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9 Must-Have Tools for Working with Electrical Wiring

As more integrators get electrical licenses, it requires a whole different set of tools that your technicians may not have.


A digital multimeter is one of the nine must-have tools for working with electrical wiring.

While CE pros tend to work primarily in the low-voltage world, there are several products that often require line-voltage electrical work. Among the more common tasks include moving outlets for mounting flat panels on walls, bringing proper power needs to the equipment room where the rack is located, and power needs for lifts, motorized mounts, motorized window treatments and even central vacuum.

In recent years, more integrators have taken on electrical licenses so they can solve these power requirements without having to work around the schedule of an electrician.

But while most service trucks are readily stocked with the necessary tools for audio, video and data work, they may not have the proper tools for working with electrical wires.

We previously showed you 10 Go-To Tools for low-voltage work, so here are nine must-have products, courtesy of Klein Tools, that technicians need to have for line voltage work.

Click here for 9 must-have tools for working with electrical wiring.


View the 9 photos attached to this entry
9 Must-Have Tools for Working with Electrical Wiring

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About the Author

Jason Knott, Editor, CE Pro
Jason has covered low-voltage electronics as an editor since 1990. He joined EH Publishing in 2000, and before that served as publisher and editor of Security Sales, a leading magazine for the security industry. He served as chairman of the Security Industry Association’s Education Committee from 2000-2004 and sat on the board of that association from 1998-2002. He is also a former board member of the Alarm Industry Research and Educational Foundation. He is currently a member of the CEDIA Education Action Team for Electronic Systems Business. Jason graduated from the University of Southern California.

7 Comments (displayed in order by date/time)

Posted by Ric Johnson  on  02/19  at  11:08 PM

Jason, by far the most important tool is the current issue of The National Electrical Code, which shows under section 90.1 that electrical work must be done by a qualified person. Just having tools is part, but understanding the code requirements and safety issues working with line voltage is also required.

Posted by manuel alberto delgado  on  02/19  at  11:28 PM

Add the clamp meter for larger amp readings. All tools r indeed in my tool pouch/bag

Posted by Rick in Raleigh  on  02/20  at  05:23 PM

Always double check your wires A non contact tester will Lie somtimes use a real volt meter, and I don,t care who tells you the power is off always Double Check it’s your life.
A white wire sharing a neutral may still have a load on it. Even if the circuit is off

Posted by Igor  on  02/21  at  11:44 PM

Just need one tool… your head. If you don’t have experience with line voltage leave it alone.  If you think wrapping a wire nut with 10’ of cheap electrical tape is good insurance…. you should not even attempt to think about touching electrical. Focus on your next trunk slam instead.

Posted by Garrett  on  02/22  at  05:54 PM

I’m going to have to agree with Ric. Also if your not a licensed journeyman electrician working for a company with a master electrician. That also has a electrical contractors license and have the proper insurance. The extra money you make is not worth the liability.

Posted by Ed Anderson  on  02/27  at  01:33 PM

I suggest reading and following the latest (2012) copy of NFPA 70-E Electrical Safety for Workers.

The (2) screwdrivers must have insulated shafts. All wire cutters and needle nose pliers should have
protective skirts at the (insulated) handle tops as well as 1000v ratings.

We are recommending against using any
SOLENOID type tester for safety reasons.  I agree workers should have both a Proximity tester and a tested DMM as well as a “clamp on” Ammeter.

Hey where are the Gloves ( Volt rated), Glasses & Hard hat? They go on FIRST.

Of course if your a qualified worker, working on or near energized components- you knew all of this already!

Ed Anderson III
NFPA 70-E Safety Instructor

Posted by mike  on  02/27  at  04:05 PM

Not understanding the limits and capeabilities of the first 3 tools in your list can get you killed.  The first 2 require contact with live circuits and the first tool anyone needs is knowledge.
Anyone that cannot explain the correct use for these 3 similar tools should stay to driving nails.
Frankly the idea that anyone but fully trained electricians is working in any power conductor is well stupid.  Even within the trade there are lots of electricians that should never be allowed to use a voltmeter and here we are advocating a tool makes you ready?  Sorry this is a fluff article and only serves to encourage uninformed people to do electrical work.
A lot of wiring mistakes takes years to go bad and often only experienced people know how to really do wiring safely.

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