Electrical Tools and Equipment for Electrical Subcontractors
Electrical contractors and hired electricians working in commercial construction require many different types of construction tools and equipment.
Whether you’re an electrical contractor or hired electrician working in the world of commercial construction, you’re reliant on certain types of electrical tools and equipment to complete your jobs. These are essential for a few different reasons:
-- Avoiding project disruption by not being able to work efficiently.
-- Ensuring safety on certain projects.
-- Avoiding the additional costs/dissatisfied customers that come with project delays.
So, with these points in mind, here’s a list of electrical tools and equipment to put to use when assembling your gear for your next project.
Job Safety and Efficiency
It is paramount for an electrical contractor and his or her team to have the right tools and equipment to do his or her job at the site. Without the proper tools, the electrician would not only not be able to work properly, but this is something that would likely disrupt the overall project. For example, if an electrician does not have the right tools, he or she is not going to be able to work efficiently, which means that he or she might delay his or her job.
A small delay can end up delaying the overall project, which can be quite costly. As a result, electricians working on commercial construction require proper construction tools and equipment for them to be able to work efficiently and productively.
Construction Tools and Equipment
There are some basic items that just about any electrician should have, such as screwdrivers. Something that should be held in the same regard in terms of electrical engineering tools and equipment is the “T-stripper.” Cutting and stripping wires is one of the base tasks that electricians have to do as a part of their daily work. As a result, this is essential to actually perform said task. Electrical wire is normally insulated with thermoplastic that you can’t remove easily with a conventional wire knife. This makes a T-stripper an essential tool to keep things safe and efficient.
Pliers are generally used for a variety of different purposes, with handling various types of wires being one of the main starting points. If any contractor touches a live wire accidentally, this can create an extremely dangerous situation. As a result, the best way to avoid risk is by using pliers to hold the wires whenever live electricity is a factor. There’s also the chance of using these for other purposes, such as wire cutting.
No discussion of electrical tools and equipment can be held without talking about the cable puller. This is designed to help pull cable (as the name implies) at different speeds. Depending on the type of cable, this can range from 25 feet per minute to 100 feet per minute. Many electrical contractors also make heavy use of the portable variant of this piece of equipment. Portable or stationary, this is generally used to simplify the process of laying cable across large distances.
The pipe bender is another vital construction tool that an electrical contractor is required to have while working at commercial construction sites. This tool allows the electricians to bend the pipes that they are installing when working on commercial construction buildings. The heavy pipe can be bent with extreme accuracy which allows a cable to be run through the pipes properly. For example, a wire might be required to run through a pipe and that pipe might have to be bent at a 90-degree angle. By using the pipe bender, an electrician can easily round the pipe, and thus work in a faster and more efficient manner.
Along with standard tools used in electrical work, many professionals are also reliant on certain construction power tools, such as drilling machines. One thing that works in the favor of most electrical professionals is these tools getting lighter and smaller, while at the same time, increasing in power. While you have the option to go corded or cordless, cordless is favored due to the increased flexibility. For example, if you had to drill a hole in the wall to install a wire, factors like long wires or where to find an electrical wire are not a concern.
Lately, you may see a lot more interest in laser measuring tools. However, all electricians should also pack a basic tape measure as well. Some professionals invest in measures with rare earth magnetic tips. This gives them the ability to stick to surfaces like iron and steel so you can get a quick and accurate measurement by yourself.
Fish tape is one of the more popular pieces of electrical tools that you’ll see and gets used on just about every job site. The main purpose of this is running wiring between gang boxes and other types of electrical components via conduit piping. To do this, the fish tape gets housed in a coil and moved around through the piping. When the end of the tape shows up on the other side, wiring can be installed and you can retract the tape.
Saws are similar to drills in that they are general power tools that find use in this specialized setting. Most electrical professionals favor handheld reciprocating saws because they are versatile and dependable in a variety of different settings. However, there is a large variety of saws also used by electrical subcontractors. Examples include cut-off saws, hole saws, and spiral saws. Which saw you bring with you will depend on your specialties as a contractor.
In some settings, it can be hard for an electrician to determine exactly what outlets are connected to what circuits in a given location. Rather than relying on trial and error to find the right spot, circuit finders are the modern solution. These components have two main parts: a digital transmitter and a receiver you plug into the outlet. When you hold the transmitter to different circuits on the breaker, the device will send a signal to the receiver, showing which circuit is associated with which outlet.
Project Management Software
This may not be something that instantly comes to mind when it comes to electrical construction tools. However, you need to realize that in the age of technology, many construction projects are managed via software and computers.
As a result, the modernized electrical equipment list should now include electrical contractor software. What makes this so essential compared to something like a cable puller or pipe bender?
Though this software is not used directly when conducting actual electrical work such as drilling, it does serve a critical function in the overall of a construction project. This type of project management software allows managers and supervisors of electrical contractors to manage and supervise the project effectively and efficiently because they can monitor the work hours, the jobs started and completed, and many other aspects of the job site.
Thus, even though it is not an electrical tool per se, it is nevertheless quite an important construction tool in the modern context for electrical contractors working in commercial construction. So, while this may not technically fall under the electrical contractor tools umbrella, it’s still an essential aspect for anyone in the profession.