Pinterest | Pinterest

32 Car Hacks For Your Next Road Trip

Diply 3 Jul 2018

Sometimes, you just need to get away for the weekend, or a week, or whatever. But, like, planning a trip is kinda a big deal, and no one really has the time for that, amirite? So, sometimes, it's really just easiest to jump in the car and drive. But you don't really want to take off totally unprepared...

There are a ton of tips and tricks that even those who consider themselves to be well-versed in the art of road tripping might not know. These are guaranteed to make the next trip the best trip.

1. Use silicone cupcake liners in the cupholder.

The Maven | The Maven

These are reusable and will catch coins, crumbs, dirt, spilled coffee...and more. When they get disgusting? Cleaning them isn't a problem, which also makes them eco-friendly.

Did I mention the pop of color is adorable?

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2. Get rid of those disgusting bugs on the headlights and front bumper.

DIY How To | DIY How To

You deserve to ride in style (and, you know, actually be able to see the light coming from your high beams). No need to go out and get your car detailed, just take something you already have at home (dryer sheets) and give the lights a quick wipe.

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3. Come prepared with a tackle box full of snacks!

I Should Be Mopping The Floor | I Should Be Mopping The Floor

This is great for kids, but I mean, hey, I would totally do this for myself too. Saves money on the overpriced snacks at the rest stops, and gives a ton of variety for my many moods!

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4. If your car isn't in range of your fob, just stick it to your chin to get it to work |

There are mixed reviews on this one, and I've tried it with some success. You just look dumb AF.

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5. Create a simple, solar-powered air freshener.

Pinterest | Pinterest

Best of all, these are super cute and you can customize the smell! For once, I wouldn't mind the hot sun beating down on the car during summer.

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6. Make a makeshift car hammock for your favorite good boy.

Choosing to Be Colorful | Choosing to Be Colorful

Big dogs, small dogs, one dogs, two, or three dogs, this car hammock is a total lifesaver and will make a comfy place for them to rest, all while saving the interior from scratches and potential accidents.

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7. Test your tires with a coin before hitting the road.

Pinterest | Pinterest

Simply run a penny through the tires and check this guide to know you're good to go. This literally takes only a few seconds and is a lot less frustrating than blowing out a tire in the middle of the highway.

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8. Use a cereal container for a portable trash can.

Trip Savvy | Trip Savvy

Let's just face it, this is the only thing that will prevent wrappers, empty containers, and other garbage from getting tossed around the car. You need this. I need this. We all need this.

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9. Clean the interior with baking soda and a vacuum.

Pinterest | Pinterest

I mean, it'll be a mess after the road trip, so I would probably wait and do it after. Like, what would be the point of vacuuming twice?

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10. Toothpaste isn't just for cleaning your teeth, it also can clean your headlights.

DIY Projects | DIY Projects

Why buy expensive products to clear up your lights when you can use something you've got in your bathroom instead?

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11. Use carabiner clips to hold purses, umbrellas, and more.


Also, did anyone not know that those had a specific name? This is such a great hack, especially for super heavy purses like mine.

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12. Line the center console with small Tupperware containers.

Pinterest | Pinterest

Shown below are popsicle molds, but you can use anything that fits! Major upgrade to the organization game, don't you think?

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13. Clean the grime off hubcaps with stuff you already have in the house.

Men Clean | Men Clean

Let's face it, when you get back, your car is gonna need a little TLC. But...there's absolutely no need to pay extra at the car wash. Do it at home for a fraction of the cost. How? Dawn dish soap, that's how.

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14. Invest in a stick-on slim basket for a built-in charging station.

Pinterest | Pinterest

Seriously, there is no reason to buy something fancier than this.

Having something like this makes sure you a) know where your phone is at all times and b) it's charged.

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15. Use coffee filters to clean the dust off the dashboard.

The Krazy Coupon Lady | The Krazy Coupon Lady

I gotta admit, when I clean the car, I never remember to clean the dash. This makes it a cinch, and having it clean makes a big difference to how I feel about driving around. Seriously, just give it a try and see for yourself.

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16. Use small favor bags and fill them with scented beads for a cheap car deodorizer.

Simple Most | Simple Most

Place them throughout the car for a fresh scent. These are great for camping, long road trips, or families with active children (and therefore, stinky shoes and uniforms).

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17. When you get out to stretch your legs in a strange city, drop a pin in your phone's map as soon as you park so you can find your way back to your car.

Reddit | DrWatson164

Nothing takes the fun out of a road trip like losing your ride in an unfamiliar city.

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18. Don't have a fancy mount to keep your phone handy? Not an issue when you have a rubber band.

Reddit | juririm

Just thread it through the air vent to hold the phone in place.

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19. Create a makeshift viewing stand for your tablet with a bungee cord wrapped around a head rest.

Reddit | brianlouis

Keeps the little ones in the back seat entertained without straining their necks.

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20. Create a hidden cup holder compartment for safekeepings.

Gadget Hacks | Gadget Hacks

Re-use an old mint container, remove the insole from the cup holder (or cut out a piece of a mousepad...), and glue the textured side on top.

This is great for emergency cash (*cough, cough* emergency McDonald's money), or anything else small that you might not want to leave sitting around in plain sight.

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21. Take screenshots of maps so you can go back to them when you don't have wifi and you're out of your coverage area. 

Markable | Markable

Because free wifi isn't nearly as common as it needs to be, amirite?

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22. Driving by the dozen? Use a muffin tin in a laundry basket to hold drinks.

Pinterest | Pinterest

Ok, this one is borderline revolutionary, but probably would only be worth it for a big group...or people who order a soft drink and a milkshake. Psh, I'm not here to judge you.

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23. Keep dice in a small piece of tupperware.

cardigansandcurriculum | cardigansandcurriculum

Nothing brings an end to a backseat board game faster than losing a die between the seats, and you just know it's only a matter of time before that happens.

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24. Put together a car sickness bag and keep it handy.

Cul-de-sac Cool | Cul-de-sac Cool

Obviously you hope you never need it, but when you do, you'll thank yourself for being so darn smart and prepared.

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25. Newspaper works really well for cleaning windshields and car windows.

Easy Aroma Therapy | Easy Aroma Therapy

This one surprised me, who would have thought newspaper could be so useful? You can also use this on your foggy windows or mirrors at home.

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26. If you don't have a funnel, you can pour oil into your car along a screwdriver instead.

Reddit | thetechhunter

It'll guide the oil quite nicely, and it's much preferred to cleaning up an oil spill on your engine.

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27. I'm no scientist, but this hack seems like it could actually be true.

Pinterest | Pinterest

I'm pretty gullible though, so I found another source to help us out. I'm down to try anything that'll save me more money.

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28. Turns out that an M&Ms Minis tube is the perfect shape to stash some quarters for things like road tolls, parking meters, and vending machines.

Reddit | [deleted]

In fact, I might just use this every day, not just on road trips.

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29. Don't you hate when things fall down the sides of your seat?!

Family Handyman | Family Handyman

This hack will stop toys, phones, and food from falling down the side to never be seen again. They used foam pipe insulation, but you could totes use a pool noodle, too.

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30. Or, if you want to keep the screen time to a minimum, use cookie sheets as coloring and drawing surfaces.

Heather Haupt | Heather Haupt

The raised edges do a great job of corralling the crayons, too.

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31. If you score your registration sticker with a razor after you put it on your license plate, thieves will have a much harder time stealing it.

Reddit | Ransacked

I really wish hacks like this one weren't necessary.

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32. Do you ever need to just pull over and have a nap?

Kick Vick | Kick Vick

If you love to camp, or are heading out to a music festival this summer, this is possibly the best hack on this list. Who needs a tent when you've got all the shelter you could possibly need, and you don't have to sleep on the ground?

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