It’s next to impossible to screw in a Phillips screw with a flathead screwdriver, yet there are always those determined folks out there who try to make do with what they have. For example, when it comes to working with tools in the yard, many growers just use what they have in their shed. I’ve learned the hard way that using the wrong tool will cost you unnecessary time, effort and money. I want to tell you why you should make sure you have the right tool for the job.
Using the proper tools helps to:
Of course, when most shoppers are buying tools, they consider their immediate short-term needs, but it is also important to consider the long-term possibilities. They can be an investment in both you and your passion. So do yourself a favor — get the best tools you can afford. Here are some things to consider when making your selection:
Caring for your investment
Once you’ve made your tool selection, you’re ready to get out there and use it. Let’s say you take out your nice new, shinny lopper which helps you power through the job like a real pro. But by the end of the day, you notice your lopper is now covered with sap and other debris. Before you put it away, it’s important that you take a minute to clean it.
Properly caring for your tools will help extend the life of them by:
What to use and what not to use on your tools
With the right cleaning materials, you can help keep your tools working like new, season after season. And it’s easy! It doesn’t take rocket science to keep them clean.
Here is a list of the ideal materials to use:
Some materials to avoid using on your tools:
Dry tools off completely before storing, and apply a generous coat of machine or natural oil to blades, screws and moving parts to prevent rust and keep them moving freely.
Keeping your tools sharp
One of the most important things you can do for your tools is keep them sharp. Doing so will minimize the amount of effort required when using them, and it will also help you make cleaner cuts, get the job done quicker and reduce the risk of injury to you or damage to the tool.
You can use a sharpening stone or file like the Corona AC 8300. Make four or five passes on the cutting side of the blade and one pass on the non-cutting side to remove the burrs. It takes only a few seconds but will help keep your tools cutting like new.
This might be most important for pruning tools, but don’t forget that sharpening your shovels and hoes using the same principles will help you cut through hard soils and roots easier, too.
Selecting the right tool for the job can make or break your success with garden and landscape activities. Don’t you owe it to yourself to take the time to select the right one, and to properly care and maintain it? You’ll be glad you did!
Chris Sabbarese is a self-proclaimed DIY gardener and landscaper, second generation Corona Tools loyalist, and the official “voice” of Corona Tools’ social networks. He has a passion for working in the yard met with a “geekiness” for great tools, which intersects with a fascination of social networks. Chris connects with growers from all walks of life as the administrator of the weekly Twitter discussion, #treechat and co-moderator of #landscapechat. Connect with Chris of Corona Tools on Twitter.