No matter if your house is old or brand new, there will come a time when it will need some repair. If you are bored, you can do some repairs today as we will take a look at what does a set of basic tools for electrical projects look like. Most of them you probably own already, like hammer or pliers. Some of the tools will have special electrician’s options that result in better safety against electric shock. And some you may be unfamiliar with. But fear not, as we will explain to you what tools are what for.
All of the tools are readily available in most of the hardware stores as well as in online stores, so if you don’t have some tool, there will be no problem getting it. Just make sure you check if you have all of the tools needed before you rip those old cables from inside of your walls.
I bet you have this one already and thinking why is it in the list of tools for electrical projects. It is commonly used to drive a screw anchor into the wall for fixing an electrical box. Also, it is used to nail down cable holder brackets in certain applications. So, a hammer may come in handy in just about any issue.
Probably an obvious one. A tape measure is used to measure the length of cables, the distance between lamps, the height of outlets and any other electrical stuff that one may fount in their household. It is used by handymen in all sorts of different areas. Electrical projects happen to be one of them.
It is common knowledge that there are two main types of screwdrivers – Phillips and flat-end. Phillips screwdriver is commonly used to open up various panels, air conditioning units, TVs, ventilation shaft covers and almost every other household appliance. However, some older pieces of technology might use flat-end screws, as well as some outlets, switches and fuse boxes. It sometimes can be used as a lever for opening certain enclosures. So, it is a good idea to have a few different sizes of Phillips screwdrivers and at least one – medium-sized flat-end screwdriver.
There is one caveat, however. Screwdrivers are basically a long piece of metal rod. And you probably remember your parents telling you to not put any metal rods into an electrical outlet. The same goes for screwdrivers, so electricians developed a special type of electrician’s screwdriver that has insulated shaft. This modification increases your level of protection against the danger of electrocution in case the mains voltage somehow was present during your repairs. So this special kind of screwdriver is recommended for electrical works.
Since electrical projects usually require power to be cut down during any procedure to avoid being shocked, it is likely that you will have to do some works under dim light or no light conditions. Here’s where the flashlight comes into play. You should be able to do most of the stuff using a regular handheld flashlight, but sometimes a headlamp is not only more comfortable but is required, as some jobs need two hands to be done. So if you don’t have it already, it is the time to go and get one.
Maybe it does not seem like it, but the electrical tape is one of the essential tools for electrical projects. Multipurpose like an electrician’s Swiss army knife. It can be used to insulate loose ends of some cable, it can be used to fasten some cables together, it can be used to insulate connections, it can be used to protect cable where insulation is damaged, it can be used to waterproof certain spots… Imagination is your only limit here.
There is no need to go fancy, as a common utility knife will do the trick. It is useful in various applications like cutting away sheathing and insulation of a cable, cutting electrical tape, or any other non-metallic object like electrical boxes. Has as many uses as a previously mentioned electrical tape. You just have to be creative on this one.
Unless you want your house to look like a crooked mirror, you will need a level not only for construction jobs but also for electrical ones. It is unreplaceable when setting outlets, switches, and electrical boxes. With level, everything will look nice and even. A pleasure to watch.
Lineman’s heavy-duty pliers will come in handy for bending wires, twisting wires, cutting wires, or even pulling them. An electrician’s do-all tool. Definitely a nice tool to have.
Cutting pliers are different. They are used mostly for cutting, wires, and cables. In skilled hands these are irreplaceable for removing isolating material from the wire. But be aware not to cut anything hard like a steel cable, as it might destroy the edge of your tool.
Just like a Lineman’s pliers, needle nose ones have a lot of applications but usually used where less force and more precision is required. Also, they are extremely helpful when reaching distant objects in a confined space.
Do you like to get electrocuted? Neither do I. So here is a tool to check if there is a live mains voltage going through a wire. You can use this tool to determine if circuit breakers are really of, or determine if there is a power coming to a certain part of the house. You could use it to determine which wire is live and which one is neutral. A lot of possibilities for such a cheap and simple tool. This is a must-have for every electrician.
As voltage tester was more like an indicator, this measuring tool is much more. It is used to measure what voltage level you have on your wires. It will help you determine if all the contacts are proper. But there are more capabilities. In skilled hands this tool can measure AC, DC voltage and current, the resistance of a certain element, and some of them can even test radio parts. How cool is that?
Of course, this is the most advanced of the basic tools for electrical projects, it requires a lot of knowledge and practice to know how to use it, but once you learn it, it will be your essential and most loved tool.
When you have an understanding of how these tools work, you are ready to do some electrical stuff. But to do it smartly and safely, first and foremost learn what exactly you need to do, learn how to do it save, watch some video tutorials and of course, don’t forget to cut off the power. Stay safe and healthy!