How to start working on cars

Working on cars as a beginner can be intimidating. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t worry: we have all been there. Casual Car Guide has got your back.

Working on cars is one of the most rewarding things you can do. You get to work with your hands and create something. Whether it’s repairing a leak or freshening up your interior, the sense of achievement from working on your own car is amazing.

You can also learn a lot about mechanics, electrical systems and what makes everything tick. Working on your car is a great way to relax and have fun while learning something new. Best of all, it’s something you can do solo or with friends. And it’s a skill that will take you very far in life.

Read on to find out more about how you can begin your journey of working on cars!

How do I start working on cars?

Preparation is key. There are a few things you’ll need before starting work on any car. Here are the basics:

  • A good-quality socket and ratchet set
  • A car to practice with
  • Access to the internet for research

If you have these basics, you’re ready to begin learning. Let’s jump in.

Start Online

Start small. Take some time to think about what you want to do with your car, and then head online and start researching that topic. You should begin with routine maintenance tasks, like changing your engine oil or flushing the coolant system.

The internet is your best friend when you’re starting to work on vehicles! You’ll find all kinds of information, from step by step videos showing you how it’s done to helpful tips and articles covering repairs in detail. If you’re a beginner at working on cars, try joining online forums and communities for expert tips and knowledge from other car enthusiasts. YouTube is a great resource: try our 5 best YouTube channels for car enthusiasts.

Visit a local garage

If you really want some in-house experience under expert supervision, try contacting your local garage to see if they offer any apprenticeships or learning programmes. You could even ask to watch them and take notes as they carry out repairs on vehicles. The more experience you can get, the better.

The best way to start working on cars yourself is to understand what you want to achieve. Do you just want to learn how to do basic maintenance tasks, like changing the windscreen wipers? Or do you want to get more involved with the engine and suspension? Do you want to turn your love of working with cars into a lifelong career? All of these paths require different approaches and different levels of confidence and commitment. 

In summary, it’s always best to start with routine maintenance and move on to the more complicated stuff once you feel more comfortable wrenching on your car.

Do I need hands-on experience to start working on cars?

The short answer is no. While having some experience working on cars will help give you a leg up when you’re starting out, it’s not necessary in order to begin learning about car repair.

The first thing I ever did to a car was replace the windscreen wipers. It’s a simple task, but you have to start somewhere. To do so, I watched a few YouTube videos that covered the process from start to finish for the exact model of car. Since then, I’ve moved on to doing routine maintenance and bigger jobs like servicing the clutch and changing brake rotors.

Understanding the basics of car maintenance and mechanics might make the process more approachable for beginners, but anyone can learn about car repair as long as they apply themselves through study and practice.

What are the benefits of carrying out car repairs myself?

First, it saves you money. Lots of money. If you’re confident enough and know your way around a vehicle, then repairing your car yourself can save you a lot of cash. With just a little bit of know-how and the willingness to get your hands dirty, you can easily avoid those expensive labour fees charged by local mechanics.

Second, being able to work on your own car gives you a sense of accomplishment that you just can’t get anywhere else. There’s nothing quite like fixing something up or making it work better than it did before. Sometimes you might even manage to fix a problem that your friends or local mechanics have given up on – and that’s one of the best feelings in the world. So shake off those new car nerves and get working on your own vehicle. You’ll gain confidence through improving your own knowledge and skills.

Third, repairing cars is a great way to teach you how things work. If you’re one of those people who has always been interested in engineering and how things work, then carrying out repairs and maintenance yourself is an excellent way to learn more about your vehicle and the inner workings of cars. Working on your car is a problem-solving exercise: and you’ll feel really satisfied when you finish tightening that last bolt.

And finally: working on your car is just fun. Come rain or shine, there’s always something to be working on with your car. And when you’ve fixed or upgraded everything, and there’s nothing left to work on anymore, get a new car!

Final thoughts

Some of my best memories come from my days working on cars. Whether it be with friends on a hot sunny day or by myself on a cold winter evening, the idea of being focused on fixing a mechanical problem is therapeutic. Once you’re finished with the task of repairing your car, the feeling of accomplishment is second to none.

I would encourage you to start working on your car as soon as possible. Don’t jump straight in to the deep end – start small and work your way up as your skillset grows. You’ll save money, gain new insights into the way things work and gain confidence.

When did you start working on cars? Do you plan to start soon? Let us know below!

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