11 Brilliant Ways to Use Pliers
Who knew that pliers could do all these things?
Handy Paint Can Opener
Every time I bought paint, I got a free paint can opener, but I still could never find one when I needed it. Now, I grab a pair of pliers and open the loop on the handle just enough to slip it around the bail. No more hunting for openers; all my paint cans have one attached. — Ray Alvarez.
Hands-Free Light Hack
Make a hands-free light in a snap with a flashlight, a pair of pliers and a rubber band. Place the flashlight in the jaws of the pliers, then wrap a rubber band around the handles. That’s it! Point the light wherever you need it.
Vise-Grips to Pull Nails
Vise-Grip pliers make great nail pullers. The tool locks onto the nail, creating a secure hold, and the curve of the head provides excellent leverage. Use a putty knife under the pliers if you plan to salvage the material after removing the nails.
Here’s an oldie with a twist. Use pieces of garden hose or other tubing to soften the jaws of slip-joint or other pliers so you can grip plated surfaces without damage. The twist? Size them so you can slide them up the handles to keep them handy.
Makeshift Small Parts Clamp
Make a small parts clamp by wrapping a rubber band around the jaws of a needle-nose pliers. The rubber band keeps the jaws clamped together for holding small items. It works especially well for getting nuts into inaccessible spots or for starting small finish nails. — Marvin J. Dirks.
Double Up on Stubborn Nails
Nails can be a pain to remove, especially trim nails with small heads and any nail when the head breaks off. The trick is to use two tools together: locking pliers to grab the nail shank, and a pry bar to do the pulling.
Blade Life Extender
When the blade in your utility knife gets dull, it’s usually only the point and the first 1/4-in. or so that’s bad. You can get additional life from your blade by snapping off the point with a pliers. (Note: Wear safety glasses when you do this.) It won’t cut as well as a fresh blade, but it’s a lot better than the dull one. — Dennis Feldpausch.
Paint Scrapers For Curves
Make a set of paint scrapers for irregular or concave surfaces from different sizes of flat washers. Sharpen one edge of the washers with a file or grinder. Clamp on a locking pliers for a handle. — Art Lipstraw.
Family Handyman, Getty Images
Crack Open Some Nuts
Channellock pliers are a great tool for cracking nuts. The jaws adjust easily so you can crack large walnuts or small hazelnuts.
A New Use for an Old Paint Brush
After your paint brushes wear out, strip off the metal ferrule with a needle-nose pliers. Use the wood or composite handle for a table saw push stick. Since it’s easy to lose or misplace these handy tools, we figured it would be better to have more of them than less.
Grind Small Objects Safely
Hold small objects with locking pliers. This keeps your fingers a safe distance from the grinding wheel and protects them against burns from the hot metal. It also gives you better control over the grinding process.