There’s just something about modifying a car that men absolutely love to spend their money on, but in our rush to make the vehicle look cool, we often end up wasting our hard-earned money on things that really don’t do much in terms of practicality or justifying the expense. To help you make better use of your modding budget, here are seven improvements that are actually worth the price you pay for them.
Swap Out the Tires
Some models come with tires that are just waiting to be pulled out and fitted with something that’s more appropriate, not just for your style but also the weather and road conditions where you plan to do most of your driving. Not all cars need the modifications, but most do and it is always an intelligent idea to have different sets of tires for different seasons. You will definitely appreciate the extra grip on those slippery roads in rain and snow.
Get a Stainless-Steel Brake Line
Generally, cars come with rubber brake lines and while they are fine in the beginning, the flex creeps in after a while, which makes hard braking feel unresponsive. To make the brake pedal feel more responsive, and to give you better control over your car during hard braking situations, replace the rubber brake line with one made from stainless-steel. The strength of the steel will feel a lot better under your feet and you will naturally gain improved control over your braking. Do not change your brake pads purely for the aesthetic appeal of the product, but do change them when you actually feel the need to.
Tint Your Car Windows
Is it cool to tint your windows? It most certainly is, but that is not the primary reason for the modification here. A proper tint significantly reduces the glare of the sun, offers SPF protection, and blocks heat from getting inside the vehicle. As a result of all that, tinting your windows will keep your interiors from fading anytime soon. However, do check out the pros and cons of tinting car windows first, before making the commitment.
Better Shock Absorbers
Something to keep in mind before you swap out your shock absorbers is that you may not need to do so initially in most of the high-end models, but that changes as the years go by and the quality of the shock absorbers go down with use. Good shock absorbers will not be cheap and the cheap ones will not be worth spending money on, so having a budget of $800 or more is recommended. Supplement the new shock absorbers with stiff, low springs and an adjustable anti-roll bar, after which the feel of the car will change so much that it will feel like a new car again.
Install a Limited Slip Differential
Does your car have an LSD? Resisting the urge to give in and make that narcotics-related joke, LSD actually stands for limited slip differential and it can make a huge difference. How it works and what it does is a complicated concept to explain, but in short, it would be sufficient to say that a limited slip differential is put in to ensure that the torque is distributed equally to each wheel and not just one of the front wheels (the one with least traction, of course), which is almost always the case in cars without an LSD. The result is amazing as you get to utilize the full potential of your existing engine power, without having to opt for expensive mods.
Install New Spark Plugs
Newer spark plugs equate to better fuel economy, better combustion and better utilization of the car’s original power. The basic rule is to change your spark plugs every 30,000 – 100,000 miles, depending on the manufacturer’s recommendations, but it isn’t a hard-set rule by any means. If you notice misfiring engines and frequent problems with starting the car, it’s probably the spark plugs that need a change. Platinum spark plugs are your best bet at getting a hundred thousand miles (at least close to it anyway) out of them.
Replacing the Bushings to Stop Vibrations
Rubber bushings are primarily responsible for not letting you feel the vibrations that originate from the engine and other sections of the vehicle, so if you are experiencing a lot of vibrations, especially after installing an engine mod, you will need to put in new bushings. Go with polyurethane instead of rubber because the material is more effective at reducing vibrations, curtailing weight transfers, and they even last longer than rubber bushings.
The general rule of car modification is that cheap is almost never good as far as boosting or improving performance is concerned. Instead, car mods should be judged on a performance/dollar basis and their actual utility in a real-world scenario, before investing money.