- Car Safety & Safe Driving
Emergency Car Tools for Women and Seniors | Impact Wrench and Battery Booster
For most guys having a flat tire is at most a 15 minute inconvenience, but for most women, it’s a major emergency. Even more so when you consider that if your tires were mounted professionally, more than likely an air driven impact wrench was used in the process. This tool tightens at more than 120 ft/lbs of torque. So even if they know how to change that tire, you will have a problem loosening the lug nuts on the tire, the leverage of the old X style lug wrenches helped but most lug wrenches now are less than 14” long to conserve space in the trunk of your car; thus providing little leverage help in either loosening or tightening the lug nuts.
Now I can also tell you from a recent personal experience there are many of us males over 50 (many won’t admit it until it’s too late) with arthritis, or other disabilities that don’t prevent us from driving but, may affect handling this sort of situation. With my arthritis on a cold day I can’t hold a pencil much less get a grip on a tire iron. Jack handles etc can generally be manipulated with out a firm grip but trying to remove or tighten the lugs is a real problem. So much so that I needed assistance of a kind hearted police officer to help me change a flat tire. I learned my lesson.
So the first tool in the tool kit is the 12 volt Emergency Impact Wrench which is the great equalizer for those of us who need help. It can plug in to a cigarette or clamp to your battery (or an emergency booster) and from a battery charge give you more than enough spins to dismount the tire and remount the spare. The additional benefit of this is it ensures your remounted tire is mounted tightly. Additionally it is not cost prohibitive, as they run from $40 – 100. I found one recently on sale at Harbor Freight for $19.95; a small price to pay for peace of mind.
A word of caution is in order here though; when you are remounting the lug nuts screw them on initially by hand to make sure they are threaded correctly as the power of this wrench can mess up the threads on the lugs if the nuts are mounted incorrectly. I also recommend you carry a can of WD-40 and a rag in your Emergency Tool Kit, so before you turn the lug nuts spray the nuts and the lug and wipe away any rust or grime built up in the threads.
Next in the order is the Emergency Battery Boost, a dead battery is a big problem for anybody male or female, and without one of these you’ll have to ask somebody you probably don’t know for help, there’s just no way around that unless you have one of these. While most folks are kind and generous and will provide assistance for a jump we all know there are bad folks looking for targets of opportunity. All of these concerns aside, this tool also is easier to use than jumper cables. I highly recommend this and again costs are pretty reasonable.
The last essential element of the Emergency Tool Kit is a Good First Aid Kit. There are many variations but I would look for one that has a warning triangle included along with a good hands free flashlight that can stand on its own. If you can’t find one that includes these items you should procure them separately, along with a high visibility safety vest. If you are disabled along a state highway of any road without a wide shoulder, or is not well lit, a high visibility vest can save your life. Please consider it.