For most, fall's arrival is exciting for quite a few reasons: cozy, sweater weather, delicious pumpkin-flavored treats and colorful, fallen leaves. But it also means Halloween is right around the corner.
Oct. 31 can be a fun day for the whole family, whether you're heading out to trick-or-treat or venturing to your best friend's annual costume party. Regardless of your plans, you'll likely need a car to get there, and pranksters have tricks of their own prepared for your sweet ride. According to the Highway Loss Data Institute, vehicles are twice as likely to be vandalized on Halloween than any other day of the year.
Don't let the idea of using your car on Oct.31 scare you – that's the ghost's job. Instead, keep it safe with these preparation tips:
1. Keep it in the garage
Keeping your car off the streets and tucked away is one of the easiest ways to avoid vandalism, according to State Farm. When you're at home, keep your vehicle parked in the garage. If you don't have one of your own, consider taking your ride to a public garage for the night.
If you're visiting a friend or plan to be out and about on Halloween night, just make certain you're parking in a well-lit, populated lot.
2. Remove visible temptations
If you don't have a garage or you plan on parking your car in a public lot, be sure to remove all visible valuables from the inside. Items such as window-suction GPS systems, expensive stereo faceplates and cellphone chargers should be stored securely in the center console.
The inside of your car shouldn't be your only concern – bumper stickers, license plate frames and windshield decorations could attract pranksters. Expressing your personality might push the wrong buttons and tempt someone to ruin your ride.
3. Start using an alarm system
By adding a motion-sensor alarm system to your vehicle, you can ensure the vandals won't get close enough to cause damage. Even adding a simple security system decal to your windshield will make them think twice about touching your car at all.
"Make an appointment with a detailer for a wax job."
4. Apply a protective wax
Finding a safe spot for your vehicle and removing visible temptations may reduce your chance of getting vandalized, but it's not guaranteed. That's why Consumer Reports advises you to prepare in advance by applying a protective coat of wax. Make an appointment with a detailer for a wax job about one week before Halloween.
5. Prepare for the worst
Nobody wants to worry about walking back to their car to find it's been vandalized, but unfortunately, anything can happen. Instead of driving your vehicle back with solid eggshell residue that could end up damaging the paint, prepare a small spray bottle of water and car-washing soap in advance. That way, if you find your car has fallen victim to a prank, you can spray the solution and wipe away the mess before it causes any harm. Even if everything doesn't wipe right away, soaking it in the solution can prevent you from needing a new paint job.
If your older vehicle was damaged by a prankster on Halloween night and it seems impossible to repair, don't worry. The maintenance technicians here at New Jersey Auto Auction can take care of it! Or, we can set you up with a high-quality, Carfax certified used vehicle. Stop in today!
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