Tools and Hardware

Tools and hardware are the nuts and bolts of every home improvement project. Learn about different kinds of tools and hardware and find out how to use hardware correctly.


Spray paint has left an indelible mark on world culture. How did it go from home-improvement solution to cultural icon? Find out in How Spray Paint Works.

Machine screws come in a variety of materials. Learn which type of stainless steel is the most common for machine screws in this article.

While drilling through plastic can be done using any power drill, it’s important to have the correct drill bits so you don’t chip or crack the material. Learn about the type of drill bits you need for plastic from this article.

Start with a moderate grit and move to a finer grit of sandpaper when working on walls. Learn about the best type of sandpaper for walls from this article.

If you're drilling through hardened steel, you'll want to use a cobalt drill bit. Find out about the best drill bits for hardened steel in this article.

Hex cap screws are noted for the extra torque they provide. Learn what the dash marks on their heads mean in this article.

Hex head cap screws come in grades two, five, eight and nine. Learn about the different grades of hex cap screws from this article.

Machine screws are used to hold parts of machines together. Learn about the different types of machine screws in this article.

Roofing nails are important for roof installation, and several factors determine the kind you should choose. Learn about the different types of roofing nails from this article.

Drywall screws are classified according to length and pitch. Learn more about the different types of drywall screws from this article.

Self-tapping screws drill their own holes when they are screwed into materials such as wood, metal and plastic. Learn more about self-tapping screws from this article.

Screws are differentiated by many characteristics, including how and where they're used. Learn what self-tapping machine screws are in this article.

Screws come in a variety of styles, each designed for a specific purpose. Learn about lag screws in this article.

Screws come in a variety of shapes and have a variety of purposes. Learn about pan-head machine screws in this article.

You can use a heat gun to dry paint in cold weather, but ideally you should paint when the temperature is at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15.6 degrees Celsius). Learn whether you can use a heat gun to dry pain in cold weather in this article.

A portable drill press is a cheaper alternative to a heavy, mounted drill press. Learn more about how a portable drill press works from this article.

There are a number of different systems around the world for numbering the grades of sandpaper. Learn about how sandpaper numbering systems work from this article.

Heat guns are power tools that blow hot air to assist with various projects. Learn how hot heat guns can get in this article.

Self tapping screws fasten materials together tightly without the need for a pre-drilled hole. Learn how to use self-tapping screws for aluminum in this article.

It’s helpful to use self-tapping screws for products that need to be maintained regularly and where you need to dissemble and reassemble the item along the same threads. Learn more about how you use self-tapping screws from this article.

Whether you're removing an old finish or applying a new one to wooden floors or furniture, steel wool can be a useful alternative to sandpaper. Learn how to sand with steel wool in this article.

The final stage of hanging a drywall is sanding. Learn how to use a drywall sander in this article.

A drill press table can provide extra support when you’re working with big pieces of wood or metal. Learn about how to use a drill press table from this article.

Lag screws are used to bear particularly heavy loads. Learn how to install lag screws in this article.

Galvanized steel is regular steel coated in a thin layer of zinc. Learn whether galvanized steel wool rusts faster than regular steel wool in this article.

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