(StatePoint) Most everyone has a couple of tricks up their sleeve that make chores and tasks simpler. You likely have a few of your own -- and once you develop a superior method of ticking off a to-do list item, it can be difficult to remember what your life was like before.
Here are a few such “lifehacks” straight from automotive experts, that you may not have thought of yourself, that can make your time in your garage more efficient and effective.
• Better organization: A well-maintained garage is a more pleasant place to work and can boost your efficiency. If your shovels, spades and other yard tools are stacked in a precarious pile, it’s time to create a better system.
Freelance automotive writer and photographer Maxwell Matthewson suggests screwing a ripped sheet of plywood to the studs of your shop or garage to hold yard and auto tools vertically and out of the way.
• Spark plugs in a snap: It can be tricky to remove spark plugs from hard to reach or extreme heat locations. The experts at JR Motorsports suggest attaching a vacuum to a length of rubber hose. With the proper size hose, this same method also works for nuts and bolts.
• Play favorites: Working on your vehicle? Don’t dig to find your favorite tools, says Tom Gerrald of Tripp Gerrald Motorsports. Save time when looking for the right wrench by using tape to color code the tools you reach for first.
• Stay in place: The professionals at JR Motorsports mark their nuts and bolts with a paint pen to ensure they haven’t moved or become loose.
• Share: Have your own DIY tips for the garage? Don’t keep them to yourself. Valvoline, the producer of automotive products, is spotlighting the creative "hacks" DIYers around the country are using to make life easier in the garage.
Submit your best ideas, tips and tricks that demonstrate how to improvise and boost efficiency, using the #GarageHacks hashtag at www.Facebook.com/Valvoline, www.Twitter.com/Valvoline and www.Instagram.com/Valvoline.
The best submissions will receive one of four $500 gift cards to the Valvoline store. Submissions should include a photo and brief description related to organizing your workspace, changing motor oil or general automotive maintenance and repair. Visit http://bit.ly/GarageHacks for full contest rules and details.
Is your time in the garage well-spent? With the right tricks, you can innovate the way you restore your ride, make home upgrades and maintain your yard.
Photo Credit: (c) JR Motorsports