Posted on August 21st, 2015 No comments
When repairing cars you want the right tool for the job. The best is a fully stocked garage full of professional tools, lifts for access and good lighting to properly complete any repair job. Most car owners, however, won’t have a professional setup. For the average car owner that may or may not have mechanical tendencies, there are some tools that are invaluable for common repairs.
I kid you not. In emergencies situations or in trying to figure out where a leak is coming from under your car, lighting is essential. A handheld torch, or plug in LED trouble light makes life much easier when troubleshooting problems and making repairs.
There’s many companies that distribute repair manuals for every make and model of car in existence. Each car is different and even models from different years can have differences in where key components are located. Chapters on bleeding brake lines, changing spark plugs and other routine maintenance tasks can be found in these books and knowing that information up front saves hours worth of time.
Although crescent wrenches can round the heads of tight bolts, they are invaluable if you only have space for a few tools in your glove box. This is the ultimate multi-tool when it comes to wrenches and is a necessity when putting together a small kit for car repair.
There are times when you need a pair of pliers. Needle noses pliers are more for specialty needs, go with a medium size regular pair of pliers to cover most of your pliers needs.
A multi head screwdriver is obviously the best and serves the same role as a crescent wrench. A car has a lot of parts, and a good chuck of panels, headlamps and the like are attached with screws.
Posted on July 22nd, 2015 No comments
A workbench is the heart of any garage or work station. So, it is important that you know what to consider when choosing the best model. Let us go ahead and take a quick look at a few of the main concepts to keep in mind.
The Right Size
You will first need to measure the work area in question. Not only must it be able to accommodate the bench, but you should have at least one half of a metre of space on all sides so that you will be able to move freely and manipulate larger tools.
Many online resources emphasise the fact that the workbench should be adjustable in terms of its height. While you never want to stoop down when performing a task, it is just as true that there are times when the bench needs to be lowered in order to apply downward pressure. So, a bench that is adjustable is often the best option.
It is a good idea to opt for a workbench that offers you ample room for storage. This is most often in the form of sliding drawers, but some benches will come equipped with pegboards. This is a great option if you wish to access any tools regularly and without any hindrances.
Posted on June 23rd, 2015 No comments
If you have the mechanical knowledge and skills to carry out car repairs, setting up your own garage can be a sound business proposition. Whether you specialise in working on just one marque or go for general repairs, some items of equipment are basic requirements while others, though not essential, will make life a lot easier!
Lifts are needed for inspection and working underneath a vehicle. They come in 2-post and 4-post versions. If you are on a budget, consider buying pre-used.
- Diagnostic Equipment
A diagnostic scanner is essential to find out why the vehicle is not working properly. Connect it to a laptop to read the car’s inbuilt diagnostic software.
A compressor supplies compressed air to power all your air tools. If you are planning to do painting, it will supply fresh air to air-fed masks.
- Trolley Jack
A trolley jack is useful for all inspection jobs, and can be used both outside and indoors. They can lift different weights so get one that is safe to lift the vehicles you are going to work on.
- Magnetic lamp
Magnetic, rechargeable LED lamps can clamp to any available surface, such as the underside of the bonnet, and are excellent for illuminating hard to see areas.
- Vehicle Mover
Moving vehicles without starting them up can be a problem. To move vehicles safely and efficiently take a look at a vehicle mover produced by the company Stringo.
- Tyre Pressure Gauge
You will need a tyre pressure gauge to check that tyres are inflated to the correct pressure. Tyres need to be inflated to the correct pressure both for safety and for fuel economy.
- Tool Chest
To keep all your spanners, screwdrivers, socket sets and wrenches organised, you are going to need a good tool chest. Tool chests come on a range of sizes and finishes so choose one to suit your specific requirements.
Posted on June 8th, 2015 No comments
If you enjoy tinkering around with a vehicle during your spare time or you are considering setting up a professional business, there are a few concerns when opening a car repair shop. Notwithstanding having enough money, such a shop requires basic tools and equipment. What are some examples of such items and why are they so important?
You will obviously need to see what it is that you are doing. So, choosing the correct lighting fixtures is a first concern. As opposed to traditional incandescent or even fluorescent bulbs, many modern shops employ LED fixtures. These consume much less energy, generate little heat and provide you with an excellent source of clean light.
There are many types of garage lifts to choose from. Some are bolted to the floor while others use hydraulics as a means of power. The specific design will primarily revolve around the size of your garage and your ultimate needs. Keep in mind that these can be quite expensive; always compare the offers from a number of different companies before making the final choice.
Navigating around a cluttered repair shop can be challenging and a pronounced safety concern. You need to have access to ample storage space. Assuming that such a unit is not located off of the property, how can you maximise the area available? Consider overhead storage as an option. You will be able to keep essentials such as oil, brake fluid, rags and small engine parts close by at all times. If you work on multiple vehicles, choose a sturdy tyre rack. Tool cabinets are other must-have items to remain organised under demanding work conditions. Even a wall-mounted pegboard is a handy way to store the tools that you use the most often.
Getting these logistics out of the way first will provide you with the confidence that you need to pursue such a challenging hobby.
Posted on June 1st, 2015 No comments
Your garage has the potential to be so much more than a place to store your car. From DIY to hobby space to boxes of family documents, your garage is the perfect place for whatever your house won’t hold. As it fills up, however, organising it can become a challenge.
Any well-organised garage starts with a storage plan. Draw out a rough sketch map of the space, together with a list of the things you need to store. Don’t forget to leave space for people to move around the garage!
Start with a blank page
Just as your storage design starts with a blank piece of paper, your actual storage solution begins with an empty garage. Clear everything out of the garage. A cluttered drive may be demoralising, but the improved storage efficiency will be rewarding. You may even find that you don’t need all the things you’ve been keeping in your garage.
A well-organised garage requires a certain amount of lateral thinking. Shelves and pegboards on the walls are very useful, but there’s more available use. If your garage has exposed rafters, consider attaching shelves or hanging storage bins to them. A section of pipe makes a good storage container for lumber, rope or other long, thin items.
Fit your storage to the purpose
Sooner or later, every garage winds up containing a storage unit with rows of tiny drawers, the sort of thing you might use to store different sizes of screw or washer. To many of us, it just seems like the sort of thing we ought to have — even if the only thing we’ve ever screwed together was a flat-pack coffee table. Going down to your local office or DIY shop and running wild in the aisles is surprisingly enjoyable, but it’s not the best way to organise your garage. As always, stick to the plan.