Inevitably, you’re going to need to make some repairs around your home from time to time. While there are some things, such as faulty plumbing pipes or leaks in a gas line, that need the work of experienced professionals, there are still plenty of small fixes that should be done by you, the homeowner.
Calling a professional for every small repair, whether installing a shelving unit or repainting a room, can quickly become expensive. By consulting a beginner’s guide to must-have basic tools for homeowners, you can know what to have in your tool kit before something pops up.
A Set of Screwdrivers
You can solve many minor renovations around your home simply by having a wide selection of screwdrivers at your disposal. Over the course of years, screws can loosen on drawers, drape holders, or light switches, and all they need is a quick tightening.
Have the Right Screwdriver Heads
Screwdrivers come in a variety of different sizes and shapes, making different screwdrivers ideal for separate applications. Have an assortment of sizes and shapes so that you can tackle any situation immediately without having to run to the store every time you need to open an electronic device or dismantle a dresser.
Spare Nails and Screws
Just like having an assortment of screwdrivers, you should have a selection of nails and screws on hand in case you need to switch them out.
When you need to install new shelves into the wall, you’re going to have to find the stud in the wall to ensure that there is something solid and sturdy holding everything up. Nailing or screwing objects into the wall without finding the stud first will only result in weak support for whatever it is you are hanging. This weak support can mean that your shelves, or whatever other large objects you attach to the wall, can easily collapse and destroy part of your wall with it.
A hammer tacker stapler is a specialized tool generally used for the installation of insulation in attics and other parts of the home. These are especially useful if your house has a lack of insulation upon buying it or you need to rip out and replace the old insulation. This is especially useful if you notice that your home doesn’t keep enough heat during the winter and enough cold air in the summer.
Measure twice; cut once will save you a lot of trouble when you need to install new cabinets, put up picture frames, or you need to check and see if you have enough space for a new piece of furniture. Tape measures are a staple in any home tool kit and a simple device that make repairs go much smoother.
Don’t Underestimate the Safety Hazard
While a tape measure is a simple tool that doesn’t seem to pose a significant threat, there is still the potential that you may cut your skin on the edge of the tape. Retract the tape slowly back into its housing when done measuring; there have been many people sliced when they allowed the tape to return too quickly back into the case.
While you do need to measure objects before you cut, purchase, or place them, you may also need to know if they are leveled and even. This is especially necessary when hanging up picture frames or screwing in shelves to the wall; you’re going to need to ensure that the object is not skewed to one side or the other. Levelers make determining the tilt of hanging objects easy and allows you to correct any unevenness instantly.
Extra Cans of Paint
Once you decide to repaint a wall, it is a good idea to keep the can of paint for later use. Any number of things can happen to your wall, whether someone knocks a hole in it, your child draws on it, or a part of the wall becomes discolored. Having the paint you used on the walls gives you the ability to quickly cover up any developing imperfections or mistakes.
Keep for Future Reference
It’s hard to find the exact right tint of paint you used on a wall years later. Trying to touch up a wall can lead to a headache if the color is even slightly off, something that is seemingly insignificant yet noticeable. Keep the cans of paint you initially used on your walls so that you can know the exact color that you used to streamline the process of repainting in the years to come.
There can be parts of your home, whether in the crawlspace in the basement or up in the attic, where there are no reliable sources of light; even low-light conditions in the basement can pose a threat if you can’t entirely see your footing. Or, in circumstances when the power has gone out in your home, you’re going to need a method to see where you are going, and a flashlight can provide that source.
You’re going to need a way to keep all of your tools and equipment in a single location; keeping things spread out increases the odds of losing something. Small items such as screws have a bad habit of going missing when they are not properly accounted for and stored. Toolboxes can also help with repairs that need extra attention and more tools to solve the problem; you can bring the entire box of tools without having to run back and forth for more tools.
Be Prepared for What You Can Handle
When thinking of the tools that homeowners should own, always think about what you’re comfortable handling and what you should leave for the professionals. Depending on your skills with carpentry, you may want to invest in more tools or less; more if you’re comfortable with taking on more and less if you’re only familiar with basic repairs. Don’t hesitate to call on contractors if something is beyond your current skill set; sometimes, trying to fix a major problem yourself may only make it worse.