5 Considerations For Preppers With Bug Out Vehicles
Consider The Factors Realistically
Own a car and have a commute? Then you’re well aware of many of the pitfalls driving can have on you and your car. For instance, you have to deal with traffic, you have to consistently fill up your tank, and you’re often stuck in stop-and-go traffic.
Not to mention, you have to protect your car from inclement weather (and then repair it when it gets hurt by hail damage, etc.
You also have to do all the necessary maintenance and repairs necessary (both big and small) to keep your car running.
Well, the truth is billions of people have cars – and most will want to continue using them after SHTF. As such, it’s likely you’ll be facing these same hardships in en emergency situation. Not to mention, many of these problems will become a lot worse once that crisis hits.
Many people fall into the mistaken belief they’ll be the only one on the road after SHTF. However, it’ll likely be the opposite. That’s why it’s important to grasp that reality now, and maximize your vehicle’s usefulness.
Consider The State Of Your Vehicle
However, most people can’t afford that, and it often isn’t realistic for different situations. Furthermore, many people don’t have the funds to purchase a whole other “bug-out vehicle” that’s going to sit and wait for when things go south.
As such, it’s safe to assume that most people will likely be utilizing their current car as their bug-out vehicle in an emergency event. And this comes with a few questions you need to consider. For instance…
“Would you trust your current vehicle to drive over 2,000 miles without issues?”
If you’re hesitant to say yes, then it’s important to start looking at alternative options. This may be biting the bullet and purchasing another car. Or it might involve taking other forms of transportation. It may even mean changing your prepping plan, and preparing to bug-in rather than bugging out.
“Can you perform routine maintenance to your car?”
It’s important to then consider all the routine repairs and maintenance your car will require. This includes oil changes, gas fill-ups, and regular checks to make sure your tires, brakes, lights, etc. are in working order. Do you know how to do these yourself (and what to do if they need maintenance)? Make sure you do before an emergency situation occurs.
“Is this the best vehicle for bugging out?”
The truth is, the car you rely on day-in and day-out may not be the best option for your SHTF experience (no matter its condition). In fact, it’s not necessarily true that “any car is better than no car at all.”
For instance, if your go-to car is an expensive SUV or a flashy sports car, this will likely work against you in a crisis. That’s because these are obvious signs to others that you’ve got lots of money. And with lots of money often comes lots of food, survival tools, water, etc.
Heck, even that enormous tactical tank you saw in the video above would likely do much more harm than good. Why? It’s screaming to everyone else “Look at me, I’m super prepared and have loads of cash.” And this kind of thing will give you LOTS of unwanted attention by looters and thieves.
In short, keeping a low profile is a MUST for surviving an emergency situation. And that goes for your car as well.
Basic Repairs You Need To Know How To Perform
Most preppers assume “survival skills” refer to things like hunting, gathering food, foraging for plants, etc. However, vehicle maintenance is an exemplary survival skill that any vehicle owner MUST have.
The truth is there’s a variety of repairs you can make to your car that don’t require a mechanic’s help. Things like…
- Changing your oil
- Repairing minor leaks
- Checking your battery
- Replacing your battery
- Replacing your air filter
- Switching out spark plugs
- Rotating tires
- Changing a flat tire
If this all seems a bit much, never fear. Many (if not all) of these can be learned through watching online tutorials on YouTube. There’s also countless books and online resources you can use to help you become more comfortable with your car.
Need more knowledge? There’s always the trusty Owner’s Manual. And, not to mention, if you require some extra assistance, make friends with a mechanic (or watch them while they work and ask questions). By adopting the mentality of a student, you’ll open yourself up to learning all about your vehicle (and likely be way more successful when SHTF).
Know What To Keep In Your Vehicle
Although every vehicle is different, the toolkit you need to keep in your car is very much the same across the board. It should include:
- Socket and ratchet set
- Car jack and tire iron
- Screwdriver set
- Adjustable wrench
- Torque wrench
- Jumper cables
- Work gloves
- Axe (helpful for removing fallen trees/branches blocking the road)
- Electrical tape
- Seat belt cutter
- Spare parts
Granted, this is the bare minimum of what to keep in your vehicle. There’s many more things to consider (see our blogs here and here for more ideas). But it’s a start.