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Tool opinions

Wayne Wildermuth

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I am looking to buy some tools, and I am looking for input on what to get. I am looking for information on types, cost and ease of use for carbon monoxide detectors and gas leak detectors. They can be combination units or individual units.

Do you have any recommendations? I want to get the best unit(s) for the least amount of money.

I am also looking into a moisture meter...any thoughts? Same deal, easy to use and the most for the least.

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My opinion, buy yourself a moisture meter and a good electrical tester and forego the gas and CO detectors. I use the moisture meter and electrical tester constantly, but the other two rarely leave my bag.

There's not really a whole lot that could be causing a CO leak that you can't detect from making a good thorough visual inspection of the appliances and their associated vents and supply pipes and how they are configured. Gas leaks are the same and I'd trust my nose over my TIFF, since any kind of VOC will set it off.

On the other hand, the number of times my Protimeter has saved my bacon where moisture is concerned is probably in the hundreds. The scan feature finds hidden moisture in places that look perfectly alright and where there aren't any other overt clues that anything is happening. It's the ultimate iceberg tip finder.

My SureTest ST-1D has found thousands upon thousands of wiring anomalies and is a whole lot more accurate than one of those danged $20. 3-light testers.



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Mike, you're paying to much for you 3 light testers! I just picked up a bunch at Lowes for $9 a piece. (I give them to some customers if they have concerns about whether or not a builder "fixed" an outlet)

Anyway, back to Waynes question.

Wayne, you can pick up all those tools you mentioned and more on Ebay and save yourself a whole lot of $$$ doing so. Just be patient.

Since you're saving so much $$$, get both a protimeter and Tramex (the newer ones). The Tramex will go deeper than the Protimeter, however the PM gets into some tight areas and is better on some dense materials such as some types of tile.

I've used both the TIFF and Bacharach gas detectors and I favor the Bacharach. It does not give me as many false positives as the TIFF and has a longer reach.

The only way I'd use a CO detector anymore is if I had a certification and then I'd charge extra to do it.

You can also browse the HI forums, however it's been my experience that HI's selling their tools want as much as new. Guess they're trying to recoup some of their initial cost.

Good Luck

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