What specific tools are GOOD to buy at Harbor Freight?

While there are lots of tools that are bad to buy at HF, this thread only asks for the GOOD tools to buy.
The reason I ask is that whenever I go to Harbor Freight nowadays, I already have all of what I consider to be the good tools.
Hence I'm only asking from you what tools you think are GOOD. (Please don't list bad tools since I want to look only at GOOD ones). (Also, if you feel like saying "none", please don't - as it's not funny even if you might think that's a hilarious joke. It's childish.)
What specific tools are GOOD to buy at Harbor Freight?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at 10:07:41 AM UTC-4, Arlen Holder wrote:

The ones you actually need for occasional, light duty use, almost everything they have is good for at least that. Some of it, eg socket extensions, breaker bar, are perfectly fine and perform just like Craftsman would. Other things, like a reciprocating saw, most electrical things with motors, are probably OK for light, occasional use, but are flimsy and I would not expect to last as long as DeWalt, but then they cost a third of the price. It's the perfect place to buy something that you need for a special job but probably won't need again for 5 years, if ever. The only thing I bought there that was totally unusable were a pair of snap ring pliers. The tips were such soft metal that instead of expanding the snap ring, they just bent. I took them back and got my money back.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 9/12/2018 9:45 AM, trader_4 wrote:

...

So, why are you going to HF at all, then???

...
They aren't tools, per se, but the tool cabinets are quite a good buy when on special coupon price.
Other than that as Trader says, use 'em for the specialty tool for a specific job that need the precise tool for that otherwise don't have and _probably_ will be satisfied other than, the specific example that if it needs to be of primo quality to meet that function, likely "not so much". The example of snap ring pliers is a perfect one that they only work for anything other than the most minimal of applications if they are of high quality steel and that's where most HF stuff cuts corners to get the cost down -- if they're hard, likely they're so brittle they'll snap or chip (many drill bits suffer from this defect); if they aren't hard enough they'll bend. It's a crap shoot...
Another that seem to do pretty well for homeowner use are the compressors; they seem about as reliable as the box store low-end Campbell-Hausfeld class and the like.
--


Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The best policy is this.
NEVER ENTER A HARBOR FREIGHT STORE!!!!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 9/12/2018 2:05 PM, snipped-for-privacy@Weiser.com wrote:

Probably best advice. If you want a cheap tool that might only need a single use where it could pay for itself you could do that but if it needs to be reliable, stay away. Not all junk but definitely a crap shoot.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 9/12/2018 2:16 PM, Frank wrote:

   Blanket statements are usually wrong ... I bought a welding helmet there a few years ago , it worked well for everything but some low-amperage TIG welding - and it isn't really rated for TIG - until the day it wouldn't darken . So I bought a better one there , a Vulcan branded unit that IS rated for TIG , and cost about triple the original one . Flawless , and it compares favorably with offerings from Miller, Lincoln , etc but at about half the price . That helmet gets used at least 3-5 times a month - not much for a "real weldor" but a good bit more than the usual hobbyist . BTW , I left the old one out in the sun for a few days and it started working again , so I've been using it for MIG/stick welding and reserving the "good one" for TIG .
--
Snag
Yes , I'm old
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I have 9 of their angle grinders. 9 of them cost less than 1 name brand version. I keep a different disc on each one. Yes, they are noisier and more vibration. But for sharpening lawn mower blades, e.g , twice a year, who cares.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Your initial HF purchase could have paid 1/3 of the cost of your good helmet.
I always figure if I have to take a gamble with HF tools, I am better off buying a quality tool. If I only plan to use it once, I can buy a quality tool and sell it on ebay or craigslist after I use it. OR rent the tool. almost every city has tool rental places.
BTW: I think those self darkening helmets have batteries in them. Did you check the batteries?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12 Sep 2018 12:16:59 GMT, Frank wrote:

I have the HF jack stands. What do you think is wrong with them?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 9/12/2018 10:05 PM, Arlen Holder wrote:

Probably nothing but I might be reluctant to crawl under a car supported by something from Harbor Freight.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 13 Sep 2018 09:40:46 GMT, Frank wrote:

Jack stands are steel. They are not something to be afraid of.
There are far worse things in life to be afraid of than a heavy steel jack stand collapsing on you.
In fact, almost everything in life is more dangerous than that. But, I guess, it could happen.
That would be really bad luck though.
My floor jack is Costco. My jack stands & transmission jack are HF. My ramps are auto parts store. My chocks are from an old Infiniti where they are part of the trunk kit.
That's all you need.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Thu, 13 Sep 2018 02:05:17 -0000 (UTC), Arlen Holder

You must not value your life very much....
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 13 Sep 2018 11:28:24 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@Weiser.com wrote:

Do you use an iPhone?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 12 Sep 2018 11:05:30 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@Weiser.com wrote:

That's the kind of childishly stupid advice I was not looking for.
If you never work on your car or home or land, then, sure, you don't need anything at HF.
But if you actually do stuff, then you need tools.
For example, if you change a clutch, you'll need a transmission jack. If you rotate wheels, you'll need jack stands. If you change and balance tires, you'll need the tools. If you drain your pool, you'll need pumps.
Where does " snipped-for-privacy@Weiser.com" buy the tools to do that?
HINT: From his childish response, it's easy to tell he doesn't actually do anything like that - so he can only say stupid things because he doesn't actually do anything. And he thinks his jokes are funny, even though every fifth grader already beat him to his jokes long ago.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Thu, 13 Sep 2018 02:05:19 -0000 (UTC), Arlen Holder

Enjiy wasting your money at H.F. they love suckers like you!
PLONK
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 13 Sep 2018 11:29:45 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@Weiser.com wrote:

You do realize everyone else is like me, where adults can figure out what's good and what's not good to buy at HF.
Only you can't figure it out.
Hint: Jack stands are good. Drill bits bad.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote

Agree.
Any tool that you need sporadically is good to buy at Harbor Freight.
An example is their bench grinder. Their drill press. Their water pumps. Their socket extensions. Their jack stands. Maybe their floor jacks. Tire changing tools like patch kits and tire irons are also good. ATV stand is good. Rubber gloves are good. Long power strips are good.
The toolbox sets are especially good for car trunk emergency kits.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 9/12/2018 10:07 AM, Arlen Holder wrote:

Depends on your use. If you are a tradesman using tools every day, there are few good ones. If you are a homeowner using a tool one for a specific job, most of their tools will get the job done at reasonable cost.
I use their air fittings, ceramic knives, a multi-tool. I have a set of very long socket extensions that did the job at hand and have not been used since.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
If they offer more than one price/grade, never buy the cheapest. I bought the cheap 18 ga brad nailer, thinking I would only use it a few times. I couldn't even use it once. It constantly jammed. I took it back and traded up to the "better" one and it has been OK but it is still not a Bostitch. I had the same experience with the reciprocating saw Trader mentioned. OTOH the 2 pound hammer has worked flawlessly.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wednesday, September 12, 2018 at 9:07:41 AM UTC-5, Arlen Holder wrote:

Go to their website and read the customer feedback for that specific tool. For bigger items you can usually find Youtube reviews.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.