No matter whether you’re a handyman, professional contractor or a DIY enthusiast, you probably own a ton of tools that you use on a regular basis. Having many tools, however, can quickly eat up your garage or workspace, especially if you don’t have a dedicated area to organise and store your tools. If that’s the case, you should probably consider getting a tools chest. Tool chests, or cabinets, are an absolute must for those who want to protect their tools and keep them organised.
But you can’t just buy the first tool chest you come across. You need one that will match your needs in terms of space and portability, and that comes with features that make organisation simpler. A tools chest, can come as a stand-alone unit, or it can be accompanied by a wide range of tools. So, if you already own all the tools you need, you can just get a chest to store your tools in. On the other hand, if you’re also on the market for tools, you can get a complete set that comes with the chest itself. That way, you get a full package that’s already neatly organised. Regardless, here’s what you need to consider when buying a tool chest.
While it may seem like an obvious consideration, a lot of people focus on getting a chest that’s suitable for storing the tools they currently have, without taking into account further purchases. This can render your tool chest useless and you might have to buy a new one to accommodate your new tools, as well. To avoid double-spending, think about whether you’ll be needing and buying more tools in the foreseeable future.
Drawers and Sliders
The number of drawers the tool chest comes with is important for ensuring you can safely and tidily organise your tools. The size of the drawers also plays a role, as you want them to fit the width and length of your tools. The slides can also play a role in how comfortable you can open and close the drawers. There are two types of slides – non-bearing and ball-bearing. Ball-bearing slide systems are preferred, as they’re easier to use, even if the drawer and tools inside it are on the heavier side.
Durability and Safety
The durability of the chest is arguably the most important feature. Buying a tool cabinet is an investment, and it can be a costly one, so don’t take it lightly. Pay attention to the materials used in the manufacturing of the tool chest of the chest you go for. Furthermore, you should consider getting a chest that comes with a decent warranty. A warranty will give you peace of mind knowing that you can get something fixed or replaced should it break down.
For added safety, most cabinets come with a lock to ensure nobody has access to your tools. Some models feature an internal locking system that covers the drawers after you shut the top lid down, whereas others feature key-operated locks for added security.
Alternative Tool Storage Solutions
As briefly aforementioned, a tool chest or cabinet can be quite expensive, so it only makes sense that you want to make sure the investment is justified. Do you only need to store a few tools that you use around the house? Are you a semi-professional that needs a compact storage unit to fit in the garage and provide optimum storage? Or are you equipping a big workplace or garage? Do you need to travel with your tools to different locations? Getting an answer to these questions can help you decide if you need a tool cabinet, a smaller, more inexpensive solution like a toolbox or a more portable solution like a tool cart.
Toolboxes are the most compact and inexpensive solution for carrying, protecting and organising your tools. They’re used by professionals, hobbyists and DIYers alike, and their specifications can vary greatly based on how and who they’re used by. Toolboxes are ideal for professionals who are constantly on the go, but don’t need a large number of tools to move around.
Tool carts are best suited for moving a large number of tools around the workplace. As you can guess, they’re especially popular around construction sites, and when working on multiple things, as you’ll seldom be in one place for extended periods of time. Moving a toolbox around can be taxing, whereas dragging a tool cart around can be done seamlessly.
While buying a tool cabinet or chest is pretty straightforward, there are a few nuances you need to pay attention to in order to ensure you get the right one for your needs. Tool chests are available in a wide range of shapes and sizes, and they can come with or without tools inside them. Based on these things, their price can vary greatly, and you’ll want to avoid making a costly purchase if you aren’t going to take full advantage of it.