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The Top Ten Tools Everyone Needs to Have a Successful Renovation

The Top Ten Tools Everyone Needs to Have a Successful Renovation


At some point, almost every homeowner will want to take on a renovation project rather than hire an outside contractor to make changes. Renovations can include a wide range of professions, including carpentry, plumbing, electrical work, concrete, tile, roofing and much more. Before beginning any renovation project in your home, be sure that you have the proper tools.

Framing Hammer with Ripping Claw

One of the most important tools to have when undertaking any renovation project is a framing hammer with a ripping claw. A framing hammer is longer and heavier than other types of hammers. In addition, the face of the hammer may be ridged and the claw may be wider. The heavier weight allow you to hammer nails more quickly, while the wider claw allows you to remove nails of various sizes rather than just small, finish nails. A framing hammer is also important if you must do any demolition during your project.

Organized Tool Belt

An organized tool belt is important for anyone who is working on a home renovation project. Tool belts have many pockets that allow you to keep tools you use repeatedly close at hand as well as smaller pockets for storing nails, galvanized carriage bolts or screws you will need. A tool belt keeps everything in one place so that you are not tucking items in your pockets where they could fall out and injure a foot or get lost.

Saws and Extra Blades

Most home renovation projects will require you to saw wood or other products, so it is important to have good quality circular, jig or reciprocating saws. In addition, be sure to have extra saw blades should one become dull or damaged to prevent an emergency run to the local hardware store. Be sure to choose saws that can be used on multiple materials, including plywood, lumber, sheet metal or PVC pipe.

Drills and Drill Bits

You can purchase either an electric or cordless drill, but it is imperative to have at least one motorized drill during home renovations. In addition, be sure to have a variety of drill bits such as a ship auger, spade bit, twist drills and step drills so that you can drill into multiple materials. Spade bits are used to bore holes in pipe or cable while ship augers pulls through lumber. Twist drills are used to make pilot holes and step drills make holes in sheet metal or steel.

Set of Pliers

A set of pliers is necessary as well for any home renovation. You will need side-cutting electrician’s pliers if you need to cut electric cable and diagonal pliers to trim cable sheathing. A set of ironworker’s pliers will allow you to cut through rusty nails or other metal fasteners while bolt-cutters will cut through thick metal.

Set of Screwdrivers

Screwdrivers can be used for many jobs during a home renovation project, such as opening a paint can or tightening bolts or screws during the project. You will need to have Phillips-head and flat screwdriver in multiple sizes. Be sure to look for tools with magnetic tips and comfortable grips. You can also invest in a cordless screwdriver with multiple heads to make the tasks even easier.

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Rubber Mallet

For surface that need pounding that you do not want to damage, choose a rubber mallet. If you are installing laminate flooring or tile, rubber mallets work well to tap the pieces into place. They can also be used to tap dents out of metal.


If your home renovation will require you to pry apart boards, remove nails or demolish things, a crowbar is another essential tool in your toolbox. The average crowbar is between two and three feet and usually has a claw end and a flat end. The claw end allows you to pry larger nails or screws during the renovation. If the demolition is significant, choose a wrecking bar instead of a crowbar.


If you are changing the deadbolt on your door or other types of renovation that require you to work with wood, a chisel is an important tool. In some cases, such as installing deadbolts, you must carve out a section of wood and a chisel makes that task much easier.

Putty Knife

Although a putty knife is designed for spreading substances, like putty or spackling, it can also be used to scrape off old paint, pry nails or remove wallpaper. They are also valuable when you are doing plumbing renovations for caulking and other substances.

These ten tools are critical items for your toolbox if you plan to undertake any type of home renovation. Most of the items are inexpensive, although high quality tools may be higher priced than those of lower quality.


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