8 Things You Didn’t Know Your Car Could Do

A lot of people don’t even know that recharging a car A/C at home is possible—let alone that anyone can do it in about 10 minutes, with no tools or experience required.

At A/C Pro, we make it easy to do exactly that. But that got us thinking: what other things can you do with a car that you might not realize are possible? Obviously we’re not talking about basic things like taking a road trip, winning a drag race, or parking like a boss. Everybody knows about that. What you may not know is that your normal, everyday car can also:

1. Cook dinner.

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Cars get really hot. Stoves get really hot. You probably see where we’re going with this. Engine cooking, which usually involves wrapping food in aluminum foil and placing it on the exhaust manifold before a long trip, has been around for decades. In sunny climates, you can also use the passenger compartment of a parked car as an oven to bake cookies.

2. Get you in shape.

Driving usually isn’t much of an athletic activity. However, cars are heavy, and provide a lot of resistance—two things essential to any weightlifting routine. As these guys show, with a little creativity you can turn your car into a members-only home gym.

3. Drive itself.

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Photo Source: YouTube/TestDriven

OK, so this is currently only true for cars with adaptive cruise control and lane keeping assist systems, and only in carefully controlled situations. Still, it is possible, as this video proves. And as cars become smarter, it will become more and more doable.

4. Be a sign.

You can “wrap” your vehicle with a printed plastic film to create a moving advertisement, or simply use glass chalk on the windows to get your message across. But we’re more impressed by people who use vehicles as literal roadside signs, such as this drag racing “funny car” hovering above a funny muffler shop, or the “We Fix Trucks” sign created from a semi truck that has something seriously wrong with it.

5. Run on used cooking oil.

If you drive a vehicle with a diesel engine, it’s possible to drive it without ever buying any diesel. With the addition of a conversion kit, you can actually run such vehicles on vegetable oil—such as the used cooking oil discarded by fast-food restaurants each day. Since you’re basically burning trash, your fuel bill can be reduced almost to zero. Plus, you’re both eliminating waste and running on renewable, 100% bio-based fuel. The potential downside: according to some users, it makes your exhaust smell like french fries.

6. Call cattle.

As any rancher can tell you, cattle respond well to horns or sirens. A long blast on a car horn sounds roughly similar to a cow calling her calf, and such noises are commonly used to call distant cattle in for feeding time. It’s the same principle demonstrated in this video with a farmer using a different kind of horn—a trombone—to draw a crowd of bovine onlookers.

7. Turn into art.

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Photo Source.

As finely-tuned machines carefully designed by top engineers, many autos are already considered works of art. However, some car owners take that much farther, seeing their rides as a 3D canvas on wheels. Such people turn their vehicles into art cars, adding elaborate paint jobs, beads, sculptures, or parts of other cars. There’s even a museum in Houston dedicated to displaying these rolling works of art.

8. Play soccer.

The World Cup featured countries such as Germany, Japan, Italy, and the U.S. facing off to see who is the best at “fútbol.” But what about seeing which country makes the best cars? That’s part of the fun behind “car football,” in which cars are used to hit a giant soccer ball and knock it into a goal. It’s entertaining, but is more than a little bit rough on the cars themselves, which is why ultra-cheap compact cars are used as the “players.”

What unusual uses have you found for your car? Add them to the list on our Facebook page or Twitter account.