DIY'ers head to Portland tool libraries during heat wave weekend - KPTV - FOX 12

DIY'ers head to Portland tool libraries during heat wave weekend

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Before tending to the garden or doing projects outside and around the house, many people started the scorching Saturday at the Northeast Portland Tool Library.

"We rent tools of all kinds,” Chris Hertel said. “Garden tools are most popular, tools for woodworking tools, for automotive, for a whole range of things." 

Hertel is a volunteer and board member at the tool library, which has about 8,000 members at the Northeast location alone.

"Well we're just like a book library, except we rent tools for members of the Northeast Portland community,” he said. "Summer’s busiest yeah, because of the landscaping and gardening aspect.”

Dozens of people walked in and out of the library near Northeast Killingsworth and 33rd Avenue Saturday. In the summer months, Hertel said they can rent out several hundred tools a day.

"Some people are just amazed that it even exists, especially at the low cost,” he said. "Compared to going through a private rental agency where you would spend $1,500 a day for a tool, some tools, we're quite a bargain.”

On Saturday, it was all about the gardening tools, but plenty of people came in for other reasons, too. Chrisian Rusby planned on spending the day turning part of a tree into a piece of art to put above his mantel.

"I have a few tools I use all the time, but it's great to get like a belt sander that I don't use but occasionally,” Rusby said. "I love the Northeast Portland Tool Library. It's a great resource for homeowners."

The Northeast Tool Library is just one of many locations around the city. People can pay a small membership fee, then rent the thousands of tools out for free. Hertel said they’re always looking for volunteers as well.

For more information, including a full list of locations and hours of operations, visit

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