So, you are considering to upgrade your car? Perhaps, you have outgrown your ride and think it is time to shake things up. Or maybe, the cost of owning the old vehicle is piling up pretty fast. Or it could be that you just want to add new features and performance enhancers to your ride.
Regardless of what your reasons are for wanting to upgrade, there are a couple of things you must consider.
What changes do you want to make?
It is not enough to want to upgrade your ride. You should get down to specifics – what changes do you intend to make on the old car. If you are swapping for a new model, what features should the new vehicle have?
Having a clear idea of what an upgraded car means to you will make planning and budgeting a lot easier.
Do you intend to improve performance or only upgrade appearance?
Answers to these questions will determine what kind of accessories and tools you will need for the job. It will also enable you to decide whether to hire a professional or do it yourself.
What is your budget?
Of course, the amount of cash you can spare for the upgrade will affect what modification job you do on the car. If you are going for performance enhancement, it means you will need new parts.
You could exhaust swap for a louder, deep sound; axle ratio upgrades for more towing capacity; upsizing tires and rims. Plus, you may need to hire a professional to do the upgrades. All of these considerations cost money.
Even if you are only going to do the paint job, you still need to spend money. Hence, not only does budgeting force you to set a dollar amount for the upgrade, you can plan ahead for funding options like applying for a car loan.
How are you going to get the job done?
Now this question follows directly from the last. You will need to either hire a mechanic or have the know-how to do the upgrades yourself.
If you love tinkering and are pretty confident that you can properly fit the gears, go for it. This way, you can save money on hiring a professional. Plus, it is fun and exciting to do what you love while creating your dream car.
If, however, you cannot differentiate between a live and neutral wire, you may want to bring in a mechanic. Thankfully, most local car dealerships will have a list of their go-to professionals which will save you time.
Are there available matching spare parts?
Depending on the car model, you may discover that some spare parts and accessories that are compatible with your car are hard to find. So, before taking further steps to upgrade your vehicle, be sure that the parts you need are readily available.
Also, consider safety concerns that may arise by using incompatible parts. As you know, cars today have integrated systems with computers and programs controlling much of the functions.
For example, an innocuous swapping of an axle ration for a different gear ratio could trigger a myriad of issues with anti-lock brakes, stability control, transmission shifts, and so on.
Understand the potential knock-on effects of upgrades
You may not know it but modifying a car could impact how much you can potentially get for it when you are ready to sell or swap for a new model.
Many car owners expect their vehicle’s value to rise as a result of modifications. The reality, however, is that every car modification is a personal taste that appeals to people differently. Generally, modified cars are difficult to sell. Think thoroughly before deciding to do any upgrades.