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A beginner's toolbox

As a homeowner, you should already know that you are responsible for your own home maintenance. If you intend to do those repairs yourself, it is essential that you equip yourself with those tools that are considered to be the staples of any toolbox.

Without the proper tools, you cannot complete a job efficiently and appropriately. No one expects you to acquire everything all at once. It is a process that takes time. But you should make sure you acquire the essentials and build from there.

General tools that you will need include:

• Plastic tool box w/lock.
• 25 ft. Tape Measure
• 16 oz. Hammer
• Utility (Box) Knife
• Phillips & Standard screw driver set
• 6 in 1 Screw Driver
• 12” Adjustable Wrench
• 12” Channel Locks
• 10” Vise Grips
• Torpedo Level
• 8” Needle Nose Pliers
• 8” Lineman Pliers
• Wire Strippers
• Wire Rippers & Gauge
• GFI Receptacle Tester
• 6” Drywall Taping Knife
• Hand Sander or Sanding Block

There are some items that everyone should have which are considered safety equipment. Those items are gloves, dust masks and eye protection. Regardless of skill level, safety equipment is something that everyone should possess and use at all times.

If you are skilled enough in Heating and Air Conditioning to do your own repairs, there are specialty tools that you will need to acquire. Those tools are as follows:

• VOM Meter
• Amp Probe
• Electronic Thermometers or Pocket Thermometers (Range -10°F to 250°F.)
• Manifold Pressure Gauges
• Refrigeration Service Wrench – 1/4”
• Inspection Mirror
• Spring Tubing Benders
• Flair & Swaging Tool Set
• Micron Vacuum Gauge
• Halogen Leak Detector (for CFC, HCFC, HFC Refrigerants) and Soap Bubbles

Remember to always be responsible for and take appropriate care of your tools.

It is extremely important that you educate yourself on how to make proper and appropriate repairs. In the coming weeks we will be discussing planned maintenance activities and how to make appropriate repairs using the aforementioned tools. Remember it is important that you use the proper tool for the task at hand. Get it right the first time and you save yourself time and money. Something we could all use more of.

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