Are you a hands-on, DIY, kind of person? You’re going to love this article with some great ‘McGuyver’-esque tips.
Not everyone drives a smartphone on wheels. Some have more classic taste when it comes to their vehicle of choice, and the rest of us are on a budget. Here are some handy tips to help you fit in with modern motoring life:
1. Interior ergonomics
All new vehicles punt their fabulous interior storage space, but that’s an easy fix for those who don’t currently drive a seven-seater. Simply get a set of plastic shower or shoe organisers (with the different compartments), and fit it to the back of your front passenger and driver seats. This turns the back of both seats into a miniature ‘wall’ with various holders for anything from books and pens to toys and water or juice bottles.
2. GPS & Bluetooth
Yes, you can buy aftermarket GPS and Bluetooth (hands-free) units, but many drivers choose to simply use their smartphones. This isn’t always the safest choice, however, as fiddling with your phone while driving really is one of the most dangerous decisions you can make behind the wheel. Many get so used to using their phones for everything, that they simply bypass car-specific GPS / Bluetooth. If that sounds like you, it’s worth looking for easy hacks to mount your phone in your car. It’s still not the safest option, but at least it stops you from looking down at your phone the whole time.
3. Manual air-conditioning
Are you driving a non-air-conditioned vintage? If your car has been standing out in the heat, try this: open a window, walk around the car to the opposite side and then open and close the door a few times. Like a fan, this will force the hot air out of the open window on the other side and get your car closer to ‘earth’ temperature in just a few minutes.
4. Car-to-driver communication
If you’re with an old-school car key that doesn’t have a button to coax a tasteful ‘beep’ to from your car when you forget where it’s parked, don’t despair. Just drop a location pin on your phone when you get out of the car. This works brilliantly for city slickers or students who navigate massive parking lots and rarely park in the same place twice. For smaller parking lots – simply snap a photo of the floor / parking lot numbering for easy reference on your way out.
5. DIY sound system
If your icon on wheels still has a tape deck, there are many tips on turning this space into an impromptu iPod holder. Do a little research to make sure you don’t damage the car or iPod (you may need a sleeve for your iPod, or lining for the tape slot), and you can create a very convenient way to turn your iPod into a full-time car audio system.
6. Real-time traffic alerts
This one isn’t foolproof, but if you don’t have access to real-time traffic information, it’s worth a shot: next time you’re stuck in traffic that seems to be going nowhere, pay attention to which lane the trucks seem to be aiming for. They often have radios and will radio back to let other trucks know which lanes are open (in the event of an accident or road closure).
There are plenty of tips out there to help you McGuyver your car into the modern era, and many of them actually turn out a lot more effective than the modern built-in options. So go wild and find the best solutions for your lifestyle, you’ll be surprised how easy it is to ‘modernise’ your wheels with a few creative hacks.
To find out more about keeping your car running smoothly and keeping costs down, download our guide: Extending the Lifespan of Your Car.
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