Carson, CA – February 8, 2011 – A recent study from online car repair site AutoMD.com shows that not only are more and more car owners choosing to DIY their car repairs, but one in three report saving over $1,000 a year on car repairs.* To help those DIYers save money in style, AutoMD.com’s DIY experts have released a three-step (Clean! Equip! Upgrade!) guide to inspire any car owner to turn his/her garage into the ultimate car repair facility.
"We're not talking extreme home makeover here," said Shane Evangelist, president of AutoMD.com. "Instead, we're suggesting three easy steps – Clean! Equip! Upgrade! - to create the garage of your dreams, with the right tools, in the right space, that's perfect for you and your car."
Step 1: Clean and organize.
The ultimate DIY garage should be clean and organized, with ample work space. De-clutter that space by removing boxes, donating old clothes and toys, and adding shelves, hooks, storage bins or racks above the garage door to get items such as tools and bikes organized and off the floor. Outdoor pre-fabricated sheds are great for storing larger items, such as lawn mowers and grills, outside and under cover.
Step 2: Equip with the right tools/equipment.
Now that you’ve cleared your garage, stock it with must-have tools and equipment.
- Roll-away Toolbox – Every DIY auto mechanic needs a good-quality toolbox, and one on wheels is even better. It moves where you move, making your tools accessible no matter where you are around your car.
- Workbench – Make sure you have a workbench with a solid work surface at a comfortable height. Many workbenches come with extra drawers and shelves, for additional storage and tool organization options.
- Bench Vise – A workbench isn't complete without a 6-inch bench vise mounted solidly on an outer corner. A quality bench vise secures the part you're repairing and can also substitute as a light duty press.
- Floor Jack and Jack Stands – A floor jack and set of jack stands are mandatory when working under your car or removing tires and wheels. A 3-ton hydraulic floor jack is much safer and easier to use than a bottle or scissor jack.
- Creeper – Moving underneath your car while working can be difficult, unless you have a creeper. Newer models are more comfortable, with adjustable headrests and padded beds. They range in price from $40 - $100.
- Air Tools and Air Compressor –Air tools, such as impact guns and air rachets, make it quicker and easier for DIYers to perform a variety of automotive repairs. None of these tools work without an air compressor, however. A good standard air compressor to buy is portable, with a 30-gallon capacity and an output of 11 CFM @ 90 PSI.
- Safety Items – Equip your garage with a well-stocked, industrial-grade first aid kit and carbon monoxide detector which are usually OSHA/ANSI compliant. Be sure to have a fire extinguisher on-hand and in an easy-to-reach location also. Finally, refer to instruction manuals or how-to guides for difficult repair jobs**.
Step 3: Upgrade/Modify for the ultimate DIY garage.
Although not completely necessary, the following items make for a state-of-the-art, the sky's-the-limit DIY dream garage:
- A coated/padded floor for cleaner, more comfortable repairs.
- All-around fluorescent lighting for a workspace that's brighter and safer.
- A 220V outlet for the welder you’ve always wanted and additional breakers to prevent circuit overloads.
- A heater for the winter and ventilation fans for the summer. NEVER run your engine in the garage, even with the doors open, to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning.
- A washroom for easy clean-up.
- A vehicle lift and higher ceilings…to take your car repairs (such as a complete brake job) to new heights!
For more DIY car repair information, tips and advice, visit AutoMD.com.
- *According to the AutoMD.com “2010 DIY Report”
- **AutoMD.com offers “How-To Guides” with step-by-step instructions on thousands of repair jobs (also available on your iPhone at iTunes).