for a company making snack bars. So we stay well stocked.
    At home we’re on a well so I keep 4, 5 gallon containers of water on hand. Along with fuel for heat, extra food and ice chests I can use on the porch to keep food cold and handy. Power is 100% solar but we have two gas generators with fuel stored in a shed available year around. Fuel used and replaced every three months. Also extra filled propane bottles and buddy heaters available if really necessary. In summer hubs uses the propane to bbq. I use fruit wood to cook with outside so some it’s always available and gets used sometimes in winter as well.
    Settling in to the newer home so hopefully we’ll be moving in the last items soon.
    Giving one of the cars to a son and most of the winter supplies will stay in it. Clothing will stay with us.

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