With an overwhelming number of tools lining your local hardware store, it’s difficult to know just where to begin. So, let’s start with the basics. Here are some homeowner “must-haves” that home improvement experts recommend based on quality, price and versatility.
1. ToolboxKeeping your collection of tools, screws and bolts in an organized and portable toolbox makes both quick repairs and bigger projects much easier.
2. Tape MeasureAlways have a tape measure handy for everything from measuring floor, wall and counter space. And remember to bring it with you to your local home center to double-check cabinet, large appliance and kitchen sink measurements before you buy.
Komelon SL2925 Self Lock Speed Mark
3. Electric DrillTypically, an electric drill is used for fastening and drilling. But did you know it can also be used for cleaning? Here’s proof. Make sure you buy a good set of drill bits and at least two batteries and keep it charged between projects.
4. Work GlovesA good pair of work gloves can keep any job moving. “You’ll waste a lot of time either working with cold hands or having to go inside to warm up your hands when doing outdoor work during the winter. Make sure they have good grip and allow dexterity for when you handle small things like screws without having to take them off,” says Kershan Bulsara, Manager of Roofmaster.
Ironclad General Utility Gloves
5. LevelA level is a must-have for a wide variety of projects such as hanging pictures correctly, installing cabinets, laying a deck or installing a railing. Skip the fancy lasers. A sturdy metal one is more effective and less prone to dings than a plastic one.
6. Nails, Screws, and TapesCompile sets of nails and screws of varying sizes so you never run out of options. And stock up on tape for every type of project. Duct tape, electrical tape, masking tape, packing tape and scotch tape will all be useful in different situations.
All-Purpose Duct Tape
7. Pliers, Screwdrivers, and Claw HammersFrom assembling furniture to replacing faucets to tightening cabinet hardware, these are the three most versatile tools you can have. A trusty set of pliers, two sets of screwdrivers and a claw hammer with a comfort grip will take on any tough job around your home.
Craftsman® TruGrip™ 4-pc. Pliers Set
Craftsman® 2-pc. Impact Screwdriver Set
Craftsman® 24-oz. Flex Claw Hammer
8. Multi-ToolA multi-tool is a versatile and smart investment, according to Ian Anderson from handycrowd.com. “This invaluable tool is useful for all sorts of different jobs on the outside of a home, from sanding down windows before painting to cutting out rot before bringing in repair pieces.”
Fein Multimaster Multi-Tool
9. Safety GlassesWhen you’re working with paint and tools, it’s important to protect yourself. Start with the eyes.
Jackson Safety V30 Nemesis Safety Glasses