01 Mar 2017

The top tools all self-builders should have at their disposal


Charlotte Bird, self-build expert at Buildworks by Jewson, offers her advice on the top tools self-builders should have at their disposal – from absolute necessities to the best multi-purpose tool which no builder should be without.


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Whether you’re handy with a hammer or a DIY novice, taking on a self-build project is no mean feat. While self-build doesn’t necessarily mean ‘build it yourself’, you’ll need a few tools in your arsenal at all times. From the absolute essentials to the tools that save you time, these top picks will support you in creating your self-build dream.

Tape measure

While it may seem like an obvious choice, a tape measure is not a tool to be taken for granted. Regardless of your budget, you’ll want to keep your materials costs as low as possible, and that means being diligent with your measurements. As the old saying goes – “measure twice, cut once” to minimise waste and keep costs down.

Safety equipment

Regardless of how much manual labour you’ll be doing as part of your project, you will be spending a lot of time on a building site and will therefore need to take the necessary safety precautions. PPE (personal protective equipment) can include items such as hard hats, gloves, boots, eye protection, high-visibility clothing and more, depending on the environment you’re working in. Your local builders’ merchant can offer you guidance on exactly what you need.

Combi drill

If you’re looking for a multi-use power tool, look no further than a combi drill. Also known as an impact drill, it offers a variety of functions thanks to its interchangeable drill bits and is suitable for use on a wide range of building materials including wood, stone and metal. A combi drill is the optimum product for any self-builder looking for a robust, all-round power tool.


Day to day, we all have those moments where we’ve put something down and forgotten where we’ve left it. Granted, larger items such as hammers and screwdrivers are somewhat easier to find, but a toolbox for supplies like screws, nails and, of course, your tape measure, will help make your life on site that little bit easier. Consider using one with different compartments for each product to save yourself time and streamline the building work.

Estimating service

Not all tools are the kind you can store in a toolbox. Estimator services can assist you in calculating the quantities of materials you need to complete your project based on your exact design and specification. They can indicate roughly how much you can expect to be spending on your project and therefore help you make a better informed decision about what materials to use and where. Some services, such as Build Aviator by Jewson, can also factor in labour costs, hire rates and schedule of works to give a more complete estimate.

The Build Aviator quantity take off service, often used by professional builders, can also be linked to a Standard Assessment Procedure (SAP) to ensure all products used are compliant and that your build meets the relevant Building Regulations.

Buildworks by Jewson helps make your entire build process easier by linking the design phase of your project to the pricing and ordering of building materials.

Further information....

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