How to Choose the Perfect Toolbox for Your Home Needs

So, you know what tools should be in your first toolbox , but where do you store them all? Here are tons of dashboard options for storing all of your tools.

The process of choosing a toolbox is almost as fun as buying the tools themselves. Tool storage is available in a variety of forms to suit any need – from the DIYer to the professional contractor. Whether you choose a large rolled steel box or a compact plastic bag, there is no excuse for your tools not being safe, reliable, and ready to go.

Tool boxes for hand carry

Plastic or steel portable tool boxes are standard when storing tools. Even if you have a large toolbox, you will still keep a portable toolbox close at hand for work outside of your workshop.

Most portable toolboxes are hand-carried and have a foldable top handle for easy transport. Look for boxes with an internal removable tray to help separate small items like pencils, levels, and goggles. Without a tray, these small tools can get lost in the mess of the toolbox. The less you have to rummage through your toolbox to find what you need, the better.

Some tool boxes have built-in trays and even smaller containers in which you can store hardware such as screws and nuts. This is useful if you don’t have separate storage for small hardware.

At the bottom of plastic toolboxes, look for one with a metal latch, as it will be more durable and perform better. This Stanley box is weather resistant and available in three sizes.

Metal tool boxes (like the one shown above by Craftsman ) are classics and never go out of style. However, they are also heavy and you will quickly get tired if you need a portable box. You can find these bargain-priced tool boxes at garage sales, often filled with tools that are just as rusty as the box. Here’s how to bring your old metal toolbox back to its former glory so you can use it for years to come.

Tool bags are a lightweight and portable alternative used by many contractors. They are made from durable canvas and have pockets to hold tools vertically for easy identification and access. They won’t hold large tools like saws, but it’s tough to beat a tool bag as it will be an indispensable option for any DIYer or homeowner. We love the bags from Duluth Trading and Bostitch .

Rolling tool boxes

The wheeled toolbox is ideal for transporting heavier hand tools and power tools. They work on the same principle as luggage on wheels: you have two polyurethane wheels and a handle so you can easily roll it to your next destination.

Several manufacturers, such as DeWALT and RIDGID , have built mobile workstations like the one shown above with a toolbox and toolboxes that stack on top of each other for easy transport.

This class of toolboxes is probably overkill for the DIYer or those working in the workshop. Unless you are traveling or traveling long distances with your tools, you are better off carrying a manual toolbox.

Tool box and storage cabinet

When your collection of tools developed into a small box with tools, it’s time to go to the box with tools . These are the ones you’ll find in every auto repair shop across the country and are often combined with a wheeled tool trolley . They range in size from 26 “to 46” wide and usually have large lockers that open easily to accommodate tools of any size.

Tool boxes often have a large top that rises to open up more storage space for tools or a work area. They can be used alone and placed on a work bench or on a matching tool cabinet that provides even more storage drawers.

Think of these units as furniture for your garage or workplace. Measure the available space as if you were using a sofa when buying a large toolbox and cabinet. Leave enough space for working around the toolbox and for the drawers to fully extend.

Craftsman and Snap-On Tool Chests have been the most popular for years, but you’ll find cheaper options from Husky at Home Depot and Kobalt at Lowe’s. Toolmakers recently introduced their own toolboxes from Milwaukee, DeWalt and Stanley.

You can spend as little as a couple hundred dollars for a quality toolbox, or over $ 1,000 for a toolbox / cabinet combination.

Higher quality toolboxes will include higher drawer loads, better hardware and bearings for the drawers, thicker steel, and better paint and finish. You can also find tool boxes with built-in extensions and lighting.

Milwaukee’s new toolbox / cabinet combo costs $ 698 but is too wide at 46 inches. For a narrower toolbox, check out DeWalt and Husky’s suggestions.

Tool benches

Closely associated with tool boxes and cabinets are tool benches . The best ones are steel, and they provide a solid work area with storage space for tools underneath.

Countertops are often made from a meat block and, like tool cabinets, are mounted on casters so they can be easily put back in place.

For small work areas, this Craftsman will work well, and for garage jobs, we recommend this sharp-looking workbench from Gladiator (shown above), but there are many other options depending on size and aesthetics.

Accessories for your toolbox

If you are using a toolbox, tool rolls are a great way to protect your tools and prevent them from damaging each other in a collision. It also makes them easier to access when you need them.

Drawer liners are essential with any toolbox to keep your tools from slipping as you open and close the drawers, and you can take it a step further by making custom styrofoam inserts for your tools.


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