Vehicle owners know how important it is to make repairs to their cars at the earliest opportunity. These tasks can either improve performance or they can ensure that the vehicle is safe and road legal, but while we might know which car parts and car accessories to buy, choosing the correct car tools for the task is something that many of us aren’t quite so good at.
The various parts and accessories on the market seem quite obvious to car owners – if you need to clean your car for example, you would buy a range of car cleaning accessories like shampoo, sponges, wax and polish – but what about the various tools that you need to fit certain parts?
Cars are built to such a standard in terms of quality and durability that a lot of car parts are custom made in the factories and your everyday screwdrivers might not be suitable for removing them or tightening them. Instead, you may find that you need purpose built car tools that are designed specifically for use with cars and car parts.
While this may sound like an investment that you could do without and you may be saying “I already have five screwdrivers, six spanners and a couple of wrenches, why do I need any more tools?”; it’s also frequently said that the right tools for the job can save time and effort – especially in the motoring industry.
Of course, there are some tools that work just as well in terms of car repairs and maintenance as they do with your everyday DIY tasks and repairs around the home. It’s just that some car tools have been designed for cars to make sure that all car parts are tightened perfectly, and to minimise the amount of manual effort required.
Which car tools should I own, and why?
It’s very important that certain car parts are tightened to a certain level – and no further. This is to ensure that the part is secure, but not so secure that the part it is attached to cannot perform its own function, whether that is spinning, rotating or moving up and down.
To ensure that you achieve that perfect fastening, torque wrenches can prove to be a very worthwhile investment. They work by setting the wrench to a specific torque, so that the nuts and bolts are not overtightened, something you may have to estimate with a traditional wrench. A scale is located at one end of the torque wrench to provide an accurate reading of the amount of tension placed upon the nut or bolt.
Depending on how much work you find yourself doing on your car – or the family cars, depending on how many you own between you – you may find it worthwhile to invest in one of the many tool kits available for professional and domestic mechanics.
These full tool kits vary in size in terms of the number of items within them, but every item has a use either under the bonnet or in terms of manipulating certain parts into place.
It might not look like a significant tool, but a feeler gauge can provide a mechanic with important information regarding clearance between certain key parts. In a set a feeler gauge comes with a range of gauges of varying thicknesses so that the mechanic can ensure that different moving parts have the clearance required to move freely and easily without grinding against another part and causing serious damage making it a valuable precision tool to have around the workshop.
Similarly it can also be used to measure the wear of a spark plug. Over time the spark plugs in your car will wear and this means that it can take the engine longer to fire into life. If the correct gauge passes too easily through the spark plug connection then it is an obvious indicator that the particular spark plug has worn and needs to be changed.
Oxyacetylene torches for welding and cutting
Welding is a real skill and something that takes a lot of practice to get right. Oxyacetylene torches can be used to cut and weld metals so that you can either repair a damaged part of your car, or so that you can cut away a rusted area and weld a new, ‘healthier’ piece of metal into its place.
Oxyacetylene welding and cutting torches, and the various accessories that come with them, are used throughout the engineering industry but especially in car workshops and body shops. They provide a much more subtle and tidy cut and weld line than using a disc cutter, allowing for a precise finish that can then be sanded and painted.
Finally, you can never have too many diagnostic tools. Technology has evolved and there is no longer the need to take your car to a garage to find out what might be wrong with it, at great expense. Car owners can now invest in a range of diagnostic tools that can be plugged into the vehicle or a specific part to reveal an error code, (if there is one).
This can be looked up in your owner’s handbook or online so that you can find out exactly what is wrong with your car and the affected part. This means that you no longer have to buy new car parts for your vehicle that don’t actually resolve the problem. Instead you can order them straight from Euro Car Parts and – if you order before 4pm – you can have them delivered to your door on the next working day.
You can also click and collect your car parts, tools and accessories from any of our branches. We have more than 200 stores across the UK so you’ll never be too far from us.
For more advice on how to buy the best car tools, parts and accessories; come back to the Euro Car Parts blog soon. If you need any specialist advice on the right car parts for your make and model then our experts will be happy to assist you, just get in touch.