Even if your handyman skills are limited to tightening screws or hammering a few nails, you’ll need the right equipment to do the job properly. And, if you’re like most of us, achieving success with those tools will inspire you to learn new skills.
Power tools are often needed around the house, in the office, or on the job site. You don’t have to get every tool on the market, though. That could cost you a fortune! Instead, opt for the few essentials that will let you pull off your all basic projects.
Here are five power tools every handyman can depend on.
1. Cordless Drill
A cordless drill is the first power tool anybody buys. It’s invaluable for drilling holes, but it really pulls its weight as a power screwdriver. We recommended that you opt for cordless power tools rather than corded, just to allow greater freedom of movement.
These tools are versatile and useful. They come in handy to tighten a bolt or set a few screws for hanging photo frames or shelves.
Drills can help you efficiently with these tasks:
- Assembling units like a table or chest of drawers
- Carpentry work
- Drilling holes
- Mixing paint with an attachment
A cordless power drill allows the user to work without worrying about where the closest power socket is or becoming irritated by tripping over extension wires. Their lightweight design is intended to reduce hand strain. Due to their compact size, these drills are very easy to store.
- Mobile and lightweight
- Easy to store
- Provides better control
- Portable and convenient
Cordless drills are not as efficient as corded ones. These battery-operated tools have to be charged and their power cells have a limited life. Plus, cordless drills are costlier than corded power drills.
- Less efficient
- Require charging
2. Miter Saw
Source: Home Depot
The miter saw is flexible, letting you make fast crosscuts and angled (miter) cuts with precision. It is ideal for trimming and woodworking. A miter saw is a powerful tool given it can cut through almost every type of material. If you’re cross-cutting longer boards, we suggest you choose a miter saw to do the job right.
It typically comes with an instruction manual that explains how to operate it. Many homeowners who have no previous experience in handling saws can easily use a miter saw for small projects like building a pet house.
- It lets you make many types of angle cuts on pieces
- Regardless of the material you are working on, make smooth, precise cuts using a miter saw
- Its high-quality blades can cut through the thickest of pieces in a few seconds
- Saves time
Consider these cons before buying a sliding miter saw:
- Sliding miter saws are much more expensive in comparison to other miter saws. If you’re not sure how or where you’re going to use the device, it might not be a good purchase.
- Since the sliding compound miter saw has the ability to move forward and backward, you’ll need more space in which to operate it.
3. Table Saw
A table saw makes larger and longer cuts compared to a miter saw. While more conventional saws are certainly instrumental in completing many projects, table saws have made it easier for contractors and do-it-yourselfers to cut wood.
A table saw can help you with the following tasks:
- Rip longboards
- Cut small sheets
- Cross-cut small pieces
Portable table saws perform the same basic functions, but on a smaller scale than stationary table saws. Plus, they are usually priced lower than other saws.
- Accurate cuts
- Easy cuts
Table saws create a lot of vibration, which can make it difficult for users to cut a straight line. Some other disadvantages are:
- They use a lot of power
- They are very large
- They create a lot of noise
A major safety tip is to never reach under your cutting table while the blade is spinning. Ensure that the saw is unplugged before you start changing blades, and wear safety glasses and ear protection while you are operating it.
Source: Popular mechanics
A sander is useful in the automotive field. Some common uses are:
- They smooth wood and add finishing touches to a project
- They remove stains from older wooden floors
- They remove rust from metal surfaces
Two most commonly used sanders are mentioned below:
❖ Orbital Sander
An orbital sander covers a larger area and is mostly used for smoothing rough spaces and removing paint. This type is highly recommended for:
- Working on large wooden pieces
- Removing varnish
- They create a lot of noise
Orbital sanders are named for their rotating movement. They are more powerful than palm sanders.
- The square shape allows it to get into corners
- It leaves fewer cross-grain sanding marks
- You can use regular sandpaper instead of orbital sandpaper discs
Orbital sanders use high-powered motors and can leave more visible marks on the wood. This can be a disadvantage for those who are trying to achieve a more subtle finish.
- Prominent sanding marks
- Don’t remove a lot of material
❖ Palm Sander
A palm sander, on the other hand, is a smaller tool designed for light-duty sanding jobs that require less pressure. It is more than sufficient for small to medium-size projects.
- It helps in sanding finished work.
- Due to its compact size, a palm sander can efficiently sand edges.
Palm sanders are convenient tools and excellent for DIY projects or small home-based projects.
- Convenient size
- Lower-power motor
- High-grit paper
Due to their lightweight construction, you cannot put too much pressure or weight on palm sanders because they might break.
- Easily breakable
- Requires multiple pad changes
Secure the sheet of sandpaper with the clamps, and you are ready to start sanding. You will have to move the sander around to cover a larger area and change the sandpaper sheet from time to time.
Builders can launch their home projects (a DIY step stool or table) with a jigsaw. It is a versatile, essential power tool for builders. This saw excels at cutting curves in wood and metal, so it has many applications. It’s ideal for woodworking.
This is a highly recommended power tool. A portable jigsaw is meant for every professional or home workshop. Check out its uses:
- It can be used to cut circular or curved patterns into wood.
- The portable power tool that can efficiently cut curves.
- It can also cut through steel, fiberglass, and drywall with the right blades.
What makes jigsaw a favorite tool?
The jigsaw is a woodworker’s favorite tool because it’s capable of making bevel cuts. Many models offer the option to angle the shoe. This tool works wonderfully for making angled cuts and is portable, unlike a table saw.
You can shape curves with a jigsaw. With the right blades, a skilled user can cut very complex shapes, patterns, and templates.
- Comfort and ease of use
Jigsaws are simple, easy-to-use tools, but they aren’t a good fit for large-scale projects. Their grip surface is limited, and they must be used with care.
- Not completely accurate in cutting
- Need to handle with care
If you travel with your toolkit, opt for a cordless jigsaw that is lightweight and simple to use. It’s a must-have tool considering how smoothly it can twist and turn to make perfect patterns.
6. Cordless Rotary Tool
A rotary tool is a versatile power tool that can be used for various types of projects. It’s a multiple-use device that deserves a place in your toolbox. The cordless rotary tool is convenient to travel with and saves you the irritation of tripping over wires. Most cordless rotary tools run on AA batteries.
Some of the most common uses for this tool include:
- Grinding with a stone wheel
- Polishing with a buffing pad
- Sanding with sandpaper sleeves
- Light cutting
- Cleaning tasks
Rotary tools also come in handy for filling with special bits and cutting with a cut-off disc.
This is a handheld power tool with a rotary tip that accepts various attachments for different tasks. The compact size, flexibility, and high speed make it an ideal alternative to power tools that are heavy and bulky.
- Compact size
- High speed
The cordless rotary tool has a few disadvantages. The limited number of attachments available and its small parts pose a problem for some users.
- Small parts can be hazardous for minors and children
- More expensive than corded versions
- Limited battery life
Use a clamp to hold your work securely in place. Don’t forget to use safe practices as you craft your next item using power tools!
As a handyman, you can justify purchasing almost every tool on the market, but don’t waste your money on tools that you’re only going to use once or twice. Consider the tasks you do most often and select the tools that help you do them faster and more efficiently.
The five tools listed here constitute the basic power tools that an amateur or pro handyman will need for any kind of project.
If you think there are other tools that need mentioning, we would love to know! Share your thoughts in the comments.