Different car owner assume they need to be some kind of auto mechanic (either literally or a hobbyist) to not only be as prepared as you need to be, but to keep your car in excellent working order. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. Here are some simple tips, tricks, best practices and car hacks that will not only keep you safe wherever you go, but that can actually help improve the performance, the fuel efficiency and other attributes of your vehicle at the same time
You do NOT need to be some type of car expert to make use of these tips – all you need is a little knowledge, some good, old- fashioned elbow grease and (often) the right product by your side.
FIND OUT IF YOU NEED NEW TIRES THE EASY WAY
One great trick that every car owner should know involves finding out how to tell if you need new tires – it’ll only cost you a penny!
The next time you’re curious about whether or not it’s time for new tires, take a penny and insert it into your tire’s tread groove. Make sure that Abe Lincoln’s head is upside down and facing towards you at the time. If you can see all of Honest Abe’s head, that means that your tread depth is less than the recommended 1/16 inches (1.6mm) – meaning that it’s time to head to the store and pick up a new set of tires before you get yourself in some trouble.
DE-ICE YOUR WINDSHIELD WITH VINEGAR
If you live in an area that has particularly bad winters, one situation that is unfortunately all too common involves ice in the worst possible places. Sometimes you’ll go out to your car in the morning and be greeted by a thick later of ice on your windshield that your defroster just can’t seem to handle on its own. Other times that ice will be in the worst possible place – your locks. You may think that pouring hot water on it will instantly solve your problem, but that will only make it worse. Instead, use a vinegar and water mixture to melt ice the efficient way.
KEEP A ROADSIDE HERO IN YOUR CAR
If you’ve ever been involved in a serious car accident, you know just how traumatic it can be. In the United States alone nearly 40,000 people per year are killed in car accidents. That’s why it’s imperative that every American have the RoadSide Hero in their cars. It has 9-in-1 Multi-Function life saving tools. It can function as a belt/rope cutter, glass breaker, hammer, compass, mounting magnet, flashlight/strobe/emergency light, powerbank and solar panel. This is the ultimate tool that should be in every vehicle.
KNOW WHICH SIDE YOUR GAS TANK IS
If you’re driving a new car in particular, you may have a hard time remembering which side your gas tank is on. You shouldn’t, however – as that information is right on your dashboard! Just look at the fuel indicator and search for the little “gas” icon. Whichever side the arrow is pointing to is the side of your car that your tank is on! This trick is particularly helpful if you’re ever driving a friend’s car or happen to be in a rental for a few days.
HOW TO JUMP START YOUR CAR BATTERY
Make no mistake: you should always know exactly how to jump start your car, no question. This is especially true if you live in an area that experiences all four seasons, as dead batteries are very common during the cold winter months and hot summer months of the year especially.
But more than that, you should always have a tool that lets you jump start your car battery on your own – which is exactly what the Portable Car Battery Jump Starter and USB Power Bank with LED Flashlight was built for. You get a portable 12 volt, 12000 mah 400 A portable battery jump starter AND the ability to charge your mobile devices at the exact same time. Not only will this make sure that you’re ready for anything, but it’s also another example of something that is compact enough to keep in your glove box as well.
USE TOOTHPASTE TO CLEAN HEADLIGHTS
Clean headlights will help you maintain a much safer drive, but it is often expensive or time consuming to get the required chemicals to do this. However, with proper creativity, toothpaste can go from cleaning your teeth to cleaning your headlights.
Using a rag and some water to rinse of afterwards, simply scrub down your headlights with toothpaste and watch the grime comes right off.
NEW USES FOR YOUR FLOOR MATS
Thick, rubber floor mats are a great way to prevent your car from getting too dirty in the winter – but they’re also a great way to get yourself out of a jam, as well! If you’re ever stuck in the snow (or in the mud during the summer), take the floor mats out of your car and put them underneath your tires. This will help give you the traction you need to get out of even the stickiest situations.
FIX CRACKED AND CHIPPED WINDOW WITH NAIL POLISH
If a flying rock takes a large chip out of your windshield, the initial damage may be minimal. Soon, however, that chip can lead to long cracks that stretch across the entire surface. Professional windshield repair can be costly. Those looking for a do-it-yourself windshield sealant will find a temporary solution in the cosmetics aisle. Fingernail polish serves as an adhesive that can be used to help prevent cracks from spreading.
RENEW AND REFRESH YOUR WINDSHIELD WIPERS WITH ALCOHOL
No, we’re not suggesting that your wipers take shots, but clean windshield wipers are a must to avoid streaks and scratches on your windshield. Cleaning your wipers with a little rubbing alcohol on a microfiber cloth is a cheap, but effective way to keep them in great shape.
REMOVE PAINT SCRATCHES ON CARS WITH NAIL POLISH
Some people may only know nail polish as something women put on their nails as a form of an accessory. However, nail polish has a lot of uses, and one of these uses includes being a great scratch remover. As you can tell with the other DIY fixes, you will need to buff and sand. However, with nail polish, you will just need to clean the area before applying it.