The Best Mechanic’s Creeper for Your Money
Best Value Mechanic’s Creepers Reviewed
Nearly every amateur mechanic in the world today is plagued by the same issue: they have to be able to get underneath the vehicles in their garage easily. They also need to be able to repair, maintain and upgrade these vehicles in relative comfort.
If you are an amateur mechanic, the most common way in which you get under your vehicle is probably to take a big cardboard box that has been completely laid out, push it underneath your car and then use that to slide under it yourself. During this process, it isn’t uncommon to sprain a few muscles and get much dirtier than you need to be.
The worst part? Every time you need to grab a new tool, you have to crawl out with a lot of effort, get your new tool and then repeat the whole thing again. Why do you put yourself through hell every single time you do this? All you have to do is get yourself a creeper. It is a tool that is used by professional mechanics all over the world, although as an amateur you may not have heard of it.
A mechanic’s creeper is also known as a garage, shop or automotive creeper. It is a tool which you will not be able to do without. When you use a creeper with car ramps, jacks, and other professional tools, the difference in your work will be very noticeable. You’ll be changing your oil and doing all the other jobs your car needs in record time. However, creepers aren’t the same from brand to brand. They have different features and capabilities.
The first creeper was made in the 1970s. Over the years, the design has evolved considerably. Because of this, there are some things you should consider before buying a creeper for your car. Some of the features present might not matter to you, while others that aren’t present on that model might come in handy later. A good rule of thumb is to avoid the cheaper models found at local hardware stores. They don’t usually have the same high quality that the models below do.
What to Look for in a Good Creeper Seat
First off, know the function of the creeper. It is made to provide you with a platform of sorts which can roll along the ground and reposition you with ease. Wheels like those on portable toolboxes are used to do this. Back in the day, these were made of steel and came with a whole bunch of issues. Today, most of the creepers use wheels that have ball bearings in them for smooth access even on cracked floors. Larger creeper models have bigger wheels that can roll over pebbles and gravel if necessary.
The level of comfort offered is also important. Usually, a creeper is either made using molded plastic or metal and foam, or a combination of the two. Plastic creepers are typically shaped for comfort. Some people prefer the metal models instead, but the plastic model is easier to clean, more resistant to daily wear and tear, and can take the sparks from a welding job far better than a typical foam padding can.
Now, without any more beating around the bush, here are the top picks for mechanic’s creepers out there today:
The Number 1 Pick
Lisle Plastic Creeper
Lisle is a company with a reputation in the auto parts industry. This is a creeper with a very low profile. It doesn’t look as aesthetically stunning as other similar tools but is all-around the best pick for any job at all. Weighing in at a measly 11lbs, this lightweight plastic creeper unit is very resilient to both physical abuse and spills. It is also very comfortable indeed, with a padded rest for a mechanic’s head. In addition to all this, it is only 4 inches in height, so it can be slid under some of the lower cars in your garage.
The wheels of the Lisle unit are 2 inches in diameter and are very high quality indeed. The roll is smooth and easy to do. While it doesn’t work too well with the rougher garage floor (you may want to consider models with bigger wheel sizes for these), it is the perfect fit for any amateur mechanic’s inventory.
In terms of length, this creeper is nearly 2 inches longer than its competition, which makes it one of the best choices for the taller mechanics out there. It can also hold a load of up to 300lbs without showing any signs of bending or buckling. Built to last by a company with years of experience building mechanics’ tools for garages and homes, this surprisingly affordable creeper can hold its own against some of the higher end models in the market today.
The Bone Creeper
The Bone Creeper is one of the stranger creepers out there. Made by Dale Adams, the design includes a 5-inch diameter wheel at each corner. This is one of the biggest wheel sizes available right now. The larger size means the creeper can be used on the rockier, more uneven surfaces without too many issues. It is the only one available that can hold its own on sand, gravel, manhole covers, grates, and wire cords. The length of this creeper is in excess of 6’3”, and can hold up to 300lbs.
One of the only complaints that can be made about this creeper is the comfort level on the unit. Not many people will agree with this, but we feel that the pattern on the head rest, which is a hard, ribbed design, might not be the most comfortable. In addition to this, the maneuvering of the creeper is a little harder because of the size of the wheels. Last but not least, this is a creeper that will definitely take some getting used to, especially when used with cars that don’t have a lot of clearance.
Omega Foldable Z Creeper
The Omega is one of the coolest creepers you will ever own. It is the only one in its class that has a completely modular, hybrid design. When you pull a little pin on the unit, it can be folded up into the shape of the letter Z and locked in place. This means that it doubles down as a chair for the budding mechanic when it isn’t being used for creeping. The chair comes in handy if you have to be squatting for long periods of time, such as when you are working on the brakes of the car. While you could use a stool for the same purpose, having a creeper that can serve two functions increases the amount of space you save in your garage.
As a creeper, it works really well. There are six wheels made of polyurethane, each of which is 3 inches in diameter. This is a perfect size, as it isn’t too large or too small for use in the garage. It can also support a weight of up to 450 pounds, so dropping something heavy on it by accident won’t cause too many problems.
Usually, there would be a complaint made about the padding on the bed of the unit, but this one has such great quality that it simply can’t be griped about. Sure, the Z Creeper isn’t as low to the ground as our top pick, but it is still one of the better creepers out there. The hybrid design might be exactly what some people are looking for.
Best Topside Creeper
In the world of the mechanic’s creeper, there are different types. The most common is the one that slides underneath a car, which is used in nearly every home garage in the world. There is another type of creeper: the topside creeper. This allows a mechanic to work on the engine from above it. The engine is the riskiest part of the car, so being able to approach it from somewhere other than underneath the incredibly heavy block of metal adds to the comfort and the overall safety of anyone working on the car. This type of creeper is essential when working with the engines of trucks and larger vehicles like SUVs.
Traxion 3-700 ProGear Topside Creeper
The Traxion ProGear has a very wide area over which the wheels extend, which increases how stable the creeper is even if the mechanic is heavy. It also features a very intelligent “I” base design. This increases the versatility of the creeper.
The wheels are rubber and five inches in diameter. These huge wheels allow you to roll over just about anything on the garage floor no matter how larger they are. If you need some extra force to apply on a part you’re trying to lift or unscrew, you can lock the wheels so that they don’t move against the floor.
This is the perfect model for Dodge Rams, F150s, Chevy pickup trucks and other large SUVs or pickup trucks. You can also fold it down when you aren’t using it so you can save a ton of space in the garage.
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