Gear – Getting Started & Next Steps

Power Tools – 5 Must-Haves for Every Newbie

As an amateur trying to keep your house together on your own, you’ve likely heard about power tools and their importance, and how to shop for the right ones. You will find tips everywhere on the Internet – buy refurbished tools, compare prices, wait out for discounts, get tools that use the same battery, etc. etc. etc.

One question that doesn’t get covered as often is, what power tools should you get started with as a newbie DIY-er? Here are five suggestions:


If you go by tradition, a drill/driver is the first thing you should get. And it makes perfect sense, knowing how much it comes in handy for common tasks like hanging things on the wall. You can begin with something that uses some kind of intuitive technology that can tell when a screw is flush with wood. It usually comes with no physical clutch to adjust since this is done by the tool itself.

Random Orbital Sander

Interested in woodworking? A power sander will be one of your most useful power tools. You can do with sandpaper and a sanding block for fine sanding or to work on small areas, but for flat and larger areas like table tops, a power sander is worth the investment. Buy one with different speeds and a dust bag that makes it easier to contain the mess.


A jigsaw is perfect for cuttings different shapes, but with a guide, it can also work well for making straight cuts. It may not be the best tool for ripping long sheets of plywood, but it’s still generally preferable to a circular saw. A jigsaw with multiple orbital settings is best to ensure accuracy as well as speed.

Rotary Tool

You can do many things with a rotary tool: sanding, grinding, cutting, polishing, and mostly all kinds of small repairs around the house. Having many different accessories and attachments is the secret. Many good brands sell kits that come complete with everything a newbie would need.

Cordless Screwdriver

Yes, you can use a cordless drill/driver to drive screws if you have the right bit on it, and it’s also the perfect tool for tougher tasks, like driving a screw into a stud. But your cordless screwdriver can always be kept in a kitchen drawer for the whole family to use. To put it simply, this tool can save you the energy and frustration that usually come with using an old, outdated screwdriver. For more usefulness, a cordless screwdriver with an adjustable handle will be great to have.

As you know, there are more power tools out there that you can explore. But for beginners, the above will be more than enough to help you establish your rhythm.

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