We all love working on our cars — but how many of us are working on a greasy driveway, fishing tools out of a cluttered toolbox? Be honest, now. While having the perfect workspace isn’t a necessity, it does make working on your car a little more enjoyable. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you create the perfect workspace for your car.
Are you using your garage to catch overflow from your house? Is it full of boxes, clutter and tons of different stuff that you may or may not use anymore?
Step one to making your perfect workspace is cleaning out your garage to give you some room to work. Start by cutting the clutter — toss or sell anything that doesn’t serve a purpose and organize anything you keep in neat storage totes or on shelves. You can even hang storage from your ceiling if you have enough clearance and some good studs to attach to.
Improve Your Lighting
Standard lighting in garages is usually insufficient for detailed work. Your next step is to improve your lighting. You’ll want two types of lighting — stationary and mobile. Stationary lighting should be bright enough so you can see clearly any time of the day. Mobile lighting, such as clip lamps, flashlights and other handheld lights, are useful for getting into those hard to reach places when you’re under the car or your ceiling base lighting just doesn’t cut it.
Organize Your Tools
Sure, it’s handy to have all your tools in one place, but if you’re spending half your afternoon searching for that elusive 10-millimeter socket, you’re wasting valuable time. A tool chest can be a great way to keep your tools organized — and it gives you some incentive to buy more tools to fill up the chest.
If you’re handy, why not break out the woodworking tools and build some custom shelving? It can double as storage for parts and other items as well as tools, so it’s a win all the way around.
Lift It up
You’re going to need something to get your car off the ground. What you choose is entirely up to you. Our suggestions will vary depending on the amount of clearance you have between the floor and ceiling in your garage. For short garages, a hydraulic jack and jack stands are often sufficient, though you’ll probably also want to invest in a creeper or two to make it easier to get under your car once you lift it.
If you have higher ceilings, a portable two-post lift system might be worth the investment — just make sure you’ve got enough space that you won’t be putting your car through the ceiling if you lift it too high.
Invest in a Compressor
An air compressor is good for more than just filling up tires — it can be one of the most versatile power sources in your garage, especially if you pair it with some pneumatic tools. You can use it to power an impact wrench to loosen or tighten bolts, an airbrush for painting your car and even an air gun for cleaning away dust and debris. Investing in a good compressor can make your car repair days go even smoother.
Enjoy the Experience
Don’t restrict yourself to a cluttered toolbox anymore. Take some time to create the perfect place to work on your car, and you’ll enjoy it even more than you do now.
Scott Huntington is a writer and car fanatic from Harrisburg, PA. Check out his site offthethrottle.com or follow him on Twitter @SMHuntington.