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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 September 16, 2019

                            How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

                            How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

                            You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

                            We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

                            The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

                            Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

                            1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

                            Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

                            For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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                            • (1) Research
                            • (2) Deciding the topic
                            • (3) Creating the outline
                            • (4) Drafting the content
                            • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
                            • (6) Revision
                            • (7) etc.

                            Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

                            2. Change Your Environment

                            Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

                            One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

                            3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

                            Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

                            Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

                            My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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                            Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

                            4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

                            If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

                            Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

                            I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

                            5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

                            I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

                            Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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                            As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

                            6. Get a Buddy

                            Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

                            I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

                            7. Tell Others About Your Goals

                            This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

                            For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

                            8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

                            What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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                            9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

                            If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

                            Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

                            10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

                            Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

                            Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

                            11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

                            At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

                            Reality check:

                            I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

                            More About Procrastination

                            Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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