The internet is created to make searching for information quicker and easier. When you are looking for a car workshop manual or any other type of car manual, you shouldn’t have to spend hours dredging the internet for the right manual.

Do “FREE” car repair manuals exist?

A lot of online car repair resources claim that they offer free manuals. You should be aware that most often, the word “free” is used to entice. For many online resources claiming to provide repair manuals for free, the saying nothing is for free or nothing is offered for free without a catch often rings true.

Many sites sell commercial repair manuals online, while sites offering manuals for free often are a trick and ask for payment when you try to download. There are however some free options that are actually good, these are sites offering free factory service manuals, this type of manual is issued by the manufacturer rather than a commercial repair manual publisher, and the manufacturer often provides these for free to their customers too via their website or customer care services.

For the beginner, commercial repair manuals are easier to follow, however factory service manuals offer greater detail and are a better source of technical specifications.

Finding the right car manual online

When you buy a car, it should come with an owner’s manual. These are created by car manufacturers. If you lose one, you can access it from the manufacturer’s own website. Most of these sites will not take through the long process of registering and signing up to get what you need. You can simply go to the site, enter the car’s make and model. 0 car manufacturers have manuals for models that are very old.

Third-Party Commercial Websites

There are some sites that have put together databases of car manuals. Some of these manuals aren’t so well written and might seem obscure or they might only be available if you register.

Besides money or signups, some sites offer manuals in exchange for ad spam which can be very annoying.

Search Google

You should search for manuals on Google by entering specific keywords. For instance, enter the make and model of your car. You might get a bunch of results. Some might be helpful others, not so much.


If Googling doesn’t help you then that may mean that a digital version of the car manual you are looking for does not exist.

If that’s the case it might be time to search eBay. A lot if car enthusiasts who know how hard it can be to get a manual for older cars sell them on online auction sites like eBay. For instance, if you are looking for a 1960 Covair manual. There were 20 different models made that year and finding one for your particular model may be challenging.

The Free Service Manuals Option

The information in commercial manuals is proprietary which is why publishers charge a lot of money. However, there is another option which is to download factory service manuals instead.

The first way to obtain a factory service manual is from the manufacturer directly, companies such as Hyundai and Kia publish their workshop data on their company websites.

Otherwise, there are free sites offering factory service manuals, the most reliable we have found is called All Car Manuals.

Your local library

A lot of libraries stock copies of Haynes or Chilton workshop manuals. See if your local library has copies that you can take out. If the manual for your particular vehicle is not available try and see if you can’t find it via inter- library loans.

If all else fails, there are paid options that you can try. Over the years, it has become easier to find manuals for car repairs online but most of the time, these are free. You can get immediate access for a price and get direct downloads to your phone or smart device.