As a gearhead, you have the unique talent of being able to turn a wrench. You can change oil, replace brakes, and do a bunch of other stuff that most people don’t know how to do—that’s your superpower.
This holiday season, why not leverage that skill by doing some much-needed automotive repairs or upgrades for your friends and family? Maybe you’ve noticed your loved one has a vehicle with brakes that are screeching for help—or perhaps their ride could benefit from add-on accessories, such as a fresh set of floor mats or new seat covers.
As we head into the holidays, let’s take a look at some of the most useful automotive gifts you can give to the people you care about.
10 Gifts Gearheads Can Give to Their Loved Ones
Car care can be expensive for those who don’t do their own repairs. Since you’re handy under the hood (and everybody knows it), consider helping out your friends and family this season by taking care of their cars.
Here are a few ideas to consider:
1. Install New Brakes
These days, installing a new set of brakes can cost upwards of $500 at a repair shop. If you know how to swap out a set of pads and rotors, don’t make Grandma and Grandpa (or anyone else you love) pay those steep prices. Instead, replace their brakes for them. You’ll be keeping them safe while saving them money at the same time.
2. Wash and Detail Your Loved One’s Car
Sure, we’re heading into the winter season. But if you live in an area where snow means salt on the roads, winter is the most important time to clean your car—and clean it well. As a seasonal goodwill gesture, consider offering to clean and detail your loved one’s vehicle.
During the winter, there’s no need to polish the car’s paint or indulge in other beautification practices. Get down to business by washing the vehicle’s exterior and undercarriage thoroughly. Then, clean and sanitize the interior.
Remember: Because of COVID-19, disinfecting the inside of the car is just as important as cleaning the outside.
3. Put in a New Cabin Filter
Do you want your mom, dad, sister—or anyone else you love—breathing in dust and pollen while driving? We didn’t think so. Replacing the cabin filter will get rid of those impurities, leaving your friends and family with clean air to breathe.
4. Replace Oxidized Headlights
Yellow, oxidized headlights can make even the nicest car look like it’s ready for the scrapyard. If your loved one has been driving around with hideous headlights for years, consider installing a new set of lights for them.
Rubbing compounds (including toothpaste) only provide a temporary fix for oxidation, but a new set of headlights will look great for years.
5. Install Seat Covers
Is your friend or family member known for covering their car’s fine upholstery in coffee and ketchup stains? Then consider getting them a new set of seat covers.
These days, seat covers come in a variety of prints, ranging from mild to wild. So, you’re bound to find a set that matches your recipient’s unique personality.
6. Lay Down a New Set of Floor Mats
Winter is right around the corner (in some locations, it’s already here), and that means a slushy mixture of snow and mud everywhere you go. To prepare for this, consider getting your loved one a set of floor mats to protect their car from mud-covered boots.
Much like seat covers, floor mats come in various designs, making it easy to find the ideal set for that person on your holiday gift list.
7. Put Together a Roadside Emergency Kit
A breakdown can happen at any time, especially if your loved one still drives, say, an old Ford Pinto. You can buy pre-packed roadside emergency kits online, but to make your gift extra-special, consider creating your own kit. You can include the essentials, such as jumper cables and a flashlight, while fine-tuning the rest of the bundle to your recipient’s needs.
8. Take Care of Overdue Maintenance
In today’s crazy world, putting off oil changes and other routine maintenance is all too easy. If you know your family member or friend has been postponing service for their vehicle, consider doing the job for them over the holidays.
Staying up-to-date on car care will keep your loved one’s vehicle running better for longer.
9. Install an Under Seat Storage Box
Does someone you know have junk strewn throughout their car? Then consider getting them a handy-dandy underseat storage box. This will give them a place to put their half-used bottles of hand sanitizer, extra masks—and whatever else they might be lugging around.
10. Replace Worn-Out Steering and Suspension Components
Show your friends and family you care this holiday season by giving their vehicle a thorough check and replacing any steering and suspension components that need work.
Show Your Loved Ones You Care All Year Round
When the holidays roll around, we make a special effort to show friends and family that we care. But acts of kindness shouldn’t be limited to a specific season.
If someone you care about has a car that needs TLC during the year, why not help out when you can? Your loved ones will appreciate the effort, and you’ll keep your title as the family gearhead that everyone can count on.