Do-it-yourself projects can seem intimidating, but most are actually fairly simple, cheap and don’t take too much time to complete. Here are five easy do-it-yourself projects that you can complete in your own driveway.
1. Changing Your Air Filter
You should be changing your air filter once a year, and new ones cost about $10. Once you’ve bought your new air filter, check your owner’s manual to find out where it is under your hood. It’s usually in a black box with metal clips. As you’re pulling the old air filter out, take note of how it fits inside the box so you can easily slip the new one in. Make sure you clip the casing down after the new filter is put in, and that’s it!
2. Replacing Windshield Wipers
It’s pretty easy to recognize when it’s time for new windshield wipers. So when you can’t see through your windshield in the rain, head over to an auto parts store and pick some new blades. Lift your old ones off the windshield so they’re sticking out. Check for a tab on the wiper hinge that you can pull. Your old blades should pop out, and you can connect your new ones the same way.
3. Cleaning Out Your Air Vents
Is no air coming through your vents? Thinking about going to a mechanic to fix it? Freeze! Most people don’t realize that air vents are easily blocked by debris such as leaves and twigs. Your air vents are hiding under your hood close to the windshield. Pop your hood and check to see if anything is blocking those vents. Most of the time, leaves get trapped down there and prevent airflow. Simply remove any of that debris, and you’re good to go! No need to panic.
4. Removing Dents
Save a trip to the body shop and get those dents out yourself. There are two proven methods to remove dents. The first is pushing from the inside of the body. Heat up the outside of the dent with a hair dryer, then find a way to get behind the dent and push with a mallet. It could take some time and elbow grease, but once that dent is gone, dry the area with cold rags so it settles. If you can’t get behind the dent, you can try a pulling method that requires buying a suction dent puller (costs about $15 to $30). Wet the suction cap before placing it on the dent so it creates a seal and sticks, then pull as hard as you can. It might take a couple of tries, but if you channel your inner bodybuilder, it should pop right back to normal.
5. Repairing Rust Damage
We’re all embarrassed by rust on our car. However, removing it is quite easy. You’ll need to purchase some metal mesh, body putty, paint primer and a can of your car’s paint color. First, scrape off the loose rust and sand the rusted part down. Then measure some metal mesh the size of the damaged area and seal it with the body putty. Wait for the putty to dry, then put a coat of primer over the area. Once that dries, you can start painting. Paint thoroughly and it will look good as new.
If you want to help people solve their vehicle issues and work with some cool rides, you might have what it takes to be a top mechanic. If that’s your dream, we want to help you make it happen. You can learn more about career opportunities for the automotive high-performance technology graduate.
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