You probably can’t remember a painful memory in your life that broke you quite as much as the day you found out you had to stop driving your old car.
Everyone feels like. You'll like that if one day, you have to stop driving an old Chevrolet. And it hurt more if it's a red beauty with black stripes, a 1970 El Camano SS. You won't have the guts to drive a red car after that.
Usually, restoring a classic car can take a year or two.
If you have a similar experience or you have a vintage that's collecting dust in your garage, this article has a few practical advice on how to speed things up and how to find the parts, and how you can register it again in the DMV, complete with VIN verification done by a registered VIN verifier.
But first, take a moment to remember our classic cars and how they made us feel.
The Glory Days
Every time you wake up, the first thing you would think about was your car. You would wash it and drive it to school. It was a classic car, and it was built differently. It’s smaller than the cars are now, yes. But it was powerful. So powerful. The moment you started the engine, you could feel its power emanating through every part of the car.
Driving was so simple back then. There was no power steering or airbags even, and the rush of driving was always a trip—no dash cams. No GPS. No distractions. It was just you and your car, each trusting the other.
Traffic then was not like it’s now. Back then, it's possible to drift, make handbrake turns, and do burnouts. And the smell. You won’t ever forget the thrilling scent of burnt rubber.
The best part of your day was always when you were driving your car, and it was there for you through the best moments in your life. Your first kiss and your first significant heartbreak happened inside that car. You went to prom in it. You and your brother visited a different state for the first time while taking turns driving that car.
You loved that car, and you promised you won’t ever own another one.
But be real. Life happened. And you did own many other cars. Nothing was ever like your first classic car, though. It was even painful to buy a vehicle of the same color as your first one.
Restoring it was too expensive. With debt and mortgage to pay, it just wasn’t a priority then
It’s been in the garage for ten years, but you could never sell that auto. Other cars would come and go, but never this one. It hasn’t seen the light of the day in so long. However, you still clean it occasionally and open the hood to appreciate the internals. Old cars didn’t have a hundred buttons and nozzles. Everything was simple and clean.
You kept asking yourself why you haven’t sold it yet. That would've been the practical choice. But you knew the answer. It would break you just as much as finding out it’s not fit for driving anymore. That’s just not an option—anything but that.
And deep down, you knew why it's still there in your garage. You knew that someday, you'd feel its power coursing through every part of it—flowing through its very veins made from rubber and steel one day.
The Restoration Project
And now it’s finally time to restore your car. Before you begin, remember, this process takes a while. But it'll be well worth it. You'll drive it again, and there’s no feeling quite like it.
But enough about that. Here are some tips to help you drive your car again.
Finding the Parts
- Save all the parts you can so you won’t have to buy all of them.
- Contact vehicle salvage centers near you. They might have some parts that match what your car needs and has.
- Check online. There might be fellow car enthusiasts you can purchase parts from.
Restoring the Car
- Do all the restoration work yourself to save a fortune. Only consult with a professional if there's something you’re sure you can’t do.
- Make space for your project. Keep your car away from any external factor that might harm it.
- Prepare your tools and owner’s manual.
- Talk to friends or other car enthusiasts who can help you.
- Set a budget for professional work like repainting.
- Take your time. Enjoy the process. Don’t rush, and always find the most affordable alternatives.
The Don’ts of Restoration
- Don’t settle for imitations. If you can still find genuine parts, get them instead.
- Don’t throw away broken parts until your car is restored. You may need to get a machinist to replicate it if you can’t find a genuine part.
- Don’t forget to learn the basics of car repair. A vintage car is tougher to fix than a modern one. You’ll need to be precise when working on one and know what parts to replace or fix.
- Don’t underestimate bolt kits. Be prepared and buy a lot of them. You’ll never know when you’ll need them.
- Don’t rush it. Take it slow. Fix and buy one part at a time. The expenses of restoration can easily blow out of proportions. A vintage car, after all, is a high-maintenance mistress.
Driving the Car Again
When your car is in top condition, here are the steps you need to avoid legal problems when you drive it again:
- Undergo VIN verification with a registered VIN verifier.
- Register the car, so it’s in the DMV system again.
Restoration projects are challenging, especially for classic cars. You'll spend so much time, money, and energy to get any car running again.
But if it’s your first love and car, it’s worth it. If you feel the rush of driving a classic car again, do it. Restore your car.
When you get your car's VIN verification done and DMV registration, you can once again relive the glory days.
Want to learn more? Click here on The Ultimate Guide to VIN Verifications & VIN Verifiers