Best Tool Box For 2021

Here's my view on some of the best tool boxes (and a quick look at tool chests) currently available.

Contents show

Your tools love you.  That is when you show them a bit of love.  Throw them to the back of a drawer, or underneath a pile of other tools, and they are left feeling unloved.  

Time to be a boss and show your tools the organization they deserve.

Reach them quicker!

Keep them safer!

Reduce the stress!

The best all round tool box is the Stanley FatMax waterproof tool box.  It is tough and also has a v groove cut into the lid to let you cut timber and pipework.  It's metal latches prevents tiny hands from accessing your tools.

(Conveniently available on Amazon where we earn a small commission)

Compare these portable tool boxes (at a glance)

Preview
Our favourite portable tool box
STANLEY FATMAX Waterproof Toolbox Storage...
Makita 821551-8 MakPac Type 3 Stacking...
STANLEY Toolbox with Metal Latch, 2 Lid...
Title
STANLEY FATMAX Waterproof Toolbox Storage...
Makita 821551-8 MakPac Type 3 Stacking...
STANLEY Toolbox with Metal Latch, 2 Lid...
Is it lockable
Yes, padlock eye built in
No
Padlock eye built in to attach a lock
Organizational features inside?
Tote tray inside
No
Yes. Tote tray inside to organize items, plus 2 compartments in the lid handy for small bits
Size
71 x 28.5 x 30.8 cm
3 boxes, each are 396mmx 296mmx 210mm
51 x 26 x 22.4 cm
Comments
Waterproof (IP53) seal
Stackable, and these can be locked together
Very spacious inside and well organized. The soft grip handles help too.
Rating
Our favourite portable tool box
Preview
STANLEY FATMAX Waterproof Toolbox Storage...
Title
STANLEY FATMAX Waterproof Toolbox Storage...
What's the cost?
Is it lockable
Yes, padlock eye built in
Organizational features inside?
Tote tray inside
Size
71 x 28.5 x 30.8 cm
Comments
Waterproof (IP53) seal
Rating
Preview
Makita 821551-8 MakPac Type 3 Stacking...
Title
Makita 821551-8 MakPac Type 3 Stacking...
What's the cost?
Is it lockable
No
Organizational features inside?
No
Size
3 boxes, each are 396mmx 296mmx 210mm
Comments
Stackable, and these can be locked together
Rating
Preview
STANLEY Toolbox with Metal Latch, 2 Lid...
Title
STANLEY Toolbox with Metal Latch, 2 Lid...
What's the cost?
Is it lockable
Padlock eye built in to attach a lock
Organizational features inside?
Yes. Tote tray inside to organize items, plus 2 compartments in the lid handy for small bits
Size
51 x 26 x 22.4 cm
Comments
Very spacious inside and well organized. The soft grip handles help too.
Rating
best tool box

Get yourself top-notch storage for your tools, whether it be a hand-held tool box or a well organized tool chest on wheels.  Everyone knows that the worst thing is seeing a drawer stuffed with tool oddments with all sorts of things jammed in "just to put it away".  That's ok until the next time you come to need a certain tool.....  ouch!  Now where did I put it?

Thankfully there are tool boxes and chests to suit all budgets.  Years ago I used to see the snap-on vans delivering to local garages.  I would hear stories of the chests costing thousands of pounds.  That put a tool chest firmly out of my reach for decades to come. 

With a bit of organization you can go straight to the right tool without blowing a months wages in the process!  There are compact carry boxes as well as more glamorous tool chests for far less money than you may think so be prepared to have your eyes opened.

Compare the best tool chests (at a glance)

Preview
Consistently great, raving reviews!
Dirty Pro Tools™ X LARGE TOOL CHEST TOP...
Hardcastle 9 Drawer Red Lockable Topchest...
Not a chest but somewhere between a chest and a box
US PRO Black Work Center Plastic Steel Mobile...
Title
Dirty Pro Tools™ X LARGE TOOL CHEST TOP...
Hardcastle 9 Drawer Red Lockable Topchest...
US PRO Black Work Center Plastic Steel Mobile...
How many drawers does it have?
14
9
4 large main compartments
Is it lockable
Yes, lockable
Yes, lockable
Yes, it has locking hoops on 3 of the 4 compartments
Anti slip mat inside?
Yes, anti slip mat inside each drawer
Yes, anti slip mat inside each drawer
No, this is designed to carry larger heavy tools
Organizational features inside?
Drawer divider with each order
Not really necessary as such as each drawer is really designed for specific needs
A Tote tray in the top section for a few smaller items, otherwise this is to carry those larger tools
Size
W616 x D330 x H1146mm
60cm long x 26cm wide x 39cm high
Width 49cm X Depth 23cm ( without handle ) X Height 72cm
Comments
Brilliant top rated inexpensive tool chest for the money!
The perfect semi permanent tool chest. The side stainless steel carry handles means you can pop it in your car or van if ever needed
A tough, well thought out mobile tool box option
Rating
Consistently great, raving reviews!
Preview
Dirty Pro Tools™ X LARGE TOOL CHEST TOP...
Title
Dirty Pro Tools™ X LARGE TOOL CHEST TOP...
What's the cost?
How many drawers does it have?
14
Is it lockable
Yes, lockable
Anti slip mat inside?
Yes, anti slip mat inside each drawer
Organizational features inside?
Drawer divider with each order
Size
W616 x D330 x H1146mm
Comments
Brilliant top rated inexpensive tool chest for the money!
Rating
Preview
Hardcastle 9 Drawer Red Lockable Topchest...
Title
Hardcastle 9 Drawer Red Lockable Topchest...
What's the cost?
How many drawers does it have?
9
Is it lockable
Yes, lockable
Anti slip mat inside?
Yes, anti slip mat inside each drawer
Organizational features inside?
Not really necessary as such as each drawer is really designed for specific needs
Size
60cm long x 26cm wide x 39cm high
Comments
The perfect semi permanent tool chest. The side stainless steel carry handles means you can pop it in your car or van if ever needed
Rating
Not a chest but somewhere between a chest and a box
Preview
US PRO Black Work Center Plastic Steel Mobile...
Title
US PRO Black Work Center Plastic Steel Mobile...
What's the cost?
How many drawers does it have?
4 large main compartments
Is it lockable
Yes, it has locking hoops on 3 of the 4 compartments
Anti slip mat inside?
No, this is designed to carry larger heavy tools
Organizational features inside?
A Tote tray in the top section for a few smaller items, otherwise this is to carry those larger tools
Size
Width 49cm X Depth 23cm ( without handle ) X Height 72cm
Comments
A tough, well thought out mobile tool box option
Rating

At the end of the day, a tool box is a tool box.  Some of you simply want a bit more organization to your cluttered pile of tools, while others need a portable way to take tools to other places.

Then there are those of you who need much better organization.  Those of you who spend hours in your workshops or garages and need to be able to casually turn round and grab the right tool from your well organized tool chest.

These options on this page are all hand picked for having excellent reviews from existing buyers and come with our very own "proudly recommended" feedback too.


Top 3 Best Overall

1: Stanley FatMax (editors choice)

STANLEY FATMAX Waterproof Toolbox Storage...

Why is the Stanley FatMax my BEST all round tool box?

A TOUGH waterproof tool box at a GREAT price.

One of the most perfect tool boxes you'll have for many long years to accompany you.

  • Structural foam plastic

  • IP53 water rated seal

  • V Groove in the lid to cut timber or pipework

  • Metal latches (hard for kids to get into)

98%

rated

Stanley tools have been around since 1843 helping shape peoples' lives for the better.  Their warranties are as good as many retailers (more info here)

The FatMax tool box needs very little deliberating.

Price-wise:

  • It's a tool box.  You won't be spending hundreds or thousands of pounds to organize tools.  This makes so much sense, and the in built features help make this our clear winner (Typically around £35 to £40).
  • Click here to view it on Amazon Uk.

Can you use it like a work horse?

Yes!  In a sense.  The top of the box is very tough and the V groove cut into the lid helps when cutting timber or pipework.  Do your best and use it as a tool, as well as a tool box!

There are many tool boxes out there.  Sure you can go check them out here on Amazon and pay as little as £20, but I believe that quality pays for itself over time.  Stanley are simply a good solid time served brand.  The boxes are not overly expensive and the warranties are good. This tool box is tough, spacious and waterproof, satisfying the needs of most people.

Stanley Fatmax Tool Box Final Thoughts

by SHaun baird

There are many tool boxes out there.  Sure you can go check them out here on Amazon and pay as little as £20, but I believe that quality pays for itself over time.  Stanley are simply a good solid time served brand.  The boxes are not overly expensive and the warranties are good. This tool box is tough, spacious and waterproof, satisfying the needs of most people.

2: Makita Type 3 connector case

Makita 821551-8 MakPac Type 3 Stacking...


Why does this tool box combination appear in this list of top rated tool boxes and tool chests?

A unique and highly portable organized tool box package

Stack 'em and pack 'em however you see fit!


Look forward to:

  • Storing tools in 3 different boxes.

  • Stack them together when not in use

  • The optional trolley (available on Amazon) that makes it a wonderful way to carry tools outdoors.

96%

rated

The only reason this tool box set got a lower score is that we did see one person whose boxes cracked and broke in a short space of time.  That said - might be worth contacting Makita customer services if this ever happens to you.

Makita Triple Tool Box Set (Type 3) Final Thoughts

by SHaun baird

The way I see it, these offer something quite unique.  Take 1 box or 2 or all 3 with you if you need to venture out with tools. You do have the Makita brand behind you for reassurance should there ever be any issues.  Overwhelmingly though, I LOVE this set considerably.

3: Stanley STA194858 metal latch tool box

STANLEY Toolbox with Metal Latch, 2 Lid...


What's so good about this tool box?

A solid, slightly smaller tool box at a rock bottom price!

Being a Stanley, you can enjoy QUALITY construction.


Enjoy:

  • A soft grip handle - makes all the difference with a heavy tool box!

  • A small organizer in the lid you can access without opening the lid (perfect for small parts)

  • Portable tray inside for seperating smaller tools from the bigger ones.

  • A padlock eye.

  • Metal locking latches for long term security.

97%

rated

Overall this being the least costly cannot be beaten on value.  It has a number of features of bigger more expensive tool boxes at a fraction of the cost (literally!)  It is conveniently available on Amazon here (this is an affiliate link).


Best Tool Box – A Buyers Guide To Understanding And Choosing The Right One



What do you need a tool box for?

Just a bit of better organization for your tools that are scattered around?  Something that helps you find all your screwdrivers together rather than in the kitchen drawer, plus the shed, the car boot and in the bedroom window.

The main thought here is to get what is most appropriate.


What will you be doing with your tools?

If you often go to other sites then portable is a "must have" requirement.  if you've got more tools or bigger tools then choose bigger and sturdier.  The sturdier the better to handle the weight.

If you will simply be accessing tools in your garage then a tool chest will make life so much easier. 

Summary

Wrapping up this tool box review (my thoughts:

Choosing a tool box in all honesty doesn't take up too much time if you're just after a simple good honest box.  However even at the lower end you should try and find the one that has the most features, most space, and so on.

Essentially get what suits your own needs.  If you have loads of smaller tools then any box should do, but for larger tools you should take a walk round your garage before buying and find out the dimensions of your tools.

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