Car Mechanics (UK)

USE­FUL TOOLS

- Lifehacks · Iceland · Belgium · Austria · Volkswagen Golf Mk4

1 DRAIN TRAY Old en­gine oil is messy, so an old wash­ing-up bowl, roast­ing tin or a pur­pose-made drain tray are ideal for col­lect­ing the oil. The oil must be re­cy­cled at a coun­cil tip or re­cy­cling cen­tre, so pour the oil into an old oil can or sim­i­lar for dis­posal.

2 FIL­TER WRENCH There are sev­eral tools you can use to undo a spin-on oil fil­ter, in­clud­ing a bike-chain or strap or a three-pronged de­vice, all of which en­able the fil­ter to be re­leased. If space is tight, then an end cup may help (see below).

3 FIL­TER CUPS A se­lec­tion of oil fil­ter cups can help to undo the ma­jor­ity of spin-on oil fil­ters. The cup sits on the end of the fil­ter, which is eas­ier than using a fil­ter wrench, es­pe­cially if space around the fil­ter is limited.

4 LARGE SOCKET For an oil fil­ter that’s con­tained in a can­is­ter, a large socket may be re­quired to release and un­screw the can­is­ter. The end of the can­is­ter usu­ally has a large hexagon­shaped end (27-36mm), en­abling it to be un­done. Ded­i­cated shal­low sock­ets of var­i­ous sizes can usu­ally be bought, to help if space is limited.

5 TORQUE WRENCH Oil fil­ter can­is­ters and sump drain plugs will need to be tight­ened to a spe­cific torque set­ting. This is of­ten not very tight: 25Nm for can­is­ters and 30-40Nm for sump plugs.

6 SOCK­ETS or SPAN­NERS Most en­gine oil sump drain plugs have a hexag­o­nal head, which can be un­done with a span­ner or socket. Some have an Allen key-shaped in­sert, so a socket with an Allen key bit will be needed to undo it.

7 BAG of SAND or SPILL PROD­UCTS Ex­pect a dis­as­ter once in a while when re­new­ing oil, so have a plan of ac­tion if old or fresh oil is spilt over your drive­way or garage floor. The cheap­est solution is to buy a bag of sand, which can soak up oil spills. Sev­eral tool com­pa­nies sell spill kits to help clean up flu­ids.

8 FUN­NEL & JUG Pour­ing fresh en­gine oil into the en­gine can turn into a dis­as­ter if the oil spills while be­ing poured, so find or buy a fun­nel and keep it clean. A mea­sur­ing jug can also help to en­sure the cor­rect vol­ume of oil is poured into the en­gine.

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