7 Tips for Living in Your Car in an Emergency

You never know how an emergency will affect your life. While you might have a home right now, a wildfire or natural disaster could take it away tomorrow. Preppers understand the futility of permanence, which is why they always plan and organize for disaster. If you were forced to live out of your car tomorrow, would you know what you needed?

1. Food and Water

The primary items you will need include food and water. For food, you will likely want to focus on freeze-dried items. You can purchase less stable food items if you are lucky enough to have a car refrigerator and a camp stove. You will also need a cooler to store water. The cooler is essential because it protects against heating and the leaching of plastics.

2. Safety Essentials

When it comes to safety, the obvious purchase is a personal protection device. You can opt for pepper spray, a personal alarm, a firearm, or a knife. If you intend to carry a gun or a knife, look into state regulations and licensing requirements. Additionally, you will want to pack a first aid kit and any medications for you or loved ones staying with you.

3. Communication

A cellphone and computer are essential for communication. While many people do not realize it, you can purchase a power converter for your vehicle to charge devices without an adapter. Cell phones typically come with car chargers, but computers do not. Another option for receiving mail is to rent a P.O. box.

4. Temperature Control

When living in your car, you cannot always have the vehicle running. First, it costs too much, and second, there is a risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Therefore, when staying in your car, you will want to invest in more practical means for staying cool or warm.

You can use a sleeping bag, wool blanket, emergency bivvy, or hand-warmers to stay warm. You also have the option of using public buildings or businesses like fast-food restaurants, malls, or grocery stores.

Staying cool is a little more challenging, but you still have the option of going inside a business or public building. Additionally, you can use car shades, curtains, and covers to block the sun. It would be best if you also tried to park in the shadow of trees and buildings.

5. Portable Toilet

A portable toilet is essential when living in your car. While you might be in an area with access to restrooms, there is bound to be a time when a portable option is your best option, especially at night when most businesses are closed.

6. Hygiene

Staying clean is a challenge when living in your car, but it is not impossible. With a bit of imagination, you can still have access to showers. Several options for remaining clean while living in your car include:

  • Gym memberships
  • Campsite showers
  • Truckstop showers
  • Solar showers
  • Wet wipes

7. Sleep

Getting a good night’s sleep in your car can be a struggle. If you do not have the right tools and resources for a comfortable night’s sleep, you will face potential health consequences. The items you need for a decent night’s sleep include:

  • Tri-fold mattress
  • Pillow
  • Sleeping bag
  • Wool blanket
  • Earplugs
  • Carbon monoxide detector

8. Parking

You want to capitalize on free parking whenever possible, but do not put yourself in a dangerous situation. Park in well-lit areas and use campgrounds if you can — national forests offer free camping and parking.

Do you know of any other tips for those living out of their vehicles? Leave a comment.