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Automotive Hand Tools

Almost every DIY mechanic has a toolbox full of hand tools and power tools at the ready; however, those who are just getting started learning about car repair and maintenance may be wondering which tools they need. You don't have to spend much on dozens of wrenches, hammers and drills, as most work can be handled with the same set of basic automotive hand tools.

What Kinds of Tools are Needed in a Basic Car Repair Kit?

If you plan to regularly work on your car, you'll need the right tools for the job. Your basic car repair kit should include the following items: a socket set; pliers; wire cutters; a torque wrench; wrenches; a screwdriver; a dead blow mallet; and an impact wrench. These tools are just what you need for most car repairs, not to mention that they come in handy for other projects around the house as well.

What Are Some Additional Items I Might Need?

There are a few other pieces of equipment and products that come in handy when working on your car. For instance, you'll want a nice, wide drip pan if you plan to change your own oil. DIY mechanics could often use an extra pair of hands, but that's not always possible. Instead, you can rely on plenty of zip ties to bundle wires and smaller items together. A work light (or two) is also valuable to help you to see into dark areas on the car, while a lift jack keeps your car securely elevated while you work on it.

How Will I Know When to Do Maintenance on the Car?

You can check your car's make, model and year online to determine the kind maintenance that is expected and when. Many car manufacturers publish this information on their websites, so you can easily look up the maintenance schedule to know what to do. If you have the original car manual, you can also usually find this information there.

How Do I Care for Automotive Hand Tools?

Just like any other hand tool in your tool box, this equipment should be well cared for to preserve longevity. Be sure to wipe your tools off with a clean cloth after using them, and if necessary, give them a rinse with soapy water. Just be sure to dry them completely after use. You can finish by applying a protective layer of an aerosol spray lubricant to metal tools before storing them.

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