We recently shared with our readers a couple of articles about home maintenance and cost savings tips to follow when you are a homeowner; but we realize that the tools needed to do these jobs can sometimes be overlooked! We wanted to list our top 15 most important tools that EVERY homeowner should own. Our hope is that you have these handy when needed and don’t need to make an emergency run to the nearest hardware store.
1. Plunger – a simple toilet or sink clog can cause some BIG problems for homeowners. This is one of the easiest problems that can be fixed and there really is no excuse to not have a plunger easily accessible when needed. We recommend having at least 2 plungers (one for the toilet and one for the sink) if possible.
2. Combination wrench set – the two ends on a combination wrench differ from each other. One is open and one is a closed loop. Nuts and bolts are made in standard and metric sizes and they are both widely used. For this reason, you’ll need both sets of wrenches.
3. Slip-joint pliers – these are used to grab a nail, nut, bolt and more. They are versatile because of the jaws, which have both flat and curved areas. There is also a built in slip-joint to allow the user to adjust the jaw size quickly.
4. Adjustable wrench – these tend to be ideal in situations when you need two wrenches of the same size. A helpful hint is to make sure you screw the jaws completely closed to avoid damaging the nut or bolt.
5. Caulking gun – not only does caulking seal up cracks in structures and piping, it also helps to provide thermal insulation, provide noise mitigation and control water penetration! You may be surprised with how many uses you’ll find for a caulking gun in your home.
6. Flashlight – this tool goes without explanation! Whether you have no or limited lighting in a large or small area, a flashlight will solve that problem for you. Make sure you have fresh batteries to go along with the light.
7. Tape measure – when completing housework a ruler or yardstick just doesn’t provide enough length to be effective. Tape measures come in many lengths, but 25 feet is best. Learn from the mistakes of many others and make sure you measure everything twice for accuracy!
8. Hacksaw – this is used to cut metal objects like pipes, bolts and brackets. Keep in mind that the blades are replaceable, so make sure you’re investing in a quality hacksaw frame.
9. Torpedo level – commonly used to make sure items being hung are level. A torpedo level is unique because it shows how straight an item is horizontally, vertically, or when at a 45 degree angle. Use this for shelving, picture frames, appliances, etc.
10. Safety glasses or goggles – these are a must when you are using many other tools. You should always be wearing these when working with chemicals, power tools or hammers. You only have one set of eyes, so make sure to take care of them.
11. Claw hammer – for a great all-purpose choice, we recommend a 16 ounce hammer. Use this to drive or remove nails, pry wood away from the house, or in combination with countless other tools.
12. Screwdriver set – a Phillips and flathead screwdriver should be in every tool box. Make sure you have a small and large size of each different type.
13. Wire cutters – these are pliers designed to cut wires and small nails. There is a side-cutting style and an end-cutting style. Our choice would be the end-cutting style, which is strong enough to cut through small nails.
14. Respirator or safety mask – there are dangerous chemicals in common household items. An example would be paints, stains or even some cleaning products. It is true that they are less toxic than before, but it is still important to wear protective devices when you are exposed to chemicals that can be inhaled.
15. Duct tape – originally used for making temporary repairs, duct tape is very strong and adaptable. It is also water resistant and very sticky, making it useful for many quick fixes!
Some of these may seem more important than others but we promise you that being prepared with the items on this list will come in handy one day and may just save you some cash if you catch a problem early enough to fix it yourself instead of calling out a professional with the right tools. As much as our experts at BN Realty like to be right about everything, this is not something we want to say “I told you so” about! So plan a quick shopping trip right away with our check list in hand and be sure to stop in and visit us on the way if you have any real estate questions or needs! Give us a call at 309-319-6030.