Work gloves protect your fingers, palms and the backs of your hands when you’re working on your car. However, they’re not all created equal. You’ll need to make sure that you’ve selected the right work gloves for the task.

Depending on the situation, you might need work gloves that protect against heat. You may also only need a glove to keep oil or transmission fluid off your hands.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when searching for your next pair of work gloves:

  • Flexibility: Obviously, the most important consideration here is going to be the type of glove, and there’s no single answer for everyone. If you’re changing your oil, you’ll probably want nitrile or latex gloves. These are thin and super flexible, and make gripping tools easier. They don’t protect against heat, but they will keep fluids, dirt and grime off your hands. They also come in boxes of several hundred pairs, so you can buy a supply that will last a long time.

  • Heat Protection: If you’re worried about burning or cutting your hands while working on the car, a set of thicker work gloves may be the best choice. There are several styles on the market from companies like Carhartt and DeWalt, as well as ATG and Craftsman. These are thick enough to keep you from burning your fingers, but have special grip features on the palms and fingers to make using tools simpler and easier.

  • Heavy-Duty Leather: You’re no doubt familiar with these gloves. They’re used for everything from shoveling to splitting wood to removing bumper covers. They’re thick and durable, but there’s very little tactile feel, so they’re better suited for general tasks rather than precision work.

  • Latex Dipped: These combine the benefits of a thicker glove with latex. The fingers and palms are dipped in liquid latex and allowed to dry. The thicker glove material protects your skin, while the latex coating ensures that oil or chemicals doesn’t get onto your hands.

The right set of work gloves is an essential consideration, and you’ll probably find that you need different types for different tasks around the garage.

This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How to Buy Good Quality Work Gloves and was authored by Valerie Johnston.


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