Best Electrical Tools and Supplies

Best Electrical Tools and Supplies

man removing an old ceiling fan

Now before we get started with this section I want to be clear that we are not trying to turn into electricians.  Our goal is to work safely around electrical wiring that is already existing in the space that we are working in. The reality is that many renovation and remodeling projects will require you to work around electrical wiring. In these scenarios, there are a few tools that you need in order to ensure that you are working safely.

If you are in a rush heres the quick list of must-have electrical tools. And if you would like to learn more about each one, and how they can make your job safer and easier, then keep reading.

Klein Tools Non-Contact Voltage Tester (click to see on Amazon)

Fluke Non-Contact Voltage Tester (click to see on Amazon)

Sperry Instruments GFCI Outlet Tester (click to see on Amazon)

Klein Tools 8-16 Wire Cutter (click to see on Amazon)

Gardner Bender Receptical Spacers (click to see on Amazon)

EFIX Electrical Wire Connectors (click to see on Amazon)

 

Outlet tester

 An outlet tester is an excellent tool for determining whether or not an outlet is properly wired and if there are any existing issues with the outlet. Most outlet testers also work for GFCI outlets which are found in kitchen countertops and in bathrooms and home exteriors. By plugging the outlet tester into the outlet and pressing the test button you will be able to  gain basic information about the outlet without having to remove it from the wall and troubleshoot. It’s not uncommon for electrical outlets to go bad over time and need to be replaced. This tool can help you quickly diagnose a problem so that you can have some insight into what direction you need to go in to resolve the issue.

 

 GFCI outlets are notorious for going bad. They also frequently have lights on them which can add to the confusion of installation and replacement. Sometimes the lights don’t work and sometimes the lights burn out even though the outlet is still functioning properly. Outlet tester who’ll tell you whether or not the GFCI is working right regardless of what the lights are doing on the outlet

 

man holding electrical voltage tester

Electrical Stick Tester

 Electrical stick tester will allow the user to determine whether or not a wire currently has power traveling through it or not.  The stick tester looks like a thick pen or marker. You turn the stick tester on and place the and of the stick tester directly against the wire that you are testing.  If there is still power on the electrical wiring the stick will flash red this is an indicator to stop and turn off the power before you proceed. If the power is off the stick tester Wolf show green which means that you are good to move forward with your work. Some of the  scenarios where you may find yourself needing one of these is: replacing a nonworking outlet or switch, replacing and overhead light fixture, replacing a garbage disposal, replacing a dishwasher, or just testing a random wire that you may find in the property in an attic crawlspace or basement

 

Electrical Pliers

 When I first got started in remodeling and repair  I got by with doing like electrical repairs using a set of needle nose pliers that I already owned. However as time went on I realized that even though I could technically get the job done with these there was a much better way to do it. Electrical flyers are thinner than standard pliers which make them much easier to work with electrical wiring.  Electrical flyers serve several different functions. Number one they make bending and cramping wires around electrical screws much easier and faster. Most electrical pliers also have different slots in the T that allow you to quickly strip several different sizes of wiring. This is also a huge timesaver.

 

Outlet spacers

 If you are installing tile backsplash or ship lap paneling or any type  of project that will increase the thickness of the wall there is a good chance you will have to adjust your electrical outlets and switches.  The additional thickness from the world or tile on the wall often leaves the rough outlet box (often blue) recess to fall back into the wall to make a good connection with both your switch or outlet screws and your switch or outlet cover. Our spacers are an easy solution to remedy this problem and keep your project moving forward. No will will

 

Wire nuts

 I know that virtually any light fixture or electrical appliance that has to be hardwired will come with its own wire nuts. However most of them will come with a really cheap orange ones that are also slightly undersized in my opinion.  The ones that come in the packaging with the fixture often take a little bit more effort to try and get them to fit snugly and pass my slip test. I like to use my own wire nuts because I find that it makes it easier for me to get a good solid twisting connection on wiring with a lot less effort which saves me lot of time and leaves less room for error.