Today I wanted to talk about car hacks. I don’t mean taking over a Tesla with a brute force attack. I actually mean useful tips and tricks when it comes to car maintenance, car buying and more. You see, I have loads of tips on this subject. And now we are moving into the winter months and thoughts turn to car maintenance, I thought it was time to share.
So no matter your needs, I’m sure the list below will provide you with help.
Cars Hacks – Car Maintenance, Cleaning, Buying And More
Maintenance & Cleaning
- Want to defrost your windscreen faster? Flip down your sun visors to trap hot air near to the screen. Seriously, this is so simple but works amazingly well!
- Do you have murky looking headlights? Clean them with toothpaste to restore them to factory freshness.
- Unsure which side your gas tank is on, check the fuel indicator for an arrow showing you:
- Have goo on your windshield from an oil change or registration sticker? Give it a quick spray with WD40 and it will wipe right off.
- Do you doors freeze closed in the winter? Rub olive oil on the rubber seals. It makes it harder for water to get in and freeze them.
- Don’t have a mobile phone holder? Use a rubber band by wrapping it around an air vent. Like so:
- If you are parked in a huge parking lot, take a picture of where you parked to easily remember.
- Always have a breakdown kit handy that includes everything you need, including a blanket, fleece, hat and gloves. You can grab one from Amazon for as little as $35:
- Stop your car from being dinged in your garage by attaching pool noodles to the area where you open the doors and hanging a tennis ball from the ceiling marking where you should stop to avoid hitting the back wall.
- This is a potato quality video, but it shows a great way to get dents out of your panels using a toilet plunger:
- You can use a squirt bottle of hand sanitizer to de-ice your locks if they have frozen after a cold snap. The alcohol content makes easy work of even the most stubborn freeze.
- Make sure you know how to parallel park properly:
- Make sure your mirrors are adjusted properly:
- Sick of dropping things down the gap between your seats? So hard to retrieve things from down there and doubly hard to clean. Install a stop drop for just 20 bucks from Amazon and never have that problem again!
- If you get stuck in snow, use your floor mats under the wheels to provide traction and get yourself going again.
- If you come back to your car and it’s roasting hot in there, do this. Roll one window down, walk around to the other side of the car and open and close the door a few times. This will push all the excess heat out of your vehicle and make it bearable to be in.
- Know how to change a flat tire:
- If the inside of your car windows tend to fog up, wipe them down with shaving foam. It contains a lot of the same chemicals commercial defoggers have but is massively cheaper.
- Never wax your car in direct sunlight, it will end up looking awful.
- Do you have bugs or tar stuck to your vehicle that won’t come off, no matter how much you clean it? Use a clay bar from Amazon, it will definitely remove it!
Car Buying & Selling
- Want to get the absolute best deal on a vehicle? Foot traffic at car dealerships is lowest on Tuesdays. Go on the last Tuesday of the month. Not only will it be slow but the sales people will be desperate to hit their sales targets.
- Know exactly what goes on behind the scenes of a dealership and don’t fall for their tactics. This article from Edmunds is a great write-up and well worth a read.
- If you are purchasing through finance, shop around and see if you can get a better deal with a bank. Not only will it save you cash in the long-term but having the money ready might mean a better deal on the vehicle you wish to buy.
- Don’t fall in love with any vehicle. This will not be conducive to making rational decisions. And there are plenty more cars out there.
- Always test drive a vehicle. Does not matter if you are buying new or second-hand. This is your chance to make sure there is nothing wrong with the car and that it is comfortable for you to drive.
- When selling your car, spend a few dollars having it detailed before taking pictures. You could add significant value to it, just with this simple thing.
- Learn what you need to check before purchasing a used vehicle:
- To add-on to the above video. If you are buying used, check the warning lights when you turn the key but before you start the engine. The warning lights should show up when you switch on the electronics, if they don’t, they have been disabled and you should walk away.
- Have dealers compete for your business. If you know the car you want, contact all the dealers within 50 miles of you by email and take the one that gives you the best deal.
- Don’t trade in your car. You will get a crappy price. However, if you have to trade it in, check the NADA guide. The National Automobile Dealers Association is what your dealer will use to get a price, so make sure they offer you a price very close to this.
- Last of all, if you want to know how to sell your car effectively, check out this guy. There is nobody on earth that could sell their car like this: