The times of the coronavirus are also the times of long lines in front of this nation’s hardware stores. In the beginning, when shopping carts were compulsory, the lined-up crowds zigzagged entire hardware store parking lots, but now you can shop without a cart again. They are still full because the virus has canceled many weekend activities and long-distance trips. Many use the free time gained in this way to spruce up their balconies, apartments, houses and gardens.
But the choice is huge. If you ask Google or a similar search engine anywhere in Germany for hardware stores nearby, the chances are good that branches of Obi, Hellweg, Toom and the like are all within reach. It was the same with the NewsABC.net Test: Hellweg, Hornbach and Toom could be reached in less than 20 minutes by car. The virtual sales rooms of the websites were checked for Obi and Bauhaus.
Where are the cheapest dowels, where do you pay the most for the inflatable pool? Which hardware store should you go to for the ax and which for a can of WD-40? We went in search of the best prices.
Cordless screwdrivers, dowel sets and secateurs
In search of the best prices, we first went to a Toom branch in Potsdam. One Bosch professional cordless screwdriver type designation GSR 18V-28 the version without batteries and charger cost 185.20 euros, including the currently reduced VAT of 16 percent. In the Obi online shop, you can buy it for significantly less: you only have to pay 97.48 euros. In the online shop of the competitor Bauhaus, the cordless screwdriver costs 184.24 euros. In the Hellweg branch in Potsdam, the device was only available in the version including two batteries and a charger. Online you pay 146.21 euros for the “solo” version. Hornbach only sells the cordless screwdriver in the store and in the branch in the battery charger version – for 193.98 euros. Clear winner here is Obi, the most expensive is the device in the simple version Toom.
A cordless screwdriver is not enough to hang a shelf on the wall. Besides screws are also Dowels asked. A set of 100 pieces measuring 5 x 25 millimeters – or 5 x 35 at Toom, also changes hands here at different prices. For a 100-pack of universal dowels, Hornbach costs 2.39 euros, Bauhaus 2.82 euros, Obi 2.72 euros and Hellweg 3.50 euros. If you want to drill ten millimeters deeper into the wall, you can buy a pack of the same size from Toom for 3.99 euros (minus the reduced VAT, which is around 3.75 euros). Here is the winner Hornbachwhile her at Hellweg pays the most for it.
The garden and balcony are advancing these days to replace the beach and therefore want to look well-kept. A Secateurs is an essential part of the basic equipment. All the markets tested have the popular Gardena B / S-M in their range, at very similar prices. Obi 14.62 euros, Bauhaus 14.57 euros, Toom 14.99 euros (minus the reduced VAT), Hellweg 15.59 euros and Hornbach 15.55 euros. Obi The crown is also placed on this product – at Hellweg it costs the most.
Voltage testers, garden pools and tools
If the garden has to compete with the Côte d’Azur and Bali and the next body of water is not just around the corner, then one can pool not missing. If you are not one of the lucky owners of an in-ground pool, you can buy an inflatable one. They are already available for little money. With the exception of Bauhaus, all hardware stores had the round Bestway garden pool with a diameter of 2.44 meters on offer. Obi costs 29.24 euros, Toom 24.36 euros, Hellweg 43.86 euros and Hornbach 29.23 euros. At Bauhaus you can buy a rectangular pool of a comparable size for 34.11 euros. In this segment you come at Toom cheapest way while Hellweg clearly asks the most money for the pool.
For the small, transparent screwdrivers that you use to check whether there is juice on the line when installing the lamp (Voltage tester) you don’t pay more than two euros at any hardware store. Here cuts Hellweg at 1.79 euros (minus the reduced VAT), while all other hardware stores charge a few cents more.
As the products offered in the categories Axes, Saws and hammers differ in material and manufacturer, a comparison is not that easy here. Axes with a head weighing 1 to 1.25 kilograms and of a simple design cost between 20 and 30 euros at all hardware stores. Most asked bauhaus, but here the head was the heaviest at 1.25 kilograms (29.19 euros). That was the cheapest Toom-Ax of the own brand for 21.99 euros. Saws with a 400-millimeter sheet cost between 8.72 euros (bauhaus) and 17.99 (Hellweg, minus the reduced VAT). So-called Locksmith’s hammers with a head weighing 0.5 kilograms cost between 10.95 (Hornbach) and 13.64 euros (Toom).
WD-40, nail sets and the conclusion
Also the penetrating oil WD-40 must not be missing in any household – for example, if the key gets stuck in the lock. For the 200 milliliter can including “Smart Straw”, the various hardware stores charge between 5.84 euros (obi) and 6.79 euros (Toom). At Hornbach you get a 220 milliliter can (the 20 milliliters are free) for 4.95 euros – the clear price winner.
Just like tools there are at Sets of hundreds of nails different size huge differences. Obi sells a kilogram of different nails for 7.79 euros. At Bauhaus, a set with a weight of just 360 grams costs 5.36 euros. Hellweg charges € 8.76 for a box of 880 nails, while Toom charges € 5.84 for a set of 580 nails. Hornbach has 803 parts for 6.95 euros.
As the award winners change from product to product, it cannot be said with conviction that one hardware store has the cheapest prices while another is the most expensive. The choice of products could have had a positive effect on one hardware store’s balance sheet and that of another negatively.
However, two of the DIY stores consistently charged the most money for the six tested (and comparable) products: Toom and Hellweg. Hornbach, Obi and Bauhaus, on the other hand, were almost all cheaper.
The comparison shows: it is worthwhile to check the online shops of the various hardware stores before buying certain products. Otherwise you end up paying 100 euros more for a cordless screwdriver or miss the 20 milliliters of WD-40.