82 Fun Finds at Harbor Freight That DIYers Will Love
Camping gear, storage solutions, hand tools and more! Check out 82 of our favorite items for DIYers at Harbor Freight.
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Who says camping can’t be glamorous? With these heavy-duty outdoor string lights, you can add a little flair to your awning, tent, or even the trees in your campsite that will rival the beauty of the night sky. Plus: 10 Breathtaking Outdoor Lighting Looks for Your Yard
If you ever work on sites that lack electric power, or if you want to ensure your equipment doesn’t draw so many amps that you’re tripping breakers inside your home, then you need a portable generator. And when it’s time to pick the best power generator for your needs, don’t miss the great deals that Harbor Freight offers on these solid units.
Sure, for a contractor who’s paying a five man crew to be onsite it may make sense to pay an extra $1,200 for a generator with identical specs, as long as it buys some peace of mind. But if your only expense is the generator itself, Harbor Freight is a no-brainer.
Vacuum Storage Bags
If you have soft goods to store, then chances are you’ve run into the frustration of shoving fluffy pillows, blankets, tarps or drop cloths onto a shelf. They take up an enormous amount of space, and are prone to collecting dust and catching on stray nails or splinters.
Luckily, vacuum storage bags can be used to compress these soft goods, while also wrapping them in a protective covering. All you need is a wet/dry vac or vacuum cleaner with a hose attachment, and you’ll be able to store soft goods in as small of a space as possible, and stack them high and dry.
If you’re going to be hauling materials from the lumber yard or hardware store, a trailer will let you get things done faster and more efficiently. Selecting a trailer hitch involves balancing quality and affordability, as well as an understanding of the kinds of items and trailers you’ll be towing.
If you’re planning on standard towing for a DIYer, you’ll want to be sure to check out this dependable three-ball hitch and see if it’s a good fit for your needs.
2000 Watt Generator
Portable Parts Case
If you need a collection of nuts, bolts or other small parts on the go, then you need to check out this portable parts case. It’s equipped with bins big enough to store most common fasteners, and a lid that seals tight enough to ensure that the parts won’t slip and slide while you’re on the road.
As any woodworker can tell you, the number of clamps you need for a project is always one more than the number you have in your shop. Whether you’re an old pro or just learning how to use clamps, Harbor Freight has got you covered. Like anything else in life, the quality varies, so be sure to examine the clamps for strength and straightness. Many DIYers find this blue-pad Pittsburgh brand clamp to be a best buy.
Anti-Fatigue Foam Mats
Anti-fatigue mats are perfect for anyone with a shop of any size. Sure, you can always make your own with a spare carpet pad, but if there’s any chance that your shop or work space will get wet, sooner or later you’ll wish that you’d used something that wasn’t essentially a big sponge.
As always, there’s the option to build your own parts bin, but if you want to buy a plug-and-play solution, you can’t go wrong with this standing parts bin from Harbor Freight. For large parts bins, whether homemade or store-bought, be sure to think through the weight of the parts. Always keep the center of gravity low to the ground, and consider securing the bin to the floor or the wall in order to ensure it won’t tip over.
This 6 in. digital caliper is built with stainless steel and can handle even the harshest of conditions. It provides metric and SAE decimal readings, making measurement conversions easy. Features also include an automatic shut-off and a convenient storage case. Here's why you need to add a digital caliper to your tool box.Photo: Courtesy of Harbor Freight
Write-Off or Loaner Tools
This affordable cordless drill is great to have on hand for all sorts of DIY projects around the house. And because of the price, you don’t have to worry too much when you lend it to a friend or neighbor. It has 21 torque clutch settings and a built-in LED lamp to light up dark corners. If you’re willing to spend a little more, check out our list of the top cordless drills on the market.
One of the best way to store materials is to simply get them up off the floor. Building storage shelves is great, but that solution still eats up floor space. Instead, make use of all that wall and ceiling area in your workshop by installing these storage hooks and suspending anything from shovels, rakes, bikes and even scrap lumber.
If your favorite tools are too large for a tool belt, or if you simply need more pockets for small items, consider picking up a canvas bucket insert organizer. One of the more ingenious uses for those plastic five gallon buckets that seem to accumulate in the homes of DIYers the world over; this insert provides a way to store, organize, access and transport your go-to tools.
Corded Reciprocating Saw
There is an endless string of excellent uses for reciprocating saws, but all of them have one thing in common: they don’t require precision. These are tools that rely on amps and a solid build, rather than precision machining. As a result, Harbor Freight’s options get the job done at a price that’s light on your wallet. The price of Harbor Freight’s corded reciprocating saw makes it the perfect tool for tearing into a project. If you only need them for very light work, they’ll last for quite a while. For full on demo work they’ll burn up quickly, but not before you get more than your money’s worth.
Shop vacuums are a near-necessity for most DIYers. When you’re working on projects in our own home, it’s vital to keep the work space clean and free of debris. At the Harbor Freight price point, these wet/dry vacs are affordable enough that you can even have multiple vacuums around the house. (Check out our 8 tips for maintaining your shop vac.)
1/2 in. Drive Click Type Torque Wrench
Grinding and Cut-off Wheels
Harbor Freight is a fantastic source for high-use, short-lifespan tools. A great example is cutting and grinding wheels. As anyone who’s used an angle grinder knows, the life expectancy of a cutting wheel is short at best. Pick up your cutting discs at Harbor Freight and over the course of a few projects you’ll see significant savings. This holds true for rotary tool grinding and cutting discs as wells as angle grinder cut-off wheels.
Your First Welding Rig
MIG welding is an intimidating task, but is actually within the grasp of the DIY community. Welding is certainly a skill that requires safety precautions, but you can get started in welding with relatively simple, common-sense procedures. And the most expensive upfront purchase is the welder itself. For the average DIY enthusiast, the Harbor Freight balance of price and practicality is just right.
A chip brush doesn’t need to be high quality because it’s used for projects like stripping furniture, where it doesn’t matter if their line is ragged or if the brush fibers fall out. There’s no reason to pay a premium for chip brushes, yet big name hardware stores will often charge a dollar or more for a single brush, while savvy DIYers pay a fraction of that at Harbor Freight.
We all know that no matter what kind of job you’re tackling, safety is paramount. Harbor Freight provides safety equipment for DIYers at a price low enough to have it everywhere you DIY. Safety glasses are an essential shop item, and at this price you can buy multiple pairs so they’re always within reach.
Metal Cutoff Saw
When you complete a project there are often leftover parts. A key step in the clean up process should be collecting miscellaneous bits and pieces and putting them in the proper storage bin. The problem is, all that collecting and organization is time-consuming, which makes it tempting to skip. By using small tricks and tools like this funnel tray, you can make clean up so easy that it’s almost a pleasure to put everything away.
Locking Tool Cabinet
If home security, including shop security, is a priority for you; consider investing in some locking cabinets. Chances are, everyone has a few tools and materials that are either too valuable or too fragile to leave lying around. This wall-mounted locking tool cabinet from Harbor Freight will keep essential items locked up and out of the hands of unauthorized users.
Hydraulic Table Cart
Trailer Light Tester
Magnetic Wrist Band
And why limit your magnetic strips to tool storage solutions? If you’ve ever worked on a ladder, chances are you know the sinking sensation of watching a nut or screw fall from your fingers and disappear far below. Avoid the headache of climbing down and searching for a lost piece by picking up one of these magnetic wrist bands from Harbor Freight, and never lose track of small parts again.
Right Angle Drill
Collapsible Multi-Task Ladder
Ladders are key tools for many tasks, but for someone working solo, an overly long or bulky ladder can be unwieldy, hard to store, and impossible to transport in a smaller vehicle. A foldable and/or collapsible multi-task ladder like this one, makes overhead work easier for the DIYer.
4 Pc 1/2 in. Drive Impact Socket Extension Set
This set can help expand the reach of your impact wrench for easier access in tight spots and crowded engine bays. They are made of rugged chrome vanadium steel and coated with black phosphate to resist rust. Check out 10 more home improvement tools that will last you a lifetime.
9-Piece SAE Combination Wrench Set
With quality metal that won’t chip or break easily, and a hand-friendly design, this wrench set is worth checking out. Of course, once you pick up these wrenches, you’ll need someplace to store them. Consider grabbing a Harbor Freight tool chest, or build your own wrench storage tote.
Utility Blade Dispenser
Store all your utility blades in this dispenser, keeping them sharp, safe, and ready to swap out at a moment’s notice. The dispenser easily tucks into a tool bag or attaches to a magnetic strip near your work bench.
2 HP Dust Collector
Magnetic Tool Holder
Sometimes you don’t want to hide away your most frequently used tools, but you do want to get them clear of your work space. You can have the best of both worlds by installing magnetic holder strips next to your work area. Need a tool? Just reach out and grab it!
32 Pc Screwdriver Set
Reciprocating Saw Blades
And, while you’re getting a reciprocating saw, grab some blades for it as well. This may seem obvious, but in fact not all blades are created equally. There’s a huge range of factors that make picking the right blade a detailed science. These reciprocating saw blades from Harbor Freight are at the right price point to be used and abused, making them a great budget option.
Step one in making the most of your tool chest is to lay in these affordable and practical liners. Without a liner, the motion of opening and closing drawers and (if you have a chest mounted on casters) rolling around your shop will inevitably slide whatever part you need into the back of the drawer, where you’ll have to fumble awkwardly for it. Plus the liners will help protect the finish of your drawer and your tools.
Project Kits for Young DIYers
This balsa wood T-Rex skeleton is the kind of puzzle that builds skills and confidence at the same time. These affordably priced models are a great way to get kids started in DIY. The sticker price makes it less painful when the inevitable wreaking ball of youthful enthusiasm meets breakable parts, and the variety of options means that you can match a young person’s interests, from woodworking to electronics.
Chest Drawer Compartment Organizers
Keeping your shop or garage organized is easy with the right products. Make the most of your tool chest drawers by installing these drawer organizers. You’ll never waste time again searching for just the right saw blade or your favorite calipers. Create the right place for your tools, and they’ll always be close at hand.
Sometimes you need a dedicated set of tools over and over. Store those items bundled together and close at hand with this mini-tool holder. Attach it to your belt or tuck it inside a larger storage container, and it’s like a tiny tool bag on the go.
Canvas Riggers Bag
If you’re working indoors, you want to be focused on your project, not worrying about damaging the carpet or hardwood floors. Drop cloths offer protection, but if you want to completely eliminate the chances of your steel toolbox scratching the work surface, consider switching to a canvas tool bag. The open-top design allows for easy access, and the fabric construction is lighter to carry around than a classic steel framed box.
Airbrush and Compressor Kit
Perfect for learning the basics of airbrush technique, this no-frills, high-value kit provides a compressor and brush for less than half the cost of many high-end airbrushes alone. This kit is great for trying out an airbrush for DIY hobbies and detail work.
If you have too many grouped tools to pack into the mini-holder, consider this Harbor Freight tool roll-up. Perfect for thin tools of a short-enough length, the roll-up is a fantastic way to store many tools in a small space, without sacrificing order or ease of extraction.