Car maintenance and repair work is never easy which is why most people rely on auto services and car wash places like Mr. Wash for the upkeep of their vehicles. But if you want to go the DIY route, there’s nothing stopping you from doing so. As long as you have all the necessary tools and are willing to do the dirty work, you should be fine. Here’s a list of essential automotive tools you should have in your arsenal.
1. Socket Wrench Set
Vehicles are held together by countless bolts and they come in various lengths and sizes. A DIY mechanic needs to invest in a set of socket wrenches if you want to be able to tune or fix your car. Whether you’re changing oil or changing tires, you need to be able to loosen and tighten various bolts.
2. Open-End Wrench Set
Open end wrenches are needed when you have to tighten or loosen bolts in close quarters which a socket wrench can’t reach.
3. Impact Wrench
A reliable cordless impact wrench can loosen bolts that have corroded which means they’ll be very difficult to unscrew. This handheld power tool which looks like a drill will definitely make life a lot easier for you.
4. Torque Wrench
At some point you will need to change your car’s tires, and a torque wrench will come in handy in such situations. You can calibrate it to exert a pre-determined amount of force and you’ll now when the lug nuts are already secure.
5. Car Battery Tester
A handheld car battery tester will make sure you have a functioning battery otherwise you won’t be able to use your vehicle. Take note of the voltage of the battery, it should be 12.6 volts minimum if fully charged. If it’s lower than this, it means you need to replace it. Moreover, it’s best to choose a battery tester that can check the overall battery health.
6. Funnel Set
You’ll be draining brake fluids, transmission fluids, coolant and motor oil from your car and replace them with fresh ones. For these tasks you’ll need a funnel set to avoid spills.
7. Drain Pan
In addition to a funnel set, if you need to drain engine fluids, you should use a drain pan to collect and dispose of them properly. You don’t want to be spilling oil anywhere as this is bad for the environment.
8. Battery Booster
If you have a car and you don’t want to end up with a dead battery in the middle of nowhere you should get a portable battery booster which comes with 2 gripper clamps that you connect to your battery terminals. Just a single charge will jump your battery a few times.
Investing in a set of quality pliers is a must if you plan on doing some DIY vehicle work. This set should include at least the following: needle-nose pliers, slip-lock pliers, wire cutters and standard pliers.
You may find yourself needing to work underneath your vehicle and a vehicle hoist is simply too expensive for the weekend mechanic. You’re better off buying a set of ramps which can boost your vehicle a few inches enough for you to drain oil and change filters.
11. Anti-Seize Compound
The bolts that keep your car together are always seizing up so an anti-seize compound will definitely come in handy. It’s not technically a tool but you’ll need it anyway. This product will prevent corrosion and will help ensure threads are working.