In The Boot

What to have in the boot (trunk)

I have been asked what should I carry with me on a long trip many times over the years. Here are a few things that could keep your trip from becoming a nightmare. 

    If the trip is in your older or classic vehicle anything that is a wear and tear item and very hard to get for your car, like the double V belt on an E type, or points for your XK120, upper and lower radiator hoses are nice and a spare thermostat. If you have changed out to an electronic Ign. system carrying the parts from the original system with you probably means some one can put it back for you. A spare distb. cap, and Ign. rotor. are always a must. 1 gallon of water. I prefer water over anti-freeze as you are carrying it for emergency use only and you can do a lot more with water than anti-freeze, wash, put in the cooling system, drink it. A blanket is nice too, you can lie on it to look under the car or wrap yourself up while you wait for a tow. A pair of gloves and a light pair of coveralls can save your suit when you change a flat. If you have tubes in your tires carry at least two spare tubes. A repair manual with good wiring diagrams means you can get your car fixed when you are away from home even if you can not do it. Many mechanics have the skill, they just do not have the information they need. 

     I always carry a tow strap, a first-aide kit, flashlight and a fire extinguisher too. Tools are more in-line with your personal skill sets - always carry the correct lug wrench and jack for your vehicle and if you are not running the same style wheel that the spare is make sure you have the correct lug nuts for the spare with you and always, always have the key for your locking lug nuts.

Going on a trip in your newer vehicle - well the spare parts may not need to be carried because you can probably get them very quickly but the rest works across all years and makes and instead of the repair manual or perhaps more correctly in conjunction with it (having the repair manual for you newer car may be nice but unless it is some very limited car, say and Aston Martin DB9, most repair shops have access to most of the repair manuals. What can make life so much easier is to make sure you have the owner's manual. A lot of information that is not in the repair manual will be in the owner's manual and can save the technician trying to fix your vehicle a lot of time which means you have more time and money to spend on your trip.

 And for everyone, the most important thing in today's day and age; Your cell phone with a charger