Many drivers don’t realize they can easily update their cars and trucks by replacing or installing a few parts and accessories. That being said, upgrading a vehicle might become an expensive process if you don’t spend some time researching all your options. Here’s a closer look at a few simple and cost-effective ways to update your vehicle.
1. Heads-Up Display (HUD)
A few years ago, heads-up displays seemed like fictional devices we wouldn’t be able to use for decades. Luckily, that has all changed as engineers from around the world continue to improve and perfect this technology. An aftermarket heads-up display should cost you no more than a new car stereo or an oil change, and you might be able to install one in your vehicle in a single afternoon. An HUD will essentially turn part of your windshield into a transparent display that shows vital information such as speed, the engine’s temperature, and the fuel level.
2. Performance Chip
Most vehicles that have been made within the last two or three decades have some type of engine control unit that monitors and adjusts the air-fuel ratio. The purpose of this unit is to maximize the efficiency of the engine, but most vehicle manufacturers don’t spend enough time tweaking these devices to improve performance. A performance chip plugs directly into a vehicle’s OBD port, and it could have a major impact on fuel consumption and horsepower. While some performance chips cost thousands, entry-level chips tend to be fairly inexpensive. As an added bonus, these devices automatically make the adjustments as soon as you plug them in.
3. Backup Camera
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, accidents due to rearview blind spots account for more than 15,000 injuries a year, which is one of the reasons every new vehicle made after May 1st, 2018, must have a backup camera. Even if your current vehicle doesn’t have a video display, this upgrade is relatively inexpensive. Some backup cameras connect directly to a smartphone or nearby tablet with a Bluetooth connection. Installing a backup camera requires a few basic tools, but the average driver shouldn’t run into any problems as long as the instructions are followed. Adding safety features such as a backup camera to your vehicle may lower the cost of your car insurance. San Diego drivers should contact their auto insurance provider for information on potential savings.
4. New Strut Bar
When you’re going around a corner, your vehicle’s struts twist, flex, and bend. If those struts sway too much, your vehicle won’t handle as well. Many drivers don’t realize just how poorly their vehicles handle because they’ve gotten so used to the extra movement while turning. A strut bar is nothing more than a piece of metal that connects the two struts together. The bar reduces the movement of each strut so there’s no wasted energy. One of those bars could improve your vehicle’s handling and make it much easier to drive.
While you’re updating your car’s features, it’s a good idea to review your auto insurance coverage, too. Reach out to Altra Insurance Services for a free quote to see how we can offer you more affordable, reliable car insurance. We can take care of many of your other insurance needs as well, including motorcycle, home, and renters insurance. San Diego residents should call us today at (800) 719-9972.