Certain purchases in our lives require some legitimate preparation and understanding ahead of time, and one great example here is anyone considering the purchase of their first classic vehicle. Whether you intend to drive the vehicle around town or simply store it, upgrade it and perhaps showcase it at local shows, becoming a classic car owner is no small step - and there are a few things you should know in advance.
At Andersen Restoration Parts, we help classic car owners around the country with all their restoration part needs, from strut rod kits to suspension kits, center links and more. Here are some of the basic things to know before you become a classic car owner for the first time.
They Can Be a Great Investment - If You're Willing
Many people are aware that classic cars can be a great investment, but it may not always be the case. Unless you know what to look for and how to properly care for your vehicle, owning a classic car can quickly become an expensive burden. Make sure you understand both the value of the car and its true needs before investing in one.
You also have to understand that your classic won't simply become a great investment on its own. It requires dedication, research, and some honest hard work to get the most out of your classic car. If you're willing to put that time in, great! But if you're looking for a passive investment, it's best to look elsewhere.
Know What You Need (and What You Don't) For Maintenance
Maintaining a classic vehicle is often a very different process from maintaining a newer car. From the parts you use to where you find them, there's often a lot more effort involved in keeping your classic running.
Make sure you understand both what you need for basic maintenance and what you don't need - as well as what options are available for each. For example, if you're looking to upgrade or replace certain components on your classic, do some research on the various parts available and what their differences mean for performance.
They Handle Very Differently
If you're thinking about buying a classic car for driving purposes, make sure you understand how they handle differently from modern cars. Classic cars are not known for their speed and acceleration (with the obvious exception of certain exceptional models), so be sure to take it slow and get used to the handling first.
They also tend to have vvery different braking systems, so be sure to test them in a safe and controlled environment first before taking it out for a spin. Their tires may also be different from those found on modern cars, so check your tire pressure and tread wear regularly.
Storage is Vital
Even more so than other types of vehicles, storing your classic vehicle properly is crucial to ensure its longevity. As with any car, a standard garage or carport will help protect your classic from the elements but there are other steps you can take to make sure it's not exposed to the harsh outdoor environment.
If you don't have access to a traditional storage option, consider investing in a quality car cover for outdoor storage or a climate-controlled facility if you plan to store it for extended periods of time. This will help protect your car from the elements and any potential theft or damage. Also make sure to also check your classic's fluids regularly and take extra precautions when storing during the winter months, as cold temperatures can cause some components to become brittle or break down over time.
Another question to ask yourself is whether any upgrades or restoration projects you're interested in need to be period-accurate. This can mean including certain features and components that were popular during the car's production era, or simply finding parts from the same time period.
If you're looking for parts that match your classic car's original specifications, make sure you do your homework beforehand so you don't end up with something that doesn't fit correctly or looks out of place. And if you're unsure about something, don't be afraid to reach out for help from a professional who knows the ins and outs of classic cars.
These are just a few basic tips to get you started on your journey as a classic car owner. With some research, patience, and dedication, owning a classic vehicle can be an immensely rewarding experience - but it's always important to know the basics before jumping in headfirst. Good luck!
Of course, you'll want to make sure that your classic car has all the right components for a safe and enjoyable ride. That means finding quality parts from reliable sources who understand classic cars and their needs. And for this, Andersen Restoration Parts is here to help. Contact us today to learn about our wide selection of parts for any classic vehicle.