15 Must-Have Additions for a Homeowner Tool Kit
Is your homeowner tool kit up to the task? There are many inexpensive–$10 or less—tools that should be must-have additions to your toolbox. Tools used by professional contractors that will simplify the work required of your DIY projects.
Zip-It Bath and Sink Hair Snare
One of the most common plumbing problems homeowners face is a clogged sink or tub drain. Most often, the culprit is simply a clump of hair that has become lodged in the drain. Add this inexpensive Zip-it Bath and Sink Hair Snare to your homeowners tool kit so you can remove the hair without the hassles of disassembling the plumbing. Just slide the tool into the drain opening and retract slowly. You might be surprised at the volume of hair the tool snags on its way out.
Plastic Taping Knives
As most homeowners can attest, minor drywall repairs go hand in hand with home ownership and do-it-yourself repairs. Professional taping knives can be expensive, and it just does not make much sense to spend your hard-earned cash on these tools unless you’re facing a large volume of drywall repairs. Plastic taping knives are great for tackling minor drywall repairs around your home. In addition, they also come in handy when applying tacky substances such as roofing tar, glue and other materials. Their low cost means you won’t have to spend precious time cleaning them as you can simply chuck them in the trash.
10-in-1 Painters Tool
One of the first things aspiring painters learn on the job is that they must always carry a damp rag and painter’s tool in their pocket. This convenient tool is a must have for a homeowner’s tool kit. Most professional painting contractors simply refer to the tool as a 5-in-1, as early models were capable of only five different functions. However, as years passed, manufacturers included additional features to the tool, increasing their capabilities. (You can even buy an 18-in-1 painter’s tool at some home-improvement centers and paint stores). Put simply, the tool can scrape, spread, hammer, remove screws—some models include both a Phillip’s and slotted screw tip in the handle—retract nails and clean paint rollers.
Mini Glass Scraper with 10 Blades
Another tool professional painting contractors carry is a mini glass scraper. The tool is designed to provide a handle for a typical razor blade. Most painters or homeowners who have ever picked up a paintbrush have faced the cumbersome task of cleaning dried paint off of windowpanes. Windex, vinegar and paper towels do little to remove the stubborn substance. However, a mini scraper fitted with a sharp blade will make quick work of the project. Not only does the tool hold a sharp blade securely, but it also allows you to flip the blade over, concealing its sharp edge for safe storage in your tool kit.
10-in. Canvas 8-pocket Nail and Tool Bag
Have you ever found yourself at the top of a ladder and realized you left your hammer lying on the sawhorses below? If you have, it is okay, as many DIY enthusiasts and professional contractors alike have experienced this unfortunate circumstance. This canvas tool pouch eliminates multiple trips up and down the ladder by holding your tools and hardware conveniently at your side for easy access when you need them.
10-in. Soft Jaw Pliers
A pair of soft-jaw pliers are a must have for DIY plumbing repairs around your home. Many have made the mistake of tightening a new showerhead or other decorative item with a pair of pliers only to realize they just ruined its finish by scratching and gouging the new product with the tool. Soft-jaw pliers will eliminate this mistake from ever happening again. The dual-function pliers are fitted with removable rubber covers that protect your finished product during installation.
10-in-1 Torx Key Screwdriver Set
Since Torx head screws are becoming increasingly popular with manufactures of home improvement products, a Torx key screwdriver set is an ideal addition to your homeowner tool kit. Never again will you find yourself stuck in the middle of a furniture assembly project trying to tighten Torx screws with a standard or Phillip’s head screwdriver.
2-in-1 Knee Pads
Any novice DIY enthusiast who has ever installed their own flooring has probably woke the next morning with aching and scratched knees. These inexpensive kneepads will protect your knees and provide comfort during many home improvement projects. Aside from flooring projects, you will find them useful when gardening, working on your car or any other situation that requires you to get on your knees.
6-in. Bar Clamp
Ideal for striking straight lines on plywood, concrete and other materials, the chalk line should be included in your homeowner tool kit. A straight line is crucial when cutting plywood or laying out flooring.
Quick tip: After snapping chalk lines on a concrete floor for tile installation, spray the lines with clear spray paint. This will prevent having to re-snap the lines continuously due to foot traffic, thinset and water used during the installation.
A scratch awl is great for scribing and marking layout lines on a variety of surfaces including metal, wood and plastic. In addition, this tool is ideal for aligning adjoining screw holes, making small indentions before drilling and countersinking nail heads.
Nail Setter Kit
Many DIY enthusiasts have dropped a screw or bolt during a home repair or automotive project. Often the hardware lands out of reach where it is nearly impossible to retrieve. This telescoping magnet will make quick work of retrieving a lost bolt.
10-in. Profile and Contour Gauge
The profile and contour gauge is an unknown commodity to many folks outside of the construction industry. It is used to easily copy unique shapes, patterns and contours of existing wood trim, tile and laminate flooring so you can transfer the shape to the new material. It takes a little practice to figure out the best ways to use it, but once you do, you’ll be reaching for it all of the time.