Best Tool Chests: Keep Your Tools Organized and Secure | Autance

By Corinna Murdoch Tool chests are a great way to keep your tools safe and organized. Smaller than a tool…

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Best Tool Chests: Keep Your Tools Organized and Secure | Autance © Best Tool Chests: Keep Your Tools Organized and Secure | Autance
Best Choice WEN 73015 Garage Glider Rolling Tool Chest Seat WEN 73015 Garage Glider Rolling Tool Chest
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By Corinna Murdoch

Tool chests are a great way to keep your tools safe and organized. Smaller than a tool cabinet but larger than a portable tool box, a tool chest is a great way to keep your valuable tools secure. Whether you’re a mechanic, woodworker, DIYer, contractor, plumber, electrician, craftsman, there’s a tool chest out there that is built to suit your needs. 

The best tool chests are made from heavy-duty, durable materials and will offer a wide variety of differently sized storage spaces to accommodate many different tools. Some tool chests and tool boxes will have heavy-duty and secure locking mechanisms or a locking system to prevent tool theft. 

Tool chests can be moved form job site to job site, but they’re not made for everyday portability. They’re perfect for storing particular tools need for specific jobs, so those instruments don’t get mixed up with the rest of your tools. Some tool chests these days feature rechargeable batteries, with USB ports or electrical outlets that allow you to charge batteries, mobile devices, or power small electrical tools. The possibilities are almost endless. With a large amount of choices regarding size, available features and construction materials, here are some of our favorite tool storage solutions.

The Best Tool Chests

If you’re in the market for a cleverly designed, durable tool chest that also acts as a seat, the WEN 73015 Garage Glider Rolling Tool Chest is the ideal solution for all your tool storage and organization needs. You can cruise around the shop on this heavy-duty glider that features four 2.5-inch ball-bearing swivel casters for smooth and easy movement in all directions. This innovative rolling tool chest also comes equipped with two foldable magnetic storage trays that will securely hold nuts, bolts, screws, and other tiny accessories that you don’t want to lose.

An extra-absorbent vinyl-protected multi-layered padded seat provides a comfortable spot to take a load off during long projects. Keep your most frequently used tools within easy reach in one of the 16 on-board tool storage slots for added convenience. This durable tool chest is made from heavy-duty, high-quality steel and features a 350 pound weight limit to easily support most adults.

Key Features
  • Heavy-duty steel construction
  • 350-pound weight limit
  • Rolling tool chest with padded seat
  • Ball bearing slide drawers
  • Full length drawer pulls
  • Scratch-resistant powder finish
  • 16 on-board tool storage slots
  • Brand WEN
  • Model 73015
  • Weight 27.2 lbs

The Classic. The iconic Craftsman 3-drawer tool box is well-regarded for its sturdy and reliable construction — but it’s ubiquitous in garages and workshops all over the world because it comes at a surprisingly affordable price point. It may not be as big as a tool cabinet, but it does an excellent job of keeping your most-used hand tools protected because of its lid-activated locking mechanism. It’s also great for storing particular tools for specific jobs, keping them separate from your go-to daily tools. The drawers slide out smoothly and easily, giving you full access to the things that are stored inside. And, it looks great on the workbench.

If you’re a Craftsman Guy, this tool chest is a must-have. If you’re not, well —suffice to say, you could spend a lot more for an inferior tool chest.

Key Features
  • Portable 3-drawer design made of heavy-duty steel
  • Hinged cover with ease of access to tray
  • Lid-activated drawer lock mechanism
  • Full length drawer slide with compound action
  • Built-in hasp and staple mechanism for secure padlocks
  • Premium-grade, secure draw bolt latches
  • Brand Craftsman
  • Model 965337
  • Weight 19.35 lbs

This Apollo Tools Black Metal Tool Box features a deep top compartment and two drawers constructed from heavy-duty Steel with ball bearings for smooth and quiet opening and a powder coated finish for added durability. You can keep your tools organized and safely stored in this sleekly designed tool box. This tool chest offers a premier quality construction at a very competitive price and will be a welcome addition to any garage or workshop. It’s portable and designed for easy transport with a convenient center latch and an ergonomic handle for easy lifting. Non-slip drawer liners are a nice and thoughtful touch that prevent tools from rolling around and keep them protected.

Available in black or pink, this steel tool cabinet can also serve double duty as an organization or storage chest for school supplies, craft supplies, sewing, or woodworking supplies. The possibilities are wide and varied, making this a very versatile storage solution. Weighing only 11.88 pounds, this chest can go anywhere and is perfect for smaller spaces.

Key Features
  • Durable and sturdy solid steel construction
  • Chemical- and scratch-resistant powder finish
  • Heavy-duty, strong, secure metal hinges
  • Ergonomic carrying handle
  • Durable slide drawer ball bearings
  • Brand Apollo Tools
  • Model DT5010-Black
  • Weight 11.88 lbs

Constructed from high-quality and durable cold rolled steel, the Goplus 6-Drawer Rolling Tool Chest is a rugged and versatile tool storage solution. Finished with a high-gloss paint that is both rust- and corrosion-resistant, this tool cabinet will provide reliable use and protection for your tools for years to come. This tool box features 4 small drawers, 2 large drawers, 2 trays, and 1 large bottom cabinet to suit different sized tools and keep you super organized.

The innovative design of this tool chest allows the whole tool storage cabinet to be detached into two separate tool boxes, providing a lot of added versatility. The top chest drawers are fully secured by a keyed external locking system that will protect your tools from theft and keep valuables safe. Four heavy-duty swivel casters allow for smooth and easy movement of the tool chest all around the workshop or garage and two durable brake mechanisms ensure that the tool cabinet stays in place when you want it to.

Key Features
  • Heavy-duty, cold rolled steel construction
  • Secure locking bar mechanism
  • Smooth slide drawers with ball bearing rails
  • Four hooks for hanging tools
  • EVA padded drawer liners keep tools protected
  • High-gloss rust-resistant painted finish
  • Four locking heavy-duty casters
  • Brand Goplus
  • Model 6-Drawer Rolling Tool Chest
  • Weight 58.5 lbs

If you’re looking for a totally customizable modular design that gives you the ultimate in tool storage versatility, check out the DeWalt two-drawer tool storage organizer. It’s part of a flexible tool organization and storage platform that DeWalt offers .with a wide variety of options for customizing and meeting your particular tool storage and organization needs. All the pieces of this system can stack securely on top of each other and are connected with durable side latches.

Heavy-duty metal hinges and ball bearing slides provide smooth opening and closing of drawers, cabinets, and lids. This particular two-drawer section features removable covered cups and dividers for efficient organization of smaller tools and accessories. All components of this versatile tool storage system are constructed from heavy-duty metal with a rugged powder-coated finish for added durability.

Key Features
  • Heavy-duty metal construction
  • 16.5-pound loading capacity
  • Multiple storage compartments for small tools and accessories
  • Durable ball bearing sliders for smooth opening and closing
  • Rust-resistant powder coated finish
  • Brand DeWALT
  • Model DWST17804
  • Weight 9.11 pounds

Designed for the professional, the Keter Masterloader Resin Rolling Tool Box is a sturdily-built tool chest on wheels that can provide a wide variety of storage solutions for all your tools. Constructed from super durable and strong polypropylene resin, this rolling tool chest is weather-resistant and has a rugged 66 pound weight limit. It features a central locking mechanism for keeping tools secure and safe, as well as ensuring added stability during transport.

An extendable handle allows for easy rolling and the 7-inch heavy-duty rubber wheels make for easy transportation over a wide variety of different terrains. This tool box includes 6 removable bins in 2 different sizes for customizable storage and organization of small hardware, parts, tools, and nuts and bolts. The handy bottom divider offers deep storage for large tool needs, like hammers, drills, saws, flashlights, etc. The cleverly designed fold out drawers provide an all-encompassing view of the contents of the tool box, making it easy and fast to find the tool you’re looking for.

Key Features
  • Durable and super-strong polypropylene resin construction
  • Heavy-duty, high-security locking system
  • Sturdy and secure extendable towing handle
  • 66-pound capacity
  • Heavy-duty rubberized wheels
  • Brand KETER
  • Model Masterloader Resin Rolling Tool
  • Weight 13 lb

If you’re looking for the perfect combination between tool chest and mobile workshop, the Husky 36 in. 3-Drawer Rolling Tool Cart with Wood Top has got you covered. The high-quality fixed top is constructed from solid parawood with a glossy, protective coating, and provides a practical and beautiful work surface to tackle small- to medium-sized projects. This super durable rolling tool cart comes with three separate drawers with ultra smooth 50-pound rated ball bearings that allow for quiet and controlled opening and closing. A large bottom storage space is constructed with high-quality reinforced steel to be able to accommodate heavier and larger tools.

This practical rolling tool chest is also equipped with large, heavy-duty push-bar and solid, durable casters to allow you to easily maneuver the cart wherever you need it to go. It features a durable and modern black powder-coated finish that is both rust- and scratch-resistant for a long lifespan. While this may not be the largest rolling tool chest on the market, it’s a sturdy and sleekly designed cart that is easily one of the most functional tool kits on our list.

Key Features
  • Portable rolling tool cart
  • Fixed finished solid wood work table
  • 3-drawer storage compartment with deep and shallow drawers
  • Durable caster wheels for easy rolling
  • Heavy-duty ball bearings
  • Padded drawer liners
  • Heavy-duty push-bar handle
  • Brand Husky
  • Model 3-Drawer Rolling Tool Cart
  • Weight N/A

Craftsman has long been a trusted and respected name in the tool industry, and the Craftsman 1000 5-Drawer Lockable Ball-Bearing Steel Tool Box is an excellent example of why. This heavy-duty tool box is proudly made in the USA from 20-24 gauge steel construction with a durable rust- and corrosion-resistant finish that is made to last. It features 50-pound full-extension ball-bearing drawer slides that open and close super smoothly, even when loaded down with tools. Full length black metal drawer pulls allow you to open the drawers from any spot on them.Recessed side handles allow you to easily lift the chest to set it onto a rolling cabinet. A keyed internal locking system and hinged cover will keep your tool collection safe and secure.

Key Features
  • Heavy-duty solid steel construction with a stackable design
  • Multiple storage drawers
  • Foam mat drawer liners
  • Secure lockable top compartment
  • Integrated side handle
  • Brand Craftsman
  • Model N/A
  • Weight 40.9 lbs

Think of the H2PRO as the Homak 41’s slightly smaller yet equally functional tool chest fully capable of becoming one of the most ideal truck tool boxes to have. It’s a top chest so it is designed specifically as an expansion to the H2PRO 6-drawer roller tool cabinet. It’s the roller cabinet that comes with the casters, not the top chest.

Regardless, the sturdy construction of the Homak Top Chest gives you peace of mind when it comes to keeping the integrity of your tools. It may be quite hefty loading it up onto your tuck though so you’d definitely need a pair of extra hands. Good thing the built-in handles won’t hurt the palms and fingers.

Key Features
  • Constructed of 15-gauge steel
  • High-security heavy-duty tubular locking system
  • Sturdy and secure full-length aluminum drawer pulls with liners
  • Full extension gas struts
  • Replaceable drawer slides
  • Heavy duty drawer slide ball bearings
  • 8-year limited warranty
  • Brand H2PRO
  • Model RD02036081
  • Weight 181 lbs

For those who are looking for a unique and different tool storage option, check out the Klein Tools Rolling Tool Bag. This durable tool box is constructed from durable 1680D ballistic weave material that is waterproof and easy to wipe down for cleaning. The tool bag features 19 different pockets inside and out for organizing and securing different sized tools.

The top of the tool bag is ultra durable hard plastic that allows you to stack materials and items on top of it and even has special compartments for storing your mobile phone, small parts, and beverages. This tool kit is made easily portable thanks to rugged 8-inch wheels that provide high clearance to traverse different terrains, and a strong telescoping handle for towing. This tool bag is rated to hold up to 250 pounds of tools. Heavy-duty metal latches on the front of the bag keep your tools safe and secure.

Key Features
  • Portable rolling tool bag
  • Constructed from durable and lightweight 1680D ballistic weave material
  • 19 storage pockets
  • Durable bottom flip pocket
  • Heavy-duty hard plastic top
  • Retractable telescopic aluminum handles
  • Heavy-duty 8-inch wheels
  • Exterior webbing and D-rings for accessory attachments
  • Brand Klein Tools
  • Model 55473RTB
  • Weight 29 lbs

The GearWrench 20″ 3 Drawer Steel Tool Box is a great option for a durable stand-alone tool kit, or as an expansion to add into an existing tool storage set-up. Constructed from tough and durable steel with a rust- and scratch-resistant black powder-coated finish, this portable tool box will hold up to years of use and abuse. It’s equipped with two heavy-duty steel latches to ensure that the lid stays closed and your tools stay where they’re supposed to.

This tool box is equipped with three heavy-duty drawers with smooth and durable ball bearing slides that allow for easy and quiet opening and closing. It’s fully lockable to prevent any of your tools from being stolen. This tool box features a large, rugged handle for transporting and the size of the tool box itself makes it a great option to fit in the back of your truck or a smaller area in a garage or workshop that can’t accommodate a larger tool storage option.

Key Features
  • Heavy-duty steel construction
  • Metal latches to ensure tool box stays closed
  • 50-pound loading capacity per slide drawer
  • Ball bearing slide drawers
  • Full-length drawer pulls made of aluminum
  • Scratch-resistant powder finish
  • Heavy-duty metal carrying handle
  • Locking mechanism
  • 1 year limited warranty
  • Brand GearWrench
  • Model 83151
  • Weight 9.46 lbs

Best Tool Chests Buying Guide & FAQ

Why You Need a Tool Chest

If you only have a handful of tools that you can count with the number of appendages you have in your hands you clearly don’t need a tool chest. As the name implies, these are large containers designed with exceptionally large capacities that can handle a variety of tools from the small ones to the larger implements such as drills, saws, hammers and wrenches among other things.

Keep your tools organized and secure in a tool chest.

The nature of a tool chest actually defines its purpose. Since it comes with a large capacity then you can expect to put a lot more things into it. Some tool storage solutions also come with dividers or organizers that can make for a more systematic way of accessing different tools. For example, you can place all cutting tools in one drawer while all striking or hammering tools will be organized in another drawer. Screwdrivers and other driver systems can also be categorized into another drawer. It is this sense of organization that is inherent in a well-designed tool chest that makes it appealing but only to those who have an extensive set of tools.

That being said, if you own a business such as an automotive repair shop, then it usually is wise to have a tool chest around. Or, better still, a tool cabinet will be more appropriate since this implement has an even greater capacity than a chest. The good news is that majority of tool chests today are fully stackable or expandable. A single unit can actually be placed on top of another unit, giving it a more modular design. So, as your business grows and the number of tool collection expands, you’re also able to keep on expanding your tool chest organizer system.

Even if you don’t own a business, you will still need a tool chest to help keep things organized and secure. Your tools are not cheap. The overall value of your hand tools can easily reach in the thousands of dollars with full-time automotive mechanics known to shell out at least $7,000 worth of tools. This is a substantial investment and you would definitely want it protected.

And if you want to protect these babies you’re better off with a vault. But that is way too expensive. The next best thing is to invest in a tool chest that comes with enhanced security features. Not only are you protecting your investment, you’re also keeping your tools in pristine condition.

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Features to Look For in a Tool Chest

Tool chests may look the same featuring drawers and locking mechanisms in pretty much the same way as cabinets. However, there are certain features that you really have to look for.

Storage capacity

For obvious reasons, the capacity of the tool chest you have in mind actually depends on the number and type of hand tools that you have or the different implements you want to store. If you only have a handful of tools, an ordinary tool box should suffice. But if you’re looking to expand your collection of tools on an almost yearly basis, you’re better off with a tool cabinet. If you’re happy with the number of tools you have now, but won’t fit everything in a tool box, then a tool chest is in the offing.

Durable frame

Tools are heavy, no doubt about that. An adjustable wrench can easily weigh about half a pound. If you have ten of these, then you’re essentially looking at 5 pounds just for this set of wrenches alone. You also have other tools to think about. As such, the loading capacity of the tool chest is as important as its volume capacity. In hindsight, it could even be more important than the volume capacity since you don’t want a chest that will give in to the weight of your tools. Most tool chests today come with 18- to 19- gauge steel while some go for thicker, heavier 15-gauge. Also, another important consideration is the wall construction and whether or not it is single or double. You’ll definitely have a more durable frame with double wall construction.


The drawers should be spacious enough to allow you to store and organize your stuff. You would also want the drawer edges to be somewhat rolled to give it added rigidity.

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It is also important to look for a stamped drawer bottom as this can increase the drawer’s durability and strength, especially if you intend on putting your heaviest tools and implements in this part of the tool chest. You may also want a drawer that has a flush design for space-saving purposes.


There are two types of drawer slide designs in modern tool chests. Friction or non-bearing slides work on the principle of kinetic energy. These are largely unsophisticated, but they do have a definite price advantage. They are also more robust and are more immune to failure, requiring only occasional lubrication. These are very easy to reassemble, too.

On the other hand, ball or roller bearing slides allow for faster, quieter, and more efficient opening and closing of the drawer. However, it is important to look at the load capacity of the roller bearings. You should always go for those rated at least 100 pounds. Additionally, you will want a roller slide with full extendability. You will want a drawer that will slide fully out so you’ll gain access to everything.


One of the reasons why you need a tool chest is to keep your implements safe. But how can you do this if the tool chest doesn’t have a reliable locking mechanism? Most designs come with a tubular lock system that requires the locking or unlocking of a single drawer to lock or unlock the rest of the drawers. Some actually come with the more conventional padlock eyelet for inserting a traditional padlock. Whatever system of lock you may see, it is important to choose one that gives you the best security.


Not all tool chests come with casters or wheels. In the case of rolling tool chests, casters can help improve the mobility of the storage solution. These should be made of heavy-duty materials and come with rubber coatings to help improve grip or traction while dampening rolling noise. You may also want casters that have locking and swiveling mechanisms for greater security, stability, and maneuverability.

What Can You Store in a Tool Chest?

You can store almost anything that can fit inside a tool chest. It really doesn’t matter if these are automotive tools or carpentry, woodwork, or even masonry tools as long as they can fit inside the tool chest and that their cumulative weight is well within the load capacity of the tool chest.

Best Tool Chest FAQ

Q: What are the best tool chests?

The best tool chests are made from high-quality and durable materials, like heavy gauge steel or top-quality shatterproof plastics. If they have locks or locking mechanisms, ball bearings, or caster wheels, those are also made from high quality steel or another high quality material that will allow for easy movement and safe tool storage. They will have plenty of storage options and space to store and organize all your tools with room enough to hold new additions to your tool collection over time.

Q: What should I look for in a tool chest?

When selecting a tool chest, look for one that has enough storage options to suit your needs with room enough to grow. Look for a storage solution that offers lots of features like a locking system, rolling caster wheels, different sized compartments and drawers that open and close smoothly on high quality ball bearings. Look for a tool chest with a husky, durable design and construction that is built to last you a lifetime.

Q: What is the best tool box brand?

There are many durable and high quality tool box brands. It’s hard to pick just one. The best brand will have a solid warranty that backs its product and protects your investment from manufacturers defects. The best brands of tool box also have a solid reputation for being reliable and they’ve been making trusted and excellent tools and tool storage solutions for decades.

Q: Why are tool chests so expensive?

Tool chests are a durable and reliable storage solution that are designed to keep your tool collection safe from damage, deterioration and loss. If you’ve invested a lot of money in a  large supply of tools, it makes sense that you’re going to want to protect that investment with a heavy-duty and secure storage solution. Some tool chests last a lifetime, so in the whole scheme of things, they’re not really that expensive. They can cost more or less depending on what features you want and the size of tool chest you need.**

Q: How do I replace my locks?

Manufacturers of tool chests have their respective replacement locks as well as other hardware. Also included in such replacement parts is the detailed instruction on how to properly replace such hardware locks or locking mechanisms. Generally, you will need to remove the existing lock by removing the top drawers, exterior nut, and lockbar.
Tool chest come in all shapes and sizes.[/caption] This should give you plenty of room to access the lock. You can then install the replacement lock and put everything back. Alternatively, you can take your tool chest to a locksmith or ask one to come over to have a look at your lock. He or she can also replace it for you for a fee.

Q: What does the maximum product weight mean?

This refers to the combined weight of the tool chest and its maximum loading capacity. For example, if a tool chest weighs 100 pounds and has a maximum loading capacity of 1,500 pounds, then you can safely say that the maximum product weight is 1,600 pounds.

Q: How do I clean and maintain my tool chest?

Keeping your tool chest in pristine condition is relatively easy. If it comes with casters or ball bearings that allow for smooth opening and closing of drawers, then these should be lubricated annually with appropriate bearing grease. The slides can be lubricated twice a year. Usually WD40 or some similar product should suffice. The drawers and other surfaces can also be cleaned using plain water and a mild detergent. It’s also a good idea to use high quality drawer liners to protect the bottoms of drawers from scratches and dents. You also have the option to apply car wax if you want to preserve the shine in your tool chest. If there is oil, grease, or grime on any part of the tool chest you can remove these with the usual cleaning or degreasing solution.

Q: What are ball bearing slides?

These are types of slides that come with ball or roller bearings. The ball bearings allow for the smoother, faster, and virtually effortless opening and closing of the tool chest drawer. These are the preferred types of slides since they are more efficient, durable, and rugged than some other options.

Our Top Pick for Best Tool Chest

As you’ve seen, the options for tool storage and organization solutions are almost limitless. There is something to fit every budget, space allocation, and personal preference. When it comes to a great all-around tool storage product, it’s tough to beat the WEN 73015 Garage Glider Rolling Tool Chest for all your tool storage and organization needs. Its innovative design and attractive price tag are huge selling points. You can cruise around the shop on this heavy-duty glider that features four 2.5-inch ball-bearing swivel casters for smooth and easy movement in all directions. We especially love the two foldable magnetic storage trays that will securely hold nuts, bolts, screws, and other tiny accessories that you don’t want to lose.

Whatever option you like the best, one thing is certain: keeping your tools safe, secure, and organized will save you tons of time and money in the long-run by allowing easy and quick access to your tools and preventing them from costly damage and degradation that can occur when they’re left exposed to the elements. When you invest a lot of money in a durable and high-quality tool collection, it only makes sense to protect that investment with a durable and high-quality storage solution.

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  1. Toolbox – Wikipedia
  2. How to Choose the Perfect Toolbox for Your DIY Needs – Life Hacker
  3. How to Organize a Tool Chest Like a Pro – Garage Tool Advisor
  4. Shopping for a New Tool Chest? Here Is What You Need to Know – Shop Gray Tools
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