Both for personal and commercial use, today’s best home improvement power tools will certainly fit your peculiar needs. And the price range here is updated for 2017.
For some reasons, you may not have the need to buy every power and hand tool out there.
So the list and tips below will help as brief buying guide as well save you some research time trying to find out the thing you need to know before commitment. Before we move on to the list, here are some tips you really have to consider.
Ryobi TEK4 Stud Sensor: $20+
Most stud sensors are such inaccurate pieces of trash that you’re better off sliding a magnet across the wall, hoping it’ll stick on some ferrous fastener buried back there.
To keep your walls from looking like drunken homemade pegboard, try the Ryobi TEK4 stud sensor, a measuring tool with some actual thought behind its design. A decent backlit LED screen actually shows you information—like, the edges of the stud, and whether you’re about to encounter live voltage. It probably works as well as it does because of its rechargeable 4-volt lithium-ion batteries.
If it’s between this and the half-dead AAs in a typical studfinder, you might as well just drill where your knuckles knock something that doesn’t sound hollow.
Compound Miter Saw: $120 -$400
This saw is essential if you’re cutting trim for inside and outside corners, especially if the angles aren’t perfect 45 degree angles. Using the compound feature, you can even make accurate cuts in angled crown molding. Look for an upcoming feature on this blog about making compound angle cut calculations! If you’re likely to need to cut wider pieces of material (like 8” lap siding on a gable end), you might want to opt for a sliding compound miter saw.
Angle Grinders: $25 – $100
are extremely versatile. They can cut, grind, sand or polish a variety of materials, including metal, tiles and pavers.
Parts and accessories can be changed easily. Wheels come in different thicknesses and abrasions to suit specific tasks. The handle can be switched to either side of the tool to suit left- and right-hand users. Plus, the safety guard can be adjusted to the angle you need.
Toro Self Propelled Lawn Mower: $200 – $500
The suburban American man may pop by the church/temple/mosque at some point in the weekend, but everybody knows the real religious experience begins when he smells that two-stroke incense and hears the angelic chant of his self-propelled lawnmower.
Toro makes a sweet machine—the 22-inch Recycler, despite its lame name, has a 149-CC Kohler overhead valve engine, which fires up without the need to prime or choke (that’s a cut above your standard Briggs & Stratton).
The self-propulsion is an old-fashioned fixed bar, not one of these weird sliding handles. As the big rear wheel rolls over uneven terrain, with the mulch system spitting minced fescue across your lawn, and the mower heaving its own 81 pounds acoss your acreage, nothing could distract you from this moment of divinity.
Black And Decker Lithium String Trimmer: $120+
String trimmers are one of those outdoor tools that actually make sense to use with a battery.
(That’s generally not the case, for, say, lawnmowers and chainsaws.) The 36-volt cell on this weed whacker has a dial that lets you choose between max power or max runtime.
It’s not just a gimmick, either—the top setting works best for brambly, woody stems, and the lower settings do a fine job cleaning up stray grass blades crowded against the mailbox post. Plus, when you flip it sideways to edge the driveway, there’s no engine to drool fuel down your arm.
Cordless Drill: $50 – $160
Cordless drills come in a variety of sizes with different functions and features. The most common are drill drivers, hammer drills and impact drivers. Each has different levels of driving power and torque (rotation power).
Some drills have keyed chucks for changing out drill bits, but many are keyless for quicker tightening or loosening by hand.
This is one of the best home improvement power tools under $200.
Drill drivers are the most commonly used. Ideal for plaster, wood, metal and plastics, they bore holes and drive in screws. Most have two speed options and different power settings for greater control. The size of the chuck is adjustable, giving you more versatility.
Hammer drills are for harder materials like stone, concrete or masonry. They spin like a drill driver but also have a hammer action to drill holes into masonry a lot quicker.
Impact drivers are designed to drive screws in faster. Ideal for wood and metal, they’re more powerful with greater control. They also use a hexagonal socket for drill bits, which you can change out quickly.
Jig Saw:$40 – $150
Don’t kid yourself. There is not room in your life for a compound sliding miter saw. And using dad’s old Disston for a few crosscuts in 2x4s conjures the unpleasant illusion that you’re building a boat, really badly.
But you’ve got boards to shorten. Give yourself a chance at a passably straight cut—in seconds—with Milwaukee’s cordless 12-volt jigsaw. The battery’s charge lasts for enough cuts to rip plywood into a set of pantry shelves, and a tool-free lever pops the blade out like an ejected shell casing. Change the blade. It’s fun. And it’s probably already dull.
Air Compressors:$50 – $150
Powerful bursts of compressed air supply energy for many tools and applications. Even a small one like this model can pump up bike tires, manage delicate paint airbrushing, blow sawdust from tight spaces, and manage strong pneumatic tools such as finish nail guns, staple guns, wrenches and sanders. A pneumatic nail gun sets tiny finish nails instantly without awkward hammering or dents on the surface of your project.
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