7 Ways to Make Your Old Beater Look (and Feel) Brand New

how to make your old car feel new again

I’ve shared a car with my husband for a long, long time. Before that I was a constant bus-rider, bike-rider, and walker. Actually, the only time I’ve ever had my own car was when I was in high school! And while I do have some daydreams every now and then of owning a fancy new, reliable, and pretty car, the reality is that cars are a huge waste of money. And, I know it.

If you have an old beater, don’t you worry! While having an old car might not be your ideal, you are most likely doing a very good thing for your finances.

So, let’s spruce up that dingy car. With a little TLC you’ll love driving it again.

Here are 7 ways to upgrade that ol’ beater:

Schedule a Deep Cleaning

While you may have some equipment at home to clean your vehicle superficially, it can be well worth the money spent to take it to a dealer or auto cleaning professional for a detailing service. They can give your vehicle a deep cleaning with shampooed rugs and upholstery and a thorough cleaning inside and out to remove stains, dirt, and bad smells.

Be sure to shop around too! For a minute there I was getting suckered into spending $20 bucks for a thorough car cleaning and then I felt like a ding-dong when my husband found a place that did the same type of deep-cleaning for under $10! Live and learn, right?!

Outfit the Essentials

Don’t waste money on accessories you never use. Take note of the things that are most important in your vehicle and upgrade those things first. A cracked steering wheel is not only ugly, it can be dangerous. Invest in a good quality wheel cover to make it more comfortable to use. Upgrade the audio system if music is important to you. Buy high-quality floor protectors to prevent wear and tear.

Upgrade Technologies

There are likely many new automotive technologies on the market that were not available when your vehicle was manufactured. You can upgrade a number of systems in addition to the audio such as installing a navigation system or a rear-seat entertainment system.

Recondition the Air Conditioning

Visit your local dealership or mechanic for an air conditioning tune up. Over time the AC and heating unit can become less effective thanks to clogging dirt and the growth of bacteria. A professional can clean the system and replace the filters to revitalize they system.

Do a Tire Check

Tires that are not properly inflated can cause you to waste fuel and make the ride feel overly bumpy. Make sure to check air pressure in each tire regularly. You should also make sure tires are serviced often so they have the proper tread depth for safety and good traction. Invest in higher quality tires to improve your ride.

Invest in a Paint Job

Get an estimate for a new paint job to makeover a dull, worn out looking vehicle. Your vehicle can get a whole new look for a more reasonable price than a new car.

Personalize Your Space

There are many types of car accessories on the market that cater to your personal taste. Select car seat covers, floor mats, or decals that feature your favorite sports team, cartoon character, or color. Make sure all accessories you invest in are within the guidelines of the law such as with lights and exterior accessories


Image source: James Vaughan

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