Whether you’re a weekend mechanic or just someone who owns a lot of vehicles, you may have dreamed of having a complete automotive shop of your own. If you have a backyard that’s big enough or some rural property, you can set up a shop that allows you to work on cars and trucks for yourself and others. Be sure to check your local zoning to avoid violating any ordinances as to size of the building and offset from your property lines.
Construct a Building
A shop space can be constructed of steel, brick, or some type of siding, like vinyl or wood. As this is meant to be a utilitarian building, you will likely gravitate toward steel or siding. A simple concrete floor will do well. Don’t forget to pour a ramp so that vehicles can easily be driven or rolled into the shop space.
A roll-up door is ideal for easily getting vehicles in and out. Barn doors can also work, or a door that slides from one side to the other.
Buy and Install Equipment
A commercial lift is not as expensive as you might think and doesn’t require placing hydraulics under the floor. Modern lift systems are more easily installed and set up on a flat concrete surface. It’s important to get cars up high enough to easily work on them and held stably and securely.
Tools including hand tools, pneumatic tools, and electrically operated tools are all needed to effectively work on cars. Tool boxes can be put on carts so that they can be moved to where they’re needed on repair jobs. Phenolic caster wheels resist grease and oils and don’t create sparks on concrete floors, which is important when working around fuels or explosive materials.
A commercial air compressor will likely be needed for tires and to operate tools. It’s important to get one with a sufficient tank size so that the buffer is adequate. The motor’s power is also key to compressing air fast enough to meet your needs.
If you’ll be working on tires, you’ll need tire mounting and dismounting equipment. Be sure that you’re adequately trained on whatever equipment you operate for mounting tires.
Include Counter and Shelf Space
As you work on jobs, you’ll need counter space, shelf space, and other storage to keep jobs organized and to work on components. You’ll need large, stable shelves to hold heavy and bulky items.
A commercial style garage of your own is within reach if you have the space. The investment in shop space can be well worth it if you can do work on your own cars and power equipment.