The right tool for the job

Tool Kit

Someone once said “It’s always recommended that you treat your new electrical tool kit like a woman would treat her purse. Always know where it is and treasure its contents even when lending something.” Apprentices, as well as some professionals can leave tools behind, and if they move from location to location, never get their tools back.

Your tool belt and pouch will keep the tools organized, easy to find, and enable you to reach the tool that you need. You should have another pouch on your belt that is for holding screws and other small parts. Try to have one with at least three pockets.

Time to fill that electrical tool kit

  • Lineman’s Pliers - Heavy duty pliers for general use in bending, cutting, crimping, pulling wire and twisting off tie wraps.
  • Chordless Drill - used for boring holes in various materials.
  • Side Cutters - Used to cut smaller gaug wires or to cut off tie wraps.
  • Cable Cutters - More powerful than regular pliers used to cut large conductors and smaller cable. Be sure to use these only on copper and aluminum. Also known as “eagle beaks”.
  • Crimping Pliers - Used to install butt splices and Sta-kons. Be sure to get a pair that has the insulated and non -insulated option.
  • Needle Nose Pliers - Used for gripping in tight spaces, I find these work best when the pliers are rough at the end.
  • Vise-Grips - Comes in handy as an extra support, especially when working alone.
  • Wire Strippers - Available in many different sizes, used to strip the insulation from the wire without damaging the wire as long as the proper size is selected.
  • Hex Keys Metric - Used to tighten electrical termination lugs.
  • Electrician Scissors - Used for cutting thick gaug wire.
  • Tape Measure - Used for measuring strut, conduit and tray and many other things. A 25-foot tape measure should be sufficient for any task.
  • Electrician Hammer - Hammer/Pry nails and to pound stuff.
  • Crescent Wrench - Handy when nut size isn’t known, this specific wrench has a good set of jaws that won’t lock up.
  • Hack Saw - Used to cut strut, conduit and cable.
  • Torpedo Level - Magnetized for convenience and accurate readings.
  • Tri-Square - Used to make accurate cut lines for a straight edge.
  • Tin Snips - Used to cut straight edge in sheet metal.
  • Channellocks - Used to tighten conduit, conduit fittings, gang boxes and connectors. Purchase three different sizes.
  • Wrench Set - Speed wrenches are well worth it, most commonly used 7/16, 1/2, 9/16.
  • Nut Drivers - Used where a wrench can’t, most common sizes 1/4, 5/16, 7/16, 1/2, and 9/16.
  • Variable Screwdriver - Used for various types of screws and terminals.
  • Socket Set - Most commonly used sizes are 3/8, 7/16, 1/2, and 9/16
  • Skinning Knife - Used to strip cable and insulation
  • Multimeter - Can test volts AC/DC, Amps, and resistance. (Note this may not be required until 3rd year but is very handy to have even as a 1st year)