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15 Cheap and Easy Car Hacks You Don’t Want to Miss

15 Cheap and Easy Car Hacks You Don’t Want to Miss

There are a lot of car problems that can be solved with a little elbow grease and some ingenuity. Some places charge hundreds of dollars to fix relatively simple problems and people pay out way too much money to fix simple little problems. Here are some car hacks you can use to save yourself some money and make your car experience more enjoyable.

1. Use toothpaste to clean those headlights

car hacks

    This one is really easy but requires a little arm strength. Use some toothpaste and rub it all over the plastic cover over your headlights. Let it sit for a bit then rinse with clean water and dry. This will remove the foggy glaze that covers them. If you want to keep them that way, try using some furniture polish or car wax to keep them clean.

    2. Use a shoe for a cup holder

    car hacks

      Pretty much all cars come with cup holders but not all cup holders are good. Sometimes you need something a little more secure to hold that 32oz drink than a flimsy piece of plastic or a cup holder that isn’t deep enough to hold it properly. The answer is a shoe! Use a tennis show to put your drink in. since the opening is adjustable it fits nearly every cup. It’s also deeper than many cup holders and the shoe itself is bottom-heavy to help prevent spills. This is also a great trick when you’re in the great outdoors and need a cup holder.

      3. Use a staple remover to add keys to the key ring

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      car hacks

        Getting keys onto a king ring can be a real pain in the rear end. If you don’t have nails it can be even worse. New key rings are also really stiff from not being used and some are just huge and cumbersome. Don’t break a nail or hurt yourself anymore! Use a staple remover to open the key ring to put keys on!

        4. Use your seat warmer to keep food warm

        car hack

          Not all cars come with seat warmers but the ones that do can be used for a really useful function. When you pick up food, turn on your seat warmer and put the food on the seat. It won’t keep food piping hot but it’ll definitely help slow the process of cooling so your food stays warmer longer.

          5. Use nail polish to fix paint chips and scrapes

          car hacks

            Getting your car dinged sucks and it can also be an unreasonably expensive repair for how little damage is actually being fixed. If you don’t want to fork out the dough but still want it at least sort of fixed then you can always try some nail polish. Just head to the local drug store and find the color that matches your car as closely as possible. Then just paint it on. Up close it won’t look all that amazing but it’ll definitely make your car look better from afar.

            6. Use a plastic cereal container as a trash can

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            car hack

              Those little trash receptacles on the driver and passenger side doors are a joke. You can never fit anything of substance in there and cleaning them out is a pain. Fix both problems at one by picking up a plastic cereal container. If you get one with a big enough hole you can stuff anything in there and you can even put a trash can liner in there so you can empty it out easier. They only cost a couple of bucks and can make your car look less like a dumpster.

              7. Use tinted plastic sheets for shade anywhere

              car hacks

                A fun little trick that pilots use is to attach plastic sheets to their windshields to avoid glare from the sun. By using that same trick with some plastic sheets like these, you can achieve much the same effect. The sheets stick on your window using static from the windshield so there is no messy stickers or anything to clean up. When you need relief from sunlight to your face and the visor isn’t doing it’s job, you can always try this instead.

                8. Mesh bungie net can add extra storage

                car hack

                  Where do you toss your coat when you get into the car? There really isn’t a designated coat storage thing in a car anywhere so why not make one yourself? If you pick up a mesh bungie net you can attach them to the ceiling handles on your car. You can then use this space to stash practically anything from clothing accessories to children’s coloring books. That stuff doesn’t need to be on the floor of your car anyway and the nets are surprisingly cheap.

                  9. Park facing east

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                  car hacks

                    This one can be a little tricky but it’s so awesome when you do it. When you park your car, make sure you park facing east. Since the sun rises in the east, it will be radiating its warm goodness all over the windshield of your car long before you need to get in it to go to work. This can dramatically decrease the defrosting time and it may even help you avoid getting back out to scrape it off manually.

                    10. Use a plunger to fix dents

                    This oldie is still a goodie. If you don’t feel like paying a mechanic to do essentially this exact same thing you can do it yourself. Do note that this won’t work for heavy damage and only for smaller dents. It’s also worth mentioning that this also works with other things like washers and dryers. It’s really easy to do because all you’re doing is taking a plunger to your car door!

                    11. Use hand sanitizer to de-ice key holes

                    car hack

                      The title pretty much says it all. The alcohol in hand sanitizer will melt ice very well and getting a bottle lets you spray it directly into the keyhole for the lock. Many people carry this stuff around anyway and really you should too. It doesn’t just clean your hands in a jiff but it also de-ices keyholes. Two birds, one stone.

                      12. Boost the range of your remote alarm by holding it against your chin

                      car hacks

                        Yes, this really works. The science behind it is actually quite simple. Your head is filled with fluids and fluids make for a good conductor. So when you put your key fob against your skull you turn your head into an antenna that can extend the range of your alarm. It won’t be very far and you won’t get more than 20ft of range out of it but it does actually work.

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                        13. Rub out scuffs with toothpaste

                        Not only can tooth paste rub out the fog of your headlights but it can also remove scuffs from your car. It’s simple to do. Just rub the tooth paste where the scuffs are and wipe clean. Your car should be monumentally less scuffed or if the scuff wasn’t bad, possibly gone altogether!

                        14. Use a laundry basket to organize your things

                        car hacks

                          The trunk of your car is probably a mess. I know mine is. If you pick up a laundry basket you have a place to put all of your stuff so it does’t go flying everywhere. You can pick up one of these at the dollar store for a couple of bucks and you don’t have to worry about stuff being loose and rolling around your trunk!

                          15. Create a backseat organizer with a shoe organizer

                          car hacks

                            Our last one is a well known car hack but it’s still amazingly effective. If you pick up a shoe organizer and some shoe ties, you can fasten the shoe organizer to the back of your front seats. You can then put stuff like maps, coloring supplies for the kids, and even stuff like gloves.

                            Wrap up

                            There are a lot of fun things you can do to make your car more enjoyable. With these little car hacks you can save time, money, and make your car cleaner. It’ll even help keep you safer with those brighter headlights!

                            Featured photo credit: Deviant Art via th01.deviantart.net

                            More by this author

                            Joseph Hindy

                            A writer, editor, and YouTuber who likes to share about technology and lifestyle tips.

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                            Last Updated on May 21, 2019

                            13 Bad Habits You Need to Quit Right Away

                            13 Bad Habits You Need to Quit Right Away

                            Creating your productivity ritual — a routine that helps you to maintain a peak level of energy can get you the best out of your days.

                            Part of creating your productivity routine involves removing activities that drain you (what I call “kryptonites”), and that includes your bad habits.

                            Like it or not, bad habits are bad for you — mentally, physically, emotionally and even socially in some cases. While some bad habits are harder to quit than others, it doesn’t change the fact that you need to get rid of them. Here are 13 bad habits to quit right away:

                            1. Stress Eating

                            I used to be a serious stress eater. I would eat whenever I felt unhappy, stressed, disappointed, anxious, or even… happy! My eating had nothing to do with being hungry, and everything to do with using food to fill my emotional voids.

                            While eating would comfort me, this feeling was momentary and would disappear right after I was done eating. Instead, what I had left would be the same emotional void that triggered me to eat in the first place (be it unhappiness or stress), a 2,000 excess calorie intake over what I should have eaten for the day, and anger at myself for having stress ate.

                            I’ve since overcome stress eating. I have healthy eating habits and a healthy relationship with food today where I no longer use food as a tool to fill my emotions.

                            If you are a stress eater, don’t fret — here’s how to manage your stress better:

                            How to Manage Stress (A Step-by-Step Guide to Turn Stress Into Success)

                            2. Nail Biting

                            Not only is nail biting unhygienic, it is also socially repelling, leads to dental problems like malocclusion of the anterior teeth,[1] potentially cause stomach problems,[2] and lead to severely deformed fingernails in the long run.

                            People who bite their nails tend to have shorter nails than the average person; their nail plates also experience scarring and may eventually become absent.[3]

                            Understand what triggers your nail biting behavior and replace it with another neutral to positive habit. Make habits to break habits.

                            For example, if you bite your nails when you are stressed, go for a walk or listen to music instead the next time you feel stressed.

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                            3. Hanging out with Naysayers

                            We all know these people — people who play devil’s advocate to every idea you have and every goal you want to pursue. We are already our greatest self-critics, so it doesn’t help when there’s someone beside us, ever ready to pounce on what we say and tear it down.

                            Hang out less with these naysayers and spend more time with supportive people who share constructive feedback instead. You will be much happier this way.

                            Learn how to get rid of naysayers with these 10 Ways to Ignore the Naysayers and Achieve Your Dreams.

                            4. Being with People Who Don’t Appreciate You

                            Haven’t all of us been in this situation before? Trying to please people who don’t appreciate us? Bending over backwards to be there for people when they are never there for us?

                            While we give without expectations of return, we need to draw a line with people who don’t value us because these people damage our souls.

                            Stop spending time with people who don’t appreciate you, and spend more time with people who do instead.

                            Unsure who you should get rid of? Learn about it here: 5 Kinds of Toxic People That You Need to Get Rid of Now

                            5. Smoking

                            Smoking is one of the leading causes of preventable death globally.[4]

                            In just the United States alone, about 500,000 deaths are attributed to smoking-related diseases annually. A recent study estimated that as much as one-third of China’s male population will have significantly shortened life-spans due to smoking! Gender-wise, male and female smokers lose an average of 13.2 and 14.5 years of life respectively — that’s over a decade of life right there.[5]

                            Not only that, smoking causes pre-mature skin aging (i.e. wrinkles), yellowing of teeth, bad breath, and worse of all — jeopardy of the health of people around you, including your loved ones. Studies have shown that non-smokers exposed to second-hand smoke are at risk to many of the health problems associated with direct smoking.[6]

                            Smoking risks

                              6. Excessive Drinking

                              All of us know that drinking too much alcohol is bad for us, but do you know how bad it really is?

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                              According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, drinking too much — be it on a single occasion or over time — can seriously damage your health:[7]

                              • Brain problems: Alcohol interferes with the brain’s communication pathways, making it harder to think clearly and move with coordination.
                              • Heart diseases: Cardiomyopathy – Stretching and drooping of heart muscle, Arrhythmias – Irregular heart beat, stroke, high blood pressure
                              • Liver diseases: Steatosis or fatty liver, alcoholic hepatitis, fibrosis, cirrhosis
                              • Pancreas problems: Pancreatitis, a dangerous inflammation and swelling of the blood vessels in the pancreas that prevents proper digestion.
                              • Different types of cancer: Mouth, esophagus, throat, liver, breast

                              If you drink a lot, perhaps cutting it out right away will be tough. Cut down the number of glasses you drink each time, followed by the number of times you drink a week.

                              If need be, seek help from an AA group — you aren’t alone in this. Change starts from today.

                              7. Eating Junk Food (Including Diet Soda)

                              Junk food — they are everywhere in our society today. From McDonald’s, to KFC, to Burger King, to 24-hour takeouts, junk food such as fries, highly processed burgers and sodas has become a staple in our society today.

                              If you think, “Hey, but junk food is tasty!”, think again:

                              A study by Paul Johnson and Paul Kenny suggests that junk food consumption alters brain activity in a way similar to addictive drugs like cocaine and heroin.[8]

                              “After many weeks with unlimited access to junk food, the pleasure centers of rat brains became desensitized, requiring more food for pleasure.”

                              And you wonder why you seem to crave fast food when you just had some the day before?

                              While it may not be possible to remove junk food completely from our diet right away, we can reduce our junk food consumption starting today. Instead of soda, opt for a fruit juice (fresh juice, not the carbonated kind) or mineral water. Instead of fries, switch to mashed potato, a salad, or rice (many food outlets allow for this today). Instead of a fried meat patty, go for a grilled one.

                              Where possible, opt for healthy food joints like salad bars and delis as opposed to fast food outlets. Every little step goes a long way.

                              Here’re some healthy snacks ideas for you: 15 Healthy Snacks You Should Always Have At Home

                              8. Eating Too Much Red Meat

                              There has been conclusive evidence that consumption of red meat increases the risk of colorectal cancer; and suggestive evidence that it increases the risk of oesophageal cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, and endometrial cancer.

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                              In addition, some studies have linked consumption of large quantities of red meat with breast cancer, stomach cancer, lymphoma, bladder cancer, lung cancer and prostate cancer![9]

                              Personally, I’m a vegetarian so I don’t consume red meat, but for those of you who consume red meat, do watch out and limit your intake — better still, cut it out of your diet. World Cancer Research Fund recommends limiting intake of red meat to less than 300g (11 oz) cooked weight per week, “very little, if any of which to be processed.”

                              Of if you’re thinking about becoming a vegetarian, check out this guide: 5 Practical Tips For Starting a Vegetarian Lifestyle

                              9. Watching Too Much TV

                              I stopped watching TV since eight years ago and I have never regretted it. Every once in a while I will switch on the telly to see what is on, and then I will switch it off because it’s just the same boring shtick over and over again.

                              Watching TV, particularly well-written dramas, can be a good way to unwind. However, remember that TV isn’t your life.

                              Spending three hours every night watching TV will not change your life for the better. Rather, using that time to reflect on your life, take stock, and take action on your goals will.

                              It’s not easy to remove TV from your daily routine right away, but follow these 6 Steps To Remove TV From Your Life.

                              10. Being Late

                              Not only is being late being rude to others, it also means that you’re always rushing from one place to another, playing catch up in your agenda, and having to apologize to every person you meet.

                              Stop being late and not being punctual, but practice being early instead. Target to arrive 15 minutes earlier before any appointment and bring along something to do in those 15 minutes (or longer if the other person turns out to be late). Then you can stop playing catch up and stay ahead in life.

                              Learn more tips about how to be more punctual here: How to Be On Time Every Time

                              11. Being in Bad Relationships

                              Are you always dating the wrong guys/girls? Do you end up with jerks all the time? Well, you may not be able to stop yourself from meeting bad partners but you can certainly stop yourself from furthering contact with them, spending time with them, or even… entering into a relationship with them.

                              I used to invest myself in this guy who was nothing but toxic for me. After a good five months of experiencing nothing but getting burned over and over again, I realized that he was a total waste of my time and I deserved better. I decided to cut him off, and it was soon after that I met my soulmate.

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                              Learn about why you shouldn’t stay in a bad relationship and how to deal with it if you’re in one: Why Trying Hard to Stay in an Unhappy Relationship Is Not Love, but Fear

                              12. Leaving Things to the Last Minute

                              Burning the midnight oil isn’t fun — it’s exhausting.

                              Those of you who got through college by burning the midnight oil would have learned this the hard way. Not only is it damaging for your body, it is also mentally draining as you’re constantly in a hyper-tense mode, feeling anxious about whether you can finish your work on time.

                              Start today on a new note. Rather than react to your deadlines, be proactive about them by planning ahead, identifying what needs to be done for the week, and getting things done in advance.

                              By staying ahead of your tasks, you can also use your extra time to plan ahead in your life and get more things done.

                              Take a look at this guide and learn how to stop procrastinating: Procrastination – A Step-By-Step Guide to Stop Procrastinating

                              13. Focusing on the Negatives

                              In every situation, there are two ways you can react: zoom down to the problem areas and crib about how things aren’t the way you want, or celebrate the areas that are going well and work on making everything better.

                              Many of us see the importance of doing the latter but in practice, we do the former. Why though? Criticizing and focusing on the negatives is easy but it doesn’t empower nor inspire us to be better.

                              Make a change — for every negative encounter you run into, I challenge you to identify three things that are good about it. Practice doing this for one week, and by the end of the week you’ll find that your first instinct is to think positive, not negative.

                              And here’re even more ways to help you stay positive: 11 Tips for Maintaining your Positive Attitude

                              The Bottom Line

                              So here you find the 13 most common bad habits and their consequences on your mind and body. The good news’ you can quit them all.

                              Just spot out your own bad habits and take my suggestions to quit them. Then you’ll find your life a lot healthier and happier!

                              Need more tips to break your bad habits? Check out these articles:

                              Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                              Reference

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