Car Pranks: The Good, the Bad and the NFL Rookie

Pranked cars

A car prank can be either one of the funniest things to do to a friend or one of the meanest and most expensive.

When pranks are done right, they might cause a small inconvenience, but in the end, everyone laughs, and the only people out any money are the ones who committed the prank. Hopefully the cost isn’t any more than the price of a few rolls of plastic wrap.

But a prank can get out of hand and even evolve into a dangerous situation pretty fast.

Keep reading for an NFL-size version of a good prank as well as a few examples you’d do well to avoid.

Carolina Panthers rookie Brenton Bersin lost the keys to his Jeep Grand Cherokee. His first mistake as a rookie was leaving his keys where veteran players could see them, because by the time Bersin returned to his car, he found it tightly sealed with plastic wrap. And filled nearly to the top with packing peanuts. That’s a great prank, because it’s fairly easy to clean up and causes no damage. I sure would like to know how the other players quickly found so many packing peanuts and got them in the car, though.

In the category of car pranks that are beyond the limits of good taste, I’ll include the ol’ “hey man, your window’s been shattered” trick. This happened to a friend in college. Another friend bought a cheap side window from a junkyard, then managed to break it into pieces. He rolled down the car’s window, then spread the glass on the ground beside the car and the driver’s seat. Not cool.

Not only did the prank leave shards of glass in the car, but it nearly resulted in a needless call to 911.

Also, never put anything into, or over, an exhaust pipe. Sometimes people want to shove potatoes in a tailpipe or put a balloon over it, but this is just a bad idea. I’ll go ahead and mention the food coloring in the windshield-cleaner reservoir, too—another bad idea. Anything that interferes with the operation or safety of a car is off limits. Don’t stick anything into the duct systems, and don’t adhere large rocks to tire treads because you think making the car shake is funny. It’s not.

If you want to make someone believe their car is making a funny noise, sit in the back seat and tap on something in sync with how fast the car is accelerating or decelerating. When the driver asks if you hear anything, say no but keep making the noise. Funny, safe, and no harm done.

What’s the best car prank you’ve ever pulled or heard of getting pulled?


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  1. There was another funny one back at GM when I was working on the Travtech project. (which was the basis for OnStar.) One of the test vehicles we were using to develop the nav guidance system was rigged with some juicy language so it would cuss you out if you didn’t do what it said to do. Even funnier when it is a computer voice cussing.

  2. Back in high school, a group of us took the German shop teacher’s VW beetle and put it on top of a concrete planter. I learned some new cuss words in German that day. We all had a good laugh and even the shop teacher laughed when he saw about ten football players pick the car up and set it back in the parking lot. Nobody got hurt, nobody was expelled, and even the assistant principle got to chew us out while trying to keep from laughing.

  3. I won’t use names, but one of the guys at our dealership was pranked when they took all the balloons off the cars and stuck them inside his truck- he retaliated on the offender by filling the inside of his truck cab with little plastic balls like the ones at Playland (found at a garage sale cheaply)- hundreds of them! they made quite a mess when he opened his door!!

  4. I’ve never pulled a car prank or had one pulled on me. However I do like the plastic wrap and packaging peanuts prank….CLEVER!

  5. I once took off the hubcaps (the chrome dishes) off an old morris minor my friends dad owned and put a few pebbles in them before re-fitting them.. every time he moved the car the stones moved about making a right racket, needless to say we got a bollocking when he found out :)

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