8 Great Lowe’s and Home Depot
Items Under $10
(Check that list! Credit: Thinkstock)
You might think that big-box home improvement stores like The Home Depot and Lowe’s are just for plumbing parts and plywood, but a wander down the aisles proves that these stores are a treasure trove of cheap, clever, and useful products. And we’re not just talking tools and hardware!
(Unconvinced? Check out Conan O’Brien’s ode to Home Depot, which even has the power to make actresses weep!)
We checked in with some handypersons on their fave go-to buys, and asked insiders at both Home Depot and Lowe’s, to get the lowdown on the best buys at these stores. Best of all, with most of our picks under $10, they won’t break the bank!
Credit: The Home Depot
Homer’s All-Purpose Bucket and Accessories
“You see those orange Home Depot buckets everywhere,” says Don Mandeville, a district manager for Home Depot. “They’re only $2.97 and it’s amazing how this bucket has evolved.” The Husky Bucket Jockey ($8.78) is a water-resistant insert that fits into the 5-gallon buckets, turning it into a 30-pocket organizer. “You’ll see handymen using this, or gardeners for the yard,” says Mandeville. And the Storage Seat Organizer ($7.97) fits onto the top of the bucket, has adjustable compartments for small hardware like nails and screws, and transforms the bucket into a seat.
Allen + Roth Lantern
“Among my go-to items is the allen + roth Lantern,” says Suzanne Opalinski, an Orlando, Fl.-based project specialist at Lowe’s. “Not only are they decorative, but if you happen to lose power, lanterns certainly come in handy.” The clear glass lantern ($9.98) holds a standard votive and has a handle for hanging or carrying.
Rolls of this brown paper ($8.96 and up at Lowe’s) is used by contractors for covering floors before painting or doing construction projects, but it has myriad uses around the house. Use it as a table covering for an outdoor party or tape a length to a wall or the floors and set the kids loose with some crayons. It can even serve as wrapping paper, either plain or decorated with stamps or markers. And in the garden, a layer of it under mulch will help with weed control.
Empty Paint Cans
Did you know that you can buy empty, unlabeled paint cans? At Lowe’s, they’re only $2.68 apiece for the 1-quart sizes. Opalinski loves to use them as storage containers, lanterns, and planters, as well as to mix paint colors at home. They’d be a cute package for a gift, too!
Folding Utility Knife
The Husky Medium Folding Utility Knife comes with five replaceable blades. It’s a favorite with Ed Padilla, founder and director of the Association of Certified Handyman Professionals. At only $3 apiece, you can buy a bunch of them to keep in various places, such as with camping gear, your tool box, in the kitchen junk drawer, and in the car.
Loctite Power Grab Adhesive
Padilla also always stocks up on tubes of Power Grab Heavy Duty Adhesive ($4.97). For crafters or project-happy moms, it’s a more effective alternative to craft glue, since it adheres quickly to a variety of surfaces, but is repositionable for up to 15 minutes, and it dries with a clear finish. Best of all, it has a low odor so air quality won’t be affected.
Credit: Home Depot
Husky 14-in-1 Tool
Multitaskers will love the numerous uses for the Husky 14-in-one tool ($5.97). “You can do everything with this!” says Mandeville. “It’s a great thing to put in your toolbox. We sell hundreds of these because they’re so versatile.”
Likwid Concepts Paintbrush and Paint Roller Covers
Anyone who’s ever painted a room knows the frustration of trying to keep a paintbrush from drying out when you get interrupted or have to stop for the day. The Paint Roller Cover and Paint Brush Cover ($3.88) are an airtight enclosure for wet brushes or rollers, keeping the paint ready for the next stroke up to 30 days. “Our buyers and merchants are always looking for new technology that’s out there,” says Mandeville. “These items are from [TV show] Shark Tank.”