Upgrading your old PC or building a new PC doesn't have to be a stressful experience. In fact, many people enjoy the time they spend tweaking PC hardware, and most will tell you that the right tools make all the difference. But which tools should you get? Here are 10 products that should make your next upgrade or build a breeze.
- Simple anti-static protection: Rosewill wrist strap
- Advanced anti-static protection: Rosewill mat with grounding wire
- Pry it open: JacobsParts pry tools and spudgers
- Everything in a soft kit: ORIA Precision toolkit
- Solder, strip, and screw: Rosewill RTK-146
- Don't fry your hardware: HDE PSU tester
- Extra screws and standoffs: VAPKER fastener set
- Cool your CPU: Arctic MX-4 thermal paste
- Extra reach: Neiko plier kit
- Keep your PC clean: Enhance IPA isopropyl alcohol
Static electricity is NOT your PC's friend. Before anything else, strap this to your wrist and clip it to your case to ensure your RAM doesn't go in the can. It's an affordable accessory that can save you a lot of money in the long run.
A wrist strap is often not enough for those extra concerned with the safety of their hardware. Grab this mat and rest easy while you tinker. It measures about two feet by two feet and has a 10-foot grounding wire that clips onto your PC case.
Is it glue? Some other mystery adhesive? A really tight fit? No matter what has it stuck down, one of these tools will get it up. Five nylon pry tools are included, as well as a metal spudger, all for less than $10.
If you're starting from scratch, a complete toolkit is probably your best bet. It has an anti-static wristband, a bunch of pry tools and spudgers, a complete screwdriver kit, and some metal spudgers, all neatly contained in a soft case.
For some people, a toolkit without a soldering iron, flashlight, wire strippers, tape, and zip ties just isn't a toolkit at all. This is for those people. It's a relatively pricey set of tools, but it's well-rated and it all comes in a hard-shell case that keeps everything organized.
PC won't turn on? Test the current power supply unit (PSU) before rushing out for a new one. Smell something burning? Test the power supply. Seriously. Check it before your hardware investment melts down.
Whether you're putting together a new PC or taking an old one apart for an upgrade, you'll most likely drop a fastener and watch it roll out of sight. This kit has an assortment of screws and standoffs to ensure you don't resort to tape to keep your rig together.
We don't know how long a CPU lasts without thermal paste, and we don't want you to get any ideas. Pick up a tube of Arctic MX-4 and apply it properly: between your CPU and its cooler. This is the latest iteration of the excellent paste, and it arguably remains the best you can buy.
Your fingers are the products of millions of years of evolution, but they still can't fit between your power supply and the back corner of your case. Deal with it. This four-piece set of long-nose pliers from Neiko gives you extra reach, and they come in a soft case.
It isn't very exciting, but it sure is effective. This stuff is 99 percent isopropyl alcohol, which means it evaporates fast. Use it to clean away the old thermal paste before applying new stuff, or soak a soft toothbrush and scrub other parts clean.
If we're making some suggestions
All of the above products can help when building a PC, but it's unlikely you'll need everything. If you're just starting out with your first build ever, we recommend grabbing the ORIA Precision toolkit for a well-rounded collection of common tools. Arctic MX-4 thermal paste is a must when installing a new CPU, and an HDE tester is always good to have around should you run into any problems with your PSU.
We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.
Up your VR immersion level with a fine HOTAS controller
Love flight or dogfighting games in VR? You could probably benefit from on of these HOTAS controllers. We've rounded up options for casual users and pros alike.
Need a new external hard drive? These are the best options for your PC.
Looking to add some extra storage to your PC setup? You don't need to crack open the case with one of these excellent external HDDs or SSDs that connect with a USB cable.
Upgrade your network with one of the best routers available today
Are you in the market for a new router? Don't make your final decision without seeing our picks for the best routers available now based on budget and performance.