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The Top 5 Power Tools Every DIYer Must Have

(In the spirit of full disclosure, there may be affiliate links in this article, which means that I may get a commission if you decide to purchase anything through those links. I only recommend products & services that I use and love myself, so I know you’ll be in good hands.)

Stop calling yourself a Weekend Warrior. It’s time to take this hobby thing to the next level. Maybe you’re remodeling, have a small business or yes, maybe you like to do a few DIY projects. But let’s get serious. It’s time to start using the tools that will take your projects to the next level.

Your projects will look better and you’ll take more pride in what you do when you’re using the right tools.

Our list of "The Top 5 Power Tools Every DIYer Must Have" is not inclusive. This is just a launching pad. Once your skill level increases, you’ll upgrade to more tools. This is your starting point.

#1 - Power Drill

A Power Drill is essential for drilling and for putting in screws. We actually have two because we’re both working in the shop at the same time. The Hubs uses it for building furniture. I use it for removing hardware on furniture and making home decor.

We’ve used a number of Power Drills over the years. By far, our favorite is the Makita 18-Volt Cordless Drill. One of my personal favorite features of these drills is it’s torque. I may not have the physical strength my husband does when it comes to a specific task for a project. This drill has enough power and torque and is still small enough to accomplish almost any task we give it.

It’s perfect to use with bits for a screw, drill or Kreg. The battery doesn’t drain quickly like other drills. The charger is fast and efficient, as well.

There are a lot of great Power Drills on the market, but this one is hands down our top pick.

#2 - Compound Miter Saw

A Compound Miter Saw will allow you to not only cut a piece of wood, but if you have the correct saw, you can make diagonal cuts, too.

This has been important for us in making signs, home decor and furniture. Being able to make something other than a straight cut will give your projects interest and showcase your skill level.

Personally, we use a Ryobi. It has a radial arm that will let us cut something wider than 10 inches. It also has a laser guide to help you line up your cuts.

We’ve gone through two saws since we’ve started our business. We really like the efficiency of this particular saw.

#3 - Handheld Sander

There are two main types of Handheld Sanders. There is an Random Orbital and a Palm Sander. The Random Orbital will move in a circular motion as it vibrates, in a random fashion. The Palm Sander also moves in an orbital fashion, but it’s not random.

They have different purposes. The Random Orbital may give you a finer finish on a piece of wood or furniture. The Palm Sander is more efficient for smoothing down rough cuts on your wood. For instance, I would use a Palm Sander on the ends of my diagonal cuts when making Wood Chevrons to smooth out the edges. I might choose to use a Random Orbital to finely sand a finished Oak top on a Console Table.

Our Handheld Sanders get a lot of use in our Studio. Our recommendation would be a DeWalt for the Palm Sander and a Bosch for the Random Orbital. They’re both affordable and sit well in your hand.

It’s also worth noting that if you’re working on a lot of projects, you should by a large pack of Sandpaper. The higher the number on a Sandpaper, the finer the the finish. For instance a 220 Grit Sandpaper would be for a very fine finish. A 60, 80 or 100 is a more coarse finish.

#4 - Brad Nailer

A Brad Nailer will definitely make your building time more efficient.

Some Nailers require an Air Compressor and others are battery operated. It sounds so much more intimidating than it actually is. A Nailer will speed up your projects by allowing you to nail quicker and with a cleaner look than if you did it by hand with a hammer.

Our tool of choice would be a Ryobi Cordless Brad Nailer. Using a Brad Nailer can be loud and cumbersome. The ease of being cordless is a win-win.

You’ll want a good supply of nails for your Brad Nailer, too. There’s nothing like being in the middle of a project and running out.

#5 - Jigsaw

A Jigsaw is a small versatile tool that will allow you to make quick cuts if you don’t want to use your Compound Miter Saw. Or you can use it to make curved cuts. They’re easy to use, too. Maybe you’re cutting a piece of plywood for the back of a curved mirror. Or you’re wanting to make a decorative cutout for your wall. A Jigsaw is the perfect tool.

When it comes to Jigsaws we’d recommend either a Bosch or DeWalt.

As with any new tool, you’ll want to make sure you read the Instruction Manuals. Even if you’re not a fan of reading directions. You’ll need to be sure you know how to operate, maintain and clean each tool. Please don’t substitute anyone else’s instructions for your own good judgement and details outlined in your manuals.

And as a side note, there are a couple of things that will also help with your safety when working on DIY projects: Work Glasses, Ear Protection and Work Gloves.

We'd love to see some of the DIY Projects you are working on. Email us your pics at and we'll review them for posting on our Facebook page.



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