September 20, 2018

by Alec Neufeld

If you work as a mechanic, you’ll know that the latest tools aren’t cheap. However, most equipment is worth the investment if you know it will lighten your workload.

A good toolkit is vital for any garage worker, whether you’re a novice or a seasoned professional. If you’re serious about automotive care, you need to stock up on the latest tools and equipment. That way, you can get the job done quickly, and to the highest standard for your cars and your customers.

Most modern mechanics use compressed air to reduce some of the manual labor the job demands. Air tools will last you for years and assist you with a variety of routine jobs, but they do require a little investment up front. If you’re not sure where best to channel your resources, here are five air tools that will save you time and help you get the job done right.

Air ratchet

An air ratchet is used like a wrench or spanner but is much more effective. It works just like regular ratchets but is powered by air rather than the motion of your arm. Air ratchets are vital to the work of a mechanic, but you need to find a powerful one with a light trigger. You should also make sure it fits comfortably in your hand, so this is one item worth buying from a store.

Air ratchets are available in several sizes to suit a variety of jobs and workspaces, so the model you need will depend on these factors. Due to their compact size (and because they don’t require lots of physical movement on your part), these tools are especially useful in small garage spaces with little clearance. Owning an air ratchet will save you time and effort in a variety of repair jobs, especially when combined with extensions, swivels, and quality sockets.

Rotary screw compressors

Rotary screw compressors are typically used in auto shops in place of piston compressors because they are best for projects that require a high volume of pressurized air. A rotary screw compressor is a kind of air compressor that uses a rotary-type mechanism driven by an electric motor. The process involves a constant sweeping motion, and the compressors experience little pulsation compared to piston compressors, which is one of the reasons they are often favored among mechanics.

As with all air tools, it is vital to select a screw compressor matches your job’s demands. You can read more about screw compressors online or reach out to a parts manufacturer who will help you find the right tool for the job.

Impact wrench

Whether you’re working on your own car or running a commercial garage, this tool is essential to the everyday work of a mechanic. An impact wrench will save you time when it comes to a number of routine projects. Whether you’re performing a tire swap, wheel replacement, exhaust repair or installing suspension parts, this air tool will take away the strain and make you more productive.

A good impact wrench will last you for years, so it is well worth the initial investment. That said, there are numerous options on the market, and many of them are highly affordable.

Blow-off gun

Blow-off guns (or air guns) are easy to use and incredibly useful when it comes to blowing dust and debris away from your vehicle. They can also be used to remove unwanted materials from small engine parts, air-dry a freshly washed car or clean tricky-to-reach places like spark plug channels. Air guns can also be used to clean power tools, filters, and other equipment, so it is multi-functional and highly cost-effective.

With affordable pricing and a range of uses, this air tool is one of the most useful to have in your mechanic’s arsenal, while avoiding a hefty expense.

Orbital buffer

If you love the look of a freshly waxed vehicle but don’t like the work it involves, you’ll be pleased to know you don’t have to polish it manually. With an orbital buffer, you can get the fresh gleam of a polished car without any of the elbow grease. By using compressed air, this tool makes light work of sanding, buffing and finishing vehicles of all sizes.

As a mechanic, an orbital buffer is an essential part of your toolkit. You can use it strip paint, sand, buffer and even vacuum (with an extra attachment) to keep dust and debris at bay.

Conclusion

Until all cars go electric, a good mechanic will never be out of work. That means you need to save time in your daily processes so you can take on more jobs and increase your profits.

You can save a great deal of time and manual effort by making small investments in better tools, many of which will last for years if properly maintained. Whether you’re working on your own vehicle or somebody else’s, air tools are vital to the work of a mechanic. Invest in these five tools today, and you’ll find your garage processes run more smoothly.

Alec Neufeld is a retired builder, now freelance writer and part-time general fix it man. He has strong opinions on the use of alternate energy and is also an avid sports enthusiast.