What Are The Best Multitools in 2020?


There are different reasons for getting the best multitool possible. Maybe you already own a multitool and want to renew your tool kit. Or perhaps, you never had one, and now you are wondering which one to get. Whichever the reason is, this article is for you.

The variety of multitools on the market today is simply staggering. Because it is such a desirable and even life-saving tool (especially at the outdoors and in emergency situations), many companies are mass-producing them. You can find multitools with over 20 different tools and functions, but not all tools are the same and have the same applications.

It’s highly important to know which multitool is the best for you and suits your needs. The multitool is designed to be your easy-to-carry tool box, so naturally it will be an essential outdoors equipment. Whether you’re going hiking, climbing, backpacking, camping or surviving a difficult situation, it’s always good to have a multitool.

In this guide, I will go over the purposes of a multitool, why you really need one, how to take care of it, and of course, recommend some of the best multitools available today. Let’s get started!

 

PreviewTitleFeaturesMore Details
LEATHERMAN – Surge Heavy Duty Multitool• 21 tools
• Highly durable
• For both indoor and outdoor tasks
Gerber Dime Mini Multi-Tool• Butterfly deployment
• Compact and lightweight
• Very affordable
Victorinox Swiss Army SwissTool X Multi-Tool• A complete tool box
• Tools lock when opened
• Lifetime warranty
LEATHERMAN – Wingman Multitool• 14 tools
• Lightweight and compact
• High-carbon stainless steel
RoverTac Multitool• Lifetime warranty
• Rust-proof
• 12 tools
LEATHERMAN – Skeletool Multitool• High-carbon stainless steel
• Operated with one hand
• Equipped with a pocket clip
Gerber Suspension Multi-Plier• 12 tools
• Special locking mechanism
• Only 4 inches when closed
SOG Powerlock Multitool• 18 tools
• Appealing design
• Ballistic nylon sheath
LEATHERMAN – Super Tool 300 Multitool• Durable and high-quality
• Comes with a leather sheath
• 25-year warranty
LEATHERMAN – FREE P2 Multitool• 19 tools
• Smooth opening
• 25-year warranty

 

Why Do You Need a Multitool?

The multitool exists for years, but have you ever wondered how it can really help you out? Here are some of the many outdoor uses of a multitool:

  • Opening cans: Whether hiking or camping, the multitool can help you open cans and, of course, your favorite beer bottle.
  • Fix zipper: Zipper pulls tend to break. Using a multitool, you can grab what is left of the nub of the zipper and just pull it to open and close until you are able to properly fix it.
  • Light a broken match: Using the pliers of the multitool, you can hold and light a match that has been broken. This is very useful if it’s your last match, or if you don’t want to risk burning your fingers.
  • Remove batteries: If you don’t want to work too hard removing AAA batteries with your fingernails, use a multitool for this task as well.
  • Ice scraper: Using a multitool, you can scrape ice from the windows of your car. You should do it when a regular plastic scraper doesn’t do the job. Use it carefully, so that you don’t scratch or break the glass.
  • Making a fishhook: Using a barbed wire or any stiff wire, you can make a fishhook.
  • Removing splinters: You can use the multitool in order to pull splinters and porcupine quills from people and pets.
  • Drive stakes of the tent: The multitool can help you hammer or push those tent stakes into or out of the ground.
  • Making a splint: Believe it or not, but this can happen! If you or your friend happen to roll or twist your ankle, you can use the multitool to cut a water bottle and then lashing it on the leg, thus providing support for your hurt ankle.
  • Cutting cloth strips: In a case of an emergency and a need for medical aid, you can use the multitool to cut some cloth strips. You can then use them for bandages and to clean injuries and wounds.
  • Hanging a bear rope: Simply open the multitool and wrap a bit of rope around the center of it. Then, tie a knot and close the multitool. Now, throw it over a high tree branch and hoist some food in a bag.
  • Sighting a rifle: There are a lot of gun sights that need to be adjusted using a screwdriver. The multitool should have this item in it, and can help you in this task as well.
  • Cutting jobs: The original multitool is basically the knife (Swiss Army knife), and all multitools of course have the knife among their other items. When you need to do all sorts of cutting jobs (like cutting a rope), you can use the knife in the multitool. If a saw is included, it can be used for the cutting job as well.
  • Different repair jobs: The multitool contains a lot of items in it that can assist you in various repair jobs. The items can cut, tie, pull, push and more.
  • Campfire cooking: I don’t need to tell you that campfires are hot, so the multitool can assist you moving around appliances like pans, pots and more without getting a burn.

The following video reviews many additional uses that a quality multitool has:

 

Using the Multitool Properly

If you’re a multitool novice, then you probably need to carefully explore it before you start using it. Your average multitool will include in it items like a knife (or several knifes), wire cutters, screwdriver, carabiners, and more. Knowing your multitool and how to use it properly makes it a lot more effective and time-saving in different situations.

Here are the steps to follow in order to use the multitool correctly:

  1. Press the mechanism that locks the tool: You will usually find it close to the butt end of the multitool. This mechanism lock can be in the form of a button or a metal slide. Use your thumb to either press the button or slide the metal to unlock your tool.
  2. Open the multitool the same way you open a set of pliers: Manufacturers design their multitools differently. Your multitool will either open itself using a spring-loaded mechanism, or you’ll need to open it manually.
  3. Engage the required tool: Use your fingernail to catch the desired tool from the multitool and pull it out. You will see thin slits where you can place your fingernail.
  4. Closing the handle: Now that you’ve pulled out the desired tool, close the handle of your multitool. Also, before you start using the tool, make sure that the lock mechanism of the multitool is engaged.
  5. Changing from one tool to another: If you wish to replace a tool to work with, disengage the mechanism that locks the multitool. Then, push back the tool you finished working with and pull out the desired tool. Again, do not forget to close the handle before starting working with the new tool.
  6. Shutting down the multitool: In order to shut down the multitool, put back all the tools back into their niches (the ones that are out). Then, bring back the multitool to the rectangular configuration, and this closes it down. Once it’s closed, store it in your pouch, bag or sheath.

 

How to Choose Your Multitool

As I’ve stated previously in this guide, there are many different multitools available on the market today, made by various manufacturers. Which one is better and suits your needs? Let’s find out the best ways to choose your next multitool:

  • Quality of the tools: If you plan to frequently use the multitool for a variety of tasks (like precisions work), then it is important that the tools will be durable and of high-quality. Choose a multitool that is made of high-quality stainless steel. This will ensure that your tools will last for a long time even in regular and constant use.
  • Number of tools: Because not all multitools are the same, they contain different numbers of tools. Some multitools contain only 6 tools, while others can contain as much as 27 tools. Again, consider your needs and the work required with the multitool. If you plan to work with it a lot, it’s best to choose a multitool that contains a multitude of tools that cover a multitude of tasks. Naturally, the most important thing is to get the multitool that contains the tools that you use the most. The rest is more of a bonus.
  • Scissors or pliers: You will find scissors or pliers/wire cutters in most of the multitools today. Again, according to your needs, choose the multitool that contains the required tool.
  • Knife blade: The knife is perhaps the most important tool that everyone needs in their multitool, and today you will find it in every multitool. But are all knives the same? Whether indoors or outdoors, the knife can assist you in many different situations. So, make sure that the knife that comes with the multitool is of high-quality. Also ensure that you can access it easily, and that you can replace the knife if needed.
  • Price: Prices of multitools vary as well. You can find ones as low as $20 or less, while others cost as much as $100 or more. If you just need the multitool to be around, just in case of an emergency, then do not buy an expensive high-end design, there’s no need for this. A more “simple” multitool will be enough to get the job done when necessary. However, if you plan to use it a lot and constantly, consider getting a multitool from a known brand that includes all the tools required.

 

How to Take Care of Your Multitool

A high-quality multitool will probably last for a very long time, even if you use it on a regular basis. But, in order to make sure it lasts for years and years to come, there are ways to maintain it. With proper multitool maintenance, you will never worry that it will break or fail in the moment of truth.

Let’s have a look at how to keep your multitool clean, free of rust and working properly.

  • Keep your multitool clean: I know it may sound obvious, but it is important to keep your multitool clean in order to avoid many possible problems. Make sure that no sand grains get stuck or caught between the different tools. If sand or dirt gets caught in between, your tools won’t run as smoothly as they should. In order to clean sand or dirt that may have been stuck in between the tools, use compressed air or a wooden skewer.
  • Protection against rust: Multitools are made of stainless steel. However, they are not made of corrosion-resistant steel. The reason is that corrosion-resistant steel does not cut as well as stainless steel, and does not stay sharp over time. That is why corrosion-resistant steel can’t be used on knives and blades. Stainless steel contains carbon in order to allow the knife or blade to cut well and stay sharp. Unfortunately, carbon also causes some steel to rust.
    But don’t worry, your multitool won’t rust that fast. In order to keep rust away from your multitool, simply clean it right after you finish using it. Remember that fruit, tree juices and salt water are some of the substances that can cause your multitool to rust if not cleaned after use.
    You can also take proactive steps to protect your multitool by greasing it every once in a while with materials like maintenance oils. This will not only prevent and protect it from rust, but will also ensure the part and tools move smoothly.In case you do spot some rust on your multitool, simply use a maintenance oil with a piece of cloth. If there are hard-to-remove parts, you can use an abrasive sponge, but do it carefully so you won’t scratch your multitool.
  • Keeping the multitool in a case: The multitool you get will probably come with its own case or sheath. When not in use, always keep it inside (after you cleaned it, of course). This will keep it dry, and also prevent it from getting hit and scratched if dropped.

In addition, when you get a brand new tool, you need to break it in. Here is a great video from Gear Nut that demonstrates how it’s done:

 

Top 10 Multitools

Now let’s have a close look at the best multitools in existence. These were carefully chosen from dozens of models and brands. I also linked every item to its page on Amazon.

 

LEATHERMAN – Surge Heavy Duty Multitool

This is an amazing multitool that basically replaces your entire tool box. It comes with 21 different tools that are very easy to access. Among the tools in the Leatherman are regular pliers, needlenose pliers, wire cutters you can replace when needed, knives (straight and serrated), saw with a blade exchanger, can and bottle openers, and more.

This is without a doubt one of the best multitools on the market, for both indoor and outdoor tasks. It’s extremely practical, easy to use and to access its tools. It’s highly durable and has everything you need in a multitool, with tools that are replaceable as well.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • The multitool is designed like a folding plier
  • Includes 5 different wire tools, 4 tools for cutting, 2 different types of pliers, different screwdrivers
  • Limited warranty (25-year)

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

Gerber Dime Mini Multi-Tool

Gerber’s philosophy was to design a mutitool that is both useful and effective as much as possible, without loading it with tools that may be unneeded. What came out is this terrific Gerber Dime Mini Multitool. An Amazon’s Choice, this multitool is both very practical and affordable.

The Gerber Dime includes 10 different tools that are easy to access and features a butterfly deployment. When the tools open, they immediately get locked in place to prevent any unfortunate injury or accident.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Among the different tools, also includes cutters, blade, pliers, scissors, openers, tweezers and drivers
  • Compact and extremely lightweight (2.24 ounces/63.50 grams)
  • Gerber is a trusted American brand dedicating to craft multitools, lifesaving knives, cutting tools and more

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

Victorinox Swiss Army SwissTool X Multi-Tool

Just like the Leatherman, this Swiss Army multitool is also a complete tool box in one device. Another Amazon’s Choice, the manufacturer states you’ll find a million uses with this tool, and they may be right.

It’s compact, handy, very functional and well designed. It comes with 27 different tools and its own leather pouch. Among the tools you’ll find are: Philips screwdriver, other screwdrivers (2mm, 3mm, 5mm, 7.5mm), pliers, large blade, wires, wood saw, metal saw, reamer, scissors, bottle opener and more.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Lightweight and durable for a long time
  • Access each tool separately from outside of the handle
  • Tools lock when opened and fold away when sliding a release button
  • Lifetime warranty

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

LEATHERMAN – Wingman Multitool

This multitool is durable, very convenient, compact and extremely effective. When you choose a Leatherman, you know you get one of the best multitools available. This is a great multitool for housework as well as outdoor tasks, and of course, in a case of an emergency.

The Wingman comes with 14 different tools. Among them are a knife, pliers, wire cutters, file, ruler, screwdrivers, scissors, package, bottle and can openers, and more. You can open all the tools using only a single hand. That includes even the tools that are not accessible from the outside.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Lightweight and compact
  • Limited warranty (25-year)
  • Made of 420 high-carbon stainless steel

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

RoverTac Multitool

If you want a multitool for an emergency situation and that is also very affordable, this RoverTac multitool is the item you’ve been looking for. I decided to add it to the list, since it’s a decent multitool if you don’t want to spend too much, yet desire to have a multitool that can be extremely useful and even save your life.

The RoverTac includes 12 different tools, among them are standard and long nose pliers, saw, wire cutters, sharp and cone knives, Philips screwdriver, slotted screwdrivers, bottle and can openers, and more.

The RoverTac has a score of 4.7 out of 5 on Amazon from more than 400 ratings, so don’t think that because it’s not expensive, it’s not a good multitool, on the contrary. It also comes with a ballistic nylon pouch that you can wear on your belt.

The downside of this multitool is that it weighs 0.67lbs/303 gram, so it’s not that lightweight. But for its price, it’s a great item with outstanding performance.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Lifetime warranty
  • Stainless steel tools
  • Rust-proof as well as corrosion-resistant
  • Great price for a multitool containing 12 tools

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

LEATHERMAN – Skeletool Multitool

The Skeletool multitool by Leatherman contains only 7 tools, but they are exactly the main tools you need to have with you. Don’t worry, it’s one of the best multitools on the market that will last for a long time to come. It has a score of 4.6 out of 5 on Amazon from more than 2,000 ratings!

This multitool contains regular and needlenose pliers, regular and hard-wire cutters, 420HC combo knife, bottle opener and large bit driver. You only need one hand to operate it and use all the available tools, including those that are not accessible from the outside.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Lightweight and compact (only 5 ounces)
  • Manufactured from high-carbon stainless steel
  • Limited warranty (25 years)
  • Equipped with a pocket clip that you can remove

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

Gerber Suspension Multi-Plier

This is a reliable multitool that is tough, yet easy to operate. Features a butterfly design, the Gerber Suspenstion Multitool is equipped with 12 different tools. Among the tools in this item are knives with straight and serrated blades, Philips screwdriver, flathead screwdrivers (medium and large), wire cutter, and more.

The multitool is lightweight (9oz), made of stainless steel and has a special locking mechanism (Saf.T). It’s basically an amazing multitool for both indoor house work and outdoor tasks, as well as emergency situations. It’s no surprise that it is another one of Amazon’s Choices with a score of 4.6 out of 5 from more than 5,000 ratings!

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Only 4 inches in length when the item is closed
  • Equipped with a ballistic nylon sheath
  • Sturdy, durable and will last for a long time
  • Limited lifetime warranty

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

SOG Powerlock Multitool

Another one of my favorite multitools, this SOG Powerlock has a score of 4.5 out of 5 from over 350 ratings on Amazon. It’s equipped with 18 different tools! Among them are a knife, pliers, wood saw, 4 screwdrivers, ratchet and hex bit driver, awl, scissors, wire cutter, can and bottle openers, and more.

What I especially like about the SOG Powerlock is its patented compound leverage, which allows you to use less force when gripping the multitool, yet cut twice as hard. Manufactured in USA from a satin-polished 420 stainless steel, this multitool will serve you in almost any situation and for a very long time.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Appealing design that is both smooth and clean
  • The locking system is very easy to operate
  • Comes with a ballistic nylon sheath that’s also very durable
  • Lightweight (9.6oz)

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

LEATHERMAN – Super Tool 300 Multitool

The Super Tool 300 multitool by Leatherman is equipped with 18 different tools and according to them, features the strongest pliers that the company has ever manufactured. Among the 18 tools in this amazing item, you get needlenose and regular pliers, wire cutters that can be replaced, electrical crimper, straight and serrated knives, wood/metal file, saw, screwdrivers, and more.

Another feature I liked about this multitool is that it’s designed with a handle that can be formly gripped even while wearing gloves. Also, a locking device makes sure that every tool (except the pliers head) locks when fully opened for safe work.

The sloped-top handle allows you to maneuver even in tight places. With this high-quality multitool, you get everything you need from one of the best companies in the business.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • Stainless steel
  • Comes with a leather sheath (some models come with nylon or MOLLE sheath)
  • Durable and high-quality
  • Limited warranty (25-year)

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

LEATHERMAN – FREE P2 Multitool

Another multitool by Leatherman, and this one I especially adore, since it comes with magnetic locking. You can open the multitool using only one hand and access all the tools quickly and easily, as they are on the outside of the multitool.

The Leatherman Free P2 includes 19 different tools, among them are regular and needlenose pliers, wood/metal file, awl and ruler, spring-action scissors, 420HC combo knife, wire and hard wire cutters can that be replaced, different screwdrivers (Philips, extra small, small and medium), and more.

What else did I like about this multitool?

  • No need to open the multitool in order to use the tools (unless you wish to use the pliers)
  • Stainless steel for durability and long-lasting use
  • Smooth opening
  • Premium nylon sheath
  • Limited warranty (25-year)

Click here to read more reviews and compare prices.

 

Final Words

Well, there you have it, a complete review of the best multitools on the market and how you can choose a multitool that will serve you for many years ahead. I hope that I was able to answer all your question on this topic and made the choice easier for you. Always remember that a multitool should be a permanent resident in your camping backpack.

Naturally, there is more equipment that’s necessary for camping or survival. I invite you to read a very useful guide on what should be in a survival backpack. In addition, although a typical multitool includes a knife, you should really get to know the different types of survival knives. A quality survival knife will surely compliment your multitool. Last, but not the least, there is the essential camping checklist, which lists everything you should pack when planning a camping trip.

Alex Rejba

Alex is a seasoned survivalist, with a passion to all things related to prepping, hiking and living off the grid.

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