Auto Body Blog

How Do You Restore an Old Car?

Choosing to restore an old car is an ambitious yet rewarding undertaking. Starting with so many components to the restoration process can be disheartening if you don’t know the ropes. Fortunately, with a bit of research and planning, you can get started restoring that old car in no time. If you’re ready to put in the work, here are some tips that can help you breathe new life into your vehicle and turn it into the hot rod of your dreams.

Deciding on the Type of Restoration

Before you jump in, you should know that there are four different levels to the restoration process, each one requiring more work and skill than the last. 

Driver Restoration: This is the most basic level of restoration in which you just make sure that the car is operational with minor cosmetic repairs. This level of restoration is recommended for those who just want their vehicle for daily personal use. 

Street Show Restoration: The next level in vehicle restoration, street show restoration involves restoring all major and minor cosmetic issues so that you can showcase your classic car at local car shows. You will probably drive this vehicle a good majority of the time.

Show Car Restoration: The third level of restoration, which may require professional work, prepares a classic car for professional showcasing. Those who opt for this level generally don’t drive their vehicle much. 

Concourse Restoration: This is the highest level of restoration. You should only aim for concourse restoration if you plan on placing your car in a private collection and you’re ready to learn advanced restoration techniques.

Once you’ve made up your mind on how you’re going to restore an old car, it’s time to track down some parts. 

Finding the Parts to Restore an Old Car

First and foremost, you should have a vehicle that you plan to work on. You can start planning your restoration project even if you don’t have the car on hand, but having access to it will help you better understand what work needs to be done and which parts you’ll need to gather. Suppose you already have your dream car in your garage and are ready to work on it. In that case, you’ll be able to dive into ordering all the necessary parts and have a better visual aid when it comes to planning the interior and exterior designs. 

Buy a Good Restoration Manual

Restoration manuals can guide you through some of the most common body restoration techniques. Not everyone needs to read through every single thing in these manuals, but they’re always a good reference if you find yourself needing a little more information in a specific area. 

Know Your Limits and be Prepared for Setbacks

Some of the higher restoration levels will include more advanced techniques, and if you don’t know when to call it a day and reach out to a professional, you run the risk of damaging your car and the parts you just bought. Setbacks are expected, and by learning to accept that, you’ll save yourself time, money, and unnecessary headaches.

Don’t Hesitate to Reach Out to Schneider Auto for Advanced Restorations!

Something as simple as drive restoration may not give you too much trouble, but if you’re looking to restore an old car to its former glory, Schneider Auto is here to help. Fill out our online estimate form today and check our competitive estimates for professional restoration services!