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Hand Tools for Everyday Home Repair

by Paul Sanders

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Hand tools hanging on pegboard

Many home repairs and maintenance tasks are small jobs that don't require professional power tools. Hand tools are more than adequate for hanging a picture, repairing a light fixture and other simple jobs. Here are some of the hand tools you may want to have on hand for small projects and basic home repairs.

Hand Tools for Home Repair:

  1. Hammers: Your hammer is a good hand tool for driving and loosening nails as well as prying or hammering stubborn materials. A simple claw hammer or framing hammer will do for most home uses, but it never hurts to have a rubber mallet around to hammer things without leaving a mark.

  2. Screwdrivers: It's always nice to have among your hand tools a screwdriver set with multiple lengths and head shapes. The most common screwdriver heads are flathead, cross-point and hex. With these hand tools, you'll be able to take apart and put together everything from self-assemble furniture to electronics.

  3. Pliers: You'll be using pliers to grip, turn, pull or crimp various materials, probably while you use other hand tools on an object. You may want to have flat-nosed pliers, needle-nosed pliers, channel locks and a pair of wire cutters handy.

  4. Wrenches and sockets: Wrenches and sockets are tools used to apply torque to turn nuts and bolts. Sockets may have either a six-point or 12-point recess and be shallow or deep. A simple socket set, an adjustable wrench and some crescent wrenches will cover a host of hand-tool odd jobs.

  5. Chisels: You can use chisels and burs in woodworking, especially for shaping wood on a lathe. You can also use chisels to shear off pieces of metal and stone.

  6. Cutting tools: You'll find uses for saws, axes, shears and other hand tools for cutting materials in numerous home improvement projects. The most basic hand tools for cutting are probably a simple hand saw, a set if utility knives and a hatchet.

  7. Paintbrushes and rollers: You'll almost certainly find yourself painting at some point. Keep hand tools like a few different sizes of paintbrushes, rollers, paint trays and stirrers on hand.

  8. Measures and levels: A tape measure is your basic hand tool for measuring. If you want to go a bit more high-tech, you can get a laser level and measure for extremely accurate measurements. A plumb line and a T-square will help you get perfect vertical lines and make sure your corners are perfect.

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