Every year millions of people choose the route of automotive self-improvement.
You’re not perfect. You know it, I know it, your mechanic knows it. But that’s okay because no one’s perfect. That’s why we get a chance to wipe the slate clean every January – a real shot at self-improvement.
Common resolutions revolve around diet and exercise, money management, and putting bad habits to bed. You know this, too. But what you may not know is that every year millions of people choose the route of automotive self-improvement – bettering their car habits.
Here’s a list of 10 car-related resolutions that you probably will give up on, if you haven’t already. (Yes, we know it’s only February.)
- Learn to drive stick
Ah, the manual transmission, the gearhead’s choice. A helpful skill to have, but one that younger generations seem to lack. But don’t get so down on yourself, millennials, driving stick is much less a necessity than it was in the past. So while it may be incredibly satisfying to clinch a perfect heel-toe downshift, you may never need to perform one. It’s becoming harder to find someone to teach you stick, harder to find a car with stick, and much easier to give up on learning it.
- The monthly tune-up
This is the year you get the most out of your vehicle. The year you play it by the book. The year that you’ll keep your car running safely and efficiently through regular maintenance.
No, it’s not. While many drivers plan to regularly check tires, belts, hoses, light bulbs and wiper blades to ensure the safety of the vehicle, few actually do it. Life gets in the way and these checklists are delayed, which unfortunately can lead to higher mechanic bills during inspection time.
- Drive on a professional race track
So your midlife-crisis-mobile has some horsepower and it’s time to gallop. Cool! Here’s what’s not cool: Many courses require you to level up as a passenger a few times before you’re even allowed behind the wheel. This prolonged process tends to put this dream to rest, not to mention that these track experiences can cost a pretty penny.
- Road trip!
Here’s a fun one: Grab your closest friends and cruise the continental U.S. Picture yourself at the Grand Canyon, Mount Rushmore, the Statue of Liberty. Wow, how lovely. Now picture yourself on your couch because most road trips never see the starting point.
- Buy a fuel-efficient vehicle
If you drive a car 10 years or older, you’re missing out on the much more fuel-efficient generation of vehicles. Upgrading to a newer model, especially a more fuel-efficient one, keeps you on the road longer and can save you money in the long run. But the long run tends to make the short run difficult. Many who want to make a new car purchase in the next year will be stopped by financial roadblocks.
- Keep it clean
C’mon, it’s a car, not a school bus. This should be easy. With a weekly sweep of the vehicle, you’d be proud to give anyone a ride. Okay, so weeks 1 to 3 you did okay. But week 4 came around and you were a little less thorough. Let’s be real, by March, your car will be as messy as President Trump’s hair.
- Cut out distracted driving
Everyone agrees that distractions on the road are bad. Cellphone use behind the wheel is at an all-time high. But despite your best efforts, the desire to check Snapchat at red lights will ultimately prevail, leaving you with a new “traffic-is-the-worst” post and with an earful of car horns.
- Control that traffic temper
Giving someone extra space when merging on the freeway instead of trying to force them out of your lane for no reason makes for a calmer, safer driving experience for all involved. This will last all of one commute before you get stuck behind that Snapchat driver from #7.
- Get the junk out of your trunk
It’s February and you have basketballs, tailgate chairs, and clothes you’ve been meaning to donate sitting in your trunk. Clearing it out not only cleans up your car’s immediate environment, but it saves gas as well. This is a simple fix, but you never seem to remember at the right time, do you?
- Car pool
Ride sharing decreases the amount of carbon monoxide you emit into the air, saves you money, saves you stress, and promotes social interaction. What a great resolution! That is, until schedules start to lose sync and your co-workers constant “Bachelor” gossip drives you right out of the car pool.
While these resolutions are commonly abandoned, we wish you and your vehicle the best of luck in 2017. Drive safely!
Dwayne Lane’s Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram is part of Dwayne Lane’s Auto Family, a family-owned and -operated business serving customers since 1954. Six locations, nine brands and over 1500 vehicles in stock. Dwayne Lane’s Auto Family, we’ll take care of you!