The Best Basic Home Toolkit HDX 76-Piece Homeowner's Tool Set
After 70 hours spent researching and testing home toolkits, we found that Home Depot’s $20 HDX 76-Piece Homeowner's Tool Set is the best for most homeowners. The compact HDX set features all the essentials at a lower price than competitors charge, and it omits the useless filler tools found in other kits. Plus, it has the best adjustable wrench out of all the kits we tested.   Read More >
The Best Christmas Tree Stand Krinner Christmas Tree Genie XXL
We looked at new Christmas tree stands for 2014, but none came close to beating the Krinner Christmas Tree Genie XXL. Its fastening mechanism is superior to any other we tested; it only needs one person for set up and can accommodate trees up to 12 feet tall. Plus, there's a 2.5-gallon water reservoir with a water level gauge to keep your tree hydrated.   Read More >
The Best Step Stool Gorilla EasyReach Aluminum 2-step
We took a hard look at new competition in the world of step stools, but it was the new version of last year's favorite Gorilla EasyReach 2-step that came out on top. It's a great size for most use cases, is surprisingly light, and gives you a bigger lift than other stools we tested. Plus, this newer version features a built-in tool shelf.    Read More >
The Best Adjustable Wrench Channellock 8WCB WideAzz
We attached garden hoses and assembled furniture with 13 different adjustable wrenches to find the best for your home tool box. The Channellock 8WCB WideAzz is 8 inches with the jaw capacity of a much larger wrench and a thin, tapered nose for getting into tight spots.    Read More >
The Best Adjustable Pliers Irwin GV10 10-inch GrooveLock Pliers
A great home toolbox needs a solid pair of adjustable pliers. After considering over 50 models, the $14 Irwin GV10 10-inch Groovelock Pliers came out on top due to easy jaw-size adjustment and comfortable handles.   Read More >
The Best Bike Pump (Floor Standing) Lezyne Steel Floor Drive
If you ride a bike more than a couple times a year, the $44 Lezyne Steel Floor Drive is the floor pump to buy. We reached this conclusion talking to a former bike pump designer, a mechanic who supports riders in the Tour de France, and the world’s preeminent bike repair manual author. We also ran tests on 15 different pumps. Paying just a couple bucks more than the absolute minimum gets you a pump that is extremely easy to use, thanks to what is far and away the simplest and most secure pump head. And because the Lezyne’s wooden handle, steel barrel, and heavy aluminum base are much more durable than bargain-basement pumps, odds are that it’ll last a lot longer.    Read More >
The Best Utility Knife Milwaukee Fastback II
If you’re looking for a utility knife for general around-the-house use, we recommend the Milwaukee Fastback II ($15). After 26 hours of research and hands-on testing of 21 different knives, we found that, simply put, this knife has it all. It can be easily (and quickly) opened and closed with one hand. It has a comfortable grip with all the right contours and finger notches. Changing blades is easy and it has a nice, springy belt hook. For increased safety, the knife locks in both the open and closed position. And finally, despite its thin profile, it still has room to store one additional blade.    Read More >
The Best Hammer Estwing E3-16C
After testing 11 hammers and getting the opinions of two working carpenters and a former editor at This Old House and Popular Mechanics, we recommend the Estwing E3-16C, a 16-ounce, curved claw, steel-handled hammer for general around-the-house hammer needs.    Read More >
The Best Stud Finder for Around the House Magic Stud Finder Plus
If you need to find a stud in your walls (and you eventually will), we recommend the Magic Stud Finder Plus. It’s reliable and accurate, and because it’s magnet-based, it doesn’t need batteries or any kind of calibration. Unlike other stud finders, the Magic Stud Finder Plus allows you to mark multiple points on your wall without having to use a pencil. Because locating studs isn’t an exact science and to do it accurately, you need to double and triple-check your work, this is a feature that elevates it above the rest.    Read More >
The Best Picture Hangers 30-pound Floreat
From this point forward, I’m only using 30-pound Floreat picture hangers to hang things on my wall. After 25 hours of research and testing, it became clear that they’re the best. In addition to our own testing, I spoke with four different art galleries and a professional art installer and all of them exclusively use Floreats. The hangers are also highly recommended in articles written by art hangers and custom picture framers.    Read More >
The Best Tape Measure 25-foot Stanley PowerLock
After over 25 hours of research and testing, we found that the 25-foot Stanley PowerLock is the best tape measure to have on hand for general needs around the house. It’s not going to wow anyone with snazzy features like an on-board pencil sharpener or a space age rubber over-mold, but features aren’t what you want in a tape measure. You want something that’s durable and affordable, with a working blade lock and a solid belt clip. The PowerLock has these. It also has a sterling reputation attached to a proven 50-year track record.    Read More >
The Best Multi-Bit Screwdriver MegaPro 211R2C36RD 13-In-1 Ratcheting Driver
The MegaPro 13-in-1 Multi-Bit Ratcheting Screwdriver is the perfect one-stop screwdriver to have at hand around the house. After over 22 hours of research and hands-on testing of 13 different models, I found that the MegaPro has all of the right features: nice ratcheting action; smart, accessible bit storage; excellent bit selection; and a comfortable handle.   Read More >
The Best Drill for Common Household Projects Porter-Cable 12-Volt
If someone were to ask me to recommend a solid cordless drill for general use around the house, I would tell them to get the 12-volt Porter-Cable Drill/Driver. After about 30 hours of research and testing, I found it to be ideal choice due to its nice combination of power, weight and size, all for a fair price.   Read More >