Car Tips


Sometimes, you just have to let go. Have some perspective. Reframe things. Ask yourself some searching questions; should that old banger sitting in your drive be a source of eternal embarrassment or a ticket to quick cash? Indeed, once you’ve decided your long and often arduous relationship with your car has run its course, then there’s no shame in accepting it’s destined for the scrap heap.

When you’re planning to scrap your car there a few things to bear in mind to get the best possible deal from the process. These are those; our 5 IDEAL tips for scrapping your car.


In the UK, somewhere between 6 million and 7 million cars are sold every year. A further two million are scrapped. Under the (commendably) strict environmental policies of the EU, cars must be disposed of in a particular way. Laws and regulations which were brought in to reduce the rate of theft of metals such as copper mean that it is illegal for car owners to be paid cash on the spot for their vehicles. Note that this doesn’t mean that you can’t get any money for scrapping your car, just that paper money ought not change hands. All this means is that it’s important to keep on top and in the know about changes to laws surrounding the subject.

Be aware of services who give you a quote and then offer to collect your car and pay you cash almost instantly. This is illegal, and you should avoid such arrangements. Reputable car scrapping services will recycle any parts they can on your vehicle, as well as provide you with a certificate of destruction. It’s not illegal to get paid for scrapping your car as long as all the guidelines are followed, culminating in a payment by cheque or by bank transfer once your vehicle has been processed.


If your vehicle is more or less past it, and making money on it as a whole unit looks optimistic, then you could sell its various parts separately for scrap. It may seem bleak, but it’s better than nothing, right? Before you take the leap, make sure your old car is ready to be taken apart and sold. Cars, much like that drawer next to your bed, accumulate a lot of stuff over time; some useful, some not so. Do a thorough clear-out and check every nook and cranny before you bid farewell to your wheels. Remember, too, to cancel license plates and insurance to avoid any extra costs slipping your mind later down the line. What’s more, you should use up all of the petrol in the car; that’s extra money right there which you don’t want to be donating.


One of the parts of the car that many people claim is the most valuable is the catalytic convertor. But what is it and is it worth removing before your car is scrapped?

Your car relies on its fuel system and one of the additions to this system is a catalytic converter, an item which controls the harmful emissions that come from the engine. It does this using catalyst substances which in turn cause a chemical reaction mitigating those emissions and ensuring that they do not make their way out of the exhaust pipe. Without a catalyst convertor, your car is going to be pumping out hydrocarbons, nitrous oxide and carbon monoxide, all into the environment.

They might not look like much, similar to an exhaust silencer, but the catalyst convertor is a valuable part of the car. The main reason for this is that they contain precious metals including platinum, rhodium and palladium, all of which can be worth a fair amount of money if the part is opened and these materials removed.


You might want to make the most money possible from your car, but for the majority of us, it’s not advised that a catalytic converter is removed from your car. The main reason for this is because the materials that are within the part, the ones that ensure that the chemical reaction occurs when the part is heated up next to the engine, are incredibly harmful.

If you are not aware of the process or the best way to remove the convertor then you’re going to put yourself at a risk of injury, which can be serious, and also of damaging that part of your car too.

If you damage the convertor when you remove it, then you are going to reduce the value that it can be sold for, which is the exact opposite of what you are going to want to do. Therefore, it’s a much better idea to trust the removal of all the parts in your car to an expert. Not only can they make sure that all the parts are removed in a safe way, but also that they are removed in a way that is going to make sure that you get the most money for your car when it is scrapped.


Several charitable organisations exist who will gladly take your car, arrange the scrapping of it and use the money for charity. If philanthropy is your thing (and it should be), then this channel should appeal. Charitycar.co.uk, giveacar.co.uk, cartakeback.com and Oxfam’s dedicated donation service are just a few of the major players here. They’ll even collect your car and give you a choice in which charity receives the donation.

It’s the car that you picked up your now wife in, on your very
first date. The car you drove halfway across the country for a music
festival. But alas, nostalgia is not going to get you from A to B. 
Trading in will afford you not only a new car, but peace of
mind. Get the best out of your bomb, and drive away in something you actually
want with these five tips. 

1.    Know your worth

This is no time for smoke and
mirrors. Having a realistic idea of where your car sits in the market, and how much you
can expect for it will make the whole process easier on you and the dealer
offering the trade. It’s true that going from dealer to dealer in your own time
can be exhausting, so why not find out what you are working with by using Carsand Co who has fortunately done all the heavy lifting for you.
By entering all your car details,
the exact trade in price will be calculated and they even facilitate a new car
delivery if you find what you are after.
only will this type of service provider save you time but they could end up
saving you a bundle against what you thought your vehicle may or may not have
been worth.

2.   Logbook

We all like to think we’re on top
of our life admin, but some things get away from us.
Luckily, mechanics and service staff are diligent with this requirement so logbook maintenance is usually done for you. We don’t always consider a log book an important
part of our vehicle maintenance, but that one missing stamp could be the reason
your trade in doesn’t reap the rewards you are due. A log book is effectively
your evidence that the vehicle has been serviced and maintained to a high
Missing a service is something
that we have all done, but missing the record in your logbook is not a habit
you want to get into. Make sure that all services, major repairs or additional
add on’s are tracked in your vehicle. This record keeping will help make sure
you get the best trade in value possible and it will also put the car’s next
potential owner at ease.

3.    Multiple markets

I’m sure that Jimmy from ‘Jim’s
Reliable Used Cars’ seems like a trustworthy guy after the valuation you just
received. However, ask yourself this question; if you were renovating your
bathroom would you go with the first quote you received? Or would you seek as
many quotes as possible to ensure you are receiving the best price?
Trading in your vehicle is no
The first valuation could be the best, but you will never know unless you ask
the question. Seek as many varying opinions and valuations as you can. Go to
your nearest genuine car dealer to have them assess the trade in value, then
visit the local second hand car dealers to do the same.
The more valuations you have, the
greater your bargaining power when it comes to getting the
most out of your trade in. Even if you find another vehicle you want from a
particular dealer, knowing the trade in value someone else is willing to offer
could increase your negotiation value even further. 

4.    Research your next car

Few things in life are as exciting as a new car. There is something truly special about driving in your driveway for the first
time, beeping the horn in anticipation to show off the new beauty to the
family. By researching and knowing what type of car you are looking for next,
you can save yourself a lot of time when looking for a dealer to trade in your
old car. Depending on how particular your preferences are on your next car you
may not have a vast choice of dealers to trade in with, Cars and Co have an
enormous inventory and give the most accurate picture.

Additionally, by knowing what you want next you can
realistically budget based on the value of your trade in and the cost of the
new car. Or if you are particularly savvy you could try to squeeze those few
extra dollars out of your trade in to bring the cost of your next car down even

5. Repairs are important

You may think fixing those dents, scratches or other fault with
your car might be counterproductive before trading in. However the cost of
repairing those issues before trading in could be much less than a dealer
‘estimates’ leaving them to take that off the value of your trade in. What the
dealer considers a fair price for the repairs and what the actual cost is can
vary dramatically. 

Yes, it can be a hassle to arrange repairs and visit the panel
beater or mechanic before trading in your vehicle. However, in the long run you
will thank yourself that you didn’t give the dealer a reason to lower the trade
in value of your vehicle to a point where you aren’t actually saving anything at
all. Take care of those pesky repairs that have been on your to do list before
visiting the dealers for a valuation. 

Trading in your car can be a tricky process if you don’t know
what you are doing, what to ask or who to speak to. The trade in value of your
vehicle is not an easy figure to calculate either. But following these tips
should help you feel more confident in the battleground that is car
dealerships. Trading in your vehicle is a great way to remove the hassle of
selling, but knowing your value is the true key to getting the best trade in

Are you ready to sell your family car? It might be time for an upgrade or perhaps you’re looking for a smaller car. Either way, getting the highest price for your used car is clearly your objective. Follow these recommendations from the professionals for selling your used vehicle for top dollar.

Prepare your car for sale. Detail the inside of the car. This includes shampooing all carpets, special attention to the console area, and shining the interior windows. Take the same care on the exterior of the vehicle. Power scrub the wheels and hubcaps as well as the bumpers. Ensure that the exterior windows have also been shined. Remove everything from the car other than the owner’s manual and car registration.

Drive to an area with a wooded back ground to take photos of the vehicles. Remove or cover the license plate for security purposes. Take photos of the exterior from different angles. Take photos of the interior including the odometer reading. Save these photos for posting to an online car sales website.

Determine the retail price of the vehicle by completing the questionnaires on the major car value websites. Be frank about the car’s condition. A higher price will be realised from a private purchaser versus a car dealership or used car lot.

Take advantage of the savings offered by Groupon coupons and purchase a For Sale sign from the office supply superstore Quill. With a permanent marker, specify the make, model year, sales price and odometer reading on the sign. Include contact information for prospective buyers.

List the vehicle on several reputable car sales websites. Include the reason for selling in the content as well as whether the vehicle has been garaged. Gather all service records and specify in the content that these are available to prospective buyers.

When responding to inquiries about the car from interested parties, arrange to meet in a public parking lot for safety reasons. Let a family member or friend know you are meeting a prospective buyer. Do not accept a check for the vehicle unless is has been certified by the issuing bank. Retain the license plates to turn into the local motor vehicle department or for use on your next car. Best of luck to you!

Some of us feel extremely sentimental about our cars, especially if we have had them for a long time. Every time we turn on the ignition we are filled with nostalgia about drives we’ve taken and places we’ve visited. Sadly, even with the best upkeep and care cars aren’t built to last forever. They wear out and become impractical to drive as often as we would like. Eventually, there comes a time when we need to replace our beloved older car with something more reliable. Unfortunately, this is difficult for some people to accept and their love for their car often causes them to be in denial. So if you or someone you know needs a reality check, take a look at these tell-tale signs that a new car is something you need.

You’re always breaking down

Older cars are expected to break down and need minor repairs every now and then. But if they are happening every few months, multiple areas of your life can be affected. Firstly it stops you from being able to drive anywhere, which can make it difficult to get to work or see friends. If major repairs such as replacing your exhaust system is needed each time, this can be a big drain on your finances too. If you know your mechanics contact details off by heart, this means you’re seeing them far too much. So get your car looked at to see what other potential issues you may have in future. If they think a lot of expensive repair work is needed to get it working correctly, replacing your car might be a more sensible option.

Your car isn’t fuel efficient anymore

As cars get older, they tend to becomes less energy efficient. This means that your car is using petrol at an alarming rate and needs to be topped up more frequently. It’s no secret that petrol prices can be extortionate, which isn’t ideal if you have to fill up your tank every few days. This adds to the costs of running your car and going to a petrol station continually can be inconvenient and frustrating. Newer cars are designed to be energy efficient, while also being more environmentally friendly. So replacing your older car with something newer can be good for the planet and your bank balance in the long run. Visit Saxton 4×4 or other car dealerships to see just how efficient newer models can be or read reviews online. You might be surprised just how little you have to fill up compared to your current car.

You’re paying more for your insurance

The older your car is, the more expensive it is to get it insured. This is because they are more likely to experiences issues. But also because they don’t have the same level of safety features that newer cars have as standard. Even if you are a model driver with no claims or points on our license, this won’t stop your premiums from increasing. Paying for insurance that continues to increase each year can be difficult for many people. Especially if you are already paying for expensive repairs and petrol. While you could use price comparison sites to try and get a better deal, you won’t necessarily save a great deal. So If you’ve noticed a steady increase in how much you are paying to insure your car, buying a new car could be a good solution.

Your car is becoming unsafe

If you use your car to transport your family or friends, safety should always be a main priority. But if your car is getting old, the safety of your vehicle might be brought into question. Your car may break down in a hazardous location such as on the motorway. If it’s an old model, the interiors such as the headrests and seatbelts might also have started to disintegrate. This can be particularly dangerous if you are involved in a crash as they won’t provide optimal protection. You can pay to have enhanced safety features added to your vehicle, but these can also be expensive to have installed. If you or your family ever feel unsafe when inside your car, an upgrade should be something you consider immediately.

If one or all of these signs sound familiar, replacing your old banger with a newer model is probably the best option. The memories you associate with this car will remain even after your car has been replaced. So take your car out for one last adventure and start searching for a new car that you can create new memories in.

The season of ice and snow is upon us, and even if it is unseasonably mild, you know that at some point winter will come. When it does arrive it will do so without much warning.  Having your car winter ready means being prepared for everything the season can throw at you. At this busy time of the season ‘cold’ car maintenance may not be at the top of your ‘to do’ list. But you are going to expect the most from your car at this taxing time of year, so here are some great tips to help you prepare.

Get a deep clean done

Consider it to be a gift to your car!   A good valet now may seem to be a little self-defeating. After all, as soon as you hit the road, you’ll be getting your car all dirty again. But a good valet is not just about shiny showroom looks. It is about clearing away toxic dirt from your paintwork, ensuring that bigger problems do not begin.  A good wax will help protect your car from corrosion.  A serious steam clean around wheels and arches can also show up any likely problems that have been concealed by dirt.  

Every driver and car owner will know how misted up windows can affect vision and safety. The problem is compounded at this time of year with moisture and cold.  Getting clearer windows is all about having them cleaned with a good quality window polish. The difference will be amazing in terms of clarity and it will be much easier to keep your windows clear.

Under the bonnet

This is where the mechanicals really count. If you are the type of car owner who rarely ventures here, this could be a good time to start.  You could always just book a service, but get to know how your car needs to be looked after. You’ll save money and have a better motoring experience.  You should be checking oil levels all year round, so ensure that you have topped up between the two markers on the dipstick. Make sure you are using the correct type of oil for your vehicle.

With freezing temperatures on the horizon, you’ll need to have antifreeze in your cooling system. Ice expands and can wreck your car engine. Antifreeze needs to be a part of your winter check up and ensure it is added in the correct proportions.  While you are here, check all your fluid levels and top up as appropriate. A weak car battery is often the first victim of a cold snap. Ensure your battery is well connected and is in good condition.


This is a crucial area to be aware of. Obviously, tyres need to be kept inflated at the correct pressure.  This is particularly true if you are loading the vehicle heavily and going on longer journeys this season.  Make it a weekly habit to check tyre pressures. You should also be aware of the condition of your tyres. The tread should not be worn and at least a few millimetres deep.

This could be a great time to consider your winter tyre options. Winter tyres are much more suited to damp, cold and wet conditions. If fact they can increase your braking distance by up to 50%!  Get a mobile tyre fitting service to come to your home or office to undertake the change.

What to carry with you

When real winter conditions strike, it pays to be prepared. Make sure you have these in your boot or trunk when you travel.

If you are venturing into high altitudes then carry snow chains. This can make the difference between a getting to your destination or having to abandon a journey.  Ensure you have a spade or shovel. If you get stuck, this can help you dig out and get you back onto firmer ground. It’s a good idea to be carrying an eco-friendly de-icer as well as a blanket or two or even a sleeping bag.  Getting caught in a snow storm will be no fun without some way of keeping warm.

Finally it pays to see and be seen.  Make sure all lights on your car are in working order and carry spare bulbs with you. Know how to fit these. This is a steep learning curve in the dark at night. Most people will have phones with them so it is easy to call for assistance if you need to. Make sure your phone is charged up before your journey.  Invest in a separate flashlight and torch.  A flashing hazard facility can be useful to warn other vehicles if you have inadvertently stopped. A hazard triangle is another great tool for being visible.

Be safe and be seen this winter and have an enjoyable motoring experience.

When it comes to the car industry, there is nothing more important than brand perception. It’s why the likes of BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi, are always there or thereabouts at the top of the sales charts. And, as we will begin to see in a moment, a bad reputation can be hard to shift. Here are a few car brands that are often seen as poorer siblings by the mainstream car market, and why we think those thoughts are a little unfair.


Volkswagen hit the headlines earlier this year, as most of you will know. They admitted hoodwinking their customers – and the world’s governments – over emissions testing. You can read more about the biggest story in the car industry over the last few years here. It’s going to cause them a lot of problems – not just with their finances, but their reputation, too. And, if history is anything to go by, once that reputation is in tatters, it can be hard to put it all back together. But, let’s be honest. Volkswagen was once a great car brand and are responsible for many of the current technologies that lots of cars on the road still use today. The actions of a few stupid people at the top of the chain should never spoil that.

The Smart Car

Smart cars are nothing short of a joke for many car enthusiasts. But, they miss the point. There are plenty of people out there who mock it for its failure to beat economy cars, but it was never meant to keep down your fuel costs. It’s a city vehicle that helps you park easily in busy streets and parking bays – no more, and no less. I would suggest that had the makers of the Smart Car called it something other than a car it would be seen as far more acceptable.  


If you were around in the 80s, you might remember that Skodas was a laughing stock. The Czech manufacturer’s cars were the go-to punchline for anyone telling an auto-based joke, and if your dad had one, you would be, too. However, it’s been decades since Skoda started turning things around, and now they make exceptional cars. Even to this day, you will find people that snort in derision. But, the fact is that new Skoda cars are just as good as anything BMW, VW, or Mercedes can come up with. The company has come a long way since their Soviet-influenced designs. And, they have released some stunning vehicles in the past decade or so.


If ever there was a better example of a car brand that can’t seem to establish itself, it’s Hyundai. The Korean manufacturer makes some excellent vehicles across all price brackets, but for some reason, it has never been in fashion. Again, the 80s has a lot to answer for – what was it with that decade? The Pony and Excel cars were, admittedly, horrendous, and often sold to people with bad credit – or less. But, that was a long time ago, and if you’re looking for value, you will always be hard-pressed to find better than Hyundai in the current market.


Honda has been through all kinds of popularity issues. In times gone by, they were a great manufacturer and people loved them, but at some point in time, things went awry for the Japanese car maker. Now, though, they are beginning to see the fruits of selling great value cars at affordable prices. There is an element of safe design and dull driving, of course. But their engines are famous for going forever, and if you look after it, your Honda will last for many years after the competition has long since gone.


BYD is a Chinese car manufacturer – one of the biggest in the country. It has a large number of cars on its roster, including hybrids, alternative fuel engines, and light motor vehicles. Sales of BYDs are virtually non-existent in the west, although there have been exports sent as far west as the Ukraine. BYD, like all other Chinese car manufacturers, have no reputation at all over here. Many people on these shores and in Europe wouldn’t dream of buying a Chinese vehicle. It’s peculiar as they are amongst the most technologically advanced vehicles in the world. So much so, that renowned investor Warren Buffet has a 10% stake in the company, And, as we all know, he is a man that rarely backs duds.


Subaru became a joke car in the late 90s and early 2000s when their Impreza became the flagship vehicle for every single boy racer in the country. But, these days, Subaru has shed that image and is now one of the most trusted car brands in the world. There are still those that turn their noses up at the mere mention of a Subaru, though. But, with reliable products and beautiful looking cars, it is worth looking beyond the snobbery. Head over to The Telegraph to see the kind of reception the brand is getting these days from current owners.


Take a quick look at the Scion xB and half of you will laugh, and the other half of you may cough with disgust. There’s no doubt it is a unique looking car – far different to anything else on the road. And, during its release, there were plenty of predictions of complete and utter failure. However, as is often the case with cars, it found its market. The older generations love the xB, for all the reasons that everyone else hates it. They are simple to drive, for a start, and their boxy look gives a feeling of safety and security. Also, the perspective from inside the car is spectacular. The unusual windscreen provides an excellent view of the road ahead, which you don’t get with any other mainstream car. It’s easy to get in and out of, too.
OK, so that’s our roundup of some of the car brands that deserve a little more of your respect. Some of them will never shake their reputation off, it seems. But, that means that the rest of us can enjoy them at a lower price tag!

If you can turn your hobby or interest into a way of making money, why not go for it? There’s nothing better than loving your job, or even just doing something you love to make some money on the side.

Renovating Old Cars

The market for classic cars is getting bigger all the time. People love the idea of having a classic car sitting on their drive. But they don’t want an old banger that is going to break down every week or so. That’s why there’s a big demand for people who can take old cars and fix them up again.

This is a task that requires investment. You need to have the money to buy the classic cars in the first place. But if you can get the cash together, you might be able to make a lot of money in the long-term. That’s because renovated classic cars tend to sell for quite large sums of money.


You don’t have to own a garage and manage a team of staff to carry out car repairs. If you have the necessary skills and experience to repair cars, you could set up a small business from your driveway. If you have a garage next to your home, you could operate the business from there.

Many people who do this, start out by fixing small problems with the cars of their friends and family members. And then if the word starts to spread about the work you’re doing, you might find more people approaching you with work. It might not make you rich, but it could make you some extra money.


There’s more demand than ever before for delivery services. This is mainly down to the huge rise in online sales of products. Those products have to make their way from the seller to the buyer somehow, and this is where delivery firms come into play. And that’s not the only form of delivery out there.

There’s also business to business deliveries that need to be carried out. It’s perfectly possible to invest in a van and start up a small delivery business that operates in your local area. You just need to be able to find clients and build trust with them. If you can do that, you could find real success. Be sure to compare motor trade insurance online because you’ll need to be covered.

Scrap Dealing

There is money to be made from scrap dealing. If you can buy old cars that no longer work or that nobody wants, you could strip them down and then make some money from the metal.

Getting locked out of your car is a pain. But it happens; it’s just one of those things. Here are your options if it happens to you.

Try the Coat Hanger Method

The first thing to do if you have a coat hanger nearby is to see if you can get the coat hanger inside the car, and prize open the door. You have to somehow reach the lock and pull it up with the coat hanger. This isn’t easy, and on a lot of modern cars it won’t be possible at all. You will also look a little suspect to people passing by!

But as long as the car is registered in your name, you’ll be able to assure any suspicious people that the car is yours. This method only tends to work if there’s a gap at the top of the window through which you can bend the coat hanger. If and when this step fails, it’s time to move on to your next option.

Call a Locksmith

Calling a locksmith is the best option for people who are far away from home and need to get into the car immediately. Make sure you contact a locksmith like eyden locksmiths who offer car lock services. Not all locksmiths deal with cars; some only offer services for homes and doors.

If you’ve completely lost the key, and it’s not in the car, the locks will have to be changed by the roadside if possible. This might not be possible though, so you might need to take it to the locksmith to have the locks changed later on. If the keys are trapped in the car though, you’ll be able to retrieve them once the locksmith has gained entry to the car.

Get Towed

If you have no other options, and you don’t want to spend time and money having the locks changed at the roadside, you could get the car towed. Most towing companies offer services to people who have been locked out of their vehicles. This is usually pretty inexpensive. But you’ll have to decide what to do next.

You could get the car towed to the nearest affordable garage where you know you won’t be ripped off. They’ll then be able to gain access to the car and get your keys trapped inside. Or you could have the car towed to your home if you have a spare set of keys in the house.

Make Sure You Have an Extra Set of Keys in Future

If you don’t have a spare set of keys, you should make sure that you have some cut by a locksmith. It might be costly, but it’ll be worth it. Most cars come with a spare set of keys, so have a dig around in the house to make sure you don’t already have a set of spare keys lying around somewhere.

An extra set of keys offers you a safety net, and it it could even save you some money in the long-term. It’s a lot cheaper to buy a backup set of keys that having to get the locks changed on the car, so it’s something that’s definitely worth considering.


Cars go through various stages of disrepair, and it’s important to recognise the signs. The smallest little issue can often lead to significant problems – and you don’t want to be driving down the freeway when they manifest themselves. All cars are sophisticated machines, and very delicate with it – despite their size and power.

So, if something goes wrong – no matter how small – always get it looked at as soon as you possibly can. Here’s how you can tell when your car is suffering…

Learning to hear your car

The good news is that some of the major issues can be easily picked up – as long as you know what your vehicle sounds like. We all get used to the noises of our cars, and the slightest little change in pitch or volume can give us a big clue there is something up. So, use your ears as much as anything else, and don’t put it down to your imagination. If you have it checked, and nothing is wrong, you’ve lost a few dollars. But if you ignore it, there could be significant problems waiting for you down the line.

Suspension issues

Another way to get to know our cars is through how they feel. So, if you are noticing that your journeys are becoming a little bumpier, take notice, and don’t just blame the roads. Suspension issues can lead to accidents, engine problems, and brake trouble. Don’t ignore them.


We probably don’t need to tell you the importance of your brakes. But, a lot of people don’t take the necessary precautions. When brake problems begin, you will notice them starting to emit a high-pitched squeak, or your car veering to one side when you use them. If any of things happen to you, it is vital to get them to your auto repair professionals. Squeaking brakes could be a sign that your brakes are about to fail, and the results of that could be – as we all know – catastrophic.

Engine problems

The engine is the hub of your vehicle – and no matter how big it is, there is a chance it could get sick. If it does, then you could be looking at an overheating incident – and that means saying goodnight and God bless to your vehicle. There are a few things to look out for. If your journeys are getting a little jerky, then there could be problems with your engine, and you should book it in for a professional look. It could also start to make strange noises – again, use your ears and take action if this happens to your vehicle. Finally, you can use your nose, too. If things start to get a little stinky, it’s going to need some work. The quicker you put it in for a service, the more chance your car will have of surviving.

As you can see, if you are in tune with your car, you have an excellent chance of nipping any problems in the bud. You don’t need to be a mechanic to hear or feel when something’s up – although the quicker you see one, the better chance you will have of getting a fix.

Your car is an extension of your personality. At least, it should be. Yet, it seems like we’re all driving the exact same cars. There are millions of Ford Fiestas on the road. And the motorways are packed full of carbon copy saloon cars. BMWs, Audis, and Mercedes. They’re all the same. It’s time to inject some personality into your vehicle. Make it yours. A quick disclaimer before you do. Some of the ideas on this list will make it tricky to sell in the future.

Custom paint job – When you buy a new car, you’re typically offered the same dull paint choices. The simple whites, blues, and blacks are the most common colours. But what about something a little more personal? How about a two-tone finish or a mix of your favourite colours? Custom car garages like Auto Art can help turn your boring paint job into something more personal. Whether it’s a simple go-faster stripe along the side or full custom artwork, it will transform the car.

Custom license plate – We love a good custom license plate. They make excellent gifts and presents for the petrol-head in your life. Unfortunately, they’re not always cheap to come by. It’s also tricky to find the perfect lettering and numbering, as they aren’t made to order. But, when you do find the perfect license plate, it makes your car that little bit more special.

Seat covers or upholstery – If the exterior of your car is all about expressing your personality, the interior is about comfort. You want to sit behind the wheel and feel comfortable and stylish. One of the best personalised upgrades you can do is fitting leather upholstery. It instantly feels more stylish and comfortable. You can finish it with a specific trim colour, and make it your own. If you’re running low on cash, you can buy simple seat covers that match your style and personality.
Stereo system – Most sensible car buyers advise against upgrading to a big stereo. It could make it more difficult to sell your car in the future, and it might lose value. On the other hand, you get phenomenal, crystal clear sound while you’re driving. If you’re anything like us, you’ll love turning the stereo up loud and going on a road trip. For that level of joy and excitement, any price is worth it.

Fun technology extras – The essence of driving is all about fun. So forget practicality and sensible choices for a second. What would you love to do in your car? We recently came across a car-lover who had installed a small mini-fridge in the front console. Now, he and his family had quick access to cold drinks on a long journey. Genius! Others have installed TVs in the back seats for their kids. It’s these fun technology extras that turn a practical car into a fun place to be.

Forget those same old cars, and find new ways to put your own stamp on your motor. What would you do to your car?