Common Tools Names in English: Glossary for Language Learners

Elly Kimreviewed byIryna Andrus / more about Editorial Process8 min
Created: Mar 24, 2023Last updated: Jan 24, 2024
Drill Tool

Do you want to sound more professional and polished during conversations in English? Maybe it’s time to master less common vocabulary and terminology, often overlooked in language classes. Tools names are a great topic to start, as they are common in everyday usage. You’ll likely come across them more often than you may realize, so it pays off to know them! Here’s a comprehensive guide to common tool names in English.

The Definition of the Tools

In a broad sense, tools refer to any device or equipment used for completing everyday tasks. You may find them in the kitchen or garden and on construction sites or factories. Their number and variety are vast, ranging from simple hand tools to more complex machinery used on worksites.

As English learners, you won’t need to know every instrument name out there – but becoming familiar with the most common options can be helpful. You will find them in many contexts and situations, from a house husband talking about cleaning the living room rug to an engineer describing their time spent welding metal frames.

Types of Tools

Depending on the task and work environment, we can group specific tools together by their job-specific functions. It will be beneficial to learn them in categories, as it will help you remember the words more easily. Below, we’ll explore the most popular categories and their corresponding English tools names.

Electric or Power Tool Names

Electric or power instruments are machines primarily powered by an electricity source. We use them for various purposes, like drilling holes and cutting materials, and they are especially common in DIY shops. Here is the power tools names list:

  • Drill – a device used to drive screws into or out of different surfaces.
  • Chainsaw – a tool with sharp and jagged blades used to cut hard materials like wood.
  • Jackhammer – an apparatus used to break up and move earth or concrete with a hammer-like motion.
  • Heat gun – a handheld tool to direct hot air onto materials like wood and plastics.
  • Nail gun – an instrument designed to fire nails into different surfaces rapidly and with great accuracy.
  • Sander – a tool to smoothen surfaces by gradually removing material with sandpaper.

These instruments typically require some level of experience or knowledge to operate correctly. Therefore, it’s essential to take proper safety precautions when using them.

Hand Tools Names List

As the name implies, hand tools are those used without a power source. They often require more effort and are suitable for smaller tasks. Here’s a list of some names of different tools in this category:

  • Hammer – a metal tool used to hit nails into wood.
  • Scissors – a device used to cut materials such as paper, cloth, or wire into smaller pieces.
  • Wrench – a metal device used for gripping and turning nuts or bolts.
  • Screwdriver – an equipment type in the form of a screw-like cap to twist screws into tight places such as furniture or machines.
  • Saw – a device with sharp teeth used to cut wood or other material.
  • Pliers – two handheld metal pieces used to grip, cut and bend.
  • Mallet – a hammer-like tool with a large, wooden head used to drive wedges into the wood.
  • Axe – a tool with a metal blade used to cut wood or other materials.
  • Bradawl – a pointed instrument used to make holes in wood.
  • Scraper – a device with a sharp blade that removes materials from the surface.
  • Plane – a tool used to shape and smooth wood.

Be sure to remember these hand tools names. We can find most in virtually any household, often used for simple repairs or construction projects. They are usually stored in a toolbox for easy access.

Fastening Tools

We often use fastening tools for attaching pieces together. Their primary focus is to secure components from loosening and coming apart, making them an essential part of the building process. Here are a few examples:

  • Screw – used to fasten objects such as wood or metal together.
  • Nail – a rod-like-shaped metal piece hammered into a surface to attach parts.
  • Bolts – an externally threaded cylinder combined with a nut to secure objects.
  • Wire – used to tie objects together in a secure fashion.
  • Nut – a small, often hexagonal-shaped metal object used with bolts for fastening.

Each fastening instrument varies in size and construction type. But they all serve the primary purpose of joining pieces together in a secure manner. Learning each tools name in English in this category is also essential.

Measuring Tools

Sometimes, precision and accuracy are vital in specific projects. Special instruments need to be used to ensure a job is done accurately with exact measurements. Here are some critical names:

  • Ruler – a tool utilized for measuring the length and drawing straight lines. 
  • Level – a tool for quickly and accurately determining if a surface is flat by measuring horizontal alignment.
  • Tape measure – a flexible ruler typically used in carpentry or construction projects.
  • Caliper – a useful tool for getting exact and accurate measurements between notches on the sides of an object. 

Though they may look intimidating and complex, these tools are relatively simple. Most amateur DIYers often have at least a few in their arsenal.

Gardening Tools Names

If you’re an avid gardener, you’ll know how helpful these instruments can be! We use them in garden projects such as weeding, planting, and pruning. Below, we’ll look at a few names of common gardening tools in English:

  • Trowel – a small, handheld tool with a U or V-shaped blade used to dig in and around plants.
  • Hoe – helpful in leveling the soil surface or controlling weeds without damaging growing plants; commonly used in earthing up potatoes.
  • Spade – a tool with an elongated blade perfect for digging, transplanting plants, and removing unwanted weeds.
  • Rake – a garden implement designed to gather leaves, grass clippings, and debris into one place for easy disposal.
  • Lawn mower – an outdoor machine that helps to keep the grass short and make even cuts across large yards.
  • Gardening gloves – cloth coverings to help protect your hands from prickles or hazardous objects while gardening.
  • Garden hose – a flexible, long tube that can be used with watering cans or connected to a sprinkler system for easier garden maintenance and irrigation.

With a bit of practice, workman’s tool names are easy to learn. The ones mentioned above are usually enough to finish most gardening jobs, with others being more specialized.

Kitchen Tools Names

Aside from crafting, many tools are also necessary for the kitchen. Cooking requires not only knowledge and skill but also the right equipment. Let’s have a look at some of them:

  • Knife – a sharp-edged tool used for cutting, slicing, and mincing food ingredients.
  • Cutting board – a firm surface used to chop and carve items, e.g., onion or garlic.
  • Blender – an electrical device with spinning blades mainly employed for blending liquids, such as soup and smoothies.
  • Grater – a device with sharp-edged holes used to shred vegetables and cheese.
  • Whisk – a metal looped utensil useful for whipping egg whites or cream.
  • Peeler – a kitchen tool with an adjustable blade for quickly removing rinds from fruits and vegetables.
  • Can opener – a handheld device specially designed to detach metal lids from cans.
  • Corkscrew – a spiral device for removing corks from bottles of wine or other items with this kind of stopper.
  • Potato masher – a hand-operated kitchen tool used to mix and mash potatoes.

These objects are commonly used when preparing food and meals, so being familiar with their names is essential. It will be helpful when discussing recipes or sharing instructions with another person.


Importance of Common Tools

Different tools have distinct functions, so identifying and naming them plays an important role. It can be handy when discussing manual labor or offering advice on completing a specific task. So, having a good knowledge of the names of tools can give you the confidence to engage in conversation and appear savvy.

It can also help you understand written materials better if a task requires specific instruments or equipment. Understanding their use and function is essential, so inquire about how it works before using any tool.

The Promova app will help you extend your English vocabulary and learn words from various fields to make learning easier. The application contains much helpful material, from online lessons to quizzes and flashcards. It is available on iOS and Android, so everyone can benefit from its many features. Download it now and test your vocabulary knowledge in no time.

Those who want to enhance their English skills more extensively can register for the Promova classes. Professional and experienced tutors help achieve your goals, using teaching aids to make the process more engaging. The first lesson is free, so don’t hesitate to start your language journey now!


Tools are handy and often indispensable when completing specific tasks. Knowing their names in English can be helpful, especially if you’re talking with a colleague or friend about a particular job. It also comes in handy when visiting a store or reading instructions in English. The above guide has provided an overview of the names of the most common instruments in everyday conversations, so take some time to familiarize yourself with them!


How many instrument names should I learn?

Of course, you don’t need to know every instrument name out there. Becoming familiar with the most common tools found in everyday conversations is a significant starting point and should suffice for many situations.

How to learn tool names in English?

Start by going through the categories and instruments above. Take some time to familiarize yourself with each word and its usage and context. You can also look up pictures of various tools online for visual recognition.

How to master the pronunciation of tools?

When it comes to the pronunciation of common tools names, practice makes perfect. You should take time out each day and review a list or chart with several options. Record your voice saying them aloud, then review the recording and compare it to a native speaker of English. Mastering pronunciation with Promova will simplify the process – our app and interactive classes make practice effective and fun.

Are there additional resources available for learning tool names in English?

Of course! If you find a name unfamiliar to you, use various dictionaries like Oxford to look up its definition and read an example sentence. To learn new categories, take advantage of flashcard sites such as Quizlet – they can be great for memorizing words.