As a DIY-obsessed stay-at-home-dad, Black Friday has come to symbolize a true expansion of self. Moving to a single income while raising a kid results in a level of budgeting and financial responsibility that would have made my younger, single self shudder. Given my nearly ceaseless desire to build, upgrade, and repair just about anything, I am in a constant, self-induced frenzy for new tools, and good tools are anything but cheap!
The notion of Black Friday deal hunting conjures bone chilling thoughts of frantic, stampeding shoppers in a frenzied bargain hunting trance more akin to a zombie flick than a pleasant shopping experience (especially where hand tools are involved). But fear not my epic DIY friends! Our friends at the big-box home stores have come to save you from the shopocalypse. Not only do the big chains advertise their deals well in advance, they offer the savings ahead of time as well. Put the hockey padding back in the closet and stroll in to your favorite hardware chain store without flashbacks of Mad Max.
If you spend your time leaving puddles of drool in the power tool aisles (as I often do), you’ll notice that unlike other products, the price tags on these gems seem to be carved in granite. If you need to make every dollar count, this is the magical time of year that some of our favorite 18 volt obsessions finally end up in our shopping cart.
1) Combo Sets
Prices for single tool options (e.g. a cordless hammer drill) remain frustratingly stagnant, but if you’re in the market for a combo set (e.g. that gorgeous hammer drill PLUS an impact wrench and a work light), get ready to hand the cashier some money. Combo sets are available year-round, but over the holidays, retailers and manufacturers put together special sets at great prices, or simply offer the standard combos at a discount.
2) Hand Tools
Last year, one of my favorite tool brand offered an impact-ready drill bit set with an impact ready driver bit set, both with bonus sizes, at a price that nearly brought me to tears. In spite of my best efforts at dropping hints, the set didn’t show up under the Christmas tree, and when I needed new sets in the spring, I paid more than double for the same things sold separately.
3) It’s the Little Things
Trying to replace a light socket in your closet, but it’s too dark? Check out the deals on flashlights, work lights, and headlamps! This is also great time to stock up not only on the essentials, but also those off center items that make your projects easier, like a pocket-hole jig, but you’re not likely to buy at full price.
4) Get Organized
Do you have a lot of tools but nowhere to put them? Right now toolboxes, organizers, and mammoth tool chests are often on sale. Tired of your old system of keeping your screw drivers in the side pockets of your cargo shorts? Then it’s time to hit the Black Friday sales for a tool belt so you can take the next step forward in your DIY adventure!
5) Know Where to Find Sales
The big chains offer some special deals online only on Cyber Monday, so it’s time to put on your fuzzy slippers and get searching! Unlike trying to navigate physical stores for great deals on your favorite tools, shopping for online sales gives you the edge as you can search multiple stores, do your research, and get exactly what you want without waiting in line, or even having to put on pants.
And unlike the early Black Friday sales in the stores, many of the Cyber Monday deals happen the (new) old fashioned way – in the time-sensitive frenzy of keyboard clicks.
For example: the shopping powerhouse that is Amazon normally has an unbelievable variety of tools and project-related items at more than competitive prices, but their Cyber Monday deals are too good to pass up.
Well, that’s enough out of me. I just bought a new DeWalt table saw at an early Black Friday sale, so I’ve got some boards to cut. I literally feel like a little kid at Christmas!
Stay safe and build something great!