DIY - Basic Tool Kit


    DIY - Basic Tool Kit


    Before you shop for tools there are a few things you should do.


    1- Make a realistic list of the project's/goals  that you're looking to accomplish.

    There are different tools for different jobs/uses.


    2- Make a list of the tools you’ll need to accomplish your project’s/goals.

    If you're planning to use a certain tool on a lot of projects, you will want to buy a better quality.

    If you're planning to use a tool once in awhile, you can sometimes get away with a cheaper quality.


    3- Plan on your tool storage and/or movability.

    If you're planning to have a good assortment of tools, tool storage is something to think about. But you don’t want to carry around a cabinet full of tools, so a tool box/bag will be needed.


    Which tools should you buy:


    This is a topic of much debate, but after years of working in the Home Improvement field, I have my recommendations that will have you spending less and having less to carry around.


    All tools below are available through my links page click here .




    A lot of sites I looked at tell you to buy a full set of screwdrivers, to me that’s just more clutter. A 6 in 1 screwdriver will cover most of your DIYer needs and cost about $5.00

    The ends of the shaft work as a nut driver (2 different sizes) and the phillips and flat heads come in 2 different sizes.


    These work well for everything from light work to medium-heavy work.



    A hammer is an investment. Although you might plan on only using it for light work, you will end up using it on a lot more. This is an item I don’t recommend skimping on.

    A good EstWing 16 oz. hammer will cost about $25.00 and will withstand most abuse.

    For general use you will want a claw hammer, notice the curve.


    I personally own 4 different kind of EstWings, but the average DIYer will be able to do do most project’s with this one.

    Tape measure:


    Most any brand tape measure will do for general project’s.


    You will want to make sure you get a 25 foot tape that is 1 inch wide.



    I do most of my work with pliers using either a 6 inch or a 10 inch Channel Lock pliers.

    If you shop around you can find a set for about $25.00


    Utility Knife:


    A good quality utility knife can cost as little as $6.00



    At the minimum you will need a 9 inch level (torpedo level).

    If you're planning to do larger projects you will need to invest in a 3 or 4 foot level too.

    With levels, quality = accuracy. So if you are hanging pictures, a cheap one is fine. If you're building something, you may want to get a little better quality.

    It’s also not a bad idea to have a 2 foot one around.



    A lot of people don’t know how to use a square properly, but if you are looking to get into projects, you will need one. I will be including in my DIYer class videos (which will be shared with you on TDS at “TDS DIYer”) how to properly use a square.


    Safety glasses and gloves:


    There is such a variety of safety glasses and gloves to choose from, but there are a two guide lines to go by.

    1- Make sure all protective wear fits snugly.

    2- Make sure you're comfortable with the fit, if your not it will take your attention away from what you're doing.




    There are some projects that you do need a power drill for, but most projects can be done with a good cordless drill (do not buy less than 18v).


    Additional tools:


    There are a lot of other tools that you may need, but most of them depend on the projects that you will be working on.


    On my links page I will setup a category for “Basic Tools”. I which will contain all the above tools, additional tools will be added as they come up in my articles “TDS DIYer”.



    For recommended materials/supplies, visit my links page below.


    Don’t forget to follow “TDS DIYer” for weekly projects for everyday people.

    For a list of recommended products from this and past articles, click here or visit our links page at


    With over 30 years experience in the home improvement field, Artie Wallace (owner of Rockaways Handyman) can help you with most of your DIY questions. For more information about Artie Wallace or Rockaways Handyman, visit his website at,  like him on Facebook at, or email your questions to


    If you found this article helpful, please take a moment and let me know in the comment area below.



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