The character Wilson was based on Tim Allen's childhood memories of when he was too short to see over a fence, and was therefore unable to see his neighbor.
Colleges and universities in Michigan sent Tim Allen sweaters and t-shirts to wear on the air, and he did.
Originally, Frances Fisher was cast as Jill Taylor. During the filming of the pilot, audiences reacted poorly, saying that she made the character of Jill whiney and desperate. She was replaced with Patricia Richardson four days before the pilot episode was taped.
According to E! True Hollywood Story (1996), Tim Allen was offered fifty million dollars to do a ninth season of the show, and Patricia Richardson was offered twenty-five million dollars for a ninth season.
While taping some episodes of Tool Time, Tim sometimes asks an unseen character, Klaus, to play music for Tool Time segments. Klaus Landsberg worked in the Sound Department on this show.
Almost all new Binford products introduced on Tool Time have the model number 6100.
The show was originally conceived under the name "Hammer Time", after the show Tim would host. Prior to filming the pilot, Tim's show was re-named "Tool Time" to avoid confusion with M.C. Hammer. Consequently, the show was re-named "Home Improvement" because the creators decided against naming the show after the show-within the show, to avoid confusing viewers.
There is a running gag regarding the Taylors' neighbor, Wilson; his face is always concealed from about the nose down (except in one episode where the top half of his face is covered with papier mache). In most episodes, Wilson was being shot from behind a fence, but in later episodes where he got out more often, camera shots, actor movements, and prop placements were carefully orchestrated so that his full face was not revealed. In fact, during all the curtain calls for the show (except the series finale curtain call, where his entire face was shown), actor Earl Hindman, who played Wilson, would bring a miniature picket fence to hold in front of his face so that it would remain hidden from view.
When the show went into syndication in 1995, the producers chose to film a new episode to kick-off the syndicated episodes, a first for a network series. Tim Allen and Patricia Richardson filmed part of the episode at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, California, where their characters had a race, driving tanks on a mapped out course. Many Marines of 1st Tank Battalion were then invited to the studios in Los Angeles to watch the filming of the rest of the episode live from the studio audience.
The character "Tim Taylor" was ranked number twenty in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" (June 20, 2004 issue).
Patricia Richardson gave birth to twins three months before she began filming. In fact, she brought her twins to her initial interview and the producers built a nursery in the studio for them.
Al (Richard Karn) is seen wearing a ring which appears to be a wedding ring on his left hand even without him being married on the show.
Binford Tools, the company that sponsors the Tool Time show, is named after a friend of the family of one of the producers.
One of the few family sitcoms that didn't feature a frontal shot of a real house that was used to be the house of the television family.
Binford Tools, as promoted by Tim on "Tool Time", was featured in Toy Story (1995), also starring Tim Allen. They can be seen in the scene when Woody is trying to help Buzz escape from Andy's evil next door neighbour Sid's room. Woody pushes a red toolbox off the side of the counter and when the toolbox comes into shot you can see the Binford logo on the toolbox.
On the show, the oldest brother, Brad is thirteen months older than the second brother, Randy. However, in reality, Jonathan Taylor Thomas, who played Randy, is older by a month and a day than Zachery Ty Bryan, who played his older brother. Bryan was considerably taller than Thomas, which allowed him to be passed off as the older brother. In later seasons, Taran Noah Smith who played Mark, the youngest brother, had a height advantage over Thomas.
A Super Nintendo video game was based on the television series. As part of the game's gimmick, the majority of the instruction manual was blanked out with the words "REAL MEN DON'T NEED INSTRUCTIONS." The game was only loosely based on the show, and featured Tim fighting through various television sets in the Tool Time studio, doing battle with such foes as men dressed up like dinosaurs.
In Germany, the series' title is "Hör mal wer da hämmert" means "Listen Who's Hammering", an allusion to the German title of the movie "Look Who's Talking".
Stephen Tobolowsky was the original choice to play Al Borland; but due to a film commitment, Richard Karn got the part of Al after filming four episodes.
Producer and Director John Pasquin directed Tim Allen in The Santa Clause (1994), Jungle 2 Jungle (1997), and Joe Somebody (2001).
The label "WLS" was frequently used to cover up real corporate logos. These are the initials of the series' original Property Master, Warren Schaffer. WLS are the call letters of the ABC owned and operated affiliate station in Chicago, Illinois. WLS are also the call letters of two radio stations in Chicago owned by Citadel (who bought ABC's radio division).
Ashley Judd auditioned for and won the role of Lisa the Tool Girl. However, her agent urged her to pursue movies instead of a television career, and she pulled out a few days before the original pilot was to be taped, resulting in the casting of Pamela Anderson. The last-minute change necessitated alterations to the original script, in which Lisa was a major character. She was a college student majoring in psychology who acted as a stand-in for Jill on the Tool Time set.
It is said in one episode that Tim Taylor is three years older than his wife, Jill (Patricia Richardson). However, in real-life, Patricia is two years older than Tim Allen.
As an homage to this show, many tools seen in Tim Allen's later project, Last Man Standing (2011) were "Binford"-branded.
Although Mark's middle name isn't mentioned directly during the series, in one post-finale interview Tim said Mark's middle name was Jason.
In 2017, a podcast dedicated to the show Home Improvement (1991) called "Grunt Work" was launched, which takes its name from Tim Allen's iconic "primitive man" routine, wherein every episode of the show is covered with in-depth analysis.
During the closing credits of one show, Tim is seen showing off a Buzz Lightyear toy to a little girl. Tim Allen provided the voice of Buzz Lightyear in the Toy Story film franchise.
Tim Allen provided the voice of Buzz Lightyear in Disney's Toy Story film franchise, and Jonathan Taylor Thomas provided the voice of Simba in The Lion King (1994).
Tim Allen was a big fan of the military so was Patricia Richardson. Patricia's father was a Navy Veteran. Because of their fondness of the Navy, they invited the Blue Angels to sit in on one of their rehearsals. Jimmy Libriola kept the Blue Angels busy cracking jokes with the team.
While meeting with Bud Harper, Tim is told "...Heidi tested better than Santa Claus." Tim Allen played Santa Claus in The Santa Clause (1994).
An actual graduate-level textbook, "The Assessment of Children (3rd Ed.)" written by Jerome Sattler, was shown while Jill was studying.