It is always helpful to have the right tool for the job, but for the new homeowner and the first time do-it-yourselfer, the right tools aren't always available.
What would you (especially you who've done it all) consider absolute necessities for every homeowner? What would you put in The Essential Toolbox?
Here's a few rules:
- All tools listed must be hand tools.
- Tools should be selected for basic maintenance and repair use.
- All the tools must fit into a medium toolbox, about 18" long.
- Total cost should not exceed $200.
Here's my Essential Toolbox:
- 16 oz. smooth-face curved-claw hammer
- 6" and 8" adjustable wrenches (Crescent-style)
- 6-in-1 screwdriver with interchangeable bits: #1 & #2 Phillips, 3/16" and 1/4" slotted, and 1/4" and 5/16" nut drivers
- Small, toolbox-sized handsaw
- 10" adjustable, tongue-and-groove plier (ChannelLock Style)
- Utility knife
- Long-nose pliers (needlenose)
- 25-foot measuring tape
- Torpedo level
- Roll of black electrical tape
- Roll of Teflon pipe thread tape
I can't stress enough the necessity of buying quality tools. Cheap tools do not last and will not perform well, even with occasional use. As a wise man once told me, "a poor man cannot afford cheap tools."
Slip-joint pliers, while ubiquitous, are evil. The joints always seem to slip when you don't want them to, and you end up bashing your knuckles. The other evil tool is the dual standard/metric tape measure. The rule you want is always on the wrong side!
So let us all know what YOU would put in your Essential Toolbox. What do you think I've left out that you'd consider essential? What do you think I've included that isn't necessary?
(NOTE: This is question is not posted by the This Old House staff. You won't get your name in print, and you won't win the $100,000 linen closet makeover.)