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Choosing The Right Power Tools
When you start learning how to fix and build your own things, it is inevitable that you will need a few tools-power tools and basic tools-to get started. How do you know what to focus on when you are just a newbie DIYer? Don’t worry! I was there, and I can help you find all of the most crucial tools to buy when you are getting ready to fix up a house and fill it with DIY projects.
Oh, and so you know, this post IS NOT sponsored by Makita. We’ve just spent tons of money on various tools and their brand is what holds up!
1.) Power Drill
If you as me, a drill is absolutely the most important tool that a homeowner can have. I use mine almost every day. I hang wall decor, mix my paint(with one of these guys), and build stuff, just to name a few uses. Chris does a lot of handiwork around the house with his drill. I love Makita because the battery life is amazing, they are super lightweight, and they can withstand heavy use. They are also the only brand that has a light right above the trigger, rather than down by the battery, which means that the light is actually useful! Buy a Makita Drill Set here. Don’t forget to buy bits that will fit your screws! I would recommend starting with a masterbit set like these.
Another tool that I couldn’t live without is my jigsaw. My jigsaw is by far my favorite saw because it is so lightweight and easy to use. I have used my Makita jigsaw to cut plywood into designs and trim wood pieces for signs. The thin blade makes it really easy to manipulate the wood and create anything you can think up. I have even used it to cut a metal pipe to size for a curtain rod. You can buy this Makita jigsaw here, and don’t forget to stock up on the replacement blades so that you can use the jigsaw whenever you need to. Find replacement blades here!
3.) Circular Saw
Having a circular saw is really great when building furniture or working on a project where you need a straight cut on a wide piece of wood. In a pinch, it can be used along with a jig to rip plywood and do basically anything that a table-saw can do(although it is more of a hassle). Like all Makita tools, I love that my circular saw is more lightweight than other brands because my wimpy arms get tired during those bigger projects. Convenience is always a plus! Buy this Makita circular saw here.
4.) Saws-All, aka Reciprocating Saw
Having a saws-all around is essential. As you can tell by its knick-name, a saws-all can do any job that is needed. The blade is sturdy enough to really get through just about anything while the saw is lightweight enough to move around and reach into small spaces. The saws-all is battery operated so it can pretty much go anywhere, unlike the other saws I have talked about. Like the other tools, I have a Makita and love how much lighter it is than other brands. If you don’t believe me, go to Home Depot and try picking up their display models! Of course, you don’t have to do that. I’m trustworthy, but it would be a fun field trip! Find this model here.
5.) Miter Saw/Radial Arm Saw
A miter saw is extremely useful when you are a homeowner. This saw is made to cut a straight line with perfect precision. You can adjust the blade to cut at an angle which comes in handy when installing trim and building furniture. The table will also turn in order to cut the piece diagonally. This Skil saw is great because it has extenders that help hold up the board, and a laser that shows exactly where your cut will be made, helping you get the exact measurements that you need. Skil is also a really reputable brand, so you know that this miter saw will last many years. You can purchase the model in the picture here.
6.) Table Saw
Before I had a table saw, I didn’t know what I was missing. Now, this is probably the most used tool in my collection. Table saws can get really pricey, but this one is a pretty good budget option. This is the saw that I have, and it was worth every penny. We’ve had this table saw for three years and it is still going strong. Buy it here.
7.) Brad Nailer
This electric brad nailer is perfect for little projects around the house. They make manual ones, but after a while, they really wear your hand out. That doesn’t happen with the electric version! This model can hold staples or nails in all different sizes and comes with a carrying case. The case is great because it helps keep everything organized. I have used my brad nailer to install trim and paneling and even to decorate for events. I have also used it to reupholster a few chairs. Having an electric nailer is super convenient, and much cheaper than having to buy an air compressor and nail guns! You can buy this brad nailer on Amazon.
If you ask me, everyone needs a sander! I probably should have put this right behind the drill, because it is essential to so many projects. I use mine all the time for refinishing furniture and cleaning up weathered wood. A sander can really save your arms from trying to buff everything out with a sanding block. I personally prefer my sheet sander(aka palm sander) compared to other styles because the paper for them is so affordable! I have tried many different options here!
Update: I have since gotten a belt sander, and although the paper is more expensive, it really gets the job done incredibly fast. I usually use the belt sander first, and then get the nooks and crannies with my palm sander now! It cuts the sanding time in half, atleast! I couldn’t find our exact sander, but I think this belt sander is a safe bet! Makita, of course.
9.) Tool Kit
This toolkit is awesome! It includes all of the basic hand tools that you need when decorating your home, plus some. I use my tape measure all of the time(I actually have a second tape measure that I carry in my purse for shopping!). I also use my level for hanging pictures and wall decor pretty often. This kit even includes an electric screwdriver so that you don’t have to haul a drill out for everything. I love that it comes with such a heavy duty case. You can buy this case(or sneak one for yourself in pink!) here.
10.) Kreg Jig
A Kreg Jig is an accessory that helps you make perfect pocket holes. If you are at all interested in building furniture, then a Kreg Jig is a must-have! Pocket holes make furniture much stronger because you drill the screw into the wood at an angle, and they also make it easier to hide the screw holes. Plus, they are super easy to use! I recommend and use the K4 pocket hole system. Chris bought it for me for Mother’s Day, along with some wood clamps that make the actual build MUCH easier. I was ecstatic.
11.) Combination Square
A combination square is really nice because it plays double duty and measures 90-degree and 45-degree angles. I use my combination square all of the time to mark my measurements before I cut them. It is a must-have for crisp and accurate measurements! Help Dad out. Buy this combination square here.
12.) Extension Cords
With all of these power tools, make sure you don’t overlook getting power to them! Having an extension cord handy is a huge timesaver, and pretty much mandatory. These Amazon Basics cords have great reviews and come in several lengths so that you can get what you need for your space.
The Most Important Power Tools For General DIY Use
If you are just getting started with a fixer-upper, having these tools around will make your job easier, and allow you to tackle almost anything you want to. These are the power tools and basic tools that we use all the time. The no-fluff, you need this to create your home basics. Of course, Rome wasn’t built in a day, so start with what you need for your next project and add to your power tool collection as needed!