Shop Talk

Going Green with Power Tools: Repair Your Power Tools Instead of Replacing Them


    Being green and environmentally/economically responsible isn’t just a fad or trend these days, it’s a bona fide lifestyle that is finding greater popularity as each day rolls on. You see, being green is generally easy, and what’s more, it usually saves you money as well; what could be better than that?

     Well, I’ll tell you – we in the tool industry get to participate in a special kind of green living that keeps a good power tool in our hands, productivity on the agenda, and more dollar bills in our pockets. These green habits for power toolers can be pretty simply summed up in just two magic words: maintenance, and refurbishing.

    First and foremost, properly and regularly maintaining your power tools and power tool parts is one of the most important things you can do as a craftsman. It is a widely known fact that a well oiled machine (or at least and clean and cared for machine) will run better and last longer than if simply left to its own devices. This regular maintenance ensures your equipment will perform better under any circumstances and continue performing better for a longer period of time. A colleague of mine can still milk a surprisingly veritable performance from an eighteen year old cordless drill (hey, Jon!); that’s a pretty incredible track record, and certainly one not impossible to replicate, especially if you practice our second bullet point as well: refurbishing. Repairing your power tools rather than replacing them is truly one of the smartest practices to incorporate into your tooling routine. It’s just like that old adage goes – you wouldn’t throw out your automobile for a failing windshield wiper or a balding tire, so why throw out your power tools for a faulty switch or worn-down brushes?

    Repairing your power tools can save you an impressive chunk of change, but what’s more, is it will also help you reduce your own carbon footprint. Every power tool that we can keep out of a landfill reduces the units of carbon dioxide emitted into our Earth’s atmosphere. This, consequently, keeps us, our projects, and our big blue Earth safer, healthier, and altogether happier. Reducing our consumption and refurbishing our power tools may seem like just a drop in the ocean, but I promise it will make a difference and soon we craftsman will be making waves with our charm and eco-mindedness. So, my friends and fellows, I appeal to you, repair your power tools, its just plain-old smart.

    And, don’t be discouraged at the thought of performing your own repairs, most minor fixes like carbon brush, power cord, or tool housing/clamshell replacements, and many switch replacements as well, can be performed by any old craftsmen. Simply purchase your replacement parts, and should you need an extra hand, a technician, video tutorial, or “how to” article can usually walk you through the process. Other, more complex repairs can be handled at a power tool service center for a fairly menial charge. This is clearly a very small price to pay to revive your power tools, honor thy proverbial mother, and keep some big bucks in your bank account.

    Buying used power tools is another way to keep your carbon footprint small and your wallet fat. Used tools can usually do all the same things a brand new one can, but they do them for a fraction of regular cost.

    As you can see, green is the new black. Reduce your consumption, reduce your carbon footprint, and benefit from high-performance refurbished power tools and the warm feelings you’ll get for acting smart.

    Click here for a step-by-step guide to replacing the brushes in your power tool.


    Click here for a step-by-step guide to replacing the switch in your power tool.