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Advantages & Disadvantages of Hand & Power Tools

Every homeowner will come across a fair number of repair jobs. And commissioning a professional every time your garage fails or your plumbing leaks can rip a hole in your wallet. So knowing basic DIY skills is crucial. You can save moolah, and you will be able to troubleshoot. To make successful DIY repairs and home projects, you need hand and power tools. Knowing the advantages and disadvantages of hand & power tools will make you decide which is better for you.

So in this article, we’ll dabble on the pros and cons of each tool. We’ll also toss in several safety tips. So stay with us.

What are hand tools?

Hand tools, true to their namesake, are operated manually by hands. It does not require the use of a motor or electricity. These tools are quite easy and simple to use. And despite that it dates back from primitive ages, these tools are still effective.

Hammers, wrenches, knives, saw are some of the classic examples of hand tools. Every homeowner often has these stashed in their toolbox. 

What are power tools?

Power tools are operated with the use of motors and electricity. It may also require batteries for it to function. The bottom line, power tools require a source of power so that they will work.

Examples of commonly used power tools in home DIY repairs are power screwdriver, chainsaw, band saw, and impact wrench.

Pros and cons of hand tools 

Screwdrivers and screws
Image by Allan Washbrook from Pixabay

Let’s get straight to the point. Below are the advantages and disadvantages of hand tools.

Why you should use hand tools

  1. Since you can control these tools by hand, hand tools offer more precision. You have more control over how fast it goes. 
  2. Since they are manually operated, it does not require power. So if there is a blackout, you will still be able to use them.
  3. Since hand tools have fewer moving parts, they are easy to use. Hand tools are not complicated, and you don’t need a manual to be able to use them.
  4. Fewer moving parts means that there is less risk of damage to the tools. Hence, hand tools tend to last longer compared to power tools. 
  5. Hand tools are compact and lightweight. So it’s easier to carry and transport from one place to another. 

And what are the cons?

  1. It requires skills. The manipulation of hand tools is dependent on the knowledge and skills of the user. So if you don’t know how to use them, the result might not be that desirable.
  2. These are less efficient. Hand tools may take time to use compared to using power tools. It will require more time to finish your DIY home project.
  3. It can eat up your energy. Aside from eating a chunk of your time, hand tools can drain you. You physically manipulate these tools, so you’ll be spending energy using them. You need to apply force with your hands. Combine this with the extended period of work. It can really be tiring.

Pros and cons of power tools

Power drill
Photo by cetteup on Unsplash

Power tools are becoming more popular, especially in modern homes. And here the reasons why

Why you should use power tools

  1. Power tools can do complex jobs. Since power tools are composed of many moving parts, they can do hard and complex jobs easily. And some power tools don’t have a manual counterpart, such as the jackhammer. However, it may experience wear and tear with frequent use and eventually need industrial tooling repair. It is essential to regularly maintain and service your power tools to ensure they continue to function at their best and avoid costly breakdowns.
  2. It can get the job done faster. Unlike hand tools, you can carry on repairs and projects easier and faster with power tools. You don’t even need a lot of people to work in your garage.
  3. There are no special skills required. You just have to learn how to handle the tools, which is easier compared to learning a new skill in repairs.
  4. It will not drain your energy. You do not need to use force, and the tool pretty much will do the job for you. Thus, it will not tire you as hand tools will.

And these are the cons.

1. It’s more prone to damage. Since power tools have a lot of moving parts, they are more complex. And the more complex it is, the more likely it can get damaged. So it might not last longer compared to hand tools.

2. High maintenance. It has a lot of moving parts that need to be oiled and cleaned regularly. Otherwise, it might not function well, and it will fail. So you have to spend time maintaining these tools.

3. There is a higher risk of injury. Power tools are faster and powerful. So you have to handle them properly to prevent accidents and injuries.

4. They can add up to your utility bills. Power tools are rather efficient because they use power. But if you have been using them often, you will notice a spike in your utility bills. Alternatingly, if there is a blackout, you won’t be able to use them unless you have a generator. 

How to safely use hand tools and power tools

Power sander
Photo by Mick Haupt on Unsplash

Though power tools present more risk of injury, you have to practice caution when using them. And even if hand tools are less risky, you have to err on the safe side still.

And here are a few tips to keep your fingers on your hands.

  1. Always wear protective gear when workingIt should include gloves, goggles, boots, helmet, and mask as needed.
  2. Have a first aid kit handy. You never know when you’ll need one.
  3. When working with power tools, ensure that you have read the manual carefully. And make sure that you can handle the tools properly. And if in doubt or there is a lack of confidence, don’t use them.
  4. When using hand tools, ensure that you are skilled in whatever you want to do. 

Final Say

Both power and hand tools are essential in a lot of DIY repairs and projects. Knowing the proper way to use them will help you finish your repair fast and safely. Also, take note of the precautionary measures that you have to consider when using power tools. These tools can really be fast and powerful, so never take it lightly.

And even if you have more control over hand tools, do not be complacent. Make sure you are properly skilled in what you want to do. 

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