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The Ultimate Bug Out Vehicle Checklist

Last Updated: September 9, 2021
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For most of us, road hazards are no surprise.

On a daily basis, we face a slew of dangers on our neighborhood roads and highways. Flat tires, vehicle breakdowns, and automobile accidents are all commonplace occurrences.

Fortunately, there are things we can do to prepare for the situations we’ll most likely face on a daily basis. I’m not going to stay if SHTF, just like the rest of my peers.

As much as I love my house, I intend on getting out of there as soon as feasible.

To make this happen, I have:

  1. Bug Out Bags packed and ready to go (see my BOB checklist)
  2. An ​emergency first aid kit. 
  3. Practiced a step-by-step bugging out plan with my family.
  4. A reliable bug out vehicle (here’s how I chose my BOV)

Let’s take it a step further. It’s time to prepare your Bug Out Vehicle for evacuation once you’ve chosen one.

Bug Out Vehicle Checklist

Why Prepare Your Bug Out Vehicle

The goal of a vehicle bug-out bag (VBOB) is to let you survive for three to five days in the event of a crisis, whether you’re traveling to safe haven from the violence or waiting out the storm.

While all good bug-out bags should include similar features to meet several essential needs, the contents of your pack should be determined by the circumstances you would most likely face.

The same logic should be used in planning your vehicle bug-out bag (VBOB) and the contents must be adapted to fit.

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What You Need To Know for Packing Your Bug Out Vehicle

Bug Out Vehicle

Rule #1. You Need More than Your Bug Out Bag

It’s essential to have a Bug Out Bag in the event of an emergency at home and another in your car. The reason for this is that calamity may strike while you are not at home.

BOBs are popular among employees as well. However, just because you have a BOB in your car doesn’t imply it’s ‘ready.’

The whole point of fleeing by vehicle is that you can bring far more equipment with you. Why would you restrict yourself to what’s in your BOB when you could load more? So, load as much survival gear as possible into your car!

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Rule #2. Redundancy Items

Because you’re treating your BOB goods as distinct from your car’s, you’ll inevitably have duplicates. You may wind up with three instances of some objects due to the fact that you should maintain a BOB at home and in your automobile, and you need further stuff for your car.

If money is a concern, you may remove items from your BOB to utilize – just put them back right away. Or focus on everyday carry survival items.

Vehicle Bug Out Bag Additional Items

You might also consider adding extra goods to your VBOB, but not necessarily in the bag itself.

If you’re traveling 10 miles to your home after work, keep extra clothing and good shoes in your automobile.

Here are some things to think about while making your vehicle bug-out bag.

The Basics: Everyday Carry For Your Car

Some items in your must-have EDC vehicle kit are included by the manufacturer. They’ll most likely give you a spare tire (either full size or donut), a jack, and a way to remove the tire with something like a tire iron.

While these goods are critical, they aren’t always ideal.

1. Full Size Spare Tire

I’m a firm believer in having a full-size spare, because it eliminates the need to replace the tire until you reach 60 miles. When you’re on a remote backcountry road and the nearest settlement is more than 60 miles away, using a donut spare can be dangerous.

2. A Car Jack

Okay, so this appears to be a no-brainer, and your manufacturer is likely to give you a method to remove your car from the ground for tire replacement.

3. Socket Wrench and Sockets

A couple of sockets and a socket wrench are included in the upgrade from the freebie version that the manufacturers give you. Your tire iron will suffice, and it will most likely provide enough leverage. A socket wrench and various sockets, on the other hand, provide a wider range of solutions for other roadside issues.

4. Jumper Cables

It’s awful to return home from work, only to find your car door unlocked or the headlights on. It won’t get you anywhere if you have a dead battery and can’t start your car.

5. Road Flares

If you ever end up on the side of the highway with a broken-down car, you’ll need some road flares.

Here are the next logical pieces to add to your shopping list…

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Vehicle Emergency Items

  • Mechanic tool kit
  • Basic spare parts
  • Fuses
  • Spare bulbs
  • Spare windshield wipers
  • Spark plug and socket
  • Spare tire
  • Fuel canister
  • Siphon and pump
  • Tire chains
  • Tire repair kit
  • Tire gauge
  • Air compressor
  • Jump starter
  • Ice scraper and snow brush
  • Transmission fluid
  • Washer fluid
  • Oil
  • Coolant
  • Antifreeze
  • Shovel
  • Salt or kitty litter
  • Spare keys
  • Rope and bungee cord
  • Tow straps
  • Small broom and dustpan (for cleaning up broken glass)
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Duct tape
  • RTV sealant
  • Heavy gloves
  • Roof rack
  • Vehicle cover (preferably camouflaged)

Communication Gear

​Comfort and Convenience Items

  • Car sickness bags
  • Hand cream
  • Chapstick
  • Napkins
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Gum or candy
  • Dried fruit and jerky
  • Extra blankets

Shelter, Warmth, and Clothing Items

Navigation Items

  • GPS
  • Paper maps
  • Compass


  • License
  • Registration
  • Vehicle repair manual
  • Contact list with phone numbers
  • Firearm CWP permit

Water and Food

Survival and Personal Protection Items

Personal Hygiene Items

  • Toilet paper
  • Insect repellent
  • Sun block
  • Soap
  • Baby wipes
  • Face mask
  • Medications
  • Diapers (if applicable)
  • First aid kit

Items for Alternative Vehicles

  • Bike or motorcycle helmet
  • Life jackets
  • Paddles
  • Life raft
  • Dry sacks

Keep in mind that these items will come in useful if you need to get home or survive a disaster, so consider your car’s EDC kit as being similar to your vehicle’s bug out bag.

Do you have any questions about what kinds of add-ons might be available for your automobile? Have we forgotten anything essential for your car, in your opinion? Leave a remark below if this is the case.

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