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20 Must-Have Plumbing and HVAC Tools and Equipment

Knowing what tools to buy when many of them look similar is no easy task. You’d think it’s easier when you know what specific field you need them for. However, it’s not always the case, as researching tools for HVAC technicians can get complicated. When you’re filtering your search results to HVAC tools on store websites will often give you specialty tools in the trade, but not a comprehensive list of products you’ll need.

We’ve just simplified your search for you. Here in this article, you’ll find a list of all the HVAC installer tools as well as tools for diagnosing and fixing problems. These products will help you get the job done.

We’ve just simplified your search for you. Here in this article, you’ll find a list of all the HVAC installer tools as well as tools for diagnosing and fixing problems. These products will help you get the job done. 

Hand Tools


It’s one of the most basic tools in every type of toolkit. You’ll definitely need one of these because you’ll be using it for basic functions to get your job done. As far as HVAC lists go, this is probably the number one thing to get because of how basic it is. HVAC technicians often do ductwork, so you should probably look into a tinner’s hammer, which is perfect for working with sheet metal. 


Another must-have hvac tool is a good screwdriver. Considering that the job requires a variety of screw sizes, it is recommended to get a 4-in-one or 5-in-one pack. This saves you space in your tool bag and makes it lighter! Also, your work will likely involve some electrical work dealing with wires, terminals, and thermostats. Expert technicians favour terminal screwdrivers for that reason as they fit in smaller places. 

Pliers and Crimpers

Tools for an HVAC technician should always include pliers and crimpers. As you work with thermostats and wires, you will want to consider a needle-nose plier. You’ll also need a crimper because there is only so much a plier can do. Crimpers are essential because you’ll need it for joining pipes and working with wires.

Pipe Wrenches

Don’t leave out pipe wrenches from your HVAC tool list. They are useful for assembling, disassembling, and fitting pipes, which you’ll need to often do as part of your work. 

Tin Snips

Tin snips are a must-have on any HVAC tool list. It works the same way as generic scissors but can also cut through sheet metal. There are different types of snips that you should also be aware of, and they’re color-coded to help you remember: yellow snips cut straight, green snips cut straight and right, perfect for right-handers, and red snips cut straight and left, perfect for left-handers.

Staple Gun

As a professional, you want your work to be amazing. You can use a heavy-duty staple gun for finishing, so it gives your work a very professional look. Use it on insulation and sheet metal, which you’ll encounter often enough in your work

Extension Cord

A good motto to work by is to always be prepared. This is why you should have an extension cord on hand. You’re likely to need electrical power where you’re not near an outlet. It needs to be durable and long, so that it does the job. 


Tubing/pipe cutters are tools which help the technician to cut pipes precisely and easily. It’s more convenient to use than a saw for small jobs like this. 


You’ll often work where it’s harder to see. For instance, if you’re working in a basement, you can expect to need a brighter view of things like wires. Some technicians prefer a headlamp to a standard flashlight, but either one is good for the job. 

Tape Measure

Don’t underestimate how important the tape measure is for you. Getting the measurements right when doing installations and repairs is key to getting it all right. In certain situations when you are preparing to install AC units or furnaces, you won’t be able to start before measuring. 


A ladder is a definite must-have HVAC tool. When working in this trade, you will need to reach high places. When choosing your ladder, get one that’s tall enough for you to reach higher places according to your own height. Don’t compromise on safety at work, so get a sturdy one, because ladder work is one of the safety hazards for HVAC technicians. 

Specialty Tools

Manifold Gauge Set

A manifold gauge is one of the specialty tools for HVAC technicians. It is essentially used to diagnose problems with the AC and refrigerators. There are both analog and digital options, but they work the same way and it’s a matter of preference. 

Scratch Awl

Cutting straight through sheet metal does not need to be a stressful task. With the scratch awl, you can scratch in your lines before you make cuts, and you’ll be all set to go for your work. It’s also very handy when you need to quickly poke a hole in various materials to avoid using your drill. 


It’s one of the tools you can count on using at every call. Multimeters test the electrical current, so that you can diagnose and fix problems on wires and refrigerators. It is also used to protect the worker from electrocution. 


HVAC thermometers are just like regular ones that show you the temperature, which are instrumental in diagnosing and fixing problems. What’s special about HVAC thermometers is that they are very fast, accurate, can detect up to temperatures like 1000ºF that regular thermometers don’t, and some even come with lasers to check the  temperature from a distance. 

Powered Tools

Reciprocating Saw / Sawzall

Every list of tools for an HVAC technician comes with a reciprocating saw, or known by its popular name, a Sawzall. The HVAC job comes with the task of cutting through various materials like wood, or drywall. The reciprocating saw handles the job with perfection and ease. 


There are some things you can’t pass up on, namely a drill. Getting a drill is not only good for making your life easier and saving you time, but it also gets screws in more precisely and can go through harder material which is not easy by hammer and hand. Most workers in this field are opting for cordless drills, because they are easier and safer to use.

Safety Tools

When you think of tools and equipment, you think of the hardware. The screws, the drill, and the hammer. You absolutely can’t forget to purchase safety tools and gear. It’s probably the most vital to you, because these are what save you from injuries, damage to your body, and generally prevent discomfort when you’re called to do uncomfortable jobs. 


This job comes with so many situations that you need to be prepared for. You deal with electrical materials as well as sharp objects. Safety gloves will protect you from harm. There are many types of gloves for the trades, but for HVAC, the one to buy is one which has good grip, resistance to puncturing, and a good fit that allows you to handle small parts.

Ear Protection

When you’re working with powered items like the drill and saw, it’s important to remember that part of safety is protecting your ears. At such a close distance to the powered tools, you’re putting yourself at risk for ear damage. You can use construction earmuffs or even ear plugs, which won’t weigh on your head so much. 

Safety Glasses

Your eyes are very vulnerable to all sorts of things on the job. There are times when the materials are above your eyes, and times when you use a high-powered saw. Every year there are so many injuries to the eye, and using the saw is one of the times when sharp materials can accidentally fly towards you. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What are HVAC tools?

HVAC tools are hardware products which are used by HVAC workers and technicians. It generally refers to tools and equipment that they use or may use. HVAC workers use basic hand and safety tools that are common to a lot of jobs as well as specialized equipment that are specifically designed to help HVAC workers. Check out our list above to see tools that are necessary for every HVAC technician. 

What are HVAC installer tools?

HVAC installer tools is a general category of tools that an HVAC tech uses when doing installations of new heating, AC, and ventilation systems in a home or office. These aren’t items that are different from common HVAC tools. This is simply another way to refer to these tools, since HVAC work involves a lot of installing. Read the above HVAC tool list for the tools you’ll need for installation. 

What is HVAC equipment used for?

HVAC equipment is tools and hardware products that you use when doing any kind of HVAC work. It is used to do installations on heating, AC, and ventilation systems, as well as fix problems in offices and homes. If your service is extended to refrigerators, your equipment will be used to fix refrigerator malfunctions. 

How much does HVAC equipment cost?

Unfortunately, the prices of HVAC are pretty steep. This is because a lot of the items are specialized. Also, even the more basic tools, like screwdrivers will cost more because you’ll need to get a set to have more size options. However, don’t worry about prices too much because it’s worth the cost. When you pay more for tools, you pay for better quality, but in the end you’ll use them so much you will have gotten your money’s worth from all of them. 

What is the best HVAC equipment?

Don’t buy tools without doing your research first. Read product reviews, or HVAC technician forums where you see experienced workers give opinions, recommendations, and more tips. Milwaukee Tools and Klein Tools are some examples of the favourite brands for specialists in the field..

What tools should you use to diagnose HVAC problems?

The best tools to get for diagnosing HVAC problems are the thermometer, manifold gauge, and multimeter. Most HVAC technicians think these three tools are the best ones to have, which they use on almost, if not every, service call. 
– Thermometers show you the temperature, which helps you to determine what the problem is and to verify a problem is fixed. 
– Manifold gauges test the pressure of refrigerators and AC units. 
– Multimeters show you the electrical current which helps you to see where a problem is.

Where can I buy HVAC tools and equipment?

If you want to buy most of your HVAC tools from one place, then go to The Home Depot, AC Wholesalers, Atlas Machinery, or even Amazon. You may not find everything in every brand you want, so you may have to find a few items on specific brand websites.

What is the best toolbag for HVAC?

HVAC technicians carry a lot of tools with them to each call. For this reason, getting the right tool bag is of utmost importance. It makes a big difference whether it will make your job easier or harder. Here are the key elements to look for in a tool bag:
Durability and sturdiness: It’s important that all your items can be held by a strong bag that will hold things together well. It needs to withstand all the bulky and heavy items.
Lightweight: Your toolbag won’t be feather light as it still needs to be sturdy. However, it should be relatively lighter than a very bulky bag. A lot of HVAC technicians like to reach for tools easily and look for lighter bags.
Spacious and with compartments: Remember to look for something with compartments! More compartments means you can be more organized. This will ultimately save you time when reaching for parts. 
Water-resistant: You never know when you’ll be outside, and it’s vital to be prepared in case of rain. Don’t risk getting your tools all wet!