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The Advantages & Disadvantages of Using Hand Tools Over Power Tools

Updated April 17, 2017

Power tools come with advantages over hand tools, but also carry some disadvantages. When planning to purchase tools, consider the tool's durability, price and effectiveness to complete the job.

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Hand tools often cost less than their power counterparts, although they are can be difficult to find. Hand drills, for example, are much more difficult to find than power drills but can be purchased for a fraction of the price of power drills. The price of using a power tool could be greater than that of a hand tool; electricity and batteries cost money and repair costs are often greater for power tools as well.


Often, you get what you pay for when buying power and hand tools. More expensive power tools can be very durable, requiring no maintenance for years. However, anything that contains many parts is bound to require maintenance at some point. Hand tools can also be very durable, as they usually have fewer parts than power equivalents. Hand tools made with low-quality materials, however, can break quite easily.


The effectiveness of hand tools versus power tools depends largely on the job they are meant to accomplish. Many power tools, for example, are more able to do difficult jobs that would take considerably more strength and time for a hand tool users. Alternatively, some hand tools are better suited for some tasks than power tools. For example, the long, slender shaft of a screwdriver is better for screwing in hard-to-reach screws and hand drills are often preferred by woodworkers for their ability to create intricate designs.

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About the Author

Kyle Fiechter began writing professionally in 2010. Websites in which his writing has appeared include eHow and LIVESTRONG.COM. He has a Bachelor of Science in neurobiology and physiology from Purdue University. Fiechter is a photographer and designer, and he has video production experience.

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