Checked and updated on January 5, 2021 by Aaron Barnett
The best carpenters tool belt is made from leather and has all the pouches needed to take the most common and most popular tools. Leather is much more durable than other synthetic materials with a bigger resistance to ripping and wearing down. The best tool belts hold the hammer high enough so that the handle doesn’t hit the wear’s leg every time a step is taken.
#3 Best leather tool belt
Occidental Leather 5530, 28 pockets, 36 to 39 inches, top grain leather tool belt
#4 Most balanced leather tool belt
Occidental Leather 5191 LG Pro, 22 pockets, 37 to 44 inches, top grain leather tool belt
#13 Best tool belt for larger waist
CLC 21448X 17 pockets, 47 to 55 inches belt, leather tool belt
#14 Best 15-pocket leather tool belt
CLC 21448 15 pockets, 29 to 46 inches belt, top grain leather tool belt
#15 Durable Lautus tool belt
Lautus 11 pockets, 30 to 26 inches belt, genuine leather tool belt
#16 Best cowhide leather tool belt
Leather Gold 3450 10 pockets,30 to 45 inches belt, genuine leather tool belt
#17 Best polyester tool belt
DeWalt DG617 20 pockets, 29 to 46 inches belt, nylon/ polyester tool belt
#18 Most ergonomic tool belt system
Gatorback B145 14 pockets, 36 to 40 inches belt, nylon/ leather tool belt
#19 Best CLC polyester tool belt
CLC 2605 20 pockets, 29 to 46 inches belt, polyester tool belt
#20 Best systematic five-pocketed tool belt
McGuire 5 pockets, up to 50 inches belt, oil-tanned leather tool belt
#21 Best tool pouch polyester belt
Bucketboss 50200 12 pockets, up to 52 inches belt, polyester tool belt
The best carpenter tool belt allows you to carry a wide assortment of tools and accessories without having to use your hands. Most have two large side pockets and any several smaller pockets that give you ample space to carry everything you need for the task at hand.
With a particularly well-designed tool belt, you should be able to reach for the tool you need without having to stop to think about it. In this way, a tool belt will help speed up your workflow and allow you to work more efficiently.
Carpenter’s tool belts can be used by builders, construction workers, woodworkers, and anyone who needs quick access to tools for DIY work.
Reasons to buy a carpenter’s tool belt
Things to look for a carpenter’s tool belt
The material will affect the durability and comfort of your tool belt. Leather and suede are the most popular options among the pros.
A tool belt should have an abundant variety of carrying options, including the right number and sized pockets and hammer loops.
It is equally important to consider pocket placement, which affects tool access and the ease by which you could climb ladders and move around.
Your tool belt should allow for size adjustment.
The best tool belt also lets you distribute the weight to your shoulders via shoulder straps.
The best material for a tool belt
Tool belts can be made of leather, suede, polyester, nylon, or canvas. For my money, leather is the best material as it provides the most protection against pointy tips and sharp edges. Suede provides similar protection, although leather is generally a lot more durable than suede.
You can make do with a canvas or multi-layered polyester tool belt for casual work. But if there is a chance that you will get more serious about building or DIY work, I suggest buying a leather tool belt at the outset.
Do you need shoulder straps?
Many tool belts have shoulder straps, and they often seem like a good idea. After all, anything that takes some weight off your waist is a good thing, right?
But the fact is that shoulder straps aren’t absolutely necessary for tool belts. In fact, they can even cause you to slump over time, as the weight is now putting more pressure on your spine.
It’s a good idea to mix it up, and always keep your tool apron as light as possible by only holding the tools you need for each task as you doing it.
What makes a leather tool belt perfect for builders?
A leather tool belt is a perfect choice for most builders. It is durable and comfortable, with sufficient weight but not too heavy. The material also provides adequate protection against sharp points and edges from your other tools and prevents damage to tools as well. With care, a good leather tool belt should last what you paid for it.
Alternatives for a tool belt
A tool belt is a requirement for tradespeople to do their job and nice to have around for DIY, but there are other alternatives for DIY’ers. You could use a portable or a Milwaukee rolling tool bag to hold and transport most of your tools, for instance.
You could then use a woodworker’s apron to have the tools that you frequently use close by. The best woodworking apron allow you to attach or remove the shoulder straps as needed.
Of course, a tool bag is a lot more cumbersome than a tool belt strapped around your waist. If you need a hands-free solution, a tool belt is still the best way to have your tools ready to go.
Tools that fit in a tool belt
The tools that you carry in your tool belt will depend on your personal preferences and the type of work you need to do. Most belts are designed to carry a lot of tools, but that doesn’t mean that you should fill it to capacity.
Keep in mind that the weight can quickly add up, so you will want to plan out what exactly you will carry in your tool belt.
Most situations require an impact drill, so make sure you have space for that. You will probably need a nail gun frequently as well, so get a leather belt that is strong enough to handle the load on your strap.
Tools to make sure will fit are:
Choosing the top carpenter’s tool belt
Top carpenter’s tool belt
The Occidental 5089 is the most expensive tool belt in this roundup, but there are many good reasons for its price. Everything about it reeks of quality, from the top grain leather material to the generously-sized pockets and tool holders.
There are no less than 23 pockets on board, all of which will securely hold your tools, accessories, and anything else you may need at a worksite.
The 5089 is designed to withstand the rigors of the road and holds up even under the most rugged conditions. It also has a ‘no-spill’ tool holder system that keeps your tools in place.
The best nylon-leather tool belt
The Occidental 8580 is an absolute monster of a tool belt with a staggering 28 pockets. With this many pockets on board, you can be sure that you will have all the tools you need for most construction and repair tasks.
Even with all the pockets filled, the 8580 remains pretty easy to handle and transport. The build is excellent, and you get the impression that it is made of high-quality materials.
The best value carpenter’s tool belt
The OX-P263604 from OX Tools is one of the best values in the tool belt market, with a superb combination of quality, convenience, and features.
With 22 pockets available, you have more than enough space to carry your most essential tools plus several other accessories besides. It even has three hammer loops that will accommodate tools such as a Stiletto titanium hammer . And with low-profile rivets securing each pocket, the OX-P263604 is built to last.
The best polyester tool belt
DeWalt’s DG617 is a handy tool belt made of durable polyester, giving it the ability to withstand the most rugged environmental working conditions. The DeWalt tool pouch has large, gusset-style pockets that increase the holding capacity, giving you access to your most-used tools.
You won’t have to worry about lugging too much weight, as this DeWalt tool belt has padded suspenders that let your shoulders bear some of the load, effectively distributing the load.
Most affordable leather tool belt
The DeWalt DG5472 is the most affordably-priced tool belt in this roundup, but it more than measures up to its higher-priced counterparts. Designed for utmost durability and rugged reliability, it is made of top-grain leather that holds up under even the most demanding conditions.
This DeWalt leather tool belt is two inches wide and has a hammer holder that lets you snap in your favorite striking tool such as your best Estwing hammer .
Things to consider before buying a tool belt
Your tool belt should be able to withstand the demands of the job. It should hold up in rugged environments and be resistant to heat, moisture, dust, mud, and oil.
The cinching style will have a lot go to do with how well you adjust to using your belt. If you have a back condition, you should consider a belt that distributes some of the weight to your shoulders.
Occidental makes some of the best tool belts on the market. You should also look into an Estwing, Ox Tools, and DeWalt carpenter tool belt, all of which provide excellent value for the money.
Consider the price of your tool belt as well. Although you will understandably want to save a few bucks, steer clear of budget belts that won’t hold up to rugged use.
Consider the type of tools you will carry and how heavy they are. You will want a tool belt made of a rugged material that can carry the weight. But you also want a good distribution of weight.
Finally, make sure that your tool belt is well suited for the job you are trying to do. Some designs are best used as a roofing tool belt. A leather carpenters tool belt might be overkill for home DIY work, but it might be perfect for heavy-duty DIY’ers.
Tips for using a carpenter’s tool belt
Comparing leather tool belts
|Occidental leather 5089||Occidental Leather 5093||Occidental Leather 5530||Occidental Leather 5191 LG Pro||Occidental Leather 8580||Occidental Leather 8089||Occidental Leather 9850||Occidental Leather 9855||Estwing 94746||OX Tools OX-P263604||DeWalt DG5472||Lautus 15 pockets||CLC 21448X||CLC 21448||Lautus 11 pockets||Leather Gold 3450||DeWalt DG617||Gatorback B145|
|CLC 2605||McGuire 5 pockets||Bucketboss 50200|
|Verdict:||Top leather tool belt||Best nylon-leather tool belt||Wise buy tool belt||Most affordable||Top polyester tool belt|
|Belt size||29 inches to 54 inches||na||36 inches to 39 inches||34 inches to 56 inches||29 inches to 54 inches||29 inches to 54 inches||32 inches to 41 inches||32 inches to 41 inches||30 inches to 52 inches||29 inches to 37 inches||29 inches to 46 inches||30 inches to 56 inches||47 inches to 55 inches||29 inches to 46 inches||30 inches to 46 inches||30 inches to 45 inches||29 inches to 46 inches||36 inches to 40 inches||29 inches to 46 inches||up to 50 inches||up to 52 inches|
|Fastener||One-tongue roller||na||One-tongue roller||One-tongue roller||One-tongue roller||One-tongue roller||One-tongue roller||One-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||Double-tongue roller||One-tongue roller|
|Material||Top grain leather||Top grain leather||Top grain leather||Top grain leather||Top grain leather||Nylon, leather||Nylon, leather||Nylon, leather||Top grain leather||Leather||Top grain leather||Top grain leather||Polyester, leather||Top grain leather||Genuine leather||Genuine leather||Nylon, polyester||Nylon, leather||Polyester||Oil tanned leather||Polyester|
Occidental Leather 5089 is the highest quality tool belt you can buy. The top-grain leather gives it the look and feel of a quality accessory and protects you and your clothes from sharp and pointed tools that inevitably poke out.
It has 22 pockets, so you can pretty much carry your entire tool collection with you if you wish. Even when packed to the gills, the 5089 never gets too heavy due to its excellent weight distribution. I especially like the copper rivets reinforcing the bags, which ensure the belt’s ability to withstand the most rugged conditions.
If you’ve enjoyed this rundown of the best carpenter’s tool belts on the market, also check out my recommendation for woodworking aprons .
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My name is Aaron, and welcome to Bangingtoolbox.
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