You should be able to do most of the simple maintenance in your home with the instruments mentioned here. However, you can take on more advanced DIY tasks and save even more money if you add a few additional tools to this simple package. For example, you can build custom-sized furniture to suit your room from scratch-and cheaper than it would cost to purchase ready-made.
Advanced Home Repair Tools
Drill – #1 in our advanced DIY tools list!
The most useful power tool you can probably possess is an electric drill. They’re just two devices in one: a drill and a motor driver. To make holes of all sizes, you can use the drill feature. For starters, through the back of a TV cabinet, you can drill pilot holes for starting screws or larger holes for running wires.
Substitute a screwdriver bit for the drill bit, and you can move screws even faster than you do for any handheld screwdriver. When you have to bring in a lot of screws in a short period, this is handy. When you need to replace a light bulb, patch drywall, or build something from a bookcase to a doghouse, you’ll reach for your drill/driver.
Most experts claim that the most useful are cordless drills. They’re not as strong as their cousins with strings, but they’re a lot easier to use. For instance, if you’re constructing a treehouse, it’s a lot easier to bring your drill up the tree than pulling a long extension cord behind it.
The most powerful element is a 12-volt cordless drill with lithium-ion batteries. It’s light and thin but strong enough for most DIY assignments. However, it’s worth switching to a more giant 18-volt drill if you do a lot of significant work, such as constructing a deck. It has more power and, on a battery charge, can run longer. Black+Decker also offers an accurate 20-volt MAX model that fits with most workers.
The best drill/driver should have a durable structure, a convenient handle, and a decent warranty, aside from strength. For $75 to $100, you can buy a drill with all these features. This requires two batteries and a charger, so you can turn to a fresh battery if you run out of power.
For small cutting tasks, a handsaw is good, but a machine saw can do the work much better if you need to cut vast timber quantities. For major DIY jobs, such as installing a railing, removing windows, or constructing shelves, pros say these advanced tools are essential.
A circular saw is the most simple, all-purpose power saw. It has a round blade that quickly spins and powers its way through the wood. The fast-spinning edge is risky, of course, so when using it, you have to take extra caution. Yet it’s the best cutting instrument that you can buy for pace and versatility.
In two forms, circular saws arrive. Lighter and cheaper are the sidewinders, which have the engine mounted on the side.
Worm-drive saws weigh more and cost more, from $140 to $200, with the engine behind the blade. They also pack more muscle, however, and can cut through heavier materials. They’re useful for the pros, but they’re way too much for a regular DIYer. Check out SKILSAW’s 15-amp word-drive model if you’re not convinced.
Cordless circular saws can be purchased, but most critics agree that they can not equal corded models’ strength. They will also only operate for a short time until you need the battery to be recharged. Finally, with the batteries and chargers added to the price, they typically cost more. All and all, professionals claim most homeowners should have a corded sidewinder saw.
Suppose you’re trying to get a bookcase installed. You must ensure that the shelves are straight so that the books do not fall down. Using a stage is the best way to verify this.
A bubble level is a thin, flat instrument with a small, transparent liquid vial mounted into the middle. This vial is just partially finished, leaving the top with a bubble of air. The bow rises to the top as you put the level flat on a table. That tells you the surface is level if it ends up centered between two lines outlined on the bottle.
Also, most stages have a vertical vial. That way, to see if vertical lines are correct, you can use them. You should use these two vials’ degrees to make sure every carpentry job comes out straight and even. You may also use it for photo hanging, cabinet construction, or patio laying.
For less than $10, you can buy a mini-level of two vials of liquid. In a toolbox, a vial of this size suits neatly. You should have a four-foot stage for more exhaustive work to test more extended surfaces. A metal standard, more durable than a plastic level, costs around $25. For some workers, Stanley’s 48-inch standard could fit.
There’s a more sophisticated instrument, called a laser stage, for hardcore DIYers. It is like a laser pointer that, with the click of a button, projections level lines. These will cost from $20 to $100 anywhere. The multi-purpose laser stage of Qooltek is a bargain.
Adjustable pliers, also called Channellock by the company name, have extra-wide jaws. Up to more than two meters, a 10-inch pair of pliers will open up. However, their jaws still stay parallel, no matter how large you set them, allowing them a firm hold on nuts, bolts, or tubing. About all, they can understand and can bend and turn in several different directions.
There is a wide range of applications for these special pliers. They are suitable for plumbing, installing a new toilet, or changing garage doors to tighten up. A big pipe wrench would not suit. They will even lo in positions open and tighten the small nuts on shut-off valves.
10-inch pliers are the most comfortable size to own, experts claim. They provide substantial leverage, but to be compact, they are small enough. The best have padded handles and v-shaped jaws that can comfortably grip round, smooth, or hex-shaped things.
Finally, it should be easy to change the pliers. Many newer models will adapt at the press of a button, which makes them much easier to use than older tongue-and-groove pliers. It costs just $10 to $20 for a decent pair of flexible pliers with all of these features, such as a V-Jaw advanced set by IRWIN Tools.
You need to make sure they stay put while you’re hanging cabinets or other heavy items. If you just hang them with nothing behind a piece of drywall, they’re going to pull straight out and drag the wall with them. You need to fasten them into the wooden wall studs to safely install them.
The thing is, under the drywall, these studs are covered where you can’t see them. You can learn to knock on the wall with practice and locate the stud by tone. It’s much quicker to use a stud finder, though.
There is a magnet inside for the easiest stud finders. They identify the metal screws that secure the stud to the drywall instead of locating the stud itself. For just $10, you can purchase a robust stud finder with two built-in magnets. A simple but accurate magnetic stud finder is made by CH Robinson.
You may upgrade to an electronic stud finder for $40 or $50. The stud itself’s the precise position, not just the screws in it, can be seen by these battery-powered instruments. This makes it a lot faster to figure out the locations of studs. To help you stop wires and metal, Aom makes a four-in-one edition that has sound warnings.
Copper pipes and electric wires may also be found by the fanciest stud finders. These instruments, however, cost at least $200. They’re not worth the money for the majority of homeowners.
You should extend your toolkit while you expand your DIY ability as well. For starters, you can add brushes and rollers to your workshop if you want to do a lot of painting. A miter saw a cube, a nail gun, clamps, or an orbital sander may be needed for woodworking. To extend the range where you can work, you could install a voltmeter for electrical work and a ladder and expansion cords.
However, any instrument above the fundamentals is only worth purchasing if you are going to use it daily. If you need to tile a toilet, see if you can borrow a wet saw or rent it instead of buying one. It’s not worth wasting money on a device that can once be used and then hang in the store collecting dust.
Lastly, note that only getting a a range of advanced tools isn’t enough. You must know how to use them, too. So, build your DIY skills while you build your toolkit, also.