Best Tool Chests – Buyers Guide 2021

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Best Tool Chest

Whether you are completing general DIY, working in a garage on your car, or doing jobs in your garden – you are going to need a tool chest to be able to store everything that you are going to need! Every homeowner needs a certain amount of tools, but these tools tend to grow over time, particularly if you develop different hobbies and start doing jobs around your home. But storing the tools can be so difficult as you need storage that is going to keep them safe and together! 

A tool chest is definitely the only way to store your tools safely and effectively! But unfortunately, it isn’t always as simple as that! You need a tool chest that is not only going to store your tools, but also that will carry a variety of different sized tools so that they can all be stored in one place. You may also need to consider how portable your tool chest is! 

If you are struggling to find the best tool chest for not just your tools but also YOU – then we are here to help, with all of the best tool chests to choose from and information on the key features you need to be looking out for. 

Best Pick – Trueshopping 3-IN-1 TROLLEY TOOL BOX

Trueshopping NEW 3-IN-1 TROLLEY TOOL BOX SET WITH 4 DRAWS STORAGE CHEST - WITH BALL BEARING SLIDING DRAWS
162 Reviews
Trueshopping NEW 3-IN-1 TROLLEY TOOL BOX SET WITH 4 DRAWS STORAGE CHEST - WITH BALL BEARING SLIDING DRAWS
  • Trueshopping 3 in 1 Trolley Tool Box Set 4 Drawers
  • Includes tote tray Material: plastic and steel Ball bearing drawer slide
  • Dual wheels Dual metal latches Easy access bottom bin Detachable
  • Aluminium telescopic trolley handle Aluminium top handle
  • Product weight: 14.7kgs Product size: 72 cm (H) x 52 cm (W) x 31 cm (D)

Last update on 2021-10-21 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

In A Hurry?

Fed up of “losing” tools in your shed and never having the right one to hand? Sick of snagging your finger on loose screws and bolts rolling round the bottom of your current tool chest? Or maybe you currently don’t have one at all! Here is where you will find all the essential information that you need to know before purchasing the best tool chest! 

Dimensions

By far the first thing that you need to think about is the dimensions that make up the tool chests that you are looking at. The number and size of tools that you have is largely going to impact on the size of the tool chest that you need – but remember to also think about what tools you may be adding to your tool chest down the line! You also need to think about the space that you have available for your tool chest and whether you have room for it to be a stand alone model or if you are going to need to store it on a worktop! 

You will usually find that tool chests are relatively similar in width and depth at around 60cm by 30/40cm (although some are bigger and smaller than this). This is so that they are going to fit most standard sized tools. However there are quite considerable differences in the height of your tool chest – and this is where you find the difference in the space that you have available for tools. Smaller models are around 30/40cm in height whereas bigger models can be upwards of 90cm in height, giving you much more space for additional tools. 

Weight Capacity 

The next aspect to consider is the maximum weight capacity of your tool chest. Not only is the size of your tool chest important but the best tool chests are going to have a higher weight capacity – so that they are able to hold more tools. It is no use having a large tool chest that has a low weight capacity as your drawers will be left half empty! 

It would be difficult for us to say the overall weight capacity of most tool chests as this really depends on their size and the number of drawers that they have! There is just too much variation to consider. However, we found that most drawers are able to hold between 11kg and 45kg. To help put this into perspective, this means that most 3 drawer tool chests are going to be able to hold around 90/100kgs worth of tools. 

Build Material 

The two main materials that you are going to have to choose from when purchasing a tool chest are polypropylene resin and metal. The best tool chests are going to be made from metal as this is a much stronger and more durable material, however plastic tool chests are going to be cheaper and lighter, so may be better for what you are looking for. If you look out for tool chests that are made from structural foam or polypropylene resin AS WELL as plastic then you will find this to be a strong alternative to metal. 

If you have a number of tools to carry then we would definitely recommend looking out for metal tool chests as these will have a higher weight capacity – although this does mean a heavier overall weight so if you suffer from back pain, a plastic, lighter option may be better for you. Another reason why we like metal tool chests is that you will usually find that they are harder to break into. One of the main reasons we find people purchasing tool chests is because they want to know their tools are going to be safe and secure – a metal tool chest is going to help achieve this. You will usually find that aluminium and steel are the best options to go for if you are wanting a tool chest that is strong but also relatively light. 

TOP TIP: If you choose to go for a metal tool chest then look out for models that have been “powder coated”. This helps to add an extra level of protection to the surface of the metal, reducing the chances of rusting or scratches. 

Style 

The style of tool chest that best appeals to you will depend on the jobs that you are planning on completing and the tools that you are needing to store. The first thing to think about is the number of drawers that you need for your tools and the size of drawers that you are going to need. We quite like tool chests that have varied sizings of drawers so that you can use a bigger drawer for your bigger tools and smaller drawers for smaller parts that you are storing! 

You also need to decide whether a floor standing tool chest or a tabletop tool chest is best for you. Floor standing tool chests are going to be less portable but will often be able to hold more tools than table top models. 

Check the style of drawers that come with your tool chest as well. Drawers that are on runners will often be full sliding so that you are able to get access to the whole drawer instead of just half like with some models! We would also recommend choosing a model with an opening top tray that is deeper set – this makes it considerably easier for you to access the tools that are most essential to you. 

Best Budget – STANLEY Essential Rolling Workshop Toolbox

STANLEY Essential Rolling Workshop Toolbox, 3 Tier Stackable Units, STST1-80151
4,895 Reviews
STANLEY Essential Rolling Workshop Toolbox, 3 Tier Stackable Units, STST1-80151
  • 3 Tier Workshop
  • Interchangeable module design
  • 18'' Top Toolbox with heavy duty metal latches
  • Foldable top handle
  • Large 7'' wheels for easier manoeuvrability

Last update on 2021-10-21 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

The Best Tool Chest Features 

Now that you know the main features that you need to consider before purchasing a tool chest, you may think that you are ready to go out and get buying! But, you will find that there are still SO many tool chests that you can choose from. Here is where we will help you narrow it down even further…

Security 

We are sure that part of the reason you are purchasing a tool chest is to keep your tools safe! So why spend hundreds of pounds on tools, to then not invest in a tool chest that is going to have these security features…

  • Central locking system – Make sure your tool chest has a central locking system that allows you to lock (and unlock) your drawers all with one key. This is the best way to keep your tools safe and also save you the hassle of having to unlock each individual drawer. 
  • Hasp and staple mechanism – If your tool chest doesn’t come with a central locking system then make sure that it has a strong and durable hasp and staple mechanism. This will allow you to add your own padlock to the tool chest! 

TOP TIP: The best tool chests come with lid-activated locking systems that won’t allow you to open the drawers unless the top lid is open. This means that even if you forget to lock your chest, the drawers won’t open accidentally when you are moving your chest. 

Portability 

Portability may not be an issue for you if you are planning on keeping your tools (and therefore your tool chest) in one place, but many people are going to want the flexibility of moving their tools to the job rather than moving the job to the tools. Not only this, but if you are lucky enough to have a garage or workshop to work in, you may still want to be able to move your tools around this space! 

Look out for tool chests that have high quality castors/wheels that will enable you to push your tool chest around the workspace. This is the best way to relieve any additional pressure for those who suffer from back pains. We would also recommend looking out for tool chests with strong, durable handles! Soft grip (rubber or silicone covered) handles are going to be best to reduce fatigue when carrying your tool chest and we would recommend looking out for handles that are high placed so easier to pick up. 

TOP TIP: Having detachable aspects to your tool chest will definitely make it more portable but this isn’t found with every model. If you have a lot of tools but you are only going to be needing to carry a selection with you then this may be worth looking out for! 

Design Features 

Look out for some of these design features if you are wanting the best tool chest that is going to make your life so much easier when working with your tools! 

  • Top tray divider – We LOVE tool chests that have a divider in the top tray of the chest. This sounds like such a small thing but it makes it so much easier for you to organise your different nuts, bolts and other fastenings that you use regularly! Look out for ones that are transparent if you want to make things even easier! 
  • Powered tool chests – Some of the best tool chests come with electrical features. This does mean that you have to be relatively close to a power source but means you can benefit from LED lighting on the inside so that it is even easier for you to see which tools you are looking for! Some even have power strips attached to some of the drawers so that your power tools can be charging whilst they are safely locked away! 
  • Drawer liners – If you are wanting to keep your tool chest looking like new for as long as possible then look out for models with protective drawer liners. This will stop the insides of your tool chest from becoming scratched easily, which will then prevent rust from developing in the long run! 

Best of the Rest

Sale
STANLEY Rolling Workshop Toolbox, Detachable Toolbox with Drawers, Flip Bin, Back Pocket, 7' Heavy Duty Wheels, 1-79-206
1,932 Reviews
STANLEY Rolling Workshop Toolbox, Detachable Toolbox with Drawers, Flip Bin, Back Pocket, 7" Heavy Duty Wheels, 1-79-206
  • Complete mobile solution for large and small tools and accessories
  • 19 Inch Detachable plastic tool box with drawer
  • Aluminium telescopic handle allows easy manoeuvrability
  • Flip bin for larger tools with back pocket for saws and levels
  • Large metal rust proof latches with padlock eye

Last update on 2021-10-21 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

vidaXL 7 Drawers Mechanics Tool Trolley Red Workshop Chest Box Storage Cabinet
172 Reviews
vidaXL 7 Drawers Mechanics Tool Trolley Red Workshop Chest Box Storage Cabinet
  • Colour: Red
  • Material: Steel
  • Overall dimensions (with wheels): 690 x 330 x 772 mm (L x W x H)
  • Drawer dimensions 1: 510 x 290 x 40 mm (W x D x H)
  • Drawer dimensions 2: 510 x 290 x 85 mm (W x D x H)

Last update on 2021-10-21 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Draper 03243 2-Drawer Tool Chest or Toolbox
41 Reviews
Draper 03243 2-Drawer Tool Chest or Toolbox
  • fitted with ball bearing runners
  • piano hinged lid and top storage area
  • fitted with EVA foam liners
  • fitted with ball bearing runners
  • piano hinged lid and top storage area

Last update on 2021-10-21 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API / As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

Frequently Asked Questions 

Do tool chests come with a guarantee? 

Yes! The best tool chests will definitely come with a guarantee! We find that guarantees tended to start at around 2 years but some actually went up to a lifetime guarantee, which means you know that your tool chest (and your tools) are going to last. It is always worth checking which parts of the tool chest are covered in the guarantee.

Why do I need a tool chest that comes with a lock?

All tools (but especially power tools) are some of the most frequently stolen items in the UK. This is because they are usually stored in a garage or shed that is going to be much easier to gain access to than a house! This is why it is so important that you purchase a tool chest with a locking system so that your tools can be kept safe. 

Are there any tool chests that come with a workspace top?

Yes! Although not as common there are some tool chests that are designed so that the top can actually take the weight and wear of being used to complete odd jobs. They are obviously not going to be as durable and strong as a proper workbench, but are fit for purpose if you just need a flat, stable surface and quickly!

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