Guest Post by anonymous
I’m finally ready to admit it. It’s true, I’m fairly new to DIY and don’t always know where to start. I trust the knowledge of my friends on these matters whenever possible rather than doing my own unbiased research. I go on hearsay. I am easily influenced by persuasive salespeople…
When it comes to buying power tools – or any tools for that matter – I always find there is that inevitable moment where I end up standing in front of a couple of different but painfully similar products, hoping that just by staring at them some inspiration will strike me out of the air and cause me to jump up shouting, “I’ve got it; I’ll take the red one!”
This, of course, never happens and I either keep staring at the power tools until a sixteen year-old sales assistant with even less of a clue asks if they can help, or I ‘eenie-meenie-miney-mo’ it and hope it turns out well when I get home and get the thing running.
Lately though I’ve decided that I want to change my ways. I’ve wanted to learn more for myself. One of my biggest problems in the past has been deciding between petrol and electric power tools. They each have their benefits and drawbacks of course but, most of the time, the two seem to me to cancel each other out.
Inconveniently, you always seem to know someone to champion each, leaving you more confused than you were to begin with and completely unsure of which way you should go.
There are the obvious tips to consider that you’ll be able to find elsewhere. Electric power tools are usually lighter and easier to handle. They are likely to be cheaper too and, assuming you have electricity, an endless supply of power, so long as there isn’t a sudden power cut while you’re working. If you go for a cordless option then this won’t even be a factor and you’ll have an endless range to boot.
The petrol power tool will usually be more powerful and will work exceptionally well for heavy duty jobs. They will have even greater mobility than the cordless electric tools, which will need regular charging – you can, after all, carry petrol around with you but it’s not quite so easy when it comes to electricity.
I thought about all of this and still couldn’t decide what to do so I went for a chat with my Dad. He’s always full of useful stories about being taught by my Grandfather. He was never too concerned about what tools he had. You need certain tools to adequately complete certain jobs, of course, but generally when it came to power tools he was all about safety. Extra safety precautions and solid hand-guards were what mattered to
him. He believed that it was completely about the workman and what he could make the tools do, rather than what the power tools could make out of the man.
You obviously want up-to-date, safe power tools but in a straight race between a mid-range petrol drill and a mid-range electric, there isn’t going to be too much of a gap in performance. My Grandfather was also a firm believer in there being plenty of ways to skin a cat, although when I was younger that image just used to scare the life out of me… Now though it’s helped me to realise that it’s perhaps most important to consider your needs and your budget, as well as whether it always matters too much which of the options you choose.by