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Tools! You Need Them, But What and How Many?

Aug 17, 2007
Tools have been with us since the beginning of time; they have driven our civilization and allowed us to thrive. This is no less true today then it was in the past. While most people no longer have the skills required to complete complicated tasks around the house, to avoid having to call in a contractor every time you need to hang a picture, you need to put together a basic toolbox. A basic toolbox is essential for any homeowner, or even renter.

It is important to first consider the importance of getting quality tools before buying any tools. You should only buy quality tools. While they are more expensive, in the long run they will be worth it. Quality tools will last longer, and work better. A well-made drill will drill straighter. A well-made screwdriver will tighten faster. Although this may mean that you only buy your tools incrementally, it is still a better plan than trying to get all of your tools in one shot by purchasing inferior materials.

The first tool you should buy for your toolbox is a screwdriver. A screwdriver will come in handy on almost any project around the house, from replacing your telephone jacks to building a that new addition you've always dreamed about. If you can afford it, get a screwdriver with a full set of detachable tips (including Phillips heads).

After purchasing a screwdriver set, you should look for a good quality 16-ounce hammer. It doesn't matter if the handle is made of wood or fibreglass. All that's important is that you need to make sure it is comfortable in your hand and feels substantial (assuming, of course, that you will be using it for something more taxing than hanging picture frames).

The final basic tool you need for your toolbox is a set of adjustable wrenches. Most sets usually come with three different sizes, and will work on almost any size of nut or bolt you are likely to encounter around the house.

Other small tools you can fit into your toolbox are a level, tape measure, utility knife, pliers, and flash light (always useful when working in out of the way corners).

You can start expanding into more substantial tools once you have your three basic tools covered and have started to fill your toolbox with smaller gadgets.
Other larger tools you will find useful to have around the house include a saw, a level, a planer, and a set of paintbrushes.

The first non-toolbox tool you should buy is an electric drill. If you've ever had to put screws in by hand, you will immediately appreciate the power and convenience of using a drill. A good drill will help you put in screws effortlessly and accurately. When buying a drill, be sure to compare the prices of normal power drills with cordless power drills. You will likely find that the difference is not as great as you thought it would be. If that is the case, it is strongly recommended that you cough up the extra cash to get the cordless drill. You will be amazed at how much easier drilling will be when you are not constantly getting tangled up in the extension cord!
About the Author
Steve Dolan is a DIY expert who regularly gets out his toolbox to 'odd job' around the house. Click on DIY Tools to find out more.
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