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20 Must Have Mechanic Tools for 2024 - Shadow Foam

20 Must Have Mechanic Tools for 2024

Whether you're a professional mechanic or a weekend car enthusiast, equipping yourself with the essential automotive mechanic tools can make the difference between a job well done and a makeshift fix that's bound to come apart.

As we speed through 2024, let's dive into the must have mechanic tools that should occupy every mechanic's toolbox. And remember, a well-organised toolbox is key to efficiency, so I’m also going to be talking about how integrating Shadow Foam into your toolbox organiser can help keep your tools in check. But first, let’s take a look at some of the most important mechanic tools that you should always keep in your toolkit.

Basic Hand Tools

Wrench Set

First up, a comprehensive wrench set is indispensable. From tightening bolts to loosening nuts, having a variety of sizes and types (including combination, ratchet, and adjustable wrenches) will ensure that you're prepared for any task.

Screwdriver Set

Another staple for any mechanic is a diverse screwdriver set, including flat-head, Phillips, and Torx drivers - these are key when it comes to tackling a wide range of different vehicle fasteners.

Pliers and Vise Grips

When it comes to stubborn parts that require a bit more persuasion, I find that a set of pliers and vise grips can provide the necessary grip and leverage, so make sure you’ve got a few in your kit.

Socket Set

And finally to round up your basic tools, a well-equipped socket set - ideally including standard and deep sockets in both metric and imperial sizes - is essential for quick and efficient bolt and nut removal.

Power Tools

a power tool on the table

Cordless Impact Wrench

When it comes to power pools, a cordless impact wrench is a game-changer for quickly removing or tightening bolts, especially if you’re working with tire changes or suspension work.

Cordless Drill

A cordless drill isn't just for drilling holes - it's a versatile tool for a variety of tasks, including buffing, grinding, and screwing when equipped with the right attachments. It’s always a good idea to have one in your kit.

Air Compressor and Impact Gun

An air compressor paired with an impact gun is great for heavy-duty tasks that might require a bit more power than a cordless wrench can provide, such as inflating tires or auto painting.

Angle Grinder

For cutting, grinding, or polishing tasks, an angle grinder is your go-to tool - just make sure you have the right discs for the job.

Cordless Ratchet

A cordless ratchet saves time and wrist strain during repetitive tasks, so it’s a valuable addition to your power tool arsenal.

Diagnostic Tools

an obd scanner

OBD Scanner

For any professional mechanic (or even budding car enthusiast!) an On-Board Diagnostics (OBD) scanner is a great way to diagnose and troubleshoot most modern vehicles, giving you access to error codes and system statuses.


An electrical multimeter is essential for diagnosing electrical issues, from checking battery voltage to testing continuity.

Compression Tester

When it comes to diagnosing problems with the engine's cylinders - such as worn piston rings or leaking valves - you can’t go wrong with a compression tester.

Infrared Thermometer

For quickly diagnosing heating issues or checking for hot spots without direct contact, an infrared thermometer is a handy tool.

Fuel Pressure Gauge

A fuel pressure gauge is necessary for diagnosing fuel delivery issues, ensuring your engine receives the right amount of fuel.

Specialised Tools

Torque Wrench

Ensuring bolts are tightened to the correct specifications is crucial for safety and performance, so a torque wrench is one essential tool that you should always have to hand in your mechanics toolbox.

Bearing Puller

For tasks like removing bearings or gears, a bearing puller can save you a lot of time and hassle.

Brake Caliper Tool Kit

If you’re working on brake systems, you’ll know that it requires precision; a brake calliper tool kit provides the specialised tools needed for the job.

Oil Filter Wrench

Changing oil is a common maintenance task, and an oil filter wrench makes removing stubborn oil filters a breeze.

Serpentine Belt Tool

Finally, a serpentine belt tool is essential for safely and easily removing and installing serpentine belts without damaging them, so always keep one on-hand when you’re on the job.

Organising Your Mechanic Tools with Shadow Foam

Shadow Foam tool organiser

As I mentioned in the introduction, keeping your tools organised is just as important as having the right tools - there’s nothing more frustrating than wasting time searching for the right wrench or screwdriver in a cluttered toolbox! This is where a Shadow Foam toolbox organiser comes in as a game-changer for mechanics and car enthusiasts alike.

Shadow Foam offers a customisable solution to tool organisation: made from 100% polyethylene, our foam inserts allow you to precisely cut space for each and every one of your tools and devices. Not only does this system save you time by making it quick and easy to find what you’re looking for when you need it, but it also protects your tools from damage and loss.

For more tips on organising your mechanic tools, and to learn how Shadow Foam can revolutionise your tool storage, check out our other blog articles or have a talk with one of our experts here. And if you want to see just how great Shadow Foam can be at keeping your tools organised and protected, you can find me over on our YouTube channel! I regularly post tutorials, tests and challenges, and also answer some of your commonly asked questions about how to use Shadow Foam - so come give us a watch!

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