Mom Hack: Using home items for Car maintenance

I am a mom, but more importantly I was a wife first… and I mean I do have perks to being married. One of the perks is that I do not have to take care of the car maintenance … or so I thought….

I used to be one of those moms who just drove from point A to B and never bothered to do car maintenance because I knew my husband would always do it for me… Yes, I know what you are thinking… I was lazy 😛 and also clueless. The truth is I didn’t feel the need to know. After all, technology has become so advanced that we can now wait for the car to tell us if something is wrong. That, however, should not be the case. I still feel that we need to be prepared at all times – especially when travelling with kids in the car.

Things changed for me once Kitana started attending school. I make at least 4 trips a day just for school. My husband’s job means that he sometimes has to travel to different places, so I had no option but to learn auto tips for emergency situations.  All of a sudden I needed to know how to check the fluids (oil, water and petrol) as well as the tyre pressure. That should be common knowledge right…? But for me, it wasn’t… 😛

If you are a mom like me, we have checklists for all the important things. Do you know the checklist for car maintenance? I didn’t even know that there was one until recently!

 Mom Hack: Using home items for Car maintenance has been my lifesaver! The website created an entire section dedicated to auto tips with information on anything and everything associated to cars even teaching you how to wash your own car if you don’t know already.

Being a pregnant mom with a toddler, I’m always looking for hacks to well… make life simpler. Gumtree has shared some hacks that I did not know existed and today I want to share some of them with you!


1. Remove Dents with Dry Ice

I recently found a dent on my car. The person that parked next to me at a shopping centre hit my car with their door and left… It frustrated me because that meant I needed to spend thousands of rands to fix it even though I parked in the line!

Gumtree has suggested a hack; just grab some dry ice from the local market and apply it to the dent. Continue doing this until the dent pops out. Be sure to wear gloves to protect your hands though, as touching the ice directly can cause burns.

2. De-Ice Your Locks with Hand Sanitiser

Squirt a small amount of hand sanitiser on the key and insert the key into the lock. The alcohol in the sanitiser is an excellent choice for melting ice away, plus it kills the germs on the key and the lock.

Mom Hack: Using home items for Car maintenance

3. Clean Your Windshield with a Razor

When your windshield becomes caked with bugs and other stuff that the car wash simply does not take off, grab a razor blade. Take the razor blade, very carefully, and scrape that hard, stuck-on gunk off the window and enjoy a clear view again. This is perfect for long distance traveling so I suggest you keep a storage box full of hack items in your boot. 😉 After scraping it, spritz it with window cleaner and wipe it off with a dry cloth to reduce any streaks the razor may have made.

4. Clean Foggy Headlights with Toothpaste

Another tip for long distance travelling; Foggy headlights can cause hazards, especially if you drive often after dark or in foggy conditions. When those headlights get oxidised, the plastic lenses take on a dull or fogged over look which indicates that they need a good cleaning.

Grab a tube of toothpaste from your bathroom and slather it all over the headlight lens, buff it with a cloth and rinse it with water.

Mom Hack: Using home items for Car maintenance

5. Use Charcoal to Remove Odours

Do you remember that time your mom decided to buy fresh fish? Trying to get that odour out is a nightmare! Just throw an open bag of charcoal in the car for a few days and it will naturally absorb odours. Take care to keep the charcoal in the bag to prevent it from turning your interior black.

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Hi, I’m Shan. I’m an entrepreneur and a sucker for good adventures. I was listed in Forbes Africa 30 under 30 2019 and just recently launched my start-up – MomSays.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook


  1. 2015-08-21 / 17:33

    I do not yet have a car but I will be honest I just thought boo would take care of anything technical when it came to car maintenance. This is a great post and definitely need to check out Gumtree

  2. 2015-08-21 / 18:12

    These are really great tips! Sometimes we spend too much money on fancy products for cleaning our car, when in fact the small, cheaper, and simple items that we have at home can already help. Great post!

  3. Tom
    2015-08-21 / 19:04

    These are some awesome hacks!! I loved the one about using toothpaste to make foggy headlights clean. I will be trying that today!! It is needed!!

  4. 2015-08-22 / 22:52

    Dry Ice will help pop dents out of cars? I am definitely going to have to try that one on mine and my Mom’s car!

  5. 2015-08-23 / 05:36

    These are great hacks! I am not super handy, but I could definitely manage these! Thanks for sharing!

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