Have you ever felt adventurous enough to take on a large new project with little or no professional assistance? This may be a solid idea in certain cases, but there is one type of endeavor you should not pursue alone: DIY car restoration. Even if you have extensive knowledge of vehicles (e.g. due to a background in mechanical engineering), you may face certain risks during this process if you overlook some details.
Why DIY Car Restoration Is a Bad Idea
Restoring a car on your own can be a poor decision because just one seemingly minor mistake can cost you more than you imagine and force you to spend more time on your project. Whether you own a classic, antique, or vintage vehicle, the car restoration process can be a long one. Therefore, there’s no need for you to make it even lengthier and more challenging than it already is.
The car restoration industry has also created high amounts of revenue. According to the Specialty Equipment Market Association, the restoration segment generated approximately $1.4 billion in retail parts sales in 2014 (without counting another $1.3 billion for labor and installation). As tempting as it may be, here are five reasons why a DIY car restoration is a bad idea:
You Will Spend a Large Sum of Money
One of the first and most important steps to take before beginning a car restoration, much like with other major projects, is to set your budget. There’s no reason you should ever have to spend two, three, or five times the amount you initially planned to invest in this project. Set a limit and stick to it as much as you can.
It Will Take Much Longer Than You Expect
A full car restoration typically takes more than just one or two weeks. In fact, this process can often take hundreds of hours (literally) and thus requires a significant amount of patience, as well as an array of tools. You will also likely be getting your hands dirty during a restoration, so be prepared for this.
It Will Likely Not Be as ‘Fun’ as You Imagine
In a similar vein to the previous point, a car restoration may include some entertaining aspects, but you will ultimately find that it remains an arduous work project that involves multiple steps and the ability to pay attention to detail. If there was ever a scenario where balancing work and fun was imperative, a vehicle restoration is undoubtedly it.
You May Lack the Proper Tools & Technology
Certain tools, such as a hammer, wrenches, a MIG welder, a dual-action sander, and a full ratchet and socket set, are essential to car restoration and/or can simplify this process. However, if you are restoring a classic car with the intent to eventually drive it, it must meet the current legal standards. These could potentially require that you utilize advanced technology or modified parts. In certain cases, you may even need to have a professional inspect your vehicle for safety.
You May Not Fully Understand the Difference Between OEM & Aftermarket Parts
Both classic and modern cars can be repaired and restored using either OEM (original equipment manufacturer) parts or aftermarket replacement parts made by other manufacturers. Both types of parts have their benefits and disadvantages, from their price to the type of technology they contain. Some of these parts can also be customized, while others can’t. Therefore, it’s important to learn exactly what distinguishes one kind of part from another.
Contact a Professional Auto Restoration Shop
Speak to the experts at Robs Customs & Restorations in Manassas, Virginia to learn more about why you should seek professional help when deciding to undertake a car restoration. We have experience dealing with all sorts of vehicles, including classic cars, antique cars, vintage cars, and muscle cars. Our restoration process always begins with a frame alignment, which is key to ensuring that your vehicle can circulate smoothly on the road. We can also provide rust repair and provide custom paint jobs and four different types of engine swaps.
Robs’ team is highly experienced in performing both interior restorations and exterior modifications. We are capable of repairing any damage or usual wear and tear on your vehicle, and can also disassemble any parts and replace them with higher-quality alternatives. Regardless of the level/condition that you hope to restore your car to (driving, street show, show car, Concours, etc.), Robs’ professionals are here to assist you and make sure that your vehicle is treated with care. Call Robs Customs & Restorations today at (703) 552-5001 or contact us online for a free estimate on your restoration or for more information about our services.