Your car is more than a mode of transport: it’s an investment that needs maintenance, and if it’s not quite part of your family, then it’s definitely part of your household. These five must-have accessories will, each in their own way, extend the life of your car.



This unit will turn your garden hose into a power hose. While it’s a great weapon for water fights, it’s also an incredibly useful tool for keeping your car clean. Instead of scrubbing dirt and dead bugs off the car’s bodywork when you wash it (scratching the paint as you do it), you’ll now be able to blast it all off with high-powered jets of water.



You’ve already got jumper cables in your boot, right? If those jumpers are the army, then consider this battery charger to be the cavalry. It’ll force current through the battery, giving it the boost it needs to get your car to the nearest battery centre for a replacement. Chargers are a short-term solution (it’s always better to have a new, fresh battery), but when you’re stuck on the side of the road or in your driveway with a dead car, a short-term solution is exactly what you’ll want!



You’ll often hear people say that the problem with fire extinguishers is that they need to be tested and checked regularly. But that’s less of a problem, and more of a necessary piece of admin. A fire extinguisher is the sort of thing that you’ll wish you had when you need it. Store a small one in your car, and be ready to use it in emergencies.



It seems like such a small thing – but you’ll be surprised how many uses you’ll find for that tow rope. Yes, you can use it to help a friend in need (or be helped yourself!), but it’ll also come in handy for other emergencies, and – if you have a bakkie or a car with a roof rack – for securing the bulky things you’re transporting.



Finally, here’s an accessory that won’t help in any emergency – but it will lengthen the life of your car, and of its bodywork. A car cover will fit over your car, protecting it from the elements while it sits in your driveway. If you live near the coast (where the salty air wreaks havoc on your car’s paint job), then this accessory is an absolute must.



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