Ensure That You’re Maximizing Your Toolbox

Time is money, as the adage goes, so it’s important to invest in tools that save time and keep you efficient on the job site

Ensure That You’re Maximizing Your Toolbox

J.C. Tiller

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In today’s high-tech world, when people talk about tool timesavers, they tend to focus on the latest Bluetooth technology or the newest gadget.

But technology isn’t the only way to cut down time spent on a job site. Tools that allow you to work smarter, not harder, can help any professional get to the next jobs more effectively and efficiently. Here are a few questions I like to consider when evaluating the timesaving merits of a tool:

Can the tool do more than one job?

The best tools seem to help you do more with less: less gear, less time, less looking around. Anytime you can rely on a tool to perform more than one task, it’s a win. You’ll reach into your toolbox less and have less to haul into a job site. For example, some wrenches provide multiple surface wrench sizes on one side while also having an open box-end for line nuts. This type of wrench has you covered for straight stops, appliance legs, shower heads, faucet nuts, stool bolts, and more.

Are you maximizing the tool’s versatility?

Knowledge of a tool’s full ability is also key to saving time and limiting redundancy in your toolbox. Pressing tools are a good example of this. Plumbers appreciate press tools because they help save time on connections and they eliminate the need for soldering. Some press tools can do more than just press pipe connections. For example, RIDGID has designed its press tools to be multipurpose. With the standard press tool, you can also snap soil pipe up to 4 inches and shear 1 5/8-inch and 13/16-inch strut — all you need are the proper attachments.

How reliable are the tools you buy?

Any tool is a timesaver if it’s reliable. Think about the tools you’ve owned the longest. What tools push through a hard job and don’t break? What brand is a one-year tool or two-year tool versus a lifetime of performance? When you’re constantly having tools break down or break, and you’re investing time and money to replace or repair them, that’s a waste. Buying reliable, proven tools is the best timesaver and moneymaker. A strong warranty program is nice, but if the tool is always breaking, even if the repairs are free, that downtime will cost you money.

Are you buying tools for today or tomorrow?

This question plays off the reliability factor. Sometimes cost is a hard line that you can’t cross. But when you can, always consider your long-term plans. You might buy a smaller drain cleaner because it costs less initially. Yet, you know that the larger commercial drain cleaner will allow you to do more jobs and build your business in the future. Which is a better investment? Tool redundancy has its place, but for higher-cost items it can be a drain on expenses and a sore spot if in one year your small drain cleaner is collecting dust in a warehouse. 

Timesaving equals more jobs and that means more income. There are many ways to adjust your tool inventory to accomplish this. 

About the Author

J.C. Tiller is the North Texas territory manager for RIDGID, a part of Emerson’s professional tools portfolio that also includes the Greenlee brand. RIDGID is a global manufacturer of more than 300 tools, trusted by professional trades in over 100 countries. Learn more at RIDGID.com


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