Are you wondering how to transform a car that looks used into something new? Keep reading. In this article, we share some valuable tips on how to spruce up your ride. If you feel like you fell out of love with your car, it’s possible to rekindle that tender loving care (TLC). Giving your car some TLC can work wonders. It all starts with a good clean-up session. This could be a Saturday cleaning session. But unfortunately, time’s not always on your side.
If you’re the ‘car wash’ kind of person, that’s okay too. Just remember, regular visits to the carwash are key, not just a one-time deal. Trust us, neglecting your car won’t do it any favors. So, if you’re up for turning your car’s looks around but feeling lost, don’t fret! We’ve put together this blog to share with you some easy ways to give your car that fresh, new look.
But first things first: Let’s start by answering this question:
Is It Necessary to Transform a Used Car?
Transforming a car that looks used into something new is one of the best things you can do. But if you are unsure how to go about doing it, start with small steps. Start by giving your car a good clean, inside out. Declutter the interior. Don’t leave any stray papers or forgotten Coke cans under the seats. Clear out anything that doesn’t belong. Once you’ve done this, you’ll have a clearer view of what needs fixing or sprucing up inside.
Next, take a close look at the exterior. What bothers you? Are the rims looking worn? Is the paint chipped, or are there dents, scratches, or a cracked windshield? Make a note of everything you’d like to change on the outside and find out the costs of each fix. This step is key in planning how to rejuvenate your older car. Oh, and don’t forget to find out how much each fixing will cost you. Knowing the cost of these fixes or replacements is helpful at this stage. Now let’s take a look at the technology of your car.
Set Up A Budget
Now that you’re committed to giving your car a makeover, the next step is budgeting. Collect quotes from various auto body shops, detailing services, and mechanics to compare prices and choose the best option for your car. Planning a budget helps gauge the overall cost of refurbishing your old car. If the expenses seem overwhelming, reconsider and weigh the possibility of buying a new car, unless, of course, your vehicle is an antique with substantial resale value.
The costs of revamping a used car into something new can vary significantly based on several factors:
Car’s Age: If your car requires extensive restoration due to its age, expenses might exceed $60,000. At this rate, you could consider purchasing a brand-new Cadillac SUV or two midsize SUVs priced around $24,000 each. It’s worth reconsidering whether the investment in revamping your old car aligns with your preferences and budget.
Consider this: The average restoration cost for your car might hover around $40,000, which is a significant sum. If you refurbish your car and decide to sell it, if you are lucky you may manage to get $60,000, earning an extra $20,000. However, selling an old car for $60,000 might prove challenging. Most people won’t be willing to pay more than $10,000 for a secondhand car. So this could be a potential loss on your investment.
Upgrade to the Newest Technology
The very first thing to revamp inside your old car is technological upgrades. Begin with basic improvements like your locking system. You can swap out old setups for a central locking and alarm system. You might as well consider updating the ignition and key as well. Adding a remote start feature via smartphone could be a game-changer for your old car.
Adding rearview backup cameras is a great enhancement too. Once you have them, backing out of parking lots becomes painless. Plus, you’ll find it easy to keep an eye on the area behind your vehicle and prevent collisions with other cars.
Keep this in mind: Some of the technology upgrades might be costly. Just choose the ones that will be affordable to you, and useful to you. For instance, a GPS tracking system.
Get Custom Details
Transforming a used-looking car into something fresh involves customization. Start by exploring custom details that suit your needs and make driving your old car a smoother experience. Remember, these features don’t have to break the bank; they just need to enhance your driving comfort. For instance, if one of your family members is in a wheelchair you might consider adding a wheelchair lift. Choose a car wheelchair lift.
Bring Your Car in for Needed Maintenance
Sometimes you can transform your old car by bringing it in for needed maintenance. Make sure you regularly maintain your old car to keep it running smoothly. Because when you neglect servicing, it can lead to issues and risks for both you and other drivers. As a rule of thumb, every 5000 to 7500 miles, especially for older vehicles. Other essential replacements include the cambelt (between 40,000 to 90,000 miles), tires, wipers, gearbox service, and even the seats at times. Regular maintenance safeguards your vehicle’s performance and safety.
We recommend that you take your car to an auto detailing service, or an auto body shop. They will assess it for you and tell you what needs to be changed on your car.
Repaint Your Car
Transforming your car’s appearance involves more than just upgrading tires and interior components. You need to consider exterior paint too. Worn-out appearance can make the car seem old. Consider visiting an auto body shop for a fresh look. Prior to going, decide whether you want to maintain the original color or opt for a new one. The technicians will prepare the car by eliminating rust, dents, and scratches to ensure a smooth surface. If repainting the interior is on the agenda, everything inside the car must be removed beforehand.
Once all the components are disassembled and cleaned, the auto body shop technician begins the process by sanding and priming your old car before painting. Achieving the desired gloss for your car’s new look requires high-quality car paint. An experienced technician can guide you on the ideal paint choice. While spray paint is commonly used, sometimes brush paint is preferred. Applying multiple coats of paint is recommended for long-lasting protection against wear and tear over time.
Reassemble Your Car
Once the painting process is complete, the reassembly of your old car follows. Typically, auto body technicians handle the reassembly process, occasionally without your presence. However, if you’re there, ensure every part is properly assembled. Not a single piece should be overlooked. All components must be tightly fastened for safety. If there are worn-out parts that need replacement, they should be swapped out during this phase.
Make Sure You and the Car are Properly Insured
It’s crucial to consider insurance after revamping your car. Fortunately, insuring an old car is notably more affordable than insuring a new one. According to Forbes Advisor, used cars are about 37% cheaper to insure than their newer counterparts. On average, you might expect to pay around $1,391 annually for an old car, saving $527 compared to the average cost. Specific state rates can vary significantly, such as $3,253 in Florida, $3,042 in Louisiana, and $2,426 in New Jersey.
Here are some helpful tips for selecting the right insurance:
- Consider Your Car’s Value: For a car with low book value, think about dropping collision or comprehensive coverage and reduce costs.
- Shop Around: Don’t settle for the first car insurance policy you come across. Searching for affordable insurance allows you to spend less overall.
- Specialized Coverage for Antique Cars: If you drive an antique car with a higher value, seek specialized coverage tailored for these unique vehicles.
Take time to choose the right car insurance for your car. Go for an auto insurance service that meets your needs.
Protect Your New Car
Always strive to protect your old car that has been transformed to a new car. Focus on protecting the exterior of your car, as this is the first thing that people will notice. Avoid parking your car in the sun for far too long.
Protecting your car from harsh weather conditions is crucial. Here are some tips to shield your vehicle:
- Covered parking: Only use covered parking areas, like underground lots at shopping centers, to shield your car from rain and sunlight.
- Garage parking: Park your car in the garage at home. If parking outside, use a car cover for protection.
- Storm preparedness: During storms, use blow-up mattresses to shield your windshield and roof temporarily.
- Hail protection: Shield your car from hail by wrapping it in bubble wrap. It’s effective in preventing hail damage.
- Wind protection: Park near a building to shelter your car from strong winds and rain.
- Avoid flooded areas: Refrain from driving through flooded roads or washed-out bridges to prevent damage to your vehicle. While at it, make sure that you have ceramic coating for cars.
Store it Properly
If you are one of those car owners who use their cars occasionally, you need to think more about where you store your car. Nothing wrong with using your car occasionally. But infrequent use of cars can impact their condition. So, proper storage is crucial to maintain your car’s health.
If your car sits for a while, it’s a good idea to fire it up for a bit and let it run before turning off the engine. Keep an eye out for any rust or dust buildup under the hood; even a tiny speck of dirt can cause problems. Giving your car a good clean every now and then is a great way to keep it looking fresh. Best spots to store it? Garages or covered parking—though we’re big fans of garages for extra protection. If you’re garage-less, considering getting one built by a garage door expert could be a smart move for your car’s care.
If your car is parked in the garage, remember to open the door occasionally to let in fresh air. This is another way of preventing stagnation. Then you also need to check with companies that sell garage doors, or someone who can advise on what kind of garage doors you can purchase for your home.
After Transforming Your Car, Look Into Adding Other Vehicles!
Congratulations! You’ve given your old car a fresh lease on life. What’s next? Another car maybe? Yes, expanding your vehicle collection is not a bad idea either. And it doesn’t have to be another car; it could be a motorbike, a truck, or even a snazzy golf cart! But hold on. Before adding more wheels to your lineup, think about where you’ll keep them. Ensure your home is spacious enough. We wouldn’t want to see you resorting to parking some of your cars on the pavement.
If a golf cart sounds like something you think you should have, by all means, go ahead and get it. We recommend that you contact companies that sell golf carts. Most of them offer a wide range of carts that you can choose from.
Revamping your car into something extraordinary needs a solid plan. It’s not a spur-of-the-moment decision or something that happens magically without a budget. Sit down, crunch the numbers, and figure out what you can afford and what you can’t. After this assessment, you’ll know if you have to wait for another time. It’s all about planning and pacing yourself for the transformation.
Always prioritize safety when upgrading your old car. No matter the new parts or features you add, ensure they don’t compromise safety. Use high-quality parts and avoid installing tech features that your older car may not support. While certain driver-assist features seem appealing, not all are suitable for every vehicle. Some may require modifications that aren’t ideal for your car’s setup. Besides, adding those features might be expensive for you.
Stick to affordable and straightforward modifications. Trust only experienced and reputable technicians and mechanics who know your car inside out. This ensures your car stays reliable and trouble-free down the road. Need any help with modifying your car? Reach out to us today!