Millions of Americans woke up this morning to an extra $1,200 in their accounts thanks to the Congressionally passed ‘Covid-19 Stimulus Bill’ that is designed to help reinvigorate the economy and provide much-needed assistance to those out of work struggling to pay for necessities. If you’re like most people, this stimulus check is effectively money intended to be spent during a time where we are not spending money. While my financially responsible father might disagree, this isn’t a time to squirrel that money away. Saving it effectively removes it from circulation while spending it will help to boost the economy. Normally, I wouldn’t encourage anyone to spend money they don’t need to. With this, though, it’s a chance to not only get something you might have had to pass up due to concerns about the economic downturn, but to put that money back into companies who are providing jobs, goods, and services. So, in this case, it’s a good idea to grab that upgrade, service kit, or tools you’ve wanted. Here are some of our top picks for what to do with your $1,200 stimulus check at ECS Tuning.
Whether you’re looking for a competitive advantage on the track or just want to go lower, most quality coilover brands are priced under the amount you received this morning. Coilovers are an excellent choice because they offer adjustability so you aren’t stuck at a fixed ride height or damper force. Most mid to high-level coilovers offer height adjustability from the shock body, independent spring pre-load, damper adjustment, camber adjustment, caster adjustment, and include a pillow-ball upper mount that reduces suspension deflection for stiffer, more precise handling. Some will have rebound and compression adjustment, but if you’re just looking for a sportier ride and better looks thanks to a lower ride height, we recommend picking something that matches your budget, ride height requirements, and has damper adjustment so you don’t rattle your fillings out. We suggest:
If you want to add some power and give your car a more pleasing sound, cat-back exhaust systems are the way to go. There are plenty of exhaust companies who provide incredible products, but they’re all effectively the same except for sound, looks, and price. You can spend $20,000 and have the same horsepower gains as someone who spent $200. It’s all about preference. Look up exhaust videos that compare stock and aftermarket systems for sound and build quality to get an idea of what to expect. We upload sound tests and comparison videos to our channel for nearly all of our exhaust products so you know what your car will sound like with our system installed. While it won’t be a huge bump in performance, CBE systems usually offer 10-20HP at the wheels, so you should feel a little something. What you really want, though, is something that looks and sounds more aggressive. Our picks are:
Giving your car a new look is as easy as adding a set of wheels. This is an upgrade that requires little physical skill but does take a bit of knowledge. You need to know what fits and how much you can change the dimensions/offset without extremely modifying your fenders, fender wells, arches, quarter panels, and so on. For the simplest solution, just select your vehicle from the dropdown menu on our site. When you select your vehicle and choose the wheel category, you will only see wheel options we have already determined will fit. It’s also not a bad idea to search the internet for other owners who have fitted the wheel you are interested in selecting and see what dimensions they chose. This not only lets you know whether it will fit or not but will also give you a perfect example of how it will look on your car. Our favorite wheel choices under $1,200:
If you aren’t looking for another upgrade at this time but need to outfit your garage, one of the best tools you can purchase is a professional scan tool for your car. Our Schwaben Professional Scan Tools are specific to your vehicle make and allow you to easily diagnose and perform functions within the vehicle’s software to the same degree dedicated shops are able. These are not the run-of-the-mill OBD readers: they’re fully-fledged diagnostic and coding tools that are designed to be the best in terms of shop tools. Under normal circumstances, most folks choose to go with something less pricey. Right now, though, with that extra cash from the stimulus check, it’s a great time to grab one for your garage and have all the power of a professional shop right in your hand.
Of course, there are plenty of other ways to spend your stimulus check when it comes to your car. The most effective thing to do is spend it on what your car needs. If it doesn’t need anything, then go for what you want. These are just some ideas that would allow you to pick up an otherwise hard to justify upgrade or tool due to the higher cost and not feel like your wallet hurts afterward. So, take that stimulus check and do something great for you, your car, and the economy. Get wrenching!