Necessity Is the Mother of Invention at Keyfit Tools

by | Apr 2024

Keyfit Tools Sprinkler Head Wrench

Keyfit Tools Sprinkler Head Wrench. Photos: Chris Emeott

Ross Lazarov’s lawn care company inspired his second career as an inventor.

Prior Lake’s Ross Lazarov has built a career of making things work. As the inventor behind Keyfit Tools, Lazarov has developed more than 80 products for automotive applications, lawn care and more. And as the owner of Lazarov High Quality Lawn Treatments, he oversees a lawn care team providing services to Prior Lake and the surrounding areas.

His life’s work found him as much as he found it. Lazarov left high school early, saying school just wasn’t a place for him. But not before a class in advanced auto mechanics sparked his fascination for how things work.

At 17, he started his own auto detail shop. One of his first clients was the Jaguar Dealership in Minneapolis. But the less-than-profit-margin success in his first business encouraged him to start a lawn care company in the late 1990s in West St. Paul.

It was Lazarov High Quality Lawn Treatment that eventually brought him to Prior Lake, where he has a few acres and a warehouse. “People had money; my company took off,” Lazarov says. “During that time, I started designing tools to advance the work we were doing in the lawn care industry. In 2015, I had an idea to improve underground sprinkler systems. The Keyfit Tools Sprinkler Head Wrench, which removes and replaces sprinkler heads with little or no digging, was my first design with large market appeal. Almost every new building or home was being built with sprinkler systems and naturally would need repair.”

Ross Lazarov

Ross Lazarov

Lazarov says it took him nearly three years, enhanced design, daily education on manufacturing, patent development and “total nightmare stress” before he landed on a Chinese manufacturer and eventually brought his wrench, a product of his company Keyfit Tools, to market via a seller’s site on Amazon. “My lawn care company was my safety net,” he says. “If I hadn’t had that, I would have failed at tool design and would be broke.”

After a couple of years of traction selling his wrench on Amazon, Lazarov’s success prompted him to start thinking like an engineer. “Every time I saw a problem, I would start designing and drawing,” he says. “I now have 14 patents and eight more pending. Keyfit Tools has a line of specialty tools, and now I’m versed in copyright, as well.”

Lazarov says he enjoys designing things that make something easier. He describes his designs as “ergonomic-centric” and focused on enhancing processes or existing products.

Lazarov’s advice to promising young inventors is to be open minded and adaptable to change with market fluctuation. “If you’re in unchartered waters with zilch experience, you have to think about what the problem could be to solve,” he says. “Mine is the Cinderella story, the American dream.”

Keyfit Tools

Lazarov High Quality Lawn Treatment
2957 179th St. E., Prior Lake; 952.440.6900


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