“Righty tighty, lefty loosey” - the top 5 DIY secrets passed down by dads revealed (and #5 is a classic)

It's official: dads remain the undisputed champions of home improvement.

Girl making handmade house, screwing with electrical equipmen
(Image credit: Getty Images)

A new poll has revealed a heartwarming truth, just in time for Father's Day - that dads remain the undisputed champions of home improvement. As if we didn't know that.

Not all dads are good at DIY, of course, and not everyone has the joy of a hands-on dad to spoil with Father's Day gifts as a thank-you for all the DIY they do. But those who do, know how lucky they are - and it's not just our homes that benefit. Research shows that children who have good relationships with their grandparents have fewer behavioural and emotional problems, and we reckon that grandfathers who share their DIY tips are especially worth their weight in gold.

Having a dad nearby who is a dab hand at DIY and happy to help around the house is a game-changer for many mums - especially when you're dealing with everything from matrescence to the mental load. And now, just in time for Father's Day, a new social poll conducted by DIY brand BLACK+DECKER confirms what many of us have always known: that dads are the undisputed champions of all things home improvement.

The survey, which gathered responses from over 500 participants, found that 43% of people turn to their fathers for DIY assistance rather than their partners, underscoring the lasting legacy of dads as the go-to problem-solvers in households.

The poll further reveals that 79% of respondents view DIY projects as an excellent way to connect with their dads. 

Top 5 DIY secrets passed down by dads

Nick Ee, product and training manager at BLACK+DECKER, outlines why these 5 tips from DIY-loving dads are such classics, proving that dads really do know best.

1. "The right tool for the right job, that's what I always say."

The survey found that 40% of respondents consider this the best advice their dads have given them. "Having the right tools for the job is crucial for efficiency, precision, safety, and quality of work. It also boosts confidence in mastering the DIY project at hand," explains Nick.

2. "Good things come to those who wait."

One in three respondents (30%) cited patience as the best tip their dads have given them when it comes to DIY. "Patience in completing a DIY project allows for careful planning and execution, reducing the likelihood of mistakes and ensuring each step is done correctly. This limits frustration and allows for more enjoyable bonding time."

Nick says: "Having patience when completing a DIY project will allow for careful planning and execution which will reduce the likelihood of mistakes. Patience will also ensure that each step is done correctly, limiting frustration, and allowing for more fun bonding time with your dad while DIY-ing."

3. "Measure twice, cut once."

One in ten (10%) said their dads have advised them to take the time to plan out a DIY project carefully in advance. Nick suggests: "Planning a DIY project ensures you have all the necessary tools and materials, saving time and preventing delays. If you’re working on a bigger project, planning efficiently will help to manage budgets and achieve a higher quality outcome."

Grandfather ,father and son working at workshop screwing a screw

(Image credit: Getty Images)

4. "Mistakes are just practice runs for success. Now let's see how we can fix this one."

Another 10% of respondents said their dads taught them not to fear mistakes - presumably that applies beyond the realm of DIY too. Nick agrees, and says: "Making mistakes can create valuable learning experiences that can improve your skills and knowledge. Don’t be put off by them, embracing mistakes will eventually make you more confident."

5. “Righty tighty, lefty loosey”

This memorable phrase was cited by 10% of respondents as the best advice from their fathers. Nick comments: "This is one of the most memorable ways to remember that most screws, bolts, and nuts tighten when turned to the right and loosen when turned to the left."

We reckon there's one tip missing from this list of classic dad advice on the theme of DIY, though. As Tim "The Toolman" Taylor (played by Tim Allen on the sitcom Home Improvement) said:

“If it ain't broke, you're not trying.”

BLACK+DECKER is encouraging families to celebrate handy dads by embarking on DIY projects together this Father's Day. Whether fixing a leaky faucet, building a birdhouse, or tackling a larger home improvement task, these timeless tips will ensure a successful and enjoyable experience for all.

For more Father's Day inspiration, check out our roundup of the best Father's day hampers and 80 Father's Day quotes and messages to write in your card for dad plus don't forget to check When is Father's Day? 

Heidi Scrimgeour
Deputy Editor

As a parenting specialist for more than 15 years, Heidi has written for most national newspapers and for a wide range of consumer magazines, including Mother & Baby where she was the Shopping Editor for six years, looking after regular consumer features including buying guides and gift roundups.