Sick and tired of lugging your toolbox around all day? Wish there was an easier way to get your tools from A to B? Sounds like you’re in need of a tool backpack!
Whether you’re an electrician, plumber, carpenter, or just really into DIY, a good tool backpack will make your life a lot easier – trust us, they’re way nicer to carry than a toolbox.
Comfort aside, what actually makes a good tool backpack? Well, it should have plenty of pockets that not only keep your gear nice and tidy but also keep it protected – after all there’s nothing worse than turning up for a job with a broken tool.
Plus, seeing as your tool backpack will be carrying lots of heavy tools, you need it to be constructed from heavy-duty material.
High-quality tool backpacks can be very expensive but, thanks to their recent surge in popularity, it’s now possible to find decent ones without a ridiculous price tag. Having said that, there are tonnes of products on the market right now, and it can take a while to find the real gems.
At A Glance: Our Top 3 Tool Backpacks
That’s why we’ve put together this list of the best tool backpacks currently on the market and given you some pointers on what to bear in mind when you’re shopping around – enjoy!
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Best for protection
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Best for Organization
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Setting the bar very high on our list of the best tool backpacks is the DEWALT Lighted Tool Backpack.
What really makes this backpack stand out from the crowd is its integrated LED light. This nifty little bulb has an output of 39 lumens plus three settings that can offer wide illumination or a focused beam for close-up work – perfect if you find yourself working in unusual locations on site.
But don’t be blinded by the light – there are plenty of other features that make us love this bag. It has an impressive 48 interior and 9 exterior pockets so that you’ll always be able to find the right tool when you need it.
The spacious main compartment contains most of the pockets, but the front compartment contains several (and is also where the light is located) and can be folded flat to form a mini workstation. The backpack also features ‘feet’ on the base that help to protect the contents from bumps and the base material itself from abrasions.
The water-resistant polyester material will keep your gear safe from rainfall (although it may eventually get wet in a monsoon). The inner fabric can be a little stiff initially, but this does improve with time.
The back panel is also padded to stop tools protruding into your back, and the shoulder straps are adjustable to ensure a perfect fit, although we wish that they were slightly thicker.
The dual carrying handles mean you can maneuver this bag easily when it’s not on your bag – and don’t worry, these are nice and padded too. Plus, the adjustable waist strap help to spread the weight of your load (because we know those tools can get heavy!).
Overall, this is a very well-thought-out, durable tool backpack with great organizational features (not to mention the light) all at a very reasonable price, well-done DEWALT!
If you’re after something durable that won’t let you down, then we strongly recommend the Rugged Tools Tool Backpack (the clue is in the name really).
This sturdy backpack is constructed of nylon, which is a water-resistant, abrasion-resistant synthetic fiber. Not all nylon is created equal, however, and this bag is constructed of heavy-weight 1680D polyester, which is essentially waterproof and will stand up to some serious bumps and scrapes – perfect for those hazardous site visits!
On top of that, the molded bottom means your bag won’t tip over and damage your precious goods (plus it adds an extra layer of protection) and the zippers are reinforced too.
Despite its toughness, this backpack is surprisingly nice to carry thanks to its padded back lumbar support and shoulder straps. The sternum strap spreads the weight load evenly and there’s a reinforced carry handle at the top with great grip to stop any slips during handling.
Although this pack has plenty of pockets (34 internal and 6 exteriors), it doesn’t have as many as the other options we’ve looked at, so if storage is your top priority, perhaps another bag would suit you better. The top front pocket is a little on the small side too but, aside from that, this is one top-notch bag that really won’t let you down.
If you’re after quality that doesn’t compromise on comfort or organization, then the Stanley Fatmax Tool Backpack is a great option.
Its ergonomic design features breathable, padded back support and padded shoulder straps, while the broad design spreads the load evenly over your back (although if you have very narrow shoulders it might not be ideal). There’s also a rubber carry handle at the top that’s very comfortable and has a great grip.
Our favorite feature, however, is the fully removable divider that heaps of organizational features – simply pull it out when you’re hunting for a tool and you’ll find it in no time! You can also wipe it down and leave it to dry before popping it back inside, so it really helps to keep your bag in tip-top shape.
There’s also a large, laptop-friendly compartment on the interior, and a whopping 50 pockets in total. The 600D fabric is water- and abrasion-resistant, and the plastic bottom is entirely waterproof and reinforced for added protection.
Plus, its rigidity means your bag can stand upright and act as a trust toolbox at your side. Our only complaint (and it’s a very small one) is the front interior top pocket – it’s small and very rigid, so it’s tricky to get things in and out.
Overall, it offers a fantastic combination of comfort, organization, and durability, making it a great all-around tool backpack.
If organization is your top priority, then look no further than the Custom LeatherCraft Pocket Tool Backpack. This backpack features an astounding 75 pockets, loops, and sleeves plus 6 zippered compartments, so you really can find a place for everything!
One of the pockets is already home to a 7 x 5.5-inch plastic tray in case you have to do any fiddly work, but there are tonnes of storage options for larger tools such as drills (and it can even fit a 14-piece wrench set!)
But has the quality been compromised by this incredible organization? Absolutely not! This bag has been constructed from hardcore polyester ballistic fabric for resistance to water and abrasions, but we wish that the bottom had some kind of reinforcement for protection and to sit the bag flat.
The extra-large top handles make it super easy to swoop down and pick up your gear, and the padded shoulder straps are adjustable and padded for carrying comfort – oh, and there’s a sternum strap too for weight distribution.
It is a little on the expensive side, but it’s worth it if you want to max out on organizational features.
Now for one of our favorite tool backpacks… the Klein Tools Organizer Backpack.
With 1680D ballistic weave construction and a hard molded bottom, this is one sturdy bag. Plus, we absolutely love that there’s a molded front pocket that will protect delicate items like your safety glasses.
Beneath that front pocket, there’s another larger zip pocket that’s great for storing quick-access items – a feature missing from most of the other models we’ve come across.
The bright orange interior means you can spot the right tool in seconds, even in poor light conditions. Although it might not have as many pockets as other models we’ve seen, we love that this bag is nice and tall so you can fit those larger tools in too.
With a padded back panel and shoulder straps and a sternum strap, you’ll be nice and comfy while wearing this pack (although the shoulder straps could be a tad thicker). Be careful with the zippers though, as these have been known to fail from time to time.
Klein Tools has been making in the tool business for over 150 years, so we aren’t surprised that they’ve managed to produce such a great tool backpack!
The Custom Leathercraft Carpenter’s Backpack features two main compartments, with one best-suited for tools and other small pieces and the other designed for a cordless drill and battery.
One of the things we like best about his pack, however, is the fact that it has an adjustable compression pocket – simply tighten or loosen the pocket until it fits your item perfectly, neat huh?
This pack also features far more exterior pockets (8 in total) than most of the tool backpacks we’ve seen, including a large pouch-like pocket, a velcro pocket, and several open pockets on the front and sides.
It also features rubber feet to keep the bottom away from soggy surfaces. We were very happy to see that the shoulder straps are especially thick, and there are two top handles and a sternum strap for carrying comfort (although the back panel could be slightly more padded).
Unfortunately, it’s a little top-heavy, so can occasionally lean to the side but overall, this is a great bag, especially in terms of organization, and it comes with a 1-year warranty too.
With its 1680D construction and plastic-coated base, the Milwaukee Jobsite Backpack has been built to endure some bumps and scrapes in the workshop.
Although there aren’t as many pockets as some of the other tool packs we’ve seen, we love that they’re incredibly varied in size, so you’ll always be able to find the right pocket for the tool. Plus, there’s even a specialized laptop sleeve.
We like the tall shape as it accommodates tall tools, but bear in mind that it can tip over from time to time. The back panel and shoulder straps are some of the comfiest we’ve seen, and we love the molle webbing on the shoulder straps that allows you to clip on extra bits of gear. Oh, and there’s a sternum strap too for load management.
If you want something sturdy that can accommodate tools of all shapes and sizes (including laptops!), then this could be the one for you.
Amazon might not be the first company that springs to mind when you think of tool-related companies, yet we found ourselves pleasantly surprised by the AmazonBasics Tool Backpack.
Not only is the exterior constructed from water- and abrasion-resistant polyester, but the interior has been lined with PVC-coated 600D polyester for additional protection and strength. Plus, there are also plastic feet on the base to keep the bottom of the bag out of harm’s way.
This backpack features an impressive 51 pockets in total. Although we absolutely love that 9 of these are on the exterior so you can access what you need when you need it, we wish that the interior pockets were slightly more varied snd there were a few more options for smaller tools.
There’s a main compartment for all your tool and a secondary compartment designed to fit a cordless drill and battery. The insides of both sections are bright orange, helping you to spot your tools in the dark.
The shoulder straps and back panel have plenty of padding, and there’s a sternum strap for spreading the weight. Aside from needing a few improvements regarding the interior pockets, we’re amazed that Amazon got this bag so right!
Aaaand, that’s a wrap – there you have the top tool backpacks currently on the market. As you can see, there’s more to these backpacks than meets the eye. They vary considerably in terms of price, materials, and quirky extra features, but what is it you should be looking out for when weighing up which backpack is right for you?
You could have the best tool holder in the world, but it’s not going to do you much good if you can’t carry it around with you. All good tool backpacks should have a sternum and/or waist strap to help spread the weight of all the heavy gear.
Similarly, you want to look for broad shoulder straps with a good amount of padding. The back panel should also be heavily padded to stop any tools from ramming you in the back while you’re on the move.
So once you know you’ll be happy carrying your backpack, you need to know your tools will be happy inside it. Think about how many pockets you’ll actually use when you’re working – sometimes less is more as it leaves extra space for personal items such as your lunch.
For some reason, many tool backpacks tend to skimp on exterior pockets which we find really annoying – it’s always a good idea to be able to grab some things without delving into the depths of your pack.
Think about whether you’ll be carrying a laptop around with you too – if you are, you’ll definitely want a designated laptop sleeve.
And now for the fun part… extra features. As you’ve seen, tool backpacks have all kinds of quirks, ranging from integrated LEDs to included plastic trays to plastic-coated front pockets.
Although these can be cool, think about whether you’ll actually use them – if you won’t, be aware you might be shelling out extra for nothing.
Still struggling to decide which tool backpack is the one for you? Maybe our top three can help you decide.
Our best tool backpack in terms of organizational features just has to be the Custom LeatherCraft Pocket Tool Backpack.
With an astounding 75 pockets, loops, and sleeves, you’ll never lose a tool again! On top of that, there are 6 zippered compartments for you to choose from.
On top of that, it’s durable, comfortable, and even comes with a tray for delicate work – what a winner!
Are you the kind of person that always seems to be bumping into things? Well, with this bag, it doesn’t matter how many tumbles you take, your tools will stay safe thanks to the Rugged Tools Tool Backpack.
Its ultra-durable polyester construction protects against water and abrasions, plus there’s a molded bottom that won’t let any water in AND stops your bag from falling over sideways.
There are tonnes of padding and even the zippers are reinforced… this pack is definitely the way to go if you want something that can stand up to the challenges of workshops and site visits!
But what’s our absolute favorite? It’s the DEWALT Lighted Tool Backpack. And no, it’s not just because of the in-built light (but we do really, really like the light), it’s because of its all-round great performance.
Plenty of pockets (even on the exterior), comfortable carrying, durable fabric, and protective feet on the base… and all at a reasonable price – what more could you ask for?