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Best Portable Toolbox

Don’t underestimate the utility and how essential a portable toolbox is. Instead of your expensive tools clattering around in the rear of your van, why not invest in one of the models we’ve reviewed?

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Buying a sturdy portable toolbox with enough compartments can mean you know exactly where a particular tool is at any time. Don’t let your other half convince you otherwise; instead, tell them that the chores around the house will get done faster!

If you need something large, consider the RIDGID Portable Toolbox. It’s a monstrous piece of kit made from sturdy resin and has excellent storage options.

You can always drop down to the Keter Masterloader for a high-quality toolbox that has a medium-sized storage option, and even further to the Waterloo Portable Toolbox if you’re on a budget.

Here’s the complete list of the best portable toolboxes available right now:

  • RIDGID Professional Tool Storage Cart And Organizer Stack—Best Large Portable Toolbox
  • Keter Masterloader Tool Box—Best Medium-Sized Portable Toolbox
  • XtremepowerUS Rolling Tool Bag—Best Rolling Portable Toolbox
  • Waterloo Portable Series Tool Box—Best Budget Portable Toolbox
  • DeWalt DWST20800 Mobile Work Center—Best Portable Toolbox for Workshops
  • DeWalt DWST33090 Contractor Chest—Best Contractor Portable Toolbox
  • Husky Heavy Duty Cantilever—Best Cantilever Portable Toolbox

Best Portable Toolbox Reviews

Ridgid Professional Tool Storage Cart And Organizer Stack—Best Large Portable Toolbox

This large RIDGID portable toolbox has two smaller levels stacked on top of it, making it an amazing choice for organizing a large number of tools.

It’s made out of high-impact resin, which is very durable. This makes it almost dent-proof should you accidentally drop it—let’s face it; that’s going to happen with a toolbox!

We’re glad to see the included side handles, which allow you to easily transport the combined unit when both levels are stacked. This means you don’t have to worry about the boxes slipping and falling while you’re rolling them behind you.

Its wheels are rubber-coated and sturdy and can carry a fully stocked toolbox while working on different terrain. You can even go up the stairs without any issues. Moreover, it comes with a telescopic metal handle that allows you to drag the whole set behind you.

The toolbox comes with metal latches and features a water and dust-proof seal. It also has metal lid stoppers that prevent any possible lid collapse.

A central-locking system allows you to safely store your tools inside without worrying that others can access it. Additionally, extra accessories inside the boxes allow for extra storage and organization.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 22.2 (W) x 12.2 (D) inches.
  • Upper box height: 6.5 inches.
  • Middle box height: 13.8 inches.
  • Lower box height: 18.3 inches.
  • Weight: 47 pounds.
  • Material: Resin.

Pros

  • Two smaller toolboxes and accessories allow for a higher level of tool organization.
  • Several locking mechanisms to prevent boxes from falling.
  • Lid stoppers prevent collapse.
  • Wheels are tough and can handle different terrain.

Cons

  • Telescopic handle can be uncomfortable to hold.

Keter Masterloader Tool Box—Best Medium-Sized Portable Toolbox

This Keter toolbox almost feels like a portable shop rather than a toolbox. Its interior space is divided and organized in such a way that it maximizes its storage capacity. It makes for a great choice for those who aren’t looking for something large yet don’t want to compromise on capacity.

The lid of this toolbox features two smaller boxes that slide apart using a ball-bearing mechanism to reveal the main box. This is very convenient since there’s no lid-removal involved. Everything just slides back into place to close.

The toolbox is made using polypropylene, which is a very strong and durable plastic and keeps the unit lightweight. As such, you won’t have to worry about any rusting, rotting, or any denting.

Additionally, it also has a central locking mechanism involving a key, which not only maintains the product’s stability while you’re moving it around but also keeps your equipment secure.

Inside of the lid’s separating and slidable boxes, you have a total of six small removable bins of two sizes. The product also comes with tool dividers. This entire setup allows you to easily arrange and sort your tools in terms of size, priority, and how often you use them.

The product comes with 7-inch rubber wheels and an extendable metal handle that make it easy for you to move your tools around.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 22.2 (W) x 12.2 (D) x 16.3 (H) inches.
  • Weight: 13 pounds.
  • Material: Polypropylene.

Pros

  • Locking mechanism secures your equipment.
  • Lid design with removable bins and dividers.
  • Sliding mechanism for easy access.
  • Polypropylene resin prevents fading.

Cons

  • Problems noted with the locking mechanism.

XtremepowerUS Rolling Tool Bag—Best Rolling Portable Toolbox

This product, manufactured by XtremepowerUS, stands out from the rest because it’s more a bag than a box, but it’s still excellent for tool storage. It’s a great choice for those who take their tools with them to the workplace, especially if it involves moving around over a large area.

It’s made out of tough 600 denier polyester fabric, which is resistant to water and can still hold its weight of tools and equipment inside the bag due to its thickness. It’s designed to easily adapt to all kinds of job sites.

Thanks to its flexible polyester fabric, this item can expand to cater for awkwardly shaped objects—helping you to squeeze in all your essentials for a day’s work.

Its main compartments come with enough pockets to store a small army—10 pockets on the outside and nine pockets on the inside. This allows for a comprehensive assortment of tools. So even while you’re on the job, you’ll still get to maintain that neatness and order.

The product also comes with a heavy-duty extendable metal handle, which has a decent range and a comfortable grip. In addition, it features two wheels that work well on both soft and hard terrain. As such, mobility isn’t an issue for you rolling this bag anywhere on the job site.

Some handy features include carrying handles, a dual-zipper top with pull strings, two external measure tape loops, and three plastic feet on the bottom.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 18 (W) x 11 (D) x 15 (H) inches.
  • Weight: 13 pounds.
  • Material: 600 denier polyester.

Pros

  • Fabric is thick and water-resistant.
  • Highly adaptable materials.
  • Numerous compartments.
  • Telescopic handle has a good range.

Cons

  • Corner seam doesn’t seem to be very reinforced.

Waterloo Portable Series Tool Box—Best Budget Portable Toolbox

This Waterloo toolbox is designed to be compact and lightweight. Its small size makes it a highly suitable toolbox for small jobs.

It’s made out of high-impact polypropylene with the color molded in. Consequently, it isn’t prone to fading, rusting, rotting, or denting like steel models are.

The toolbox is lightweight, weighing only 2 pounds. It also comes with one handle that has a comfortable grip and can be tucked back into the lid when the box is set down or stored.

You’ll have no trouble carrying it around, despite the absence of wheels or extendible handles. Stacking it won’t be problematic either since the tucked-away handle won’t get in the way.

Inside the toolbox are two trays that have separate handles molded into them. The trays are also removable. This means you’re still able to organize various tools using this toolbox while also using the larger space for bigger tools. Also, being available in different widths allows you to tailor the model to your specific needs.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 14 to 21 (W) x 8 (D) x 6.3 (H) inches.
  • Weight: 2 pounds.
  • Material: Polypropylene.

Pros

  • Budget-friendly.
  • Trays for storing small tools.
  • Lightweight and sturdy design.
  • Stackable.

Cons

  • Can’t hold some of the heavier tools.

DeWalt DWST20800 Mobile Work Center—Best Portable Toolbox for Workshops

DeWalt is famous for its heavy-duty industrial product range, and this portable toolbox truly lives up to that label. It’s a movable work station for all things, providing both capacity and toughness.

It’s an ideal option for those who spend a lot of time using tools in their garage or workshop due to the multiple work levels. These open and close using a single latch at the front. The internal compartments use a ball-bearing slide mechanism to slide off one another, opening up all the space insides for you. When you’re done, you simply slide everything back into place and then close the latch.

The compartments come in different sizes, with the bottom compartment housing a large enough space for your bigger tools, and the others for the smaller ones. The mid-section features dividers, which makes it an ideal organizing spot within the unit.

You shouldn’t have any trouble moving this model around, despite it weighing 22 pounds. It comes with a pair of heavy-duty wheels, which can handle rough terrain, as well as a telescopic metal handle, which makes for easy rolling. These features are also responsible for weight distribution while the unit is open.

If you need to load it up into your vehicle, this portable toolbox comes with side handles, which work well for easy lifting and maneuvering.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 21 (W) x 16 (D) x 28 (H) inches.
  • Weight: 22 pounds.
  • Material: Foam.

Pros

  • Design creates a workstation out of the toolbox.
  • Only uses a single latch to open and close.
  • Allows for excellent tool organization.
  • Wheels can handle any terrain.

Cons

  • Users have noted problems with the durability of the side supports.

DeWalt DWST33090 Contractor Chest—Best Contractor Portable Toolbox

Another product by DeWalt, this particular portable toolbox is designed as a contractor’s chest to provide a large capacity on the job site. It serves as a great option for mobile construction workers that use large and heavy tools. It boasts a capacity of 15 gallons, up to 90 pounds, and weighs approximately 12 pounds.

The chest itself has a water resistance rating of IP43, meaning it protects your tools from moisture and rain at less than a 60-degree angle. There’s no need to worry about your tools rusting or suffering any kind of water damage.

Additionally, the product features a pair of 7-inch rubber wheels that work well on rough and uneven terrain, as well as an extendable metal handle. Maneuvering your stuff around should be a breeze!

This contractor’s chest also comes with a tray that can be placed in different positions across the extendable handle. This is ideal for the smaller tools that often just get thrown in. On top of all, it comes with a single latch, which makes for a swift and easy open and close.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 24.5 (W) x 15.6 (D) x 16.4 (H) inches.
  • Weight: 12 pounds.
  • Material: Polypropylene.

Pros

  • Can hold heavier loads.
  • Flexible tray positioning.
  • It opens and closes using one single latch.
  • Lightweight and has a large capacity.

Cons

  • Sliding handle isn’t that smooth.

Husky Heavy Duty Cantilever—Best Cantilever Portable Toolbox

If a portable cantilever toolbox is what you’re looking for, then you’ll find no better than this product by Husky. This heavy-duty box will have you organize your tools in a rather unique way.

Instead of a normal top lid, there’s a specially designed cantilever lid, which splits open and slides away to reveal the main bottom compartment. The toolbox doesn’t come with any trays, but as a compensation, it features as many as 18 different customizable compartments. These are more than capable of arranging and sporting your tools neatly.

This Husky model also boasts a holding capacity of 15 gallons, up to 80 pounds, weighing only 16 pounds itself. It’s constructed from polypropylene, a tough and strong plastic, with water resistance. This makes it a long-term toolbox that will take all the abuse you give it while protecting your gear and avoiding rust and dents.

It comes with 8-inch all-terrain wheels and an extendable metal tubular handle with a soft grip, which you can use to roll your stuff behind you with little difficulty.

As for securing your tools, that comes pretty much as a guarantee with this portable toolbox. Not only does it have dual latches for this purpose, but it can also be locked using a padlock. You’ll never have to worry about losing your tools as long as you keep that key close.

Specs

  • Dimensions: 25.4 (W) x 14.7 (D) x 16.1 (H) inches.
  • Weight: 16 pounds.
  • Material: Polypropylene.

Pros

  • High volume.
  • Large number of customizable compartments.
  • Unique cantilever lid design.
  • Lockable pad.

Cons

  • Compartments might be too small for some.

What to Look for When Buying a Portable Toolbox

If you’ve been through our product reviews, you’ll notice that not all portable toolboxes come in a one-size-fits-all style. This makes it even more important to take your time when choosing one for your needs.

Although they’re versatile pieces of kit, take in these considerations when shopping:

  • Size and compartments
  • Material
  • Mobility
  • Water and dust protection
  • Budget
  • Security

Size and Compartments

Purchase a toolbox based on the size and number of tools you require for your work or hobby.

Look out for models that have internal compartments for storing smaller tools and accessories. These can either come in varied pre-determined sizes or with dividers so you can split the area up as you need.

As such, you can find a place for every kind of tool that you have, from screwdrivers to power drills.

Material

Steel

Many traditional toolboxes are made from steel. This material is sturdy and keeps the toolbox intact, even when it’s thrown around or dropped on many occasions.

While metals in themselves are quite durable, they are still susceptible to rust. Their malleability also makes them more prone to dents with regular use and impact.

Plastic

Consequently, many modern toolboxes are manufactured using hard plastic, most notably polypropylene. Polypropylene is cheap, easily available, and tough.

It doesn’t suffer the problem of rusting since it isn’t metallic. It also has a low density, even compared to other plastics, making it lightweight. Plastic also offers protection from hazardous chemicals, but this material isn’t as durable as steel and won’t survive multiple drops.

Mobility

Toolboxes that have comfortable handles are preferable. Look for padded handles to make them soft against your hands. You could also opt for rubber protection, so the handles are long-lasting.

Extendable handles are also an additional feature that makes for a better portable toolbox.

For larger toolboxes, wheels allow you to transport it easily without bearing a heavy weight in your hands. Those wheels need to be strong enough and able to handle different types of terrain.

The larger the wheels, the more uneven surfaces they can handle, which is great for a construction site with gravel and hills.

Protection from Water and Dust

It’s very important that your toolbox can shield your tools from the effects of moisture and dust. Exposure to water will eventually cause your tools, most of which will be metallic, to rust. Getting dust on your tools would just make a mess of things, and you’d have to spend more time cleaning them up before use.

Water-resistance might not matter if you need a toolbox for sole garage home use. However, if you’re in a construction-related industry, we’d say this is a vital feature for you.

Be aware of the different IP ratings for toolboxes. Even when a manufacturer claims its product is water-resistant, that doesn’t mean it can survive a monsoon downpour. Use a handy IP rating checker to see what levels of dust and water your chosen toolbox can handle.

Budget

How much you are willing and can spend on getting that toolbox is something you should account for. You don’t want to spend too much on a toolbox that you won’t use often nor need its additional features.

Is a toolbox a part of your professional work? Do you own a garage or a workshop? If working with tools is a hobby, how often do you practice it? If you take pride in your tools, opt for a high-quality toolbox by a reputable brand, and be prepared to increase your budget.

Security

If you own expensive tools that are your pride and joy, you want to keep them safely stored in your toolbox. Fortunately, many devices feature a built-in locking mechanism.

If you’re surrounded by strangers on the worksite or wish to leave your toolbox unattended without fretting about your tool’s safety, consider a padlock or key lock. This allows only you—or anyone else with the code or key—to access your tools, providing you with peace of mind and security.

How to Organize Your Toolbox

There are some general guidelines that you can use to help you obtain a customized sorting that fits you best.

Arranging Your Tools

The best way to start sorting your tools is by type and size. For example, get all the sockets together, and then lay them out in order of size.

The same applies to your screwdrivers, hammers, chisels, hex keys, wrenches, and others. For larger tools, like power tools, it also helps to sort them out according to weight as well as size.

There are many other ways you can sort out your equipment. You can do it by set if you have complete sets of certain tools. You should also order by the tools you use most frequently.

Another idea is making labels for each of your toolbox storage compartments, if possible. It would make things neater and easier, not just to access but to put back without messing up the order.

If you have a partner whom you share the toolbox with, the labels will help a great deal, especially if they aren’t familiar with the different types of tools and where they’re kept.

Putting Your Tools Inside

The way your toolbox is divided up can influence the way you decide to sort your tools. Things like the number of compartments you have, their capacities, and how often you access them are important aspects here.

Upper Part

It makes the most sense that the tools you use more frequently, as well as the ones that are the smallest and lightest, should be stored in the upper part of your toolbox. It’s a great place for sockets, nails, nuts, and other similar objects. They’ll be easily picked up, used, and then put back or replaced.

Middle Part

The middle part of your toolbox makes for the best place for hand tools like screwdrivers, hammers, wrenches, hex keys, chisels, pliers, cutters, and maybe even clamps.

Bottom Part

Consequently, the bottom part of your toolbox, which is also usually the largest, is the most suitable place where you can store the heavier and larger tools.

Here, consider putting in: power drills, portable bandsaws, and electric screwdrivers. Not only is there enough space for them, but it also adds stability to the whole toolbox since the center of mass is near the ground.

Conclusion

Each of the above portable toolboxes can be the most suitable companion to you depending on what you do, how often you do it, and whether it’s a part of your professional life or not.

If you prefer to carry the weight on your back, you may like to check out or review of the best tool backpacks here.

If you’re eager to get the biggest and best money can buy, hold off for a second and let the practical side of your brain kick in. Try and only buy what you need, but do plan for the future. This is especially important if you’re a handyman or contractor and might expand your range of tooling soon.

We particularly like the models that have detachable compartments, which allows for flexibility if you only need to take a certain amount of tools with you, rather than the entire kit.

For you home enthusiasts, you can probably afford to go for a more budget model since you won’t be transporting the case around as much. You also don’t need to worry about quality if you go for a lower spec since all the models we’ve reviewed are durable.

Don’t forget to focus on mobility, too. You’ll see many have wheels for ease of moving around. Heavy-duty wheels are vital for rough terrain but also look out for those soft-grip handles.

If we had to pick from the three best portable toolboxes, it’d be:

  • Ridgid Professional Tool Storage Cart And Organizer Stack—Best Large Portable Toolbox
  • Keter Masterloader Tool Box—Best Medium-Sized Portable Toolbox
  • Waterloo Portable Series Tool Box—Best Budget Portable Toolbox
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