It seems as though the type of car you drive says a lot about who you are and what you’re all about. So why wouldn’t you want your car to simply scream, “I’m awesome!”?
It’s a pretty safe bet to say that this is what everyone wants. We pick a car to give off a certain vibe about ourselves and our lifestyles. Unfortunately, if you’re still driving around that old clunker you got as a hand-me-down in high school, you’re not saying much for your own case. To add to the pain, you don’t have the money you wish you had to truly pimp that old thing out.
Well, change all of that now while you still can with any of these 3 inexpensive ways to “pimp” out your ride and make it almost as awesome as you are without spending your entire life savings.
One of the easiest ways to make an old car look just like new is to put on a new set of rims.
When you’re shopping around for rims, it’s important to take a few things into consideration. First off, think about whether you will be installing them yourself or if you’ll hire a pro to do the job. If it’s a DIY project, you can probably spend a little more money on the rims themselves because you’ll save in labor costs.
On the other hand, if you’re hiring a pro, opt for some rims that they have on-hand at the car shop. They’ll likely be sold as a bundle with the labor to install them, so you’ll be able to save some money.
Look for sport rims that match your tastes and ones that will match your car design. You can choose from a variety of different color, sizes, shapes and even extras like motion within the rims themselves. Keep them within budget and putting on a new set of rims can go a long way in pimping out your old, clunky ride without totally breaking your bank.
Custom Exterior Lights
How boring can the plain old headlights and taillights that your car comes with be?
Change all of that up by putting in your own custom exterior lights. There are tons of options available on the market – all you really have to do, at most, is replace the light bulbs and the light coverings, so it’s a job that you can absolutely do yourself and won’t take you long at all.
The hardest part will be shopping for what you want. You can choose any shape, size or color you wish – so be wise in your choices. You don’t want them to look tacky, you want them to look classy! You don’t necessarily have to match the headlights to the taillights, but you should at least try to stay consistent with the design and theme.
For example, if you have silver headlights in the shapes of tear drops on the headlights, you should at least keep the same silver color in the back.
A simple home installation after the shopping ought to do the trick. And just like that, your car will be even further customized to your tastes and you won’t have spent more than about $300 or so.
Custom Paint Job
Perhaps the simplest thing you can do to customize your clunker is to treat it to a new, custom paint job. This is one thing that you will, in fact, want to have professionally done so as not to have a fake- or cheap-looking car when all is said and done (DIY jobs are very noticeable when it comes to your car’s paint job).
Choose a solid color to keep your car looking classy, or if you’re looking for something a bit sportier perhaps, consider a couple of racing stripes or even a cool design on the sides (don’t overdo it, though, and try to avoid the tacky-looking flames). Whatever color or design you choose, try to keep it consistent with the rims and the headlights that you’ve chosen so your car is one cohesive custom design.
Call your local auto shop (preferably one that specializes in detailing) to get some ideas for price points for a custom paint job. Some jobs can run you up several thousand dollars, but a solid color with a few coats of paint should stay under $1,000.
It may be slightly more expensive than other bank-saving options to customize your car, but it’s one of the most dramatic instant changes you can make if you’re unhappy with the peeled, multicolored look of your old ride.
Mary Richardson is a freelance writer and likes to keep her car as updated and as customized as possible. She recently installed a new engine with top-of-the-line everything, from the hydraulic filters to the parts themselves. She’s thrilled with the result, but broke because of it!