Essential Investments for Your Toolbox
Whether you're a serious DIY enthusiast or just tackle the occasional job around the house, having the right tools will make your project go much more smoothly. Pulling together a few basic pieces of kit ensures you are fully prepared when there's a job to be done.
Your first purchase is likely to be the toolbox itself. Although any container will do, specially designed ones have a number of benefits. Many have compartmentalised trays for screws and fuses, which can help you stay organised. A box with wheels and a handle is easier to move and if you have small children you might want to consider a lockable one.
Most household jobs can be tackled with a fairly basic toolkit. A claw hammer can be used for both inserting and removing nails. Both flat-head and cross-head screwdrivers are among the tools you will use most but an electrical detection screwdriver can also be very handy. Include a hacksaw and a retractable tape measure. Choose an adjustable wrench to help you fit nuts and bolts in a variety of sizes. Lockable pliers are invaluable for gripping a variety of materials, but basic combination pliers will also work well. A utility knife and scraper are useful for a range of tasks, as is an awl and an array of different-sized chisels. Having a selection of nails, screws and rawl plugs in different sizes is a great idea, as is putting together a collection of wiring accessories such as plugs, spare fuses and electrical tape. Putty, masking tape and sandpaper are always helpful. Including a torch in case of power cuts or to illuminate dark cupboards is also a sensible precaution.
Once you've got the basics, you can move on to more specialised tools. A drill, preferably cordless, is useful for a multitude of jobs. Many also function as an electric screwdriver. A jig saw is invaluable if you do a lot of woodwork, as is a circular saw. An electric sander can save a great deal of time and effort.
When buying tools, remember that cheaper isn't usually better. Investing in quality tools ensures you will get optimum performance from them for many years to come. Other items that perhaps won't quite fit in a toolbox but are useful nonetheless are a step ladder and an extension cable reel. You could even use your drill and insert hooks or screws in the wall to tidily hang your tools on.
Whether it's basic wiring accessories or specialised power tools, having the right equipment means you're always ready to tackle any job.
by Gary Hunter