How Well Do You Really Know Your Auto Shop Tools?

By: Jacqueline Samaroo

How Well Do You Really Know Your Auto Shop Tools?
Image: da-kuk/E+/gettyimages

About This Quiz

Gear up and get your engine revving to take on the ultimate auto-shop tools identification quiz! Many people enjoy working on their own vehicle whenever minor issues arise. They take pride in knowing that they're able to fix the problem themselves without the need to seek professional assistance. What cannot be denied, however, is that some jobs simply need the skill, know-how and experience of the auto mechanics in a repair shop. Importantly, too, they have the tools to get the job done right the first time!

Auto mechanics have an impressive lineup of tools at their disposal to carry out regular vehicle maintenance; diagnose engine problems; perform major repair work and any other job a client requires of them. Quite a few of these tools will look familiar to the average person, but others are so specialized that even the most avid at-home car doctor might not recognize them. They range from small hand tools to large, fixed pieces of equipment, and each one has special functions auto repairers know how to take full advantage of. Do you? Here's a chance to prove that you know more than just a thing or two when it comes to auto-shop tools. Take the quiz!

Jack stands Can you name these sturdy devices auto mechanics depend on to hold a vehicle up off the ground?
Jack stands
Bottle jacks, scissor jacks and hydraulic floor jacks can all be used to raise a vehicle, but it's the job of jack stands to keep the vehicle elevated. Jack stands are rated according to the maximum weight they can bear.
Rubber mallet
Socket
Digital caliper

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Needle scaler It's made up of a bundle of thin chisels, but do you know the actual name of this rust remover?
Parts washer
Voltage tester
Needle scaler
Rust isn't the only thing a needle scaler can remove from automotive parts. It's very good at chipping away caked-on dirt, paint and mill scale (hence its name). Mill scale is a flaky, bluish-black coating which forms on hot iron or steel and often has to be cleaned away before parts are worked on or painted.
Ramps

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Engine crane Do you recognize this piece of equipment which hoists motors up into the air?
Bent-handle flex-head ratchet
Trim removal tools
Inspection camera
Engine crane
The engine crane or engine hoist can lift the engine out of a vehicle, but it's not meant to continue holding the engine while it's inspected or worked on. For that, the engine should be transferred to an engine stand.

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Timing light Tuning up an engine is easier with which piece of equipment shown here?
Auto body hammer
Hydraulic shop press
Timing light
A timing light may be referred to as a timing gun when it's shaped like a pistol. This design makes the gadget fit better in your hand and in the confined spaces of the engine bay.
Scriber

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Oil drip pan It could be called a grease catcher, but do you know the actual name of the item in this picture?
Collector
Oil drip pan
Using an oil drip pan does more than keep the auto-shop floor free of grease. The collected oil is recyclable, since it can be filtered by certain recycling centers and reused. Some centers will even pay for used car oil brought to them!
Bench vise
Face shield

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Creeper Do you know the somewhat frightening name of this item that auto mechanics use when they need to work under a vehicle?
Wheel chock
Tire changer
Stubby screwdriver
Creeper
Creepers come in various designs with features such as padding, a raised headrest and the ability to fold up and be locked into position as a seat. Some also feature variable height settings for perfect positioning and maximum comfort when working.

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Headlamp You can use the item here to illuminate your work space, but can you name it?
Crowbar
Headlamp
An LED headlamp is an affordable choice when dark work spaces, such as a vehicle's engine bay, need to be illuminated while repairs are carried out. Plus, it does not generate much heat, so it won't leave you hot-headed!
Electric impact wrench
Automotive stethoscope

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Socket Do you recognize this item often sold as a set of multiple interchangeable pieces along with at least one ratchet wrench?
Socket
Sockets are typically put to use with ratcheting socket wrenches. They come in various sizes for use with fasteners of different measurements.
Metal forming dollies
Jack stands
Spark plug pliers

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Nut splitter What name does this reliable tool for cracking rusted and stuck fasteners go by?
Inspection camera
Nut splitter
Nut splitters can save plenty of time, energy and frustration when dealing with a rusted or damaged nut. The device is placed into position around the nut and screwed until its tooth cracks the nut in two.
Tire inflator with gauge
Automotive multimeter

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Crowbar Do you know this useful tool used to pry apart objects which are stuck together?
Face shield
Metal forming dollies
Air hammer
Crowbar
The crowbar is a steel bar used as a lever for prying things apart. It's generally well-made and can last for a very long time with minimal maintenance. Taking care of a crowbar usually means not getting it wet or drying it off as soon as possible if it does. It should also not be put under so much strain that its shaft bends.

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Parts washer What practical name is given to this workstation where components are cleaned of their dirt, grease and rust?
Automotive multimeter
Digital caliper
Funnel
Parts washer
It's often necessary to clean vehicle parts both before and after working on them. That's because dirt, grease, residues and rust make it difficult to work on a part in the first place and can interfere with how well the parts work once they're fitted back in place.

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Air compressor Can you name this item which powers the pneumatic equipment in the auto shop?
Air compressor
Many auto mechanics prefer air-powered tools to electric ones, since air-powered tools tend to be more powerful. Some air-powered (or pneumatic) tools frequently used in an auto shop are drills, impact wrenches, air hammers and needle scalers.
Tire changer
Tire changer
Voltage tester

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Ramps What's the name of these inclines used to get a vehicle off the ground?
Automotive stethoscope
Engine crane
Ramps
Before driving a vehicle up onto ramps, care should be taken to ensure that the wheels are centered behind the ramps. Once the vehicle is up on the ramps, centering of the wheels should be checked once more. If they're not properly centered, then the vehicle should be backed off and the ramps adjusted to a better position.
Engine crane

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Wheel chock Can you name these wedges used to keep a vehicle from rolling down a hill?
Bent-handle flex-head ratchet
Wheel chock
The wheel chock may look like a simple device, but it's a very important safety tool when a vehicle is on an incline. One such instance is when the front wheels of the vehicle are up on ramps and wheel chocks are used behind the back wheels to keep the vehicle stable.
Creeper
Auto body hammer

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Underhood light Do you recognize this gadget used to brighten up a vehicle's engine bay?
Nut splitter
Bent-handle flex-head ratchet
Underhood light
Many underhood lights are designed with magnets to attach them to the inside of a vehicle's hood. Another methods includes padded hooks so that the light can be attached to the edges of the hood without scratching the paint on the vehicle's surface.
Stubby screwdriver

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Rubber mallet It's easy to see that this auto-shop tool is a type of hammer, but do you know its correct name?
Timing light
Scriber
Hydraulic shop press
Rubber mallet
The large head of a rubber mallet lets it deliver gentle blows over a wide surface area. Rubber mallets are often used in instances when you want to protect the material being struck from forceful blows which could mar or damage it.

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Face shield The type of protective gear shown here goes by what name?
Oil drip pan
Air hammer
Face shield
Safety goggles can protect your eyes, but there are times when protection for the other parts of your face is also required. At those times, a full face shield can be used. It can protect your face from chemical spatter, heat, glare and flying debris when drilling.
Needle scaler

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Spark plug pliers Do you recognize this tool which can grip and turn the boots on a vehicle's ignition devices without damaging them?
Spark plug pliers
Much of the damage that happens to a spark plug's boot or wire is caused by use of the wrong tool to grip the boot when the plug is being pulled out. The boot and wire of a spark plug are less likely to be damaged if a pair of spark plug pliers is used.
Hydraulic floor jack
Tire inflator with gauge
Headlamp

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Trim removal tools If you know that these items can unfasten decorative and finishing elements from a vehicle, do you also know what to call them?
Underhood light
Electric impact wrench
Jack stands
Trim removal tools
Fasteners, which hold trim in place, tend to be hidden from view so as to keep the vehicle looking as streamlined as possible. Working with a trim removal tool to loosen these fasteners is a good idea, since it will not damage the trim or the material under it.

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Tire inflator with gauge What's the name of this very handy tool which pumps out compressed air?
Tire inflator with gauge
Properly inflated tires will wear much more evenly than if they are over- or under-inflated. Plus, under-inflated tires are proven to cause a vehicle to consume excess fuel.
Stubby screwdriver
Rubber mallet
Crowbar

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hydraulic shop press Which piece of equipment for bending and shaping metal components is shown in this image?
Wheel chock
Funnel
Metal forming dollies
Hydraulic shop press
The hydraulic shop press is a compact piece of equipment which delivers a great deal of force to bend and shape metal. It's not uncommon for an auto shop to have a larger free-standing shop press and a smaller desk-mounted one (known as an arbor press).

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Automotive Stethoscope Are you enough of a car doctor to name this tool which lets auto mechanics listen to the internal workings of an engine?
Air compressor
Automotive stethoscope
An automotive stethoscope can be used to diagnose problems in vehicle systems which have internal moving parts—most commonly, the engine. It's typically sold with a detachable horn and probe to better locate where an unusual sound is coming from.
Air hammer
Hydraulic floor jack

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Bent-handle flex-head ratchet Do you know what this crooked and very useful type of wrench is called?
Ramps
Oil filter wrench
Bench vise
Bent-handle flex-head ratchet
A bent-handle flex-head ratchet can get into tight spots and turn fasteners from different angles. As with other tools, the fact that it's bent means that it is sometimes referred to as offset.

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Auto body hammer You can probably spot this as the ideal tool for pounding minor dents out of your vehicle, but can you name it?
Socket
Auto body hammer
One side of an auto body hammer's head is typically flat, but the other end comes in a variety of styles. These styles are used to name the hammer, with common varieties being pick, chisel, claw and cross peen auto body hammers.
Torx screwdriver
Tire changer

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Electric impact wrench Do you recognize this versatile power tool which makes short work of removing lug nuts?
Electric impact wrench
A cordless, electric impact wrench is a very convenient tool to have in a repair shop. It can be used anywhere in the building without having to worry about the cord running out of length or getting entangled in other objects. You just have to remember to keep the battery charged.
Crowbar
Inspection camera
Suction cup dent puller

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Automotive multimeter Do you know the name of this gadget that measures electric current and voltage?
Parts washer
Nut splitter
Automotive multimeter
The multimeter is a diagnostic tool which comes in both analog and digital versions. It can be used with both AC and DC to measure voltage, current and resistance.
Creeper

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Tire changer Auto shops rely heavily on this piece of equipment, but can you identify it?
Rubber mallet
Timing light
Tire changer
The tire changer saves plenty of time when taking a tire off and placing a tire on a rim. It should only be used by someone who is trained to use it. Some manufacturers will offer to train auto-shop employees in how to safely and effectively use the tire changer.
Spark plug pliers

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Scriber Can you name this simple writing tool used just like a pen or pencil?
Hydraulic shop press
Headlamp
Oil drip pan
Scriber
The scriber, or scribing tool, has a tip made of very hard material which is resistant to wearing and will remain sharp for a long time. Materials used to make the tips of scribers include tungsten carbide, tool steel and hardened steel. Some scribers are made with a tiny industrial diamond mounted in a steel tip.

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Bench vise This device for holding items firmly in place goes by what name?
Bench vise
The bench vise is one of the most common type of vises used by both professionals and amateurs. It features a clamp so that it can be tightly secured to the edge of the bench.
Hydraulic floor jack
Voltage tester
Voltage tester

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Oil filter wrench Which handy turning device is shown in this image?
Torx screwdriver
Engine crane
Oil filter wrench
Oil filter wrenches come in various designs, but they all serve the same purpose: to make it easier to remove an oil filter. This can be a challenging job without the right tool, since the outside of the filter tends to be slick with oil, while a buildup of grime holds the filter firmly in place, making it hard to turn.
Engine crane

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Stubby screwdriver What's the name of this shorter-than-usual hand tool used to tighten and loosen fasteners?
Auto body hammer
Stubby screwdriver
Although it will not provide as much torque as a longer screwdriver, the stubby screwdriver gets put to plenty of use in an auto shop. It's a good tool to have when a fastener is located in a confined space with very little room above the fastener.
Funnel
Headlamp

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Digital caliper This measuring device with its convenient display screen goes by what name?
Needle scaler
Underhood light
Bench vise
Digital caliper
Calipers are used for taking internal and external measurements of objects. They are not always easy to read, however, which is why a digital caliper displaying the measurement on a screen is such a handy device.

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Metal forming dollies Which set of tools used in tandem with auto body hammers is shown in this image?
Trim removal tools
Ramps
Metal forming dollies
Dollies are made in a wide range of sizes and curvature. They can be used when creating a new part or when reshaping a damaged part.
Spark plug pliers

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Voltage tester An auto mechanic can do diagnostic checks on a vehicle's electrical system with which tool shown here?
Suction cup dent puller
Underhood light
Nut splitter
Voltage tester
A voltage tester, or test light, is sold in two varieties. The first is the contact type, which requires the tester to be placed directly on the item being tested. The second safer option is the non-contact type, which only needs to be brought up close to the item.

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Inspection camera Which flexible viewing gadget is shown in this image?
Parts washer
Inspection camera
The inspection camera is a type of borescope, very much like the endoscope a doctor uses. Some inspection cameras feature their own screen for viewing images of the area being inspected, while others are designed to be linked to a separate device, such as a phone or computer.
Automotive multimeter
Oil filter wrench

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Funnel This common object can be found in kitchens as well as auto shops, but do you know what it's called?
Face shield
Oil drip pan
Electric impact wrench
Funnel
Funnels can be used when pouring all kinds of liquids. Care should be taken, however, not to use the same funnel for all liquids (oils, coolant and water, for example).

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Air hammer Do you recognize the pounding power tool shown here?
Air hammer
The air hammer (or air chisel) is driven by pneumatic power and is very useful for cutting sheet metal during restoration work. The air hammer is most often designed so that it can be used with chisel heads of various sizes.
Timing light
Suction cup dent puller
Wheel chock

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Suction cup dent puller Which of these terms matches this tool used for correcting auto body dings?
Creeper
Tire inflator with gauge
Suction cup dent puller
A suction cup dent puller is an easy, convenient and inexpensive way to fix dents on a vehicle. The suction cup dent puller may not be the best repair option when it comes to large dents, dents which result in paint damage and dents in locations where electrical components are behind the dented panel.
Digital caliper

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Hydraulic floor jack This device makes short work of raising vehicles off the ground and goes by what name?
Hydraulic floor jack
Hydraulic floor jacks vary in size, maximum weight capacity and the material from which they are made. The basic design is the same, however, with a piston pushing liquid in a cylinder to create sufficient force to raise the vehicle.
Engine crane
Scriber
Jack stands

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Torx screwdriver Can you identify this tool for loosening and tightening fasteners that have star-shaped sockets in their heads?
Needle scaler
Needle scaler
Automotive stethoscope
Torx screwdriver
The two most common styles for the tip of a screwdriver are slotted and Philips, since they're also the most common screwheads used. Tip styles that are seen less often (such as the Torx) are meant to discourage consumers or untrained persons from disassembling or trying to work on certain equipment.

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