Most homes should have a drawer or toolbox where a variety of tools can be kept for those times when the homeowner is faced with a do-it-yourself job. It’s not necessary to have an expensive set or a vast quantity that may never be used but a practical variety for basic repairs and maintenance around the house is essential.
Here is a list of tools needed for a basic home tool kit:
16-ounce claw hammer
For pulling out nails, a curved-claw hammer offers more leverage and therefore requires less strength. When purchasing a curve-claw hammer, test the balance by setting it upside down to see if the handle rests at a 45-degree angle. Since a hammer’s power is in its head, a well-balanced hammer is much easier to wield.
Used with slotted screws, a flat-tip screwdriver will find frequent uses around the house such as tightening up loose door hinges and drawer handles.
#2 Phillips screwdriver
#2 Phillips head screws are found on appliances, kitchen cabinets, and many other applications around the home. Screwdrivers are inexpensive, and yet priceless when one is needed.
A 12 or 16 foot tape measure that is ¾-inches wide and features a locking mechanism is a good item to have in the home toolbox. The locking mechanism is highly recommended as it removes the need for a partner in most instances.
Used for numerous jobs, pliers are a must. Lock-jaw, or channel-lock pliers work best overall, though combination pliers also have their place in the toolbox.
An 18 or 24 inch level is handy for tasks where vertical and horizontal accuracy is needed. Smaller levels known as “torpedo” levels, are handy as well for picture and plaque wall hangings.
Utility razor knives are helpful for many jobs from opening boxes to trimming vinyl flooring. Retractable blade models are best for safety.
120/240 Volt Circuit Tester
Voltage testers can be used to verify the presence of electrical power when working on switches, outlets, or other electrical applications.
Stud finders make locating wall framework easier than inaccurate wall tapping. Heavy wall hangings require a firm anchoring point, and a wall stud finder provides just that.
Pipe wrenches are a handy addition to the home toolbox. Use for both drain pipe and pressure pipe tightening.
These essentials are a good start in putting together a home tool kit. As the needs arise, add to the kit the tools required beyond the list. Soon there will be a tool for every household repair job. Be sure to have a good pair of work gloves to protect the hands and always wear safety glasses.
Remember, always work safely.