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9 Essential Tools and Accessories Every Professional Electrician Should have in their Toolbox
As a professional electrician, your productivity and safety depend on having the right tools to tackle any maintenance or repair job. Building a comprehensive professional electrician toolkit isn’t easy or inexpensive. It makes sense to start with the tools you use commonly in your projects, and build your collection in time.
Working in the electrical field requires proper training and a high level of professionalism in tacking electrical repair and maintenance needs in order to prevent unwanted incidents. Have the right electrical tools in order to complete your repair easily and quickly is what separates a good electrician from the rest.
The following are 9 tools and accessories every professional electrician should own. Although the initial investment is not negligible, these tools will save you money and make you more productive from day one.
One of the most important electrician tools is the voltage tester. If an electrical appliance isn’t working, you can use this tool to determine if the appliance is damaged or if the cause is related to the lack of an electrical current. It can also provide more safety by allowing you to check for a current after you’ve turned off a circuit breaker.
The biggest benefit of a multimeter is its ability to test different electrical measurement properties. These include resistance, current, and AC or DC voltage. This ability makes it easy to troubleshoot electrical breakdowns. A multimeter can also test your local power sources and switches. There are digital and analog multimeters available to meet your professional needs.
Electrical repairs often require the removal of wire insulation. In case your wire stripper doesn't have a cutter built-in, using a high-quality wire cutter can make it easy to remove damaged wiring during many common electrical jobs. Wire cutters with insulated handles is always a good investment, as they preserve the functionality of regular wire cutters, while providing protection against electrical shock.
In addition to cutting wire insulation, some electrical wires will also need to be stripped. Wire strippers vary in functionality, from those that feature precise holes for each gauge of wire, to automatic wire strippers that self-adjust to accommodate a wide range of wire gauges. Many models also feature a wire cutter and crimper built-in.
Wire nuts are simple, but essential, tools for your electrician’s toolkit. Keeping wire nuts on hand at all times is good practice to ensure that you can complete your electrical repair without the need for additional materials. They can be used to fasten multiple wires and come in a variety of shapes and sizes to suit your needs. They are made from a combination of plastic and a coiled insert made of metal. The insert is what allows the nut to hold the wires together and maintain the electrical current.
Screwdrivers are essential in any toolbox. Your toolbox should have a variety of sizes in slotted, Phillips and square recess head design. For electricians, using insulated screwdrivers prevents the risk of electrical shock when working with live currents. Insulated screwdrivers can typically withstand up to 1,000 volts.
Insulated Lineman’s Pliers
Electricians use lineman’s pliers to twist, bend, cut, and grip electrical wiring. The design of this must-have tool enables it to create a high degree of force and increased accuracy, which helps with a wide range of operations. The tapered outside edges are suitable for reaming the rough edge of conduits, or clean sharp metal from inside a junction box.
Insulated Needle-Nose Pliers
Needle-Nose Pliers are used in a variety of trades in addition to electrical repair This tool is ideal for reaching in confined areas to access and pull wires and cables that are stuck. Needle nose pliers also allow professional electricians to hold and cut wires. . The unique design of this tool provides you with a high level of control and accuracy. It has a cutting edge that makes the tool versatile for any electrician.
A battery tester is another valuable tool for troubleshooting during an electrical repair job. Without the battery tester it can be difficult to determine if a faulty battery is to blame for the problem. Also, if you have spare batteries to use for replacement, you can use a battery tester to determine if they can still be used, which helps reduce the waste that occurs when purchasing new batteries.
No electrician’s toolbox is complete without electrical tape. This tape allows you to insulate electrical wiring and is made of vinyl or plastic. It’s an elastic material that makes it sensitive to pressure and provides long lasting insulation properties. Some types of electrical type are made with fiberglass cloth and are typically used for class H insulation.