A simply functional car gets you on the road, but will you be prepared when transportation troubles arise? Lower your risk of being stranded (or worse) by keeping these 17 simple items in your car.

Jumper Cables
1. Jumper Cables

These are essential to have with you at all times. Even if you're not one to leave the lights on, you never know when your battery will fail you.

Fire Extinguisher
2. Fire Extinguisher

Car fires become a major problem during the summer months. Don't get caught without this handy lifesaving tool.

First-Aid Kit
3. First-Aid Kit

Whether you happen upon an accident or you're in one yourself, a first aid kit could be the difference between life and death, especially during those 12 minutes you'll likely be waiting for the first responders to arrive.

4. Flares

If your car breaks down on the road in the middle of the night, it's best to have some sort of signal to warn traffic. They're also very helpful as a visual reference for the first responders.

5. Non-Perishables

If you're ever stranded in a snow drift or in the middle of nowhere, it may be days before you're rescued. It's good to have some food on hand and...

Bottles Of Water
6. Bottles Of Water

Water is vital for most emergencies, especially if you're stranded and you need to fight off dehydration.

7. Blankets

You're stuck in a blizzard, and your car just died. The temperature is dropping fast. How do you stay warm until help arrives? Your blankets. Wrap up in these to protect yourself from hypothermia.

Ice Scraper
8. Ice Scraper

Have you ever tried to chip ice off of your windshield with your bare hands? It's practically impossible. Ice scrapers are a must for every driver during the winter months.

9. Lifehammer

Picture yourself careening off the road into a lake. You can't open the door because of the water pressure and your seat belt is jammed. The Lifehammer can cut through your seat belt and break through the window so that you can escape. Keep this tool within arm's reach. Its a lifesaver.

10. Flashlight

When your car breaks down, you'll need a light to look at your engine. You can also use it to flag down help and find your way to the nearest gas station at night.

11. Matches

This is another item that you might need when you're stranded. If your flashlight goes out, you can use these instead. They can also help you build a warm fire if the weather isn't against you.

Car Manual
12. Car Manual

If you're not sure what's wrong with your car, check your car manual before you take it to get serviced. You might be able to fix the issue on your own and save some money.

Spare Tire
13. Spare Tire

If you ever get a flat, a spare tire will save you from the hassle of calling a tow truck and buying an overpriced tire.

Duct Tape
14. Duct Tape

Duck tape is necessary if you're looking for a quick and temporary fix. You can also get creative with it and use it for practically anything, like strapping some boxes to the roof of your car.

Tire Pressure Gauge
15. Tire Pressure Gauge

You might be able to avoid changing your tire on the interstate if you you check the air pressure before long-distance trips.

Basic Tools
16. Basic Tools

Knowing is half the battle. Doing is the other half. Even if you know how to fix any issues that might arise in your car, you won't be able to do anything without the proper tools to get the job done.

17. WD-40

You've noticed that your doors have been squeaking for some time now, and every time you hear it, you say, "I really need some WD-40." Keep it with you at all times and attack the problem right away. It's also great for stubborn bolts.

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