Basic Vehicle Recovery Kit

Last spring, I wrote a post about how to get your vehicle unstuck from a slippery situation whether it’s sand, mud, or snow. As we enter the fall, it’s time to start thinking about winter driving. Here’s what I carry in my jeep

  1. Valve stem remover: I talked quite a bit about airing down in my Guide to Getting Unstuck. Although you can airdown using a stick or a rock or your pocket knife, dropping from 50 psi to 10 psi goes a lot faster with a valve stem remover.
  2. Tire pressure gauges: I carry both a high and a low pressure gauge because that allows me to measure air pressures <10psi however you should at least carry a high pressure gauge.
  3. Recovery strap and D-ring: Sometimes you need a little bit of extra help. And if that help comes along, you don’t want to have to say, “It’s okay, nevermind” because neither of you has a strap! It’s also a good idea to figure out where you can attach the strap or D-ring to on your vehicle before you need to use them.

  1. Shovel: If you’re stuck, a lot of times it’s important to dig yourself out a bit before getting going again. I carry a small shovel like this one.
  2. Compressor: While a compressor is not strictly necessary, if you’re going to spent a lot of time far from main roads and travel routes, the ability to put air back into your tires can be really important. Driving 50 miles to a gas station for air on really flat tires will do a number on your tires and put you at risk for a blow out. Airing back up, to at least 35 psi, will help prevent more issues!
  3. Tire repair kit: Being able to fix a puncture to your tire can be a life saver! I’ve even heard of people using the tire ropes to temporarily fix small slashes in the sidewall!

6 Replies to “Basic Vehicle Recovery Kit”

  1. Good post. Excellent items to carry. I also carry a 3 ton floor jack and a large air tank just in case.
    A good flashlight or battery lantern is helpful too. I have a bit of emergency food and water also as well as a spare phone charger. Oh yes, the most important item….Emergency Coffee making supplies.

    1. Floor jacks just take up too much room for me. A flashlight is a great suggestion–I have about three of the Harbor Freight magnetic ones in the Jeep because they’re so helpful when you’re solo!

  2. Got all of the stuff from my bag of tricks, kudos…
    In tire repair kits a valve stem removal tool is almost always included…

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