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Top 5 Essential Power Tools for the Born to Build®

If you have building in your blood, the power tool section of McCoy's can make you feel like a kid in a candy store. From drills and sanders to saws and nail guns, there are so many power tools you can add to your collection. If you're just starting out or wanting to grow your power tool collection, understanding how to safely use these tools can be a bit intimidating. But rest assured, our power tool guide and safety tips will help ensure you are safe and productive at all your home improvement jobs from hanging up some family photos to building a new deck.

Top 5 Power Tools


There’s no such thing as too many tools in our book! But if you’re just discovering you’re Born to Build®, let us guide you on the top 5 power tools we recommend for your collection. (Yes, you can use this as an excuse to replace an old tool.)

    1. Power Drill- A power drill operates by spinning customizable drill bits with an electric motor powered by a cord or battery. The drill bits can drill holes in wood, metal, or plastic. You can also use screwdriver bits to speed up any job - big or small. Keep a drill bit kit on hand, so you have all the sizes and types of drill bits you might need, whether you are drilling pilot holes into drywall for a shelf or fixing up a doghouse.
    2. Orbit Sander- An orbit sander works by rotating grit sandpaper (from extra-fine to coarse) with an engine powered by a cord or battery at high speeds to quickly smooth surfaces. There are two kinds of orbit sanders: regular or random. Regular orbit sanders move the sandpaper in a circular motion, while random sanders rotate the sandpaper randomly, which does not leave cross-grain marks. If you have wood furniture that needs resurfacing or wood floors that need prepping for a fresh coat of stain, an orbit sander is ideal. It can also easily remove paint from wood or metal at top speed.
  1. Angle Grinder- An angle grinder is a versatile tool that operates with an engine, powered by a cord or battery, which rotates different types of discs to perform a variety of tasks. It spins the disc between 2,800 to 12,000 revolutions per minute (rpm). It can cut through metal, brick, tile, or stone, and it can sharpen blades for lawn equipment. It can also clean or polish metals or stones. You can use an angle grinder to cut tile for a bathroom or kitchen remodel, cut pipes for plumbing, or to cut stone or bricks to build a fire pit or garden path.
  2. Nail Gun- A nail gun, commonly called a nailer, uses either electricity or compressed air in a pneumatic nailer, to shoot nails at top speed into different surfaces. There are different gauges of nail guns. A higher gauge means a thinner nail. Popular choices are 15- to 18-gauge nail guns or a framing nailer, which is used for more heavy-duty jobs, as it uses eight- to 12-gauge nails. Nail guns save you a tremendous amount of time when you’re tackling those big projects such as installing new baseboards, tiling a roof, or laying wood floors.
  3. Jigsaw- A jigsaw is a saw fitted with a blade that rapidly moves up and down and can cut through almost any material including wood, metal, plastic, or even steel on a curve or bevel. A jigsaw makes perfectly straight cuts too, and you can change the blade to fit whatever material you are cutting. The blades are measured by teeth per inch (TPI) with a higher number of TPI resulting in a smoother cut. You will need a specialty blade if you are cutting through something other than wood. Jigsaws are the perfect tool for cutting shapes in wood, such as a round coffee tabletop or a sign for your kids’ playroom.

Power Tool Safety Tips


  1. The number one safety tip for all our builders and DIYers is to read the manual for all of your power tools before you use them. Take the time to do this! You won’t regret it, but you could regret not reading the manual if an accident happens.
  2. Turn the power off of any power tool when maintaining it. Whether you are changing drill bits on a power drill, replacing sandpaper on an orbit sander, or changing the discs on an angle grinder, turning off the power will ensure you don’t mistakenly turn the tool on while touching a moving part.
  3. Remember to dress for home improvement work. Avoid wearing loose clothing and jewelry that could snag in moving parts. Keep your hair out of the way, if you have long hair. Wear eye protection and work gloves, a dust mask for messy jobs, and ear protection to protect your hearing.
  4. Make sure you have a clean workspace. You don’t want to trip on a mess on your floor. It also helps you work faster if you have all your supplies readily available.
  5. Make sure tools are in good working order. If you have power tools with cords, double-check the electrical cords to make sure they are in good condition with no cracks or tears. Clean all your tools after each use, so they are ready to go when you are.
  6. Keep your drill bits, sandpaper, blades, and nails stocked and organized. Most power tool supplies come in organized containers. Yes, it’s worth the time to properly put them back in their containers. This keeps your supplies clean and helps you find what you need. Store your power tools in their containers, in a garage or shed that is free of excessive moisture, as this can cause your tools to rust.
  7. If you have battery operated tools, charge all your batteries after each use, and keep an extra battery on hand, fully charged, so you never run out of power. This will prevent a power tool from stopping mid-use, which could be dangerous.

You can stop daydreaming about your home improvement projects and start checking them off your “to-do” list with a collection of power tools on hand. Whether you’re looking to start a new collection, or you want to enhance your current one, we have plenty for you to choose from here at McCoy’s, along with the proper safety gear you need to get you busy building safely and efficiently.