HVAC Tools What One Tool Does Every Technician Need?

Are you confused by this title?

Many HVAC technicians would be. Why? Because they know there’s no single tool that trumps all others for their job.

In fact, a complete HVAC tools list contains dozens of must-have items, from crimpers and snips to manifold gauges and tube cutters. Not to mention a sturdy, durable tool bag or box to carry them from job to job.

If you’re one of the 22,000-plus HVAC technicians working in the USA alone, this article’s for you. Read on to learn what HVAC tools you (or your employer) should invest in today.

(Note: This is not an exhaustive list of must-have HVAC tools. If we’ve left something important off our checklist, let us know, and we’ll add it.)

A Hammer

Sure, it seems basic. But a hammer is essential to any good HVAC technician's tool kit.

You can use it for all sorts of tasks, like:

  • Removing ductwork
  • Installing ductwork
  • Adjusting sheet metal
  • Straightening fin on condenser coils

A hammer is also helpful when you need to tap or gently knock parts into place or dislodge stuck components.

Crimpers and Pliers

HVAC technicians are constantly bending, shaping, and cutting various materials, from sheet metal and copper tubing to electrical wires. And that’s where crimpers and pliers come in handy.

There are so many crimpers out there, all serving different purposes. However, if you don’t have the capacity (financially or in your tool bag) to get a bunch, try this multi-modular plug crimping tool instead.


A big part of HVAC work is dealing with electricals. And this means you need a good set of insulated screwdrivers.

These screwdrivers have a rubber-coated handle that keeps you safe from electrical shock. It also ensures equipment isn’t damaged by sudden power surges.

Use them to install, repair, and maintain various electrical components: thermostats, circuit breakers, and relays.

Pipe Wrenches

As the name implies, pipe wrenches help technicians grip and turn pipes and fittings. They have sharp “teeth” that securely grip the surface of the pipe, making it easy to tighten or loosen as needed.

They’re particularly useful for gas lines and water pipes, which HVAC technicians deal with often.

A Cordless Drill

The reason cordless drills are so helpful is in the name: they’re cordless! You don’t have to be tethered to a power outlet or extension cord.

HVAC technicians typically use cordless drills to:

  • Drill holes for running wires
  • Mount equipment
  • Install hardware
  • Drive screws and bolts

Always keep two charged batteries on hand. That way, you don’t have to wait for a single battery to charge when it inevitably runs out on-site.

A Tape Measure

Accuracy is essential in HVAC installation and maintenance.

With a tape measure, you can take accurate measurements of everything from ductwork and vents to equipment. This is essential for ensuring proper fit and alignment.

It can also assist you in calculating the correct size and amount of materials you need.

A Staple Gun

We’re not talking about the kind of staple gun you use for stapling paper together or fixing upholstery. HVAC technicians need a heavy-duty or industrial staple gun!

Use this as a finishing tool to give your insulation and sheet metal seams a polished look.

A Scratch Awl

A scratch awl is a small but mighty tool. It looks like a pen and functions similarly.

Add this to your new HVAC tools list so you can mark the surface of sheet metal, wood, and plastic with measurements, locations, and other vital details. This ensures equipment is positioned accurately during HVAC installation or repair.

A Refrigerant Scale

Anyone outside of the HVAC industry is probably unfamiliar with this tool. A refrigerant scale accurately measures and charges refrigerant into HVAC systems.

This helps ensure that the system operates at peak efficiency. It also prevents damage from overcharging or undercharging, which can cause compressor failure and other issues.


Any hands-on profession requires tools you can cut with, whether scissors, knives, or, in the case of HVAC professionals, snips and cutters.

There are so many types of snips out there that it can get confusing. They’re color-coded by use and whether the tool is for left-handed or right-handed people. If you’re looking for an all-in-one option, you can’t go wrong with a universal cutter.

Tube and Pipe Cutters

As an HVAC technician, you often have to make clean, precise cuts on various types of tubing and pipes. Airtight connections are essential to the proper functioning of an HVAC system. You’ll also need to cut refrigerant lines and install gas lines.

These tools come in different sizes and designs to fit specific applications, but a mini tube cutter like this will work in any toolbox.

A Duct Stretcher

This device is an HVAC specialty tool!

A duct stretcher helps you stretch and shape ductwork for specific applications. It enables you to ensure proper fit and airflow throughout the HVAC system.

Use one when installing or repairing ductwork in tight or awkward spaces.

A Multimeter

A multimeter measures electrical parameters, including:

  • Voltage
  • Current
  • Resistance
  • Continuity

It’s an essential tool for technicians because it helps them diagnose and repair electrical issues in HVAC systems. You can also use a multimeter to test and troubleshoot electrical components and circuits.

A Metal Punch Set

As the name implies, this tool punches holes for bolts, screws, and wiring in sheet metal. And sheet metal is often used in HVAC componentry!

As a bonus, a metal punch set can also be used to punch holes in other materials, like leather and plastic.

Stock Your Tool Kit With the Best HVAC Tools on the Market

HVAC installation and repair is a complicated business.

As you can see, identifying a single tool is simply impossible. You need a carefully curated kit of tools to get the job done efficiently and to a high standard.

Whatever you do, don’t skimp on tool quality. The more you invest now in good tools, the more benefits you’ll reap in the future.

If you’re an HVAC tool importer or retailer searching Google for “HVAC tools near me,” consider working with the team at HTI. We design and manufacture high-quality HVAC (and other tools) for importers, retailers, and consumers worldwide.

Review our complete selection of expertly-made HVAC tools today. Then, contact our team if you have questions about materials, shipping, or anything else.


Multi-Modular Plug Crimping Tool

Multi-Modular Plug Crimping Tool

5" Scratch Awl

5inch Scratch Awl