Whether you are a professional carpenter or electrician, or you are an avid do it yourselfer, a tool bag is an absolute must. A tool bag keeps your tools neat, organized and protected, and allows you to know where they are when you need them. Plus, a tool bag makes it easy to transport your tools from job to job so that you can always be sure that you have the right items on hand without having to fumble with them or worry about running back and forth to get the tools that you need.
Tool bags are literally a dime a dozen because there are countless options available, which gives you a lot of choices; however, with so many options, finding the best tool bag for your specific needs can be a bit of a challenge. To help you simplify the process and find the best tool bag, we have put together this handy buyer’s guide, which is offers a ton of valuable information that we hope will make your quest for finding the best tool bag a lot easier and a lot more successful.
Types of Tool Bags
The types of tool bags available can be classified by the method used to carry them and their size. There are three main types of tool bags:
- Tool bags
- Tool pouches
- Tool belts
Too bags are much lighter and easier to carry than a conventional toolbox, which makes them much easier to use. Generally, they boast soft, flexible sides, which allows them to fit into more compact and irregularly shaped spaces. Tool bags also tend to feature middle sections and side pockets; the middle section is usually large enough to accommodate larger tools, while the side pockets are intended to hold smaller tools and accessories, such as nails and screws. Tool bags are usually made from nylon, leather or burlap.
Similar to tool bags, tool pouches are intended to make it easier to tote around tools so that they can be kept on hand. Tool pouches can be anchored, fixed in place, or they can be movable. Anchored pouches are usually worn in the front, while movable pouches tend to be worn to the side or back. Tool pouches offer several pockets that vary in size from small to large. Smaller pouches can have as few as four pockets, while larger pouches can have as many as 18 pockets. Tool pouches are usually constructed of leather.
Tool belts, as the name suggests, are essentially smaller tool bags that in the form of a belt. They wrap around the waist, keeping your tools within arm’s reach. Tool belts offer a range of pockets and loops, which can be used to carry tools of various shapes and sizes. Tool belts can also provide back support, which can help to reduce strain and fatigue.
Factors to Consider When Purchasing a Tool Bag
There are several factors that you should take into consideration before purchasing a tool bag. These factors will help you choose the best tool bag for your specific needs. We think that by taking the following factors into consideration, you will be better able to purchase the best possible tool bag.
Size matters when it comes to the tool bag you choose. Do you intend on carrying a lot of tools around, or do you plan on carrying only a select few tools? While larger tool bags certainly carry more, they are also heavier and more cumbersome. Smaller tool bags are lighter and easier to tote around; however, they offer limited space and usually don’t accommodate larger tools.
You also want to consider the type of material the tool bag is made of. Generally, the materials that tool bags are constructed out of include canvas, leather, nylon and poly fabric. All of these materials are strong and durable, however, some are easier to clean than others; leather holds up great and looks wonderful, but it can be difficult to clean, for example.
Number of Pockets and Loops
You should also consider how many pockets and loops the tool bag offers. The more pockets and loops it has, the more individual storage space you will have, which will make it easier to keep your tools and accessories in order. When considering the number of pockets, you should also consider the devices used to close them. Zippers are commonly used, and they are easy to open and close, though you may prefer pockets that have a snap closure.
If you are purchasing an actual tool bag, consider whether or not you want a shoulder strap, and if you do, you should also consider the length of the shoulder strap. Generally speaking, a shoulder strap that can be easily adjusted is ideal, as you will be able to get the fit that is ideal for you.
You should also consider the weight of the tool bag. It goes without saying that the heavier the bag is prior to being loaded up, the heavier it will be when it is loaded with tools. Obviously, the heavier your tool bag is, the more difficult and cumbersome it will be to move around.
The price of the tool bag should also be a factor that you take into consideration before you start shopping. Tool bags can vary significantly in price, ranging from around $30 to upwards of $100 or more. Typically, the larger the tool bag and the more features it offers, the more expensive it will be.
Tool Bag Features
Tool bags can boast a range of features, and these features are intended to make this accessory easier to use. You may not need some of these features though, so it’s important to have an understanding of what kinds of features are available so that you can avoid paying extra for something that you don’t need.
To make larger tool bags more portable and easier to use, many of them are outfitted with wheels. Simply place the tool bag on the ground and you can easily glide it to wherever you want it to go. Do note, however, that you will still need to pick up the tool bag when you approach stairs, as pulling the bag up or down a set of stairs on its wheels can be dangerous.
Some tool bags are outfitted with reflector materials. These reflectors make you more visible, which is particularly important if you are going to be working in dimly lit spaces. Construction works that do road work would be wise to purchase a tool bag that features reflectors, as the material will make you and your tools more visible in traffic.
Water Resistant Materials
If you are going to be working in environments that are exposed to moisture, consider purchasing a tool bag that features water resistant material. These materials repel water, which will help to protect your tools from damage such as rust and corrosion.
Some tool bags are constructed with a non-tip base. These bases prevent the tool bag from tipping over when tools are added to or removed from the bag, which can certainly make things a lot more convenient for you.
If you want to really keep your tools organized, look for a tool bag that features dividers, especially in the main central compartment. Dividers will provide you with more storage options and will prevent your tools from slipping about and becoming mixed up.
Best Tool Bag Brands
There are a wealth of tool bag manufacturers, which can make the process of selecting the best tool bag for your specific needs a bit challenging. To help you weed through all the different manufacturers, we conducted extensive research and tested out several brands. After our assessment, we determined that the following brands are the best of the best.
Stanley is one of the leading names in the tool industry. This manufacturer produces a wide range of power tools, hand tools and tool accessories. We liked the variety of tool bags that Stanley had to offer, and we liked the varied price range, too.
Snap On makes some of the highest quality tool bags on the market. Their tool bags are constructed of exceptionally durable materials, offer a range of features and come in a variety of sizes, types and shapes. Snap On tool bags make carrying your tools around extremely easy and convenient.
Custom Leather Craft
If you are on the market for a genuine leather tool bag, Custom Leather Craft is an excellent option. This company uses the highest quality leather materials to construct their tool bags. The material is extremely durable and looks and feels incredible.
DEWALT is one of the leading manufacturers of power and hand tools. We liked all the options that they had to offer in their tool bag department. We also liked the bold colors and the durability of their fabrics, and how easy the fabrics are to clean.