At some point you will have to bid your car farewell. That is often a moment of realization, since the value of your vehicle starts depreciating the first moment you drive it. However, there are many ways to preserve its value while we own it, which can both increase your car’s lifetime and preserve its resale value:
1. Think Of Your Vehicle As An Investment
A good mindset is always the best start! We all know that our vehicle will lose value over time, but not everybody adopts the same attitude when it comes to taking proper daily care of it. Coming to terms with this idea (“it’s not just a means of transportation; it’s an investment that I can recover to an extent”) will lay excellent foundations for maintaining your car’s value.
2. Maintain Your Car and Keep Service Records
Besides everything that comes with proper maintenance (regular washing, repairs, adequate driving, and protection), it cannot be stressed enough how important it is to keep your service records. They are always the best proof of your vehicle’s history, and a quick way to show buyers just how well you took care of your car.
3. Use All Weather Floor Mats
It is easy to undermine the difference floor mats can make in a vehicle. Just ask anyone used to driving in cold weather! These simple, overlooked items are very important to protect the interior of your car from dirt, snow, and the particularly annoying salt stains, which are difficult to remove.
4. Constantly Check Your Fluid Level and Tire Pressure
We all lead busy lives, so you may have realized that you have not checked the oil or put air in the tires for a long while. While oil keeps the engine running smoothly, adequate tire pressure improves the mileage of the car. Therefore, checking both things often will pay off in the long run.
5. Don’t Ignore Any Body or Paint Damage
Besides affecting the value of your vehicle, scratches tend to remove the clear coat that protects the paint job, which in turn exposes the car to further damage such as rust. Avoid this by repairing the damage right away, and remember not to wash your car too roughly.
6. Don’t Eat, Drink or Smoke in Your Car
Cigarette smoke is known to dull interior surfaces and even discolor them, not to mention the persistent ashtray-like smell it leaves. Food and drinks can leave stains and hurt your vehicle’s value. Keep your car as a smoke-free environment and avoid eating and drinking on the road.
7. Protect Your Vehicle Against Rust
Especially for those who live in cold, harsh weather areas, rust can be a nightmare to deal with. Salt deposits eventually lead to rust, so it is a good idea to combat this by washing your car regularly, as well as by undercoating it with a rust proof spray.
8. Store It Properly
Once again, weather can be a defining factor for your vehicle’s value over the long term. Excessive sun will fade the outer surfaces of your car, while cold and snow tend to damage engines and other components. Keep your car in a climate-controlled space and you will certainly avoid some expensive repairs.
9. Rent For Long Trips
If you are planning to embark on a long road trip, it might be a good idea to rent a car and leave your personal vehicle at home. Remember that fewer miles equal to more resale value, and if you rent a fuel-efficient car, you might even save a bit of money in gas.
10. Wash Your Car Inside and Outside Regularly
We covered this recently in our blog, as it is a crucial part of car maintenance. Washing your vehicle twice a month is a good general rule of thumb. When possible get a hand wash service to further protect the paint from any scratches or swirl marks. Waxing, meanwhile, should happen once every 3 months to protect the paint against the elements. And of course, don’t forget the interior!