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The Top 12 Brands for Electrician Tools

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Gigly team, Marketing at Gigly
Male electrician

Every electrician needs tools.

If you’ve ever spent time around a seasoned electrician, you may have even heard them say that “an electrician is only as good as their tools!”

Honestly, there’s some truth to this.

If you buy cheaply made tools, they’re much more likely to break or fail on the job — and that won’t do.

Broken or malfunctioning tools will invariably lead to frustration, setbacks, and an overall lack of efficiency.

Buying ‘cheap’ electrician’s tools repeatedly won’t help your wallet or your business. At that point, you would spend more than if you had purchased the right tool the first time.

If you’re getting started on the path to becoming an electrician, you may be wondering — what brands should you be looking at as you put your first toolbox together?

That is a great question! In this post, you will learn about the top 12 brands that many professional electricians use around the globe.

These brands have been tried and tested, and they’re proven to work day in and day out.

Let’s dive in and talk about it.


List of Essential Electrician’s Tools

Let’s start with a list of essential tools that every electrician needs.

Regardless of the type of job site you’re working on, these are the tools you’ll need in your tool kit from day one:

  • Pliers (needle nose pliers, lineman pliers, long-nose pliers, etc.)
  • Wrenches (various types)
  • Side cutters
  • Crimps
  • Gloves
  • Nut drivers
  • Saws (both powered and unpowered, various types)
  • Utility knife
  • Claw hammer
  • Screwdrivers
  • Wire strippers
  • Cable cutters
  • Voltage testers and circuit testers
  • Receptacle tester
  • Pipe reamer
  • Tape measure
  • Torpedo level
  • Cordless drill and drill bits
  • A tool belt, tool pouch, and tool bag
  • Connectors
  • Circuit breaker finder
  • Conduit bender

Now that you know what tools you need, you’ll need to find the best brand for each piece of equipment.

Related: How to Become a Self-Employed Electrician


12 Top Brands For Electricians Tools

That’s right; it’s time to talk about some of the best industry brands for electrical tools.

One thing to keep in mind is that many of these brands offer the same basic types of tools. Therefore, figuring out which brand to buy specifically is really up to you.

You can test out different brands, ask other electricians what they use, or even read online reviews to determine which option may work best for you.

But in all of our research, these 12 brands consistently stood out as the top tool brands preferred by professional electricians worldwide.

1. Knipex

Knipex is well known in the industry for its world-class pliers, hand tools, cable connectors, and more.

They’ve been in business for 132 years, and they’re still going strong.

Whether you need wire stripping tools, side-cutting pliers, crimpers, etc., these are top-level products befitting the quality that a master electrician would expect.

Knipex manufactures all of its tools in Germany, and they all ship with a lifetime limited warranty.

2. Channellock

Channellock is a well-known manufacturer of pliers, screwdrivers, specialty tools, wrenches, and toolsets. Their Channellock pliers remain famous.

They’ve been around since 1886, so they have a longstanding reputation among American construction and trades workers for their quality and reliability.

Their tools are designed for trades specialists, including electrical workers. So whether you’re a beginner, journeyman, or master electrician — Channellock has a reputation for building high-performance products.

All of their tools are manufactured on American soil (in Pennsylvania, specifically). Additionally, Channellock ships all of its products with a limited lifetime warranty.

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3. Wera

Wera creates high-quality hand tools for professionals in many fields — though they’re perhaps best known for their screwdrivers and ratchets and ergonomic handles.

The company has been around since 1936 and operates with the slogan “be a tool rebel.”

Wera builds these tools in Germany and the Czech Republic and ships with a limited lifetime warranty.

4. Klein Tools

Klein Tools is well known throughout the trades for crafting a diverse range of high-quality tools.

Founded in 1857, this is another all-American company that has been doing business with professional tradespeople for quite some time.

Not only do they craft some of the most widely used collections of hand tools on the market, but they also build things like volt testers, HVAC tools, electrical wiring tools, multimeters, non-contact voltage testers, fish tapes, and more.

Klein crafts all of its tools in the United States. Plus, they all ship with limited manufacturer warranties.

5. Stanley

Stanley Tools builds a limited collection of reliable hand tools, though they’re probably best known for their Stanley FatMax Tape Measure.

They’ve been in business for 175 years, and professionals have used these tools to help build (and repair) many parts of the world.

The company produces all of its tools in the USA, with materials sourced globally. They also ship with a full lifetime warranty from the manufacturer.

6. Milwaukee

If you’ve ever set foot on a professional construction job site, you’ve doubtlessly seen (and probably used) some Milwaukee power tools.

They’ve been in business for over 85 years and are still going as strong as ever.

They manufacture a full range of power tool products, including cordless drills, saws, vacuum cleaners, etc. They also offer some select hand tools.

Milwaukee crafts these tools in the USA, Europe, or China, depending on exactly which products you buy.

Additionally, all Milwaukee tools come with a warranty — different tools come with different warranty options.

Discover: How to Excel as a Subcontractor in Any Profession

7. Dewalt

Dewalt handsaw

Dewalt is another well-known and respected cordless and corded power tool brand among trades professionals, including carpenters, plumbers, and electricians.

However, they also offer a select range of hand tools — such as hammers, measuring tapes, and screwdrivers.

They’ve been in business since 1924. Interestingly enough, Dewalt’s very first product was a universal woodworking machine known as the Dewalt Wonder-Worker.

Dewalt produces select products in the USA. As a general rule, their tools come with a three-year limited warranty.

8. Estwing

While Estwing is known for manufacturing a few different types of hand tools, their BIG claim to fame is their truly famous Estwing hammer.

Estwing builds world-class hammers in just about any fashion that may be required. This selection includes nail hammers, bricklayer hammers, a range of specialty hammers, and more. If you need a hammer, the odds are that Estwing has the right tool for the job.

Founded in 1923, they’ve single-handedly supplied high-quality hammers to generations of American builders.

All of their products are built in the USA — in Rockford, Illinois, to be specific. They also offer a full warranty against “failure in normal use.”

9. Rigid

Rigid is best known for its power tools, adjustable wrenches, hand tools, and tubing tools; all manufactured to extremely high-quality standards.

However, their biggest claim to fame was their historical invention of the red Rigid Pipe Wrench, which has been around for over 80 years and is used by tradespeople in various fields around the world.

Regardless of what kinds of lugs, light fixtures, cut-offs, or fasteners you’ll be working with, a good chance that Rigid builds a tool for the job exists.

Rigid maintains a plant in Ohio, but the company now produces most of its tools in China. They also offer a comprehensive lifetime warranty.

10. Irwin

Irwin is probably one of the most well-known tool brands today, especially where hand tools are concerned.

They’ve been around since 1885 — since the development of the very first Irwin Auger Bit. However, it wasn’t long until they came out with their iconic line of Vise-Grip locking tools.

Nearly anyone who grew up in a garage or with a parent who practiced a trade has, at some point, used an Irwin vice grip, wrench, or pair of pliers.

Therefore, it’s not so surprising that electricians of our current generation choose to utilize these iconic tools on a pretty broad scale.

Irwin used to have a reputation as an American-produced brand. However, in 2008, they did move a portion of their production to China to keep their prices competitive. Irwin hand tools also carry a full lifetime guarantee.

11. Fluke

Fluke is most well known for its diverse, high-quality range of testers and meters.

Some of these include:

  • Digital multimeters
  • Thermal cameras
  • Electrical testers
  • Clamp meters
  • Industrial ethernet testers
  • IR thermometers
  • Portable handheld oscilloscopes
  • Fiber light detectors
  • Photovoltaic testers
  • Solar PV testing equipment
  • And more

Fluke has been in business since 1948, starting at its first headquarters in Everett, Washington.

If you’ve ever been to a job site where professionals needed to use sensitive testing gear, you’ve probably seen (or possibly even used) a Fluke tester.

They produce their products in the USA, the UK, Asia, and The Netherlands; they also carry a limited lifetime warranty.

12. Greenlee

Greenlee is known for producing all kinds of products, including pullers, knockout kits, cable cutters, drill bits, and many other tools in a wide range of different categories.

They’ve been making world-class tools for over 154 years — though technically, they are a subsidiary of Emerson Electric.

All Greenlee tools are produced in Louisville, Kentucky. Most of their products also ship with a lifetime warranty.

They operate with the tagline “building America.”


What About Tool Insurance?

Set of tools

Electricians, like most tradespeople, spend quite a bit of money on tools to help them perform vital tasks associated with their work.

With this heavy investment also comes a certain measure of risk. Unfortunately, sometimes things happen to tools such as theft, damage, or loss.

While the manufacturer’s warranty may cover some instances of these things, it certainly won’t cover you in every circumstance.

For example, electricians, carpenters, and concrete contractors have had their entire tool trailers stolen by criminals.

And in such cases, it’s essential to protect yourself and your investment from the financial hardship that’s sure to follow such a loss.

And that’s where insurance comes in.

What Type of Insurance Do Electricians Use for Their Tools?

Electricians generally protect their tools with a type of policy known as Inland Marine Insurance.

Now, this may sound confusing — but it’s pretty simple.

This type of insurance covers products, materials, and equipment that travel by land — usually by truck or train. However, it also protects equipment housed by a third party (like a storage locker at a job site).

The two most frequent losses covered by inland marine insurance coverage are losses due to collisions and cargo theft.

But it also specifically covers construction and contracting equipment.

As an electrician who’s getting ready to invest some serious money into your tools, you’ll want to find a qualified local insurance agent to get a policy set up to cover your investment.

Getting your insurance in order should get you on the path to protecting this vital business asset and safeguarding your business from related losses.

Read our guide on Insurance for Electricians: What You Need to learn more about the types of insurance that may benefit your business.


Conclusion

Now that you’ve gotten the 411 on the top 12 electrician tool brands available, it’s time to put together your professional toolbox.

Of course, expect a bit of trial as you test different brands and choose your favorites for yourself. That’s part of the fun of it, though, right?

Thanks for visiting us here at Gigly.

When you’re in the market for personal benefits to help cover you as a professional contractor, freelancer, gig worker, or entrepreneur, please don’t hesitate to let us know.

We supply independent tradespeople with various benefits — from medical benefits to finance and legal tools.

We’d love the opportunity to talk to you about your independent worker benefits options. You spend money on your tools and profession, but you should remember that you’re the most crucial piece of equipment you have.