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A Sim in The Sims 3 improving their handiness skill by tinkering with an object.

For the similar skill in The Sims and The Sims 2, see Mechanical.

Handiness is a skill in The Sims 3 and The Sims 4, which replaces the mechanical skill from previous games. It allows Sims to fix and upgrade various objects.

The Sims 3[edit | edit source]

In The Sims 3, handiness is augmented by the handy trait.

Statistics[edit | edit source]

  • Objects Repaired
  • Electrical Objects Repaired
  • Plumbing Objects Repaired
  • Objects Upgraded
  • Unique Upgrades Completed
  • Percent of Unique Upgrades Completed
  • Times Electrocuted

Challenges[edit | edit source]

Electricians have repaired at least 10 electrical objects. The experience gained means they will never be electrocuted by an electrical object again.
Plumbers have repaired at least 10 plumbing objects. They are so good at repairs that plumbing objects repaired by them never break again.
Tinkerers have finished at least 10 unique upgrades on household items. Installing the "Unbreakable" upgrade on multiple objects only counts as one unique upgrade, so it helps to experiment with different upgrade options! Tinkerers never fail when upgrading objects.

Abilities[edit | edit source]

An electrocuted Sim
Level Ability Notes
1 Tinker Allows the Sim to tinker with an object to add a random upgrade
3 Upgrade (Self Cleaning) Cleanable objects can be made self-cleaning
4 Upgrade Features

Fireproofing (Stove), Improved Speakers (Stereo), Silent Running (Dishwasher) Improved Jets (Hot Tub)

6 Upgrade (Unbreakable) Objects can be made unbreakable
7 Upgrade TV & Other Seems to unlock most of the remaining upgrades
10 Discount Objects in the Buy and Build Mode are cheaper

Upgrades[edit | edit source]

Lvl Upgrade Applicable Objects Difficulty Rating Function EP
0 Auto Refill[1] Juice keg The juice keg no longer needs to be refilled. &EP09
1 Foghorn Helm &EP10
2 Tech Level 2 Brain enhancing machine &EP09
3 Auto Fill Water trough Automatically fills the horse's water trough. &EP05
3 Custom Doorbell Sound Door Changes the sound of the doorbell. &BG
3 Improve Speakers[2] Stereo Increases effect of "Enjoying Music" moodlet by 10. &BG
3 Self-Cleaning Plumbing, stove, all-in-one bathroom(lvl 8) This object will clean itself every time it's used. &BG
3 Silent Running Cheap dishwasher Makes the dishwasher run silently. &BG
3 Improve Speaker[2] Wall-mounted speaker &EP06
3 Space Travel UFO Enables the ability to travel to the space with an alien's UFO. &EP08
3 Improved Jets Hot tub Changes the hot tubs' bubbles effect. &EP03
3 Upgraded Extinguisher Fire extinguisher Requires level 5 in Firefighter profession. Sims can extinguish fire faster. The extinguisher color changes from white to orange. &EP02
4 Add Speakers Not So Routine Machine Gives Sims a fun boost whenever they use the machine. &Store
4 Auto Water Sprinkler Automatically waters the plants every morning. &BG
4 Cosmic Bowling Bowling lane &EP09
4 Fireproof Stove(lvl 4), fireplace(lvl 6) Will never set things on fire. The Fireproof Homestead lifetime reward makes this upgrade useless in the active household. &BG
4 Engine Speed Helm Increases the speed of the houseboat. &EP10
4 Improve Fire Alarm Fire alarm Requires to be in Firefighter profession. The alarm responds faster to firefighting emergencies. &EP02
4 Laser Cannons UFO Gives the ability to invade community lots with an alien's UFO. &EP08
5 Improved Pressing Nectar maker Adds an extra one bottle of nectar on each production. &EP01
5 Never Loses Dartboard Hacks the dartboard, allowing the Sim that hacked it to always win. &EP03
6 Improved Crushing Trash compactor Allows Sims to store more trash. &BG
6 More Efficient Solar panel, windmill Bills are reduced by 3% (Solar Panel) and 6% (Windmill) instead of 2% and 4%. &Store
6 Unbreakable Electronics, plumbing, etc.[3] This object will never break. &BG
6 Clean Polymer Injection System Washing machine Makes the Fresh Clothing moodlet last longer. &EP02
6 Inkinization 2.0 Expensive tattoo chair Always gives good result when using the device. &EP02
6 Look-Good Mirrors Styling station Customers will be more likely to be satisfied with their makeovers. &EP02
7 Tech Level 3 Brain enhancing machine &EP09
7 Auto Light Cheap fireplace The fire turns itself on whenever Sim walks into the room. &BG
7 Boost Channel Cheap TV Unlocks advance channels which are not available in cheap televisions. With higher skills, more channels can be unlocked. &BG
7 Faster Cooking Microwave Sims cook food with microwave faster. &BG
7 Improve Meal Quality Stove Increases the quality of cooked meals. &BG
7 Perfect Teleportation Teleporter Disables the possibility that Teleporter fails. &BG
7 Always Good Fortune Fortune cookie maker Always gives Sims the positive moodlet from the fortune cookies. However, with this upgrade, Sims with Loser trait or "Unlucky" moodlet will always get bad fortune. &EP01
7 Autopilot Helm Enables autopilot mode to the houseboat. &EP10
7 Glow Umbrella Enables the umbrella to glow when used. &EP08
8 Teleport Anywhere Not So Routine Machine Shows up as Perfect Teleportation in-game after upgrade completed. &Store
8 Inertial Stabilizer PlasmaPunch Gyroscopic Conductor Sims will never get nauseous again. &EP06
8 Singing Synthesizer Karaoke machine &EP06
8 Improved Graphics Computer, holo computer Sims gain more fun playing with computers. Technophobe Sims cannot do this upgrade. &BG
8 Wire House with Speakers Stereo "Enjoying Music" moodlet follows all around the house. The stereo interrupts sleep throughout the house instead of just nearby rooms. &BG
9 Flavor Enhancement Nectar maker Increases nectar flavor by 15%. &EP01
9 Change Fire Color Cheap fireplace The player can choose between blue, purple, green and normal for the fire color. &BG
9 Improved Memory Food replicator Every subsequently stored meal will have 20 copies available instead of the regular 10. &BG
10 Dimensional Gate PlasmaPunch Gyroscopic Conductor Creates a dimensional gate when the PlasmaPunch Gyroscopic Conductor is used. &EP06

Opportunities[edit | edit source]

Settle an Argument
Reward: Cash
Location: Specified Sim
Description: [Sim] is a bit peeved with modern technology, and has taken the opinion that it's unreliable and breaks too often. Have a chat with [Sim] and provide a convincing argument about the greatness of modern technology. You'll earn a little money and improve your relationship with [Sim] for settling the disagreement.
Bring Back the Jams
Goal: Upgrade the Stereo and return it to [Random Sim]
Reward: Cash
Location: Specified Sim
Description: A Stereo belonging to [Sim] is barely pumping out tunes like it used to, and it's making [Sim] look really uncool. [Sim] will leave the stereo with you (in the family inventory) to Upgrade. Once you're finished, bring it back and [Sim] will pay you for the work.
Broken Laptop
Goal: Repair the Laptop and return it to [Random Sim]
Reward: Cash
Location: Specified Sim
Bad Reception
Goal: Repair the TV and return it to [Random Sim]
Reward: Cash
Description: [Sim] has a TV that's busted and there's nobody around to fix it. Take the TV set (It will be placed in your family inventory.) and whack it a few times to see if you can't get it working again. [Sim] will pay you for the repair work.
Not Music, Not Fun
Goal: Repair the Stereo and return it to [Random Sim]
Reward: Cash
Location: Specified Sim
Repair Before Jail Breaks
Goal: Fix the lock mechanism
Reward: Cash
Location: Police Station

Glitches[edit | edit source]

Unbreakable and Perfect Teleportation

The player can give both Unbreakable and Perfect upgrades to the same Teleporter by taking advantage of a glitch by completing the Perfect Teleportation upgrade first, then starting a new upgrade for Unbreakable, and canceling it after only some work is done.

Unique Upgrade Update

The Solar Panel and Wind Raker or Wind Reaper will add to your unique upgrade count, but not your unique upgrades percentage or unique upgrades list.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

The Sims 4[edit | edit source]

In The Sims 4, handiness is mostly used to repair broken objects in order to not spend money by replacing them, or by calling a repairman. Handiness also determines the quality of craftable items made with the woodworking table. Raising this skill is one of the main objectives of the Nerd Brain aspiration.

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Level Ability Interaction
2 Basic Upgrades on Plumbing, Craft Furniture, Talk about Handiness, Purchase Upgrade Parts Upgrade, woodworking, social and computer interactions
3 Find Rare Upgrade Parts, Carve Bunny, Dragon, Horse and Elephant Sculptures Collecting and woodworking interactions
4 Advanced Upgrades on Plumbing, Craft End Tables Upgrade and woodworking interactions
5 Basic Upgrades on Kitchen Objects, Craft Bear and Lumberjack Sculptures, Brag about Handiness Upgrade, woodworking and social interactions
6 Craft Dining Tables and Dining Chairs Woodworking interactions
7 Perform Advanced Upgrades on Kitchen Objects Upgrade interactions
8 Basic Upgrades on Electronics, Craft Instruments Upgrade and woodworking interactions
9 Advanced Upgrades on Electronics, Craft Tubs Upgrade and woodworking interactions
10 Craft Toilets, Mentor other Sims Woodworking and social interactions

Learning[edit | edit source]

Handiness is raised by repairing and upgrading objects, as well as crafting sculptures or furniture at the woodworking table. Like with other skills, Sims can read skill books to raise their handiness. Sims who are focused will build their handiness skill faster, as well as repairing objects much quicker. Genius Sims tend to be focused more often than other Sims, making the trait to be perfect for leveling this skill. Sims who have mastered their handiness can mentor other Sims as well.

Repairing objects[edit | edit source]

A Sim repairing a toilet.

Various objects such as televisions, toilets and sinks tend to break after numerous uses by Sims. A broken object is indicated by a visual cue such as stream of water, smoke or electrical sparks, depending on the type of the object. Repairs will always work no matter how low or high the Sims' handiness skill is, though having higher handiness will make these interaction go quicker. After a Sim has successfully repaired an object, they will gain a couple upgrade parts. A scrap pile will also appear, that Sims can scavenge to gain another part or two.

If a Sim with low handiness skills tries to repair an electronic object or is standing on top of a puddle of water, there is a higher chance of the Sim getting shocked. The Sim will gain the "Seriously Fried" moodlet, which will give the +40 dazed emotion for 3 hours, and causes smoke to pour out of the Sim. If the Sim gets shocked again with the moodlet, they'll be immediately electrocuted and die. There is also a chance of the object the Sim was repairing catching fire.

Upgrading objects[edit | edit source]

Having a high handiness skill allows Sims to upgrade various objects, by improving their functionality and making them unbreakable. In order to upgrade objects Sims must first have the required level and upgrade parts. Upgrade parts can be found while searching through the scrap piles left from repairing, or by breaking down and salvaging electronic objects. Sims can also purchase various upgrade parts from the computer after reaching level 2. It costs §10 to buy common upgrade parts, §30 for plumbing parts, §90 for kitchen parts and §120 for electronic parts.

Upgraded objects, while costing a small fortune, provide happy moodlets for Sims that can boost their current emotions, and can also add more functionalities to objects, such as new channels on the television. Some higher quality versions of objects, such as DJ booths[TS4:GT] and robot vacuums,[TS4:C&D] will have all of the upgrades already available, though they tend to be much more costly.

List of upgrades[edit | edit source]

Lvl Upgrade Applicable objects Required parts Function EP
2 Sturdy Faucets Sink 2 Common Reduces how often the sink breaks. &BG
2 Superior Flush Toilet 2 Common Reduces how often the toilet breaks. &BG
2 Sturdy Faucets Bathtub 3 Common Reduces how often the bathtub breaks. &BG
2 Upgrade Water Flow Regulator Shower 2 Common Reduces how often the shower breaks. &BG
2 Climatic Hydrator Weather machine 1 Common, 1 Plumbing Increases the success chance when attempting to create rain or snow. &EP05
2 Gyroscope Durability Weather machine 1 Common, 1 Kitchen Reduces how often the weather machine breaks. &EP05
2 Humidity Chiller Weather machine 1 Common, 1 Kitchen Increases the success chance of interactions involving snow or cold. &EP05
2 Moisture Vaporator Weather machine 1 Common, 1 Plumbing Improves the success chance of attempts to clear the skies. &EP05
3 Tighten Up Graphics Gaming console 2 Common, 1 Electronic Makes playing video games gain more fun. &EP03
3 Capacitive Efficiency Weather machine 1 Common, 1 Electronic Unlocks the ability to modify the current season's weather. &EP05
3 Iron Line Clothesline 3 Common Makes the clothesline unbreakable and unable to catch on fire. &SP13
4 Self-Cleaning Sink 1 Common, 2 Plumbing The sink will be automatically cleaned. &BG
4 Auto-Soap Dispenser Sink 3 Common, 1 Plumbing Increases the rate of gaining hygiene. &BG
4 Self-Cleaning Toilet 3 Common, 2 Plumbing The toilet will be automatically cleaned. &BG
4 Bidet Toilet 3 Common, 2 Plumbing Increases hygiene while using toilet. &BG
4 Self Cleaning Bathtub 3 Common, 1 Plumbing The bathtub will be automatically cleaned. &BG
4 Clean Coat Bathtub 3 Common, 2 Plumbing Increases the rate of gaining hygiene. &BG
4 Self-Cleaning Wall Coating Shower 2 Common, 2 Plumbing The shower will be automatically cleaned. &BG
4 Pulsating Massage Jets Shower 3 Common, 1 Plumbing Increases the rate of gaining hygiene. &BG
4 Fireguard Fireplace 3 Common, 2 Plumbing Decreases the chances of a fire starting. &BG
4 Autolight Fireplace 3 Common, 2 Plumbing The fireplace will be turned on automatically when Sims entering the room. &BG
4 Sturdy Panels Motion gaming mat 4 Common Reduces how often the motion gaming mat breaks. &BG
4 Corrective Laser Lens X-ray machine 3 Common, 2 Electronic Makes the x-ray machine scan faster. &EP01
4 Frictionless Scanner Rig X-ray machine 3 Common, 2 Electronic Makes the x-ray machine unbreakable. &EP01
4 Self-Cleaning Sauna 2 Common The sauna will be automatically cleaned. &GP02
4 Iron Microphone Karaoke machine 3 Common, 2 Electronic Prevents the karaoke machine from breaking. &EP03
5 Reinforced Door Refrigerator 4 Common Reduces how often the refrigerator breaks. &BG
5 Coated Exterior Stove 3 Common The stove will become less dirtier. &BG
5 Coated Interior Microwave oven 3 Common Takes longer to get dirty. &BG
5 Stick-Free Pot Tea brewer 3 Common Takes longer to get dirty. &BG
5 Consistently Perfect Pulls Espresso machine 2 Common, 3 Kitchen Unlocks the "Perfect Pre-Work Shot" recipe. &EP02
5 Gizmo Redundancy Robot vacuum 2 Common, 1 Electronic Reduces how often the robot vacuum breaks. &EP04
5 Self Repairing Nanites Weather machine 2 Common, 2 Electronic Makes the weather machine unbreakable. &EP05
5 Presoak Washer 1 Common, 2 Plumbing Makes clothes wash slower, but increases the chance of them being pristine. &SP13
5 Lint-Less Dryer 1 Common, 1 Electric,
2 Kitchen
The dryer will no longer create lint, making laundry dry faster and preventing fires from starting. &SP13
6 Wireless Display Override Gaming console 3 Common, 2 Electronic Allows the gaming console to take control over the display of nearby video screens. &EP03
6 Wireless Display Override Karaoke machine 3 Common, 4 Electronic Allows the karaoke machine to take control over the display of nearby video screens. &EP03
6 Gyro-Compactor Robot vacuum 4 Common Increases the amount of trash that can be cleaned before becoming full. &EP04
6 Whisper Quiet Washer 1 Common, 1 Plumbing, 1 Electric Makes the washer run more silently. &SP13
6 Laundry Additive Tray Washer 1 Common, 3 Kitchen Unlocks the ability to add pleasant or foul scents to loads of laundry. &SP13
6 Whisper Quiet Dryer 1 Common, 1 Kitchen,
1 Electric
Makes the dryer run more silently. &SP13
7 Fresh Maker Refrigerator 2 Common, 3 Kitchen Improves the overall quality of food. &BG
7 Fridge of Steel Refrigerator 2 Common, 3 Kitchen Greatly reduces how often the refrigerator breaks. &BG
7 Self-Cleaning Stove 3 Common, 3 Kitchen The stove will be automatically cleaned. &BG
7 Heat Sensor Stove 2 Common, 2 Kitchen Improves the overall quality of the food. &BG
7 Self Cleaning Microwave oven 2 Common, 2 Kitchen The microwave oven will be automatically cleaned. &BG
7 Flavor Enhancer Microwave oven 2 Common, 3 Kitchen Improves the overall quality of food. &BG
7 Self-Cleaning Tea/Coffee brewer 2 Common, 2 Kitchen The tea/coffee brewer will be automatically cleaned. &BG
7 Infuser Tea/Coffee bewer 3 Common, 2 Kitchen Improves the overall quality of tea/coffee. &BG
7 Increase Cleaning Speed Dishwasher 1 Plumbing, 1 Kitchen Speeds up the wash cycle. &BG
7 Make Extra Reliable Dishwasher 2 Common Reduces how often the dishwasher breaks. &BG
7 Make Run Quieter Dishwasher 1 Common, 1 Kitchen Makes the dishwasher run silently. &BG
7 Make Unbreakable Dishwasher 2 Common, 2 Kitchen Makes the dishwasher unbreakable. &BG
7 Pitch Enchancer Karaoke machine 5 Common, 3 Electronic Allows Sims to sing with computer-assisted precision. &EP03
7 Waterproof Mechanisms Robot vacuum 2 Common, 2 Plumbing Allows the robot vacuum to clean liquid messes. &EP04
7 Speed Cycle Washer 2 Common, 1 Plumbing, 1 Electric Makes the washer clean laundry more quickly. &SP13
7 Speed Cycle Dryer 2 Common, 2 Electric Makes the dryer dry laundry more quickly. &SP13
8 Better Components Television 4 Common Reduces how often the television breaks. &BG
8 Better Components Stereo 3 Common Reduces how often the stereo breaks. &BG
8 ECC RAM Computer 5 Common Reduces how often the computer breaks. &BG
8 Crytacoo Casing Motion gaming mat 3 Common, 3 Electronic Makes the object unbreakable. &BG
8 Reinforce Telescopic Pivots Backyard observatory 2 Common Redcues how often the telescope breaks. &BG
8 Robustify Inner Workings Microscope 2 Common Reduces how often the microscope breaks. &BG
8 Steel Centrifuge Chemical analyzer None Makes the chemical analyzer unbreakable. &EP01
8 Unbreakable Upgrade Gaming console 3 common, 2 Electronic Makes the gaming console unbreakable. &EP03
8 Sonic Dampeners Robot vacuum 2 Common, 2 Electronic Sounds reduced while running, drawing less pet attention. &EP04
8 Temporal Modifier Unit Weather machine 3 Common, 3 Electronic Allows the weather machine to advance the season. &EP05
8 Tungsten Drum Washer 2 Plumbing, 2 Electric Reduces how often the washer breaks. &SP13
8 Tungsten Drum Dryer 1 Kitchen,
3 Electric
Reduces how often the dryer breaks. &SP13
9 Super Reception Television 4 Common, 2 Electronic Adds the fireplace and music channels. &BG
9 Firaxium Wiring Television 3 Common, 3 Electronic Makes the television unbreakable. &BG
9 Super Reception Stereo 4 Common, 2 Electronic Adds the retro radio station. &BG
9 Firaxium Wiring Stereo 3 Common, 2 Electronic Makes the stereo unbreakable. &BG
9 IP Spoofer Computer 4 Common, 3 Electronic Makes hacking more successful. &BG
9 Better Video Card Computer 5 Common, 3 Electronic Makes playing video games gain more fun. &BG
9 eMotion Engine Motion gaming mat 4 Common, 4 Electronic Makes playing video games gain more fun. &BG
9 Augment Telescopic Eyepiece Backyard observatory 2 Common Increases the chances of success when using the telescope. &BG
9 Improve Lens Quality Microscope 2 Common Increases the chance for success when in use. &BG
9 Perfect Inner Workings Microscope 2 Common Makes the microscope unbreakable. &BG
9 Waterproof Circuitry Sauna 2 Common, 2 Plumbing Makes the sauna unbreakable. &GP02
9 Turbo-Charge Robot vacuum 2 Common, 3 Electronic Speeds up the robot vacuum's movement, idle and scan-time. &EP04
9 Upgrade to Never Break Pet surgery station 3 Common, 2 Electronic Makes the pet surgery station unbreakable. &EP04
10 Precision Temperature Probe Sauna 4 Common, 2 Electronic Makes for better relaxation. &GP02

Woodworking[edit | edit source]

Crafting furniture with the woodworking table.
Main article: Woodworking Table

Handiness is also greatly affected by woodworking, which composes of crafting various forms of sculptures and unique furniture. Sims can start crafting at any level, though at lower levels of handiness they will have probabilities of crafting bad quality items. The sculptures can range from small decorations such as knife blocks to animals like bunnies, dragons and horses. Chairs and tables are usually the first forms of furniture that Sims can craft, before moving into actual functioning objects such as instruments, bathtubs and toilets at the highest levels.

All crafted items will have various levels of guality, ranging from poor, normal and excellent. Poor quality furniture will have jagged looks and be uncomfortable for Sims. Excellent items, however, sell for much higher prices and have better stats on comfort and environment. Being focused will help immensely with woodworking, increasing the chances of crafting items of excellent quality. Sims who are experiencing specific emotions and have reached level two in handiness can also craft emotional sculptures.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Sims need to at least learn handiness once and fill up the skill bar just partially, not necessarily earn 1 level, in order to allow them upgrade the juice keg.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Improve Speaker" on wall-mounted speaker counts as a different upgrade from the "Improve Speakers" on stereo.
  3. Jukebox and PlasmaPunch Gyroscopic Conductor requires level 1 and 5 handiness for "Unbreakable" upgrade, respectively.