You have started spending time in the garage with your prized possession tinkering to the little flaws that need to be rectified. A mechanic is only as good as his tools and getting the right tools makes his work easier and faster. While you may choose this as a hobby or a passion, having the right tools will make you nothing short of a pro. You can also spend some time doing the much needed repairs outside the garage and at your home that your folks have been complaining about.
Here are the 10 tools for every do-it-yourself (DIY) auto mechanic.
1. Multi-Purpose Screwdriver-Socket-Bit Set
A multipurpose tool set is a mechanic’s arsenal that will come in use for every mechanical job that you plan to carry out. The tool set will comprise of multiple sockets for screws, wrenches, torx bits, ratchets all of different sizes to cater to different jobs that may come up around the car. Always settle for good quality tools right from the start, since you will be putting them through heavy tension and they should be able to take the load.
The hammer is the most common and the most useful tool that should be part of your tool kit. From straightening out bends to hammering things in place, the hammer place a diverse role throughout the repair work you will be conducting. Loosening the tyres or the drum brakes, the hammer is the perfect tool. You can choose for the claw hammer that will help serve in different jobs.
Pliers come in handy for several works, especially electrical. You have several options available in the market available for pliers. You can start with flat jaw pliers that are needed to for different works, and upgrade then add up slip joint, and needle nose pliers. Pliers will normally cost anything between Rs. 500/- to Rs. 1000/- for good quality ones.
4. Locking Pliers
Locking pliers are a must to be a part of a tool set. Rusted screws that won’t turn, pulling out metal bends, cutting wires can all be addressed with locking pliers. 10-inch high grade locking pliers will cost you around Rs. 1000/- from Vise Grip and will come with rubber grips for added comfort.
5. C – Clamp
A C-clamp is a C shaped clamped that holds to two things together in between like the thumb and the index finger. It is specifically needed to retain the pistons in the brakes apart from other works. If you plan to do major repairs like cleaning or replacing brake pads, this will be beneficial tool. You can also use it to hold two things together in place while drilling through them or cutting something. A regular 6-inch clamp will cost around Rs. 600/- onwards and is made of cast iron.
6. Hydraulic Jack
Hydraulic jacks provide a simple and stable method to lift your car without having to put too much effort into it. You need to check first the weight of your car and then opt for a hydraulic jack. These jacks are available for lifting different tonnage and your best bet would be 3-ton for a sedan and a hatchback that can lift the vehicle 4 – 18 inches off the ground. A hydraulic jack can never be used alone and a lifted car has to be secured with jack stands.
7. Jack Stands
You might have a jack that was given to you along with the spare tyre and that holds the car just fine for some time till you change the flat tyre; however, for longer durations it is better to invest in a jack stand or two for your garage. Jack stands can be adjusted to any size and all you need to do is slip it right under at the dedicated point and do your work with ease. Also with jack stands in place there’s minimal risk of slippage compared to a temporary jack. If you wish to venture into the underbelly of your car, a jack stand is a must have.
You can’t work properly unless you see whats wrong with car. A high powered torch is a must when working on the car, especially for the less reachable parts like the suspension, under body and so on. There are many high powered LED torches available that consume less battery and provide higher illumination. Prices for LED torches start at Rs. 750/- and up depending on the capacity and brand. You can also opt for head strapped torch lights, which will keep your hands free while working.
9. WD-40 Spray
A toolkit is never complete without a Wd-40 lubricant spray. WD-40 serves multiple purposes on different things. It removes rust, soften leather, removes tar, old stickers, glue residue, stains on the carpet, bird droppings and much more. In fact there are over 2000 uses of WD-40 at different levels. A can of this magical spray will cost you around Rs. 250/- and is highly recommended even for domestic use.
10. Old Tooth Brush
Sometimes the simplest things can solve the most complicated tasks. Always keep an old tooth brush handy in your tool kit. A tooth brush can reach the difficult spots which otherwise would not be accessible by our hands. Even for cleaning interior panel gaps and unreachable corners, a tooth brush will come in more than handy.
You can always add other things to your tool kit like power drill, grinder, torque wrench, oil extractor, brake bleeding kit, tyre pressure gauge and tyre inflator from time to time. This also depends on what your work demands and how you plan to take it up.
If you are carrying out repairs on your own on your car, let us know how it is going for you and what kind of equipments are you using, in the comments section below.