My Family Car Breakdown Kit

*Practical post klaxon* Yes, it’s not very glamorous but it’s really important to be prepared when you’re out and about in the car as a family. When our daughter was a baby, we always had an extra baby change bag packed and in the boot, just in case we went out and (shudder) forgot to take the essentials with us. Back then, being caught short without a fresh nappy or change of clothes was quite possibly the WORST THING THAT COULD HAPPEN. Now, of course, we don’t need a change bag, but we do need emergency supplies of a different kind.

If our car breaks down, on a journey, there are a few things that are really handy to have, while we wait for the AA breakdown and recovery van to arrive…

What to pack in your car in case of a breakdown

1. A blanket to keep warm. OK so this Breton stripe blanket  from The White Company is probably a bit too posh and lovely to keep in the car – but just think! You’d actually LOOK FORWARD to a breakdown just so you could snuggle up under this beauty while you wait for help.

2. Warning triangle – useful to let other cars know you have broken down (NB. don’t use it on the hard shoulder of a motorway.)

3. A weather-proof torch like this Energizer Impact LED Torch.

4. Hi-vis jackets. Safety advice says that if you break down on a motorway, you should always get out of the car and find a safe place to wait for help, rather than sit in the car. Hi-vis jackets will ensure you’re more visable. And don’t forget the kids – get them a child-size hi-vis.

5Ultra Grip gloves will keep your hands warm in the winter, and will give you extra grip if you’re changing a tyre. Pack some kids’ gloves too.

6. In summer months, it could be sunny (could be, I said!) so having SPF 50 with you will stop family members from burning while waiting for the AA.

7. Snacks are a good idea – something like a cereal bar is ideal as they have a long shelf-life and will survive being kept in the car.

8. Ditto, pack some  small bottles of water in case you get thirsty.

9. Keep kids entertained while you wait with a fun activity book like The Anti-Boredom Colouring Book by Chris Dickason. Well, it beats playing ‘spot the red cars’…

10. It could be tipping it down, so a couple of umbrellas could be a God-send to keep you dry.


Is there anything I’ve missed? What would you add to the list?


This post was written in association with The AA. For details on my commerical posts, please visit my Work With Me page.




  1. February 4, 2014 / 11:33 pm

    I love that you are prepared for a breakdown in style. I wouldn’t mind a breakdown, if it meant snuggling up in that stripy blanket 😉

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