My Favorite Car Hack Plus 30 More

Transportation is essential in the modern life. As the world evolved, it became possible for everyone to own a car. But owning a car can be difficult and challenging. A thousand small problems can appear. You could spend hundreds of dollars trying to fix the small crack on the window or the tiny scratch that you got while parking. This is where these hacks come into play. Here are some hacks that experienced drivers do:

#30 – Nail Polish

Nail polish can come in handy on many occasions. Its primary mission is to make your nails beautiful, but did you know that you can use it to cover a scratch on your car? It happens, we have all scratched our cars. But, sometimes we need a quick fix. Taking your car to the local body shop can take time and money. I have a quick solution. The main obstacle is to find a nail polish that will match your car paint color. But, the beauty industry has advanced so much. I think that there are nail polishes in any colors. After you apply the nail polish, leave it to dry. After it is dry, buff it to make it appear smoother.

#29 – Stop A Windshield Crack With Clear Nail Polish

While we are at how cool is nail polish, let’s make it even cooler. Imagine you are driving down the road and a rock hits your windshield. It might not bust your windshield, but it could leave a small chip. Over time, that small cheap will grow bigger and bigger from the vibrations while driving. You can change your windshield, yes, but if you want it to last longer, I have a quick fix. You will need to steal your wife’s clear nail polish and apply 2-3 layers on the crack. The clear nail polish will stop the crack from spreading.

#28 – Keep Your Steering Wheel Cold

This hack is very useful during the summertime. 90% of the time we park our cars outside in the sun, whether it is in front of a supermarket, school or our house. The interior gets super hot from the sun, especially the steering wheel. My 2007 Hyundai has a leather steering wheel and leather seats. It can get as hot as hell. This is where this trick gets handy. Whenever I park my car, I turn the steering wheel 180 degrees. This way, the upper part of the steering wheel that gets hot, is actually the lower part of the steering wheel. The part that you use for driving (the upper part) was down in the shadows and remained cold.

#27 – Get Rid Of The Bright Sun

This trick comes in handy if you are driving during the day, without your sunglasses. It’s not only annoying, it is also very dangerous to drive with the sun facing towards you. Your vision can get reduced, therefore you are a danger to yourself and the other drivers. There is an easy solution to this issue. This is a trick that pilots use. The way that pilots do this is they get an acrylic sheet and attach it to the windshield. Thanks to the static electricity, the acrylic sheet is easily attached. This is an easy and cheap fix.

#26 – Prevent Car Sickness With Bay Leafs

Going on a road trip is a very special and unique experience. Don’t let car sickness keep you away from the road trip experience. There are medications that can prevent motion sickness, but if we take medicine for every small issue that we have, we would be drowning in pills. I always strive to find a natural solution first. If there is no natural solution to my issues, then I turn to medicine. I find putting a bay leaf under my tongue and staring at the horizon very helpful. The bay leaf contains chemicals that are known to relax the nervous system and the stomach.

#25 – Lemon To Keep You Awake

Driving for a long period of time will make you tired eventually. Drinking energy drinks full of sugar is not good for your health. Also, you will get that ‘pump’ and after a short period of time, when the effect fades, you will feel even more tired than before. Like I said, I try to find natural solutions, and I found one. Putting a piece of lemon under your tongue will act as a cup of coffee and will keep you awake and will restore your energy.

#24 – DIY Garage Parking Sensor

This is a great trick for all car owners that don’t have parking sensors in their vehicles. Even though you are great at parking, imagine if your tail lights stop working as well as the light in your garage. How will you park your vehicle without hitting the wall? Do you have a tennis ball? Hang the tennis ball at the point where your car would hit the wall. A friend of mine hanged the tennis ball at a point to hit his windshield when he has no more room. This is a cheap, but very useful solution.

#23 – Check Your Oil Quality

Aside from checking your oil levels, there is a special test to check the quality of the oil. This is a great test to perform if you have a vehicle that has been sitting for a long period of time. In order to check the oil quality take a clear napkin and put a few drops onto it. Leave the napkin to sit in a warm place for at least 2 to 3 hours. After that, perform a visual inspection. Pay attention to the edges of the spot. If the edges are smooth, that means that there is no water in the oil and the oil is good. If the center of the spot is darker gray, that means the oil is very dirty and it’s time to change the oil. If you find metal particles, you have to change the oil and the oil filter. It is best if you perform this test before you start your engine. If you start your engine and you have bad oil in it, or you are lacking oil, you could damage your engine.

#22 – Check The Gas Quality

If you have a vehicle that has been sitting for a long time, besides checking the quality of the oil, it is essential to check the quality of the gas.

Same as checking the oil, grab a white sheet of paper and put a drop of gas on it. Leave it to evaporate. What you are looking for is a perfectly dried white paper. If you have those results, that means that the gas is of good quality. If you are left with a grease spot, it means that there is kerosene in the gas.

If you want to perform a small test to see if there are signs of resin, here is how to do it. Put a couple drops of gas onto a glass and set it on fire. Check the circles around the fire. If the circles are white, there is no resin. If the circles are brown, there is enough resin in the gas to cause damage to the engine.

To check if there is water in the gas, you need to pour some gas in a transparent jar and add manganese solution. If the manganese crystals dissolved and the color of the gas changed to purple or pink it means that there is a significant amount of water in the gas.

#21 – Super Fast Car Cooling

If you read the full list carefully, you found the hack on how to keep your steering wheel cold. Now, there is no trick to keep your cabin cool, except if you park it in the shades. Let’s say you park it in the hot sun and leave it for a couple of hours. It will be hot as hell when you get back. You can start your car and start the AC yes, but there is another way. Open the front door on the driver side and the window on the door behind the driver. Go on the passenger side and just open and close the door. Repeat the process 2,3 times. What happens is you are pushing out the hot air. Brilliant, right?

#20 – Fight Pets Hair With Static Electricity

We all love our pets, but we hate their hair. Especially if you have a furry friend, the hair can become a problem. This trick can be used both at home and in cars. The secret is to put on some latex gloves and rub them off the carper, thus creating static electricity. Your pets hair will glue onto your latex gloves.

#19 – Prevent Car Doors From Freezing

Winters can be cruel. There are some parts of the world where it snows so much that you cannot find your parked car. Many parts of the car can freeze. Aside from the windshield, the frozen doors can be a problem. To avoid this issue, grab your cooking spray and spray it on the rubber parts of the door and then wipe it off. Your doors will not freeze.

#18 – Family Road Trip With Kids

Going on a road trip with kids can be challenging. Even when you are packing, you have kids running around and there is a good chance that you will forget something. Even if you didn’t forget anything, you must think about the items that you will be using during the trip and how to access them while driving. There is a great hack which will come in very handy. Grab your shower organizer and fix it to the seat in front of you. You can put diapers, bottles, games and everything you will need during the road trip.

#17 – An Improvised Sunglasses Holder

If you forgot to bring your sunglasses case and you don’t know where to put your sunglasses without breaking them, there is a safe spot in the car. Put your sunglasses on the Sun Visor and close it. They will be safe there and will not fall on a bumpy road. You can put a lot of stuff on the Sun Visor. I usually put my parking tickets there to keep them safe.

#16 – Stronger Cup Holder

I can speak from my personal experience of this issue. My cup holder isn’t strong enough. Every time I put my coffee in my cup holder, there is a great chance my cup of coffee will just fly away on the first bump on the road. That is why I like putting a silicone cupcake case on the bottom of my cup holder. The silicone will secure your coffee and you won’t have to worry about spilling it. Also, when it comes to cleaning it, you can just take the silicone cupcake case and it will have all the dirt on it.

#15 – Towbar Parking Sensor

This is a great tip for beginner drivers that haven’t had time to practice their parking. The trick is to place a tennis ball on your towbar. Whenever you are backing up, the towbar being the part that sticks out is the one that will first hit the wall or another car while parking. The tennis ball will act as a pillow and you won’t damage another car if you hit it.

#14 – Forgot Your Keys Inside The Car?

This trick may or may not work on your car, but it sure does work on most older models. If you forgot your keys inside your car, and you don’t have a spare key to open the door, you can do it with a tennis ball. The trick is to drill a hole in the tennis ball and place the whole onto your door lock. Apply pressure with your hand to press the air into the door lock and your door will unlock.

#13 – Secure Your Handbag

We all drive with the windows open during summertime. We all have a lot of items on the seats as well. For a thief, it’s very easy to steal something while we are waiting at the traffic light, with our windows open and our handbag on the passenger seat. You can secure your handbag with a headscarf on your passenger seat.

#12 – Foggy Windshield

During winter time, we get a foggy windshield. Driving with a foggy windshield is nearly impossible. You don’t want to wipe the windshield with your hands. You will end up with a dirty windshield. Instead, throw some of the little bags that we get when we buy new shoes. Those bags will suck up all the moisture and you will have a clear windshield.

#11 – Polish Your Headlights

No, it’s not with a toothpaste. Even though polishing your headlights with a toothpaste is a great trick, there are other stuff you can polish your headlights with. Coca-Cola. Yep, the most famous drink on this planet can be used to polish your headlights. Simply pour some coca-cola on the headlights and start wiping with a sponge or a microfiber towel. You will end up with brand new lookalike headlights.

#10 – How To Adjust Your Seat Correctly

Having your seat adjusted correctly will not only help you avoid back pain, but it will also allow you to react faster in dangerous situations. In order to adjust your seat correctly, start by pressing your back against the seat. You should be able to rest your hands on the steering wheel. Adjust the seat if needed. Next, press the clutch. Your leg should be straight. If your leg is not straight when you press the clutch, adjust your seat. Upon adjusting your car seat, you will have to adjust your mirrors as well. Also, make sure that your steering wheel is not covering the dashboard. You need to be able to see the dashboard at any time.

#9 – How To Jumpstart Your Car Correctly

We have all at least once in our life tried to jumpstart a car. The cause might be a bad battery, bad alternator, or simply you forgot your radio overnight.

  1. In order to jumpstart your car correctly, park the donor car facing the front of your car with a distance of no more than 1 feet.
  2. Switch off the engine on the donor car and all the electronic devices.
  3. Disconnect the negative terminal of the ‘Patient’s car’.
  4. Connect the jump leads. Red goes to the positive terminal.
  5. Connect the black cable to the donor’s negative terminal and on any metallic unpainted part of the ‘patient’ car.
  6. Start the donor engine, and then try to start the patient car.
  7. After you start the patient car, connect the negative battery terminal.
  8. Disconnect the jump leads.
  9. Leave the patient car running for at least 20 minutes so the battery could recharge.

#8 – Don’t Warm Up Your Car When It’s Cold

This might come as a shocker because we all know that we should heat up the engine in cold weather in order to prolong its service life. But, mechanics say that we shouldn’t do this! They say leaving the engine running idly uses up the fuel which can damage it. The engine runs on a mixture of air and vaporized fuel. Engine running idly heats up more slowly than normal. At the same time, the cylinders are filled with the fuel mixture, which removes the oil. So, the best way to heat your car is to wait for a minute after starting it, and then slowly drive forward.

#7 – Parking Tips

Parking can be a problem for many drivers, especially for beginners. Here are some cool tips that will help you improve your parking skills:

  1. Always park in reverse. It will be much easier to leave.
  2. Before parking in reverse, make sure there is nothing (trash, animals, or people) behind you.
  3. Position your car in a way that doesn’t impede pedestrians.
  4. When parking, make sure you are not blocking other cars.
  5. Never park in the second lane, otherwise, you will cause a traffic jam, and you will probably get a traffic ticket.
  6. If you don’t see any markings on the parking spot, go ahead and park parallel to the vehicle next to you.
  7. When leaving, always give a signal to other drivers.
  8. Always park where it’s permitted. Avoid parking in a no-parking zone or in the grass. Otherwise, you won’t find your car later on.

#5 – Never Drive Slowly In The Fast Lane

Driving slowly in the fast lane is more dangerous than increasing your speed. To overtake a driver that is in the left lane, you have to maneuver to the right side lane which is illegal in the first place and can cause an accident. Statistics show that people who drive too slowly in the left side lane cause 10% of road accidents. So, whenever you see a car approaching, kindly move to the right side lane and leave the car to pass you.

#4 – Avoid Traffic Jams On The Road

The main problem with traffic jams are the drivers, their slow reactions and lack of attention. Traffic jams can occur anywhere, starting from junctions, tiny streets, even highways. All it takes is a dog or a cat to cross the road, or the car in front of you to change a lane. So, how to avoid traffic jams?

  1. If there are cars in front of you, and you cannot pass the crossing before the traffic light changes, do not drive. Wait for the next light.
  2. Retain the same distance from cars both ahead and behind.
  3. Don’t drive very close to other cars. Aside from traffic jams, this can also cause accidents if the car in front of you starts to slow down.

#3 – When To Stop Driving

Driving can be exhausting, especially when you are driving at night. You shouldn’t risk your life, and the life of others and stop immediately if you feel tired. Here are 5 signs that you should stop driving:

  1. Stop immediately if you notice the moment you blink. We blink many times during the day, but we never notice the ‘blackness’ because we blink fast. If you start noticing the ‘blackness’, that means you are keeping your eyes closed for a longer period of time than normal while blinking.
  2. There is something called ‘A trick of the eye’. This means that normal objects that you see every day will appear different. Example: The line in the middle of the road is suddenly not in the middle of the road.
  3. You can’t focus your gaze on the road. If you notice that you just can’t look for longer than 2,3 seconds without blinking, stop and rest. It’s important TO arrive at the destination, it’s not important WHEN.
  4. This is probably the most reliable test to see if you are too tired to drive. Try to exercise your brain. Give yourself an occasion and try to solve it. Example: 7×7. Can you get the results in a timeframe that you would normally do?
  5. Your attentiveness has dissipated. For example, you never forget to turn on your headlights, but now you are driving with the headlights switched off.

Your passengers should always check the driver’s condition. But how do to that?

Ask questions that will make the driver think. Where are we going? When will we arrive? If the driver doesn’t answer clearly, TAKE A BREAK IMMEDIATELY!

#2 – Never Leave Anyone In A Car In The Heat

You should never leave your pets or kids in the car. What do you think, how long can a car be under the sun before it gets hot inside? Just for reference: 21 Celsius = 69F and 54 Celsius = 129F.

After 10 minutes:

  • Outside: 21 Celsius – Inside: 32 Celsius
  • Outside: 23 Celsius – Inside: 35 Celsius
  • Outside: 27 Celsius – Inside: 37 Celsius
  • Outside: 30 Celsius – Inside: 40 Celsius
  • Outside: 35 Celsius – Inside: 46 Celsius

After 30 minutes:

  • Outside: 21 Celsius – Inside: 40 Celsius
  • Outside: 23 Celsius – Inside: 43 Celsius
  • Outside: 27 Celsius – Inside: 46 Celsius
  • Outside: 30 Celsius – Inside: 48 Celsius
  • Outside: 32 Celsius – Inside: 51 Celsius
  • Outside: 35 Celsius – Inside: 54 Celsius

Even in the shade, the temperature reaches a dangerous level. Open windows don’t have an effect on the temperature inside. It simply slows the heating process.15 minutes is enough for an animal to get heat stroke. If you see a dog locked in a car, hit the tires of the car to activate the alarm system. If the owner is still not coming out, call the police. If the dog has passed out, find a witness and break the window. Every year thousands of dogs die whilst locked in cars, and to be honest I am too afraid to even research if any children have died locked in the car.

#1 – Finally, My Favorite Trip – How To Repair Dents

I remember when I first took my fathers car on prom night and came back with a dent which I didn’t do. Some drunk kid fell onto my passenger side door and made a dent with his head. I tried to explain but my parents that it wasn’t my fault, but they wouldn’t listen. I wish I knew this trick back then, it would have saved me. Whenever you get a small dent in your car, whether it’s the door or the bumper, you can fix it very easy. Heat up a water in a pan, up to a boiling point. Pour the hot water onto the dent. Then, grab a plunger and place it on the dent and pull. If you have a scratch, you can fix it with a same color nail polish.

That’s it, folks. Those were the hacks that will hopefully save you time, money and will make your life easier. Tell us your favorite hack. If you have a hack that is not on the list, please share it in the comments.

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Car Care Hacks

Hi there. I am a certified Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) mechanic since 2018 and a car detailer for 10 years.

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