Top 8 Best Tool Box Reviews – For DIY & Professional Tradesmen
The Best Tool Boxes For The Trade & The Home DIY'er
Tool boxes have been part of our working life that it is impossible to imagine life without them. These boxes provide an organized way to store our tools and keep them from scattering during the working process and keep everything safe and to hand. Toolboxes are designed in their various shapes and sizes and if selected well will serve you for decades to come if you invest in a well constructed model.
When in the marketplace shopping for the best toolbox available, quality is a major factor. You have to inspect the quality of the toolbox to understand if it will serve your needs. Things like metal clasps, robust plastics and aluminium casing all make good features to look for.
Read through the varied reviews of different tool boxes to get a general perspective of the different kinds available and some of what we consider to be the best tool boxes.
OUR BEST PICK
Below are what we found to be the best tool boxes which we felt deserved to be included in our review:
Dirty Pro Tools™ large tool chest with drawer divider
Stanley STA194858 20-inch Metal Latch Toolbox
Stanley 1-70-326 3-in-1 Mobile Work Centre
Faithfull TBC517 Metal Cantilever Tool Box 17-inch
Stanley 195620 Galvanised Metal Toolbox 26-inch
Stanley 192902 Professional Mobile Tool Chest
Laser 3487 Tool Box 7 Tray 21"/530mm
Stanley STST1-71963 3-In-1 Tool Organiser
The following products represent some of the more trusted toolboxes. You will get to understand their various pros and cons and therefore be in a position to make an informed decision.
Below we get straight into the detailed reviews followed by a detailed buyers guide with buyers tips and what to look out for, finally we finish up with a quick summary and final conclusion with a few of our favourite most impressive models.
Let us begin:
TOOL BOX REVIEWS
Dirty Pro Tools Large Tool Chest With Draw Divider Review
OUR BEST PICK
The Dirty Pro Tool large tool chest with drawer divider is quite a looker and one impressive piece of kit which comes at a very reasonable price. The unit comes designed with castor wheels to effect easy transportation and balance the weight of the unit. The red and black toolbox has a steel frame that is able to keep up with constant use. This means it great for anyone wanting a tool box they are move around such as in a garage or workshop.
At 30kg its a fairly heavy piece of kit but has the ability to store a number of different tools. This is facilitated by the different chest and compartments available. Another great feature is that you can store the smaller tools, specially expensive ones such as laser levels etc in the lockable chest above and place the large tools in the drawers which has ball bearing runners so are super smooth. You will notice small handles that help you pull the drawers out easily which are also a nice touch.
As I have all ready mentioned, operating the drawers won’t have any snags when pulled out due to the ballpoint design and well places rollers. The drawers have anti-slip mats in them. The function of these mats is to prevent the tools from slamming at the sides when the drawer is opened/closed.
Another additional feature is the hooks installed on the side of the box. The hooks can be used to hang hats/ cords and other equipment that can’t fit inside the toolbox. Two handles are placed on either side of the toolbox to pull or push the machine from one location to the next.
The Dirty Pro Tools large tool chest is one of the best large tool boxes we have seen and worth the price as it offers unlimited storage for those with a large number of tools. We are impressed by the variation of features offers including the lockable chest. Well it is not fully professional for workmen and probably not quite up to being in a busy work garage but it can none the less do a lovely job and is more than good enough for anyone looking for a decent tool box for there own garage at home or DIY workshop .
Watch out of the castor wheels for they are not lockable. So always make sure that the unit is positioned on a flat surface to prevent it from rolling away.
Overall we think its a brilliant tool box and would make a great addition to anyone looking for a large but affordable toolbox, some similar models would cost upwards of £600 making this model seem like pocket change.
Stanley STA194858 20-inch Metal Latch Toolbox Review
The Stanley STA194858 20-inch Toolbox is an affordable toolbox that you can use to carry your tools from job to job. The box is made of durable robust plastic and can be locked when the user is not around to keep an eye on it. Two padlock eyes presented can accommodate medium padlocks securely without the risk of easy break-ins. The latches are made from metal for secure fastening which are much better than plastic latches that often break.
An ergonomic handle can be found so that the user can transport the box with ease. The handle can also be folded out of the way when you want to place something on the box or while sitting in storage. Since the unit weighs 1.7kg it shouldn’t be heavy to lift, the handle will be able to keep in position as you move.
For your smaller pieces of equipment like small screws, there are 2 compartments present. These compartments are located on top of the toolbox. They are easy to access and seal back securely. These simple compartments help keep track of any small bits and pieces you have.
Finally the unit features a removable tote tray for when you need to clean the box or you need an entire set of tools near you. It is a light box for light working conditions and great for keeping a few essential tools in instead of carry a large heavy box around with tools you probably will not use.
The Stanley STA194858 20-inch Metal Latch Toolbox would make a good starter toolbox or for anyone looking for a smaller cheap toolbox for home use. Since it is a light box it is unable to handle heavy and larger equipment.
The improvement we noticed was it has metal latches which are much better than the older platic latches that would break easily, a great improvement.
The features offered match the price of this item. If you are looking for a toolbox that your son can carry around or just store light tools, this will do fine. Light handed tool box made for light use.
Stanley 1-70-326 3-in-1 Mobile Work Centre Review
The Stanley 1-70-326 3-in-1 Mobile Work Centre is a dependable toolbox on wheels but only for lighter use and great for personal use but probably not the best choice for professional use. The large wheels balance the weight of the unit and effect easy movements. The unit consist of three sections. The larger section at the bottom is used for the larger sized tools while the middle section is perfect for small things and accessories, top holds smaller tool like screwdrivers, pliers, wire cutters ect.
The top compartment can be removed so as to offer easy access to the accessories tray amd tools at the bottom box. This is especially handy if you have a many tools that need to be transported at a go. Smaller tools that tend to get lost easily can be placed in the smaller compartments availed in the top box.
Weighing in at 2.6 kg and measuring 47.5 x 28.4 x 63 cm it is an easy toolbox to work with. The handle is well placed to help you steer the box even when its full. You can secure the contents of the box using the latches provided. Different people use different methods to secure the latch, so use the method that feels safest to you.
When work is done, the two boxes are placed on top of each other with the accessories tray in-between. A strong metal latch acts as the joint between the two main boxes. That way, the entire unit can be stored securely without tipping over.
The Stanley 1-70-326 3-in-1 Mobile Work Centre is good if you are looking for dual storage that has a small footprint and a separate accessories tray to storeing scews and other small bits and pieces. The two compartments can store tools well putting in mind the general sizes of the tools.
What is flawed about this product is that the construction is not so good. If it falls over the shell could incur some damage as its not as robust as you might expect.
The toolbox is appropriate for those with limited space but own a lot of tools. it is a solution to simple storage for an affordable price. For something a little better we recommend looking at the Stanley 192902 Professional Mobile Tool Chest which we review further down.
Faithfull TBC517 Metal Cantilever Tool Box 17-inch Review
The Faithfull 17inch TBC517 Metal Cantilever Tool Box arrives in a fetching colour and at first appears a little smaller than you might think but obviously very well designed. The unit opens up to display 5-layer tray that can store different tools according to the user’s preference. The design offers a compact way to store a number of tools and with easier hold a good 20kg of tools no problem.
Durability is a factor that most people consider since they want their toolboxes to last. Metal boxes are preferred for this reason. This toolbox is fully metal meaning that you can trust the strength and security. The handle is designed in a tubular shape so appear very strong and comfortable to carry.
The box is only 17 inches long so be sure to double check it is big enough but at around 3.2kgs is fairly light weight but it may not contain some tools comfortably due to its size. The box can be locked for security purposes which is also an added bonus. This is convenient for workmen who need to keep track of their tools. You will have to purchase the lock yourself since it is not supplied but overall its a great tool box which is made to last.
The Faithfull TBC517 Metal Cantilever Tool Box is a lovely metal box to have but for sizeable tools. The larger tools will not be able to fit in the small compartments. The box takes up little space and would make an appropriate starter toolbox. For heavier tools one should seek a larger box.
For those who need a strong metal box for their small home tools can purchase this box and will probably think its just the business. For DIY enthusiasts, this toolbox would be adequate and comes at a very affordable price. Be sure to find a small sizeable lock that can’t easily be broken into to help keep the tools secure. Having said that it would not help if someone stole the whole box.
If you would prefer a larger tool box that is very similar in design take a look at the Laser Tool Box which we review further down.
Stanley 195620 Galvanised Metal Toolbox 26-inch Review
The Stanley 26 inch 195620 Galvanised Metal Toolbox is a heavy duty box that can be adopted for both tradesmen and domestic use. The construction of the box can be trusted to provide durability and safe storage thanks to its rust proof galvanised finish and robust plastic construction making it suitable for even the most demanding site work. The unit weighs 3kgs so its a heavy piece of kit but with the extra weight you get the extra quality, in total measures 66 x 29.5 x 22.5 cm so will comfortable hold a decent amount of work tools.
The galvanised sides are installed to ensure that the box does not succumb to impact damage or rust. If you are working in areas that have high humid conditions, the box will keep your tools dry and safe from harm.
To prevent just anyone from accessing the unit, heavy latches have been fixed to the box. The latches won't rust either therefore jamming is not in the list of problems. To move the unit, a soft padded handle is featured. The handle can conveniently be folded into the structure to keep it out of the way.
The top of the toolbox features a honeycomb design to effect extra strength from impact. If one wants to access your tools, the partly removable tray will come to your aid. All tools have diversified compartments where organisation is possible. A final little design feature some will appreciate is the saw groove which can hold pipes and wood that you may need to cut. Finally it is also lockable with a padlock for a little extra security.
The Stanley 195620 Galvanised Metal Toolbox is a good product from the Stanley and a great choice for the trade as its definitely one of the better boxes in terms of quality.
We love the galvanised sides because they provide an extra layer of protection and add an aesthetic appeal to it. We are impressed by the security of the latches but remember to put a bit more muscle into it the first few times. The handle is also pretty comfortable when carrying a considerable number of tools.
Overall it's a good box that you can purchase for affordable pricing. If your looking for something with similar build quality for trade use then out next review below might be a better option which is also by Stanley.
Stanley 192902 Professional Mobile Tool Chest Review
The Stanley 192902 Professional Mobile Tool Chest is a dependable heavy duty tool box with wheels making it easy to move your tools around site. The 6kg unit is made mobile by the heavy duty wheels at the back. The user can pull it along wherever they go. The overall dimensions of the box measures 61.3 x 37.5 x 41.9cm which gives you plenty of space for your tools.
The unit has two compartments meant for light and heavy tools. The top part stores the smaller screws and tools while the lower bit takes in large tools. As you would expect the tray is removable so as to gain access to the lower unit. The polycarbonate tray is durable and compartmentalised to help easy organisation.
There are two handles present on this toolbox. The top handle that lifts the top box up and the second handle that pulls out and folds away is responsible for moving the whole unit by pulling it on the two wheels. Both handles are ergonomically designed and they are capable of offering comfort and function.
Security is an important feature, which is why lockable units are preferred specially if you leave your toolbox around on site while attending to jobs. This is a unit that understands the need of security. There is a durable latch presented that can be locked by a sizeable padlock.
The Stanley 192902 Professional Mobile Tool Chest is a well-designed toolbox and a great model for those looking for a model with wheels. We like the fact that the wheels help you drag it around. It offers a very easy way to store your tools offering two major compartments. The price compared to the features offer is fair. We would recommend that this unit be used by those who indulge in activities occasionally and need to carry around heavy tools and need a toolbox that makes moving tools around a site much easier.
The strength of the shell could be better and may not withstand constant use without a bit of wear and tear. DIY enthusiast should take a look at this model. They may find that it fits domestic home. Less motion is offered inside homes thus prolonging the service life but making it easy to move your tools around.
Laser 21inch - 3487 Tool Box With 7 Trays Review
The 21 inch Laser 3487 Tool Box is another metal box but has a little more space than the Faithful model we reviewed earlier. Metal boxes are quite simple in design and have all ways been popular and this model is no different. The two handles open the box up to display the contents. The material used to build the toolbox is strong and can contain a number of tools with ease without buckling under the weight.
The box unfolds to reveal 7 layers of differentiated sizes that you can store your various tools, the red finish that was transferred into the interior gives it a rather pleasing look. Units that are designed like this take up a small footprint and personally we think they are very well designed. This makes them easy to store away under surfaces and garages.
The handles are tubular to prevent the weight of the weight from taking a toll on the user’s hands. It features a small hole where small-sized padlocks can be squeezed in for a little extra security. The unit measures 53.6 x 22.4 x 16.2 cm so as you can see its a decent size tool box.
The Laser 3487 7 Tray Tool Box can be described as efficient and fairly well built and probably a better alternative to the Faithful model we have also reviewed. The toolbox is fit for professional standards since it cannot contain large equipment. However, for the user who is not storing heavy equipment it is perfect. It is not a heavy toolbox to carry making it user-friendly for the smaller sized users.
We recommend this unit for medium use since we think it may not handle professional demands. Domestic and DIY applications will be the perfect fit for this model. We love the red interior and exterior. It reminds you of the toolbox that your grandfather has in his tool shed or the plumber in the movie. If you can afford it, we don’t see why not.
Stanley STST1-71963 3-In-1 Tool Organiser Review
The Stanley STST1-71963 3-In-1 Tool Organiser looks like something that could be really useful which it certainly is but it does have its drawbacks depending on what you want to carry. The design is very geometric but rather attractive in a weird sense. The 2kg unit measures 43 x 30 x 25 cm so overall its a decent size for carrying a drill, bits and pieces and maybe a hammer and screwdrivers. it can contain a number of tools but not at the professional level.
The toolbox is divided into sections that can accommodate the varied sizes of tools which is a good design feat. Each compartment is further divided to help the user organise their tools in an orderly manner. Some parts are movable to create more room. The plastic lid over every compartment is transparent so as to facilitate easy identification of tools. They are easy to pry open making them accessible.
A convenient handle has been placed in a centralised position to help the user be able to balance the weight of the box. The handle is ergonomic therefore your muscles won’t be strained to the point of discomfort.
The Stanley STST1-71963 3-In-1 Tool Organiser would be appropriate when working in impact-risk environment. The casing makes it hard for the tools to get damaged when closed as it does seem very robust. Even when the casing is open the respective compartments still remain sealed.
We love the compartmentalisation strategy that lets small and large tools stay separate. No more loosing screws in seas of wires. The price of the unit is manageable and the quality is not bad at all. If you are loyal to the brand and you feel it appeals to you, why not?
The only downside we found is the middle compartment does not seem deep enough to hold much except for maybe a hammer and a few screwdrivers.
Overall a great toolbox but just be a where of the middle section limitation.
THE BUYERS GUIDE
When it comes to purchasing a toolbox, many will agree it’s a tough decision to make before you can get the right toolbox that you’re comfortable with. Given there’s a large variety of toolboxes in terms of size, drawers, storage pockets, and prices, one may find it difficult making an informed decision.
There are a couple of factors to consider while selecting your preferred toolbox to purchase. You need to consider the uses, number of tools you have, construction material, and its primary use. Durability is important for any toolbox. You need a toolbox that will be able to serve you for a long time without breaking down or having to replace it from time to time. Consider the factors below to get the best tool box UK:
Type of Toolbox
It may seem obvious but the type of toolbox you eventually settle for, must cater for the needs of your tools. You should consider where you will be using the toolbox and whether it will be moved around or stationary. You should also consider if it will be used indoors or outdoors. Engineers might prefer a different type of toolbox from the one a carpenter would prefer. Here are a few general types of toolboxes on the market to help you determine which one fits your needs:
For many people, their tools are scattered all over the house, office or workshop. Before choosing a toolbox for your usage, it’s important to take note of how many tools you actually have. You'd be surprised to find out an inexpensive small toolbox may not be enough to hold all of the tools you need and therefore end up with multiple small toolboxes.
Further to this, you may also want to consider the type of tools you have. Are they small and delicate? Are they large and heavy? Size and weight is a key factor to consider before choosing the right size toolbox. At any given time, a larger toolbox is often the best choice allowing you room to properly store your tools and also expand your tools collection.
Having considered the variety of toolboxes to choose from, then comes the budget discussion. Many options are available for low cost, mid-range and expensive toolboxes you can purchase. Before setting out for a toolbox, set aside a minimum budget for what you eventually wish to spend. Setting a budget for an item, enhances your ability to work with the general concept behind a toolbox; proper and careful storage of your tools.
Purpose of the toolbox
You need to ask yourself a few questions about what you intend to use the toolbox for. Do you simply wish to organise all your tools into one central location? Or are you looking for an easy way to take your tools with you to off-site locations? It is therefore the most important step to make before making your purchase. This will inform where you need to buy a rolling toolbox to move your tools around or get a robust metal toolbox with enough storage and load capacity.
Tools are generally expensive and important such that most jobs cannot be performed without them. Your toolbox is as important.
Any Toolbox’s loading capacity can be easily determined using the material it is manufactured from and tools therein. The type of tools one prefers in their box will greatly define the weight that it can eventually hold. Each toolbox comes with a pre-set maximum storage capacity to make the owner aware of its threshold limits and also avoid any kind of accident while transporting or carrying it around.
The simple secret to tool boxes is identifying the type of tools that you want to store and the appropriate measure of organisation. The rest will flow like water.
If you need to keep a lock on your toolbox is it is better if you focus on the type of lock mechanism provided. This way you can be sure that your box is safe. The overall quality of the material will affect how long the unit is able to serve you.
Our Best Pick
Dirty Pro Tools™ large tool chest with drawer divider
We gave the title to the Dirty Pro Tools large tool chest with its drawer dividers. We find that this unit offers ample storage for different kinds of tools.
The toolbox is designed to be on the go. The castor wheels provide support and balance. We find that the general quality and the amount of storage offered would serve a number of functions.
It can be used for domestic and semi-commercial use but its obviously not for taking from job to job but would be a great tool box to have in your garage or workshop.
Our Best Lightweight Budget Tool Box
Stanley STA194858 20-inch Metal Latch Toolbox
This goes to the Stanley STA194858 20-inch Metal Latch Toolbox. This is because it is designed to hold light tools and it would be great as a starter unit to have at home.
People who want an easy to access box that can fit on most surfaces should take this one. It has appropriate storage for the smaller bits of equipment which makes it convenient. For the general price of the unit we think it fits lightweight applications but is certainly not suitable for trade use.
Best Rolling Tool Box
Stanley 192902 Professional Mobile Tool Chest
The Stanley 192902 Professional Mobile Tool Chest takes this crown. We think that the positioning of the handle and wheels is perfect for moving the toolbox around.
Although the quality of the wheels has room for improvement, the storage compartment is spacious. The wheels are large and effect a parking stance when needed.
You can store varied sizes of tools in there. It is affordable after all and fits light-medium applications.
Whether you are in search of the best rolling toolbox or a metal box, the market always has something for you. Having a keen eye and an informed eye never harmed anyone so take heed.