Every household should have basic tools. This can include, hammers, screwdrivers, pliers, blades, and even bottle and can openers the best multi tool should have these. But what if you could have all of that in one simple multipurpose object? Well, that is essentially what multi tools are.
These great items have a ton of miniature tools and a wide variety of features, making them a must have for everyone – especially those who often participate in outdoor activities where these tools may come in handy! While they are no substitute for their full-sized counterparts, the tools within a multi tool are handy in a pinch and can be great in emergencies, or just for daily tasks.
There are many multi tools out there with a wide array of features available, so it is vital that you know what you are looking for and how to tell the good from the bad. That is why we have put together a guide on choosing the best multi tools, while also providing you with a list of some of our personal favorites.
How To Choose The Best Multi Tool For You!
Naturally, the main reason you will buy a multi tool is, well, the tools. It has to cover a good number of different handy devices so that you can use them on multiple occasions. Everything but the kitchen sink is usually what you want to go for!
Any good multi tool should have some form of knife, if not two – one with a plain blade and one with a serrated one. It should also have at least one size of each type of screwdriver, although some multi tools may have a couple of each in different sizes. It is also important to have a kind of saw in place, as well as a can or bottle opener, pliers, scissors and a wire cutter and stripper.
Some extra tools that might be included for you to choose from are hammers, files, drills, and rulers. There are even some companies that offer extra tool kits that you can purchase to add on or replace those on your current multi tool, allowing you to customize your product to best suit your needs.
Regardless, make sure you have a list of what you absolutely need in a multi tool so you can ensure that the one you buy checks all those boxes.
No one wants to purchase an item only to have it break within a few months. As such, it is important that you buy a multi tool that can be a long-term addition to your kit.
Opt for a multi tool made out of stainless steel or something similar in order to prevent rusting or breaking. The handle should also be made of a heavy-duty material, and the joints that hold all the tools should be smooth but strong.
Keep in mind that you will be pulling at different parts of this product regularly. It should be able to stand up to your constant manipulation.
Of course, each individual apparatus should also be strong enough to hold its own when used, and should not chip or break while you are using them. As such, you should purchase one made for your specific needs. Cheaper, lighter multi tools are great as emergency products or just to have around the house, but if you are a real outdoorsy person, you will want something sturdier.
3. Ease Of Use And Safety
These two factors often go hand-in-hand when it comes to multi tools. For instance, in order for an apparatus to be easy to use, the small miniature tools must be able to stay in place while you are holding them and performing your task. At the same time, it is vital that tools stay in place so that they do not close on your hand and injure you while you work.
Not many multi tools have fully lockable apparatus for every single feature they have, but many have them for the more tedious ones. Most will have a lock for blades or knives, for example. This will help ensure that none of the tools you use will slip as you work, and avoid any accidental cuts and scratches.
Additionally, many multi tools come with a form of sheath or carrying pouch – or both – to help make them more portable for you so you can bring them along on your travels and adventures. As such, both the sheath and pouch should be of a good quality. This is to ensure that they won’t fall off, and also to guarantee that they won’t become so worn that sharp objects begin to poke at you through them!
You should also try to find a multi tool that isn’t too difficult to get the individual devices open from. This will prevent injury to your fingers and make them quicker to deploy. In short, items that take extra safety measures are ones that you want to have with you, and these cautionary bits will often be of great help when it comes to usability, too.
The Top 5 Best Multi Tool
1. Swiss+Tech ST53100M2 Micro Pocket Multitools
This 19-in-1 multi tool comes in a pack of two, although you can opt to purchase only one if you prefer. It was designed for camping, outdoor, and hardware use.
- A stainless-steel build allows for a durable tool with a nice finish.
- The product comes with a large number of tools; in fact, it has more than most on the market.
- It has two hex wrenches at 1/4” and 7/16” dimensions and six screwdrivers in sizes 0, 1, and 2 for both flat and Phillips heads.
- A wire cutter and stripper as well as wire crimper are included.
- The multi tool also has pliers, a bottle opener, a file, and a hand drill.
- It also has two rulers, one in millimeters and one in inches, as well as one extension for each of them.
- This multi tool is fitted with a patented quick-release and self-locking mechanism, making it safe and easy to use.
- As it is a keychain multi tool with a keyring attached, it is easily portable and can be brought along easily with your keys, so you won’t leave it at home by accident. This also means it is compact and convenient to take along.
- This tool can be brought on many airlines due to the fact that it does not have any sharp knife points.
- The product comes with a limited lifetime warranty.
- Oddly, this multi tool does not have a blade.
- The keyring function may eventually result in the tool loosening or falling off of your keys over time if you aren’t careful with it.
- Using it on a keyring may cause your keys to become a lot heavier, making it a little clunky to move around.
- Some of the functions are slightly difficult to use due to the small nature of the multi tool and the lack of a firm locking system for each new function.
- The huge multitude of tools available can make it difficult for you to find what you are looking for.
2. Leatherman Wingman Multi-Tool
This bestselling product holds 14 different tools. It measures 3.8” closed and weighs about 7 oz. It is claimed that it can be used in more than one thousand different situations.
- The item is made from a strong, durable stainless steel.
- This product has needlenose pliers, regular pliers, wire cutters, and scissors that are operated by newly designed spring action jaws make this product a breeze to use.
- The multi tool also features a 420HC combo knife, a wire stripper, a can opener, a bottle opener, a package opener, a wood and metal file, a 1.5” ruler, and Phillips, medium, and small screwdrivers.
- The knife function in this tool has a blade measuring about 2.6” and has a locking mechanism to keep it sturdy when in use, as it clicks into place when fully deployed. This allows for safer use as it will only close when manually unfolded.
- Some tools on this product are accessible even when it is folded or closed, allowing for maximum functionality.
- This multi tool is designed to be able to be operated with one hand, making it convenient and easy to use while multi-tasking.
- It is made to be lightweight and pocket-size for easy transport, and it has a pocket clip for convenience.
- The product comes with a 25-year warranty.
- Taking into consideration the price against the functionalities, this multi tool offers great value for money.
- It is at a higher price point than the other options on this list.
- The lack of a locking mechanism on majority of the tools means that it may be difficult to use them under certain circumstances when you can’t hold them in place yourself.
- The body has some side play, so you may feel other tools moving when you try to open one of them.
- There have reportedly been some quality control issues with this knife, although the percentage of those affected is very small.
3. CoBean 8 in 1 multi-function tools set
This product has eight tools and was designed to be perfect for household usage and emergency needs. It measures 5 ¼” overall and weight about 11 oz.
- This product is made of heavy duty stainless steel, increasing its durability.
- The wooden handle is easy to hold and is of a high quality, increasing ease of use when you are wielding this tool.
- A hammer, axe, wrench, saw blade, knife, and pliers are all included inside this multi tool.
- It is extremely affordable and is one of the lowest priced multi tools in the market.
- The product comes with a nylon belt pouch to carry it in, which is fitted with a holster loop that you can attach to your belt and bring around with you easily.
- It is small and compact so it isn’t a hassle to bring around and is easy to manage when in use.
- At the same time, the product has a decent heft to it, so you know it will be sturdy.
- The joints for the tools are smooth, making each item easy to open and close without hassle.
- This multi tool is not suitable for heavy usage.
- The tool cannot be carried in the pocket due to the blade on one of its ends. The knife point has a cover, but it is not particularly high quality, making it unsafe to place in a pocket.
- A lack of sturdiness due to no locking mechanisms makes many of the tools slightly difficult to use.
- The edges on the handles of this multi tool are quite sharp, making it slightly difficult to pull some of the tools out.
- The axe hangs out of the holster and is only covered by a mediocre plastic sheath, which may pose a safety hazard. The sheath is known to be flimsy and fall off easily.
4. Gerber Suspension Multi-Plier
This multi-tool has a total of eleven different functions and was designed to be useful in a wide variety of situations. Separate tool kits are available for purchase that will increase the functionality of this product, should you choose to add on more features. These extra kits include an adapter, three different sizes of flathead bits, cross point bits, and hex head bits, and sharpeners.
- The butterfly design and lightweight frame make this tool incredible easy to use and bring around.
- Its design is tough and reliable, promising durability thanks to its stainless-steel construction.
- The product features needle-nose pliers as its main function, then has wire cutters and strippers, scissors, a bottle opener, a can opener, and an awl.
- It has three kinds of blades: a straight blade, a serrated blade, and a saw.
- It has a Phillips screwdriver as well as large and medium flathead screwdrivers.
- Some of the tools on this item are spring-loaded for easy opening and closing, making it more intuitive to use.
- This product also has a lanyard ring so that you can easily bring it with you.
- A patented safety feature known as the Saf.T.Plus component locking system ensures that all the tools you need to use lock in place and don’t close on you while you work with them. You can access this feature via a lock-release button on the back that you slide into place.
- Ergonomics are accounted for thanks to the multi tool’s unique suspension-style aluminum handle that sits in a well-balanced manner in anyone’s hands.
- The product comes with a ballistic nylon sheath so you can keep it and bring it along easily and safely.
- The option to purchase extra tool kits allows you to customize your multi tool so that you get exactly what you want out of it.
- The Gerber company name has been in place since 1910, with its focus shifting to blades and other tools in 1939. As such, it is a renowned name that can put you at ease.
- The nylon pouch may wear out quickly if the tool is used daily, and the Velcro used to holster it to a belt is extremely unreliable and may come loose. As such, you may need to purchase a better carrier for it.
- It can be difficult, at first, to get used to unfolding the tools individually and the motion can take some practice.
- Due to this product being mass-produced and manufactured in different countries, quality control has become slightly iffy.
- The location of the tools and the lock slider button indicate that it was made for right-handers, which may be inconvenient if that isn’t your dominant hand.
5. Stanley 84-519K 12-in-1 Multi Tool
- Stainless steel construction makes this product durable and reliable.
- The handles have relatively good ergonomics, so the tool is easy to handle.
- This multi tool converts into long-nose pliers and curve jaw pliers, and also has two kinds of knives.
- Four types of screwdrivers are included, with a standard 1/4” and 5/16” screwdriver among them.
- This multi tool also houses a wire cutter, a saw, a bottle opener, and a file.
- This product can be operated with one hand.
- The product comes with a high-quality nylon holster so that you can bring this tool along with your everywhere.
- It is inexpensive and budget-friendly.
- All the tools have a metal feed around them, and for some, this makes them slightly painful to use at certain angles if you are not wearing gloves.
- The devices in the product can be difficult to pull out and slightly overlap over each other. This makes it difficult to deploy the tools you need in a quick manner.
- Some of the tools are very thin and may not stand up to hard or heavy use, so this is a multi-tool best used for simple household tasks or to keep on hand for an emergency.
- The tools are slightly flimsy in their joints, making it hard to keep them steady.
- The components become loose over time, which would be manageable, but it is also extremely difficult to tighten them due to their positioning.
- The screwdrivers are very small.
- Some customers have reported not receiving a bottle opener in their multi tool, which hints at quality control issues.
What do you want in a multi tool? Something that has everything you need and is strong enough to withstand some heavy use, and something that is safe, functional, and intuitive. These tools all have those features!
These are all great picks for multi tools, but out of all of them, our personal best would have to be the Leatherman Wingman Multi-Tool. Its fourteen different devices makes for excellent usability and allows you to have everything in one place, and the knife is fitted with a safe locking mechanism so you can use it without worries. The fact that you can use this tool with one hand and can even access some features while it is closed makes it a surefire winner. The 25-year warranty is a big bonus, too!
We hope that these tips and this list have both helped you to decide on the best multi tool that fits your personal needs and requirements. Stay safe out there!