How-To

5 Repairs You Can Google and Do Yourself

Aug 1, 2016

Learn how to use the tools you already own and save some money on these easy car repairs

Not so long ago, DIY knowledge was exclusively passed down from father to son. Uncle to nephew. Learning to work on your car was a rite of passage. But it’s 2016, people. And while quality time with your uncle will always be a prized commodity, you’ve got a world of awesome video tutorials and step-by-step resources at your fingertips. So dive into your driver’s manual and start saving some dough. Check out these top five car repairs you can Google and do yourself!

1. Replace Your Air Filter

Any self-made mechanic will tell you that air filter replacement is a car repair you can totally handle without getting your hands too dirty. A fresh, clean air filter helps keep your engine cool and running at its best. And it’s something you’ll want to take care of at least once a year. Don’t sweat the logistics though, guys. This is a 3-minute job that will take you even less time to Google.

Tools you’ll need:

·      Shop Rag

·      Vacuum Cleaner

·      Screwdriver Set

·      Safety Goggles

·      Dust Mask

Tutorial we like:
How To Change A Cabin Air Filter, HowStuffWorks.com 

2. Change Your Headlights

You’ve got a light out. You stop by the auto parts store, grab the bulb you need and pop your hood. Only now you realize, you have no idea how to change that headlight. So you swallow your pride and ask the guy who sold you the light for help. Sound familiar? Yeah, we’ve all been there. And we never want to be there again. Word of advice: take a minute to type this one into your favorite search engine. And while you’re at it, stock your glove compartment with extra bulbs.

Some cars may require a little more handiwork than others, but ultimately, car repairs don’t get simpler than this.

Tools you’ll need:

·      Your two hands!

·      Phillips screwdriver (maybe, depending on the car)

Tutorial we like:
Change a Headlight Bulb In 4 Steps, Military.com  

3. Replace Your Car Battery

Another car repair you should stop paying for today: changing your battery. Now, if you buy a new battery at the mechanic or your local Valvoline service center, they’ll usually replace it for you. But why let someone else do something you can feel great about tackling yourself? Sure, the thought of messing with your car’s electrical system may seem a little unsettling at first, but if you do your research and exercise the proper precautions, you can truly take charge of your battery.

Tools you’ll need:

·      Crescent Wrench or Socket Wrench (10mm)

·      Adjustable Pliers

·      Wire Brush

·      Nut driver or ratchet set

·      Vinyl or rubber gloves

·      Safety Goggles

Tutorials we like:
Car Battery Replacement Tools and Tips, CarsDirect.com
How To Change A Car Battery, HowStuffWorks.com

4. Change Your Brake Pads

Changing your brake pads is an extremely important repair, and will save you tons of money over the course of your car’s life. This one’s a little bit of an endeavor, but honestly, it’s lot less painstaking than it sounds. All you need is 1 hour, some standard tools from your garage workshop, and a thirst for invaluable car knowledge. Not sold yet? Go ahead and Google it. You’ve got thousands upon thousands of online mentors ready to guide you through the process.  

Tools you’ll need:

·      Gloves

·      Jack and jack stand

·      C-clamp

·      Lug wrench

·      Socket wrenches

·      Bungee cord

·      Turkey baster (for brake fluid)

·      New brake fluid

·      New brake pads

Tutorial we like:
How To Change Your Brake Pads, Edmunds.com 

5. Change Your Oil

Finally, for our favorite DIY car repair: the oil change. In our opinion, this is by far the best one-on-one time a man can spend with his special ride. See, knowing how to change your own oil is widely recognized as an unofficial stamp of manliness. And once you conquer this easy feat, your DIY game has officially reached the big time. All it takes? A few household tools, an hour under the hood, and of course, a few quarts of Valvoline motor oil. Time to hit the information superhighway and kick your car expertise into high gear.

Tools you’ll need:

·      Wrench

·      Oil filter wrench

·      Oil drain pan

·      Funnel

·      Latex gloves

·      Jack and jack stands

·      Oil filter

·      Valvoline Motor Oil

Tutorial we like:

How To Change Your Oil, Edmunds.com

More From Team Valvoline:

Been a while since you changed your wiper blades? There’s no shame in needing a refresher. Check out our piece on changing windshield wipers and become an overnight expert.


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Tags: How-To, DIY