10 Best Torque Wrench 2019It takes most people a while to fully appreciate all the implications of torque. But once you know how important it is, you start to see how vital it is to get the best torque wrench for your needs. With the right torque wrench, you’ll be able to tighten important nuts and bolts and ensure safe operation of your vehicle or another piece of equipment.

This tightening tool isn’t something that you want to skimp on! But it can be very hard to identify the right one to suit your budget and application from the massive selection offered online. To make your life a little more ‘tension-free’, we’ve gone out and done all the hard work for you.

Best Torque Wrench for Cars, Trucks & SUVs 2019

A torque wrench is a valuable tool, however there are some things to keep in mind about it. For instance, you need to make sure to protect it from elements like dust which can ruin it. The market offers many torque wrenches that you can buy, and many can be used on your vehicle. Below is a list of the top 5 best torque wrenches of 2019.

In A Hurry? This Is The Best:

TEKTON 24335 1/2" Drive Click Torque Wrench...
  • Wrench emits click that can be heard and felt when the preset value is...
  • High-contrast dual-range scale is easy to read, even in low light....
  • Reversible ratchet head drives in both directions and measures torque...
  • Durable all-steel construction has no plastic parts to break or wear...
  • Ships pre-calibrated to +/- 4% accuracy and ready to use

This ½ inch drive torque wrench comes with a range of 10 ft.-lbs. to 150 ft.-lb. It features a high contrast dual range scale and a reversible ratchet head. This ratchet head has 24 teeth. This torque wrench also comes with a +/-4% accuracy. This will help to ensure you can tighten things like nuts and bolts without them breaking. This product will also give a loud click once the correct torque level is reached.When storing it, be sure to put it away at its lowest setting so it will continue to work properly.

Pros

  • This product comes with a storage case.
  • It also comes with a torque conversion chart. This is great because it will help you find and use the correct torque level.
  • The loud clicking sound is very helpful as it will make sure you don’t tighten anything beyond its limit.

Cons

  • This product comes with a storage case.
  • It also comes with a torque conversion chart. This is great because it will help you find and use the correct torque level.
  • The loud clicking sound is very helpful as it will make sure you don’t tighten anything beyond its limit.

Best 3/8 Inch Torque Wrench

TEKTON 24330 3/8-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench (10-80...
  • Wrench emits that can be heard and felt when the preset value is...
  • High-contrast dual-range scale is easy to read, even in low light
  • Reversible ratchet head drives in both directions and measures torque...
  • Durable all-steel construction has no plastic parts to break or wear...
  • Ships pre-calibrated to +/- 4% accuracy and ready to use

This 3/8 inch drive torque wrench will easily snap-on to any piece of equipment you need to adjust. It has a high contract dual-range scale and a 24 tooth ratchet that’s reversible. There is a micrometer on the handle which you can use to adjust the torque. Its head moves in both counter-clockwise and clockwise directions and will measure in a clockwise direction. Once you reach the desired torque level, this torque wrench will give a loud click. It uses Nm and Ft.-lbs. measurements.

Pros

  • The torque wrench from the TEKTON brand comes already set at a +/-4% accuracy. This means you can start to work with it immediately without having to adjust.
  • It comes with a storage case to help protect it from any damage.
  • It comes with a torque conversion chart to help with any measurements/conversions.
  • Its measurement scale is easy to read, so you don’t have to worry about not being able to see the scale while using the tool.

Cons

  • It does tend to break easily, so you might end up having to buy another one.

Best 1/4 Inch Torque Wrench

CDI 1501MRMH 1/4-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench 150-Pound...
  • The metal handle series offers the user a rugged
  • Industrial strength torque wrench able to withstand the rigors of...
  • It has a non-slip grip

I mentioned in the beginning of this article how the 1/4-inch pound torque wrench is the most underused but most important torque wrench in your tool arsenal and CDI 1501 makes a great addition to your tool set. Small bolts that hold things like oil pans, valve cover gaskets and water pumps are extremely temperamental and sensitive to over torquing. You will waste hours laying on your back trying to extract that broken bolt or repairing a stripped hole you caused from over tightening.

And that’s why you should get a very accurate 1/4-inch torque wrench to avoid those headaches. The CDI as we’ve discussed earlier makes amazing torque wrenches. Torque wrenches so good they make them for Snap On to put their names on, and you know Snap On makes some of the best hand tools. I’ve had this CDI torque wrench for over 3 years now without a single issue, and it gets used almost daily.

The CDI 1501 torque wrench comes with a torque range of 20 to 150-inch pounds which is a perfect range for torquing those smaller bolts. You still get the same features as its big brother. The spring loaded pull down ring to adjust the torque setting. The quick release button makes taking sockets off a breeze.  The torque wrench calibration is spot on from .1 to 1.2%.

If you are shopping for a quality, accurate, USA manufactured torque wrench the CDI inch pound torque wrench 1501 is the perfect buy.

Best Digital Torque Wrench

DEWALT 20V MAX XR Impact Wrench Kit, Brushless, High Torque,...
  • Brushless motor for superior performance
  • Heavy duty impact mechanism with max torque 700 feet/ pounds;...
  • 3 speed selector switch for control
  • LED work light
  • Battery fuel gauge

If you are looking for an electric torque wrench, then DEWALt DCF899P1 MAX XR is said to be one of the best electric torque wrench available on the market for you to purchase. It comes packaged with the impact wrench, charge, carrier bag, and two 20V Lithium-Ion batteries for MAX XR5.0h.

It is equipped with a heavy-duty impact mechanism which boasts of a maximum torque at 700 ft-lbs with a maximum breakaway torque at 1200 ft-lbs. It has a bright LED which works with a 20-second delay in case of low light situations. You purchase it and you will have a 3-speed selector so that you can select the speed for a specific application that is a specific drive or torque control. It is ergonomic meaning, you will have a good grip when handling it.

Pros

  • Increased visibility provided by the LED light with 20 seconds delay
  • It comes with a 3-year warranty
  • Being compact makes it the right design especially when it comes to storage
  • Creates 2400 impacts per minute
  • Have 3 speeds control to select from
  • Has an LCD

Cons

  • Tough to control the LCD
  • Switch not up to standards

What About Digital Torque Adapters?

ACDelco ARM602-4 1/2” Digital Torque Adapter (4-147.6...
  • Static torque measurement
  • Standard functions: torque setting, measurement setting, mode setting
  • Operation in both clockwise and counter-clockwise directions
  • LCD display shows N-m (or kg-cm, in-lb, ft-lb) measurements
  • Audible torque confirmation by means of buzzer

Digital torque adapters are another fairly inexpensive way to measure torque on a fastener. ACDelco Digital Torque Adapters are small devices that attach between your ratchet and your socket. They are able to measure both clockwise and counter-clockwise torque of the fastener being tightened or loosened with your regular ratchet.

ACDelco digital torque adapters come in a 3/8 drive adapter (ARM602-3) that has a functional range of 3-59 ft-lbs and a 1/2 version (ARM602-4) with a range of 4-147.6 ft-lbs. The torque adapter can be pretty convenient and is very easy to use. It has an LCD that shows torque goal which you select by pressing the up or bottom buttons on the torque adapter. When the torque is reached the tool will provide an audible confirmation with a buzzer.

This wrench comes pre-calibrated to an accuracy of within 4% which allows you to eliminate guesswork and work with confidence. There’s a common tendency to over-tighten bolts and other fasteners, but with this tool, you’ll never have to worry about damaging threads and having to replace bolts because of over-tightening.

It lets you tighten all fasteners to the exact torque specifications of the vehicle or equipment’s manufacturer. This ensures that your parts are not only being properly and safely secured but also helps to avoid damage that can cause them to become loose or fail over time.

This torque wrench has a simple design that makes it easy to use. The ratcheting head allows you to drive fasteners in both clockwise and anti-clockwise directions. To measure torque, you simply need to set the torque value (in Newton-meters or foot-pounds) on the tool’s handle scale, and when the value is reached, you’ll hear and feel a clicking sound which alerts you to stop applying pressure.

We’ve put this wrench at the top of our list for a reason, and if you’re searching for the best torque wrench on the market, this is one you definitely need to check out.

Best Torque Wrenches Buyer Guide

A torque wrench is a tool that must be in every mechanic’s tool set. These kinds of wrenches can give you the ability to tighten bolds and nuts to the recommended feet per pounds settings without worrying about over-tightening and possibly stripping of the nut, or worse, damage your engine.

What is a Torque

In simple terms, torque refers to tightening force. Safety critical automotive parts always have certain manufacturer’s torque settings stating the amount of torque that’s needed for their fasteners.

Utilizing too much force can result in damage to the fastener or damage to the mating parts. Similarly to that, use too little torque implies giving a bolt the opportunity to back out or shear off when the bolted joints are loaded, yielding in a potentially dangerous failure.

While this might not be a huge problem for something insignificant like a glove box latch, it’s most surely a consideration for safety critical items like suspension and brake components. Because of that, it is really crucial to guarantee that you are using a torque wrench to apply the right amount of torque when the job calls for it.

On the other hand, a torque wrench is a kind of wrench that lets you precisely tighten a fastener to a torque they specify. Normally, you use one wrench and swap out sockets to match your bolt size, similar to how you’d use a ratcheting socket wrench.

These wrenches comes in many different versions, nonetheless those versions used in the automotive industry are the most common ones.

Why Torque Wrenches Are Crucial

When you purchase a torque wrench, you are purchasing an accurate tool that’s going to measure the applied tension/load/force on a threaded fastener. The tools is going to aid you achieve the recommended fastening torque efficiently and precisely without needing plenty of elbow grease.

When your fastener is correctly torqued, it can stay tight no matter how much vibration is present while the vehicle is in operation. If the bolts and nuts are improperly torqued, that could present disaster for you as well as your vehicle.

How Do They Work

Most torque wrenches you find today are going to have a ratchet mechanism that’s going to let you keep the wrench on the bolt or nut once it reached the end of the rotation.

In other words, you don’t need to take the wrench off the bolt in order to do another rotation. All you need to do is just turn the torque wrench in the opposite direction and start all over again.

Its ratcheting mechanism utilizes gears inside the head of the torque wrench. These gears lets the handle to rotate backward while the fastener you are working with stays still and precludes it from unloosening. Due to this fact, you can work much faster in tight spaces.

If you’re working on vehicles a lot and you want to speed up the process of loosening or tightening bolts, then a torque wrench is needed tool that you are going to have in your tool box.

Types of Torque Wrenches

Not only do these tools come with different ranges and features, but torque wrenches come in different types and styles. Each of thesetypes and styles serve a specific purpose. Below are five types of torque wrenches you can purchase.

Programmable Electronic Torque-Angle Wrench

This type of torque wrench is electronic and allows you to program it to the specific torque level that you need. It is similar to the electronic torque wrench as it uses a digital screen and also collect memory from previous usages. It also uses special sensor to help make sure that the angles and torque level needed are used correctly. This sensor is also known as an “electronic gyroscope”. You can program the torque level into the torque wrench and also lets you move it in many angles. Because you can program it digitally, you can save the memory, which will let you look back on the torque levels and angles you used once you’re done with using it. This helps with using the torque wrench in hard to reach places.

Click Wrench

This type of torque wrench is great for using on vehicles. For instance, if you need to tighten or remove spark plugs, a click wrench would be a good choice for you. One reason why it’s great for vehicle use because you don’t have to see the torque level to know when it’s been reached. So, if you’re under a car with it, you just have to wait for the clicking sound. A click wrench lets you use a clutch to secure it onto an object. It lets you adjust it so that you don’t over torque the object, which can lead to damage. Usually once you’re done using a click wrench you need to reset it back to the lowest setting.

Plumber Wrench

When doing couplings on soil pipes, this is the torque to use. It has a T-shaped handle which is much similar to what the ratchet wrench has. To reach the target torque level, it is pre-calibrated to slip.

Hydraulic Torque Wrench

A hydraulic torque wrench is best to use with large objects. These are usually used with heavy duty machines and extremely large nuts and bolts. These hydraulic torque wrenches are also known for being great with providing the correct accuracy for a project. A hydraulic torque wrench is ideal for construction work or if you work with large and heavy machines.

Deflecting Beam Wrench

Instead of a coil spring, a torque is applied to a deflecting beam. It provides high safety and accuracy, especially for the high level of torque pressure. When you reach the target level, you will know because it has an inbuilt audible click that will be produced.

Beam Wrench

This torque wrench has a beam indictor on it, which kind of looks like thermometer. The beam indicator will show you the current torque level. However, you have to pay attention to the levels as there is not a sound to indicate once the right torque level has been reached. It also tends to be a little heavy. This is good for if you don’t plan to use a torque wrench and only need one occasionally. They also are a cheaper torque wrench option compared to other torque wrenches, so if you are on a budget beam wrenches are usually the best choice.

Electronic Torque Wrench

An electronic torque wrench is similar to a click wrench except it has a few differences. One notable difference is the sound. Instead of a clicking sound to indicate you’ve reached the desired torque level, it makes a beeping one. Because it’s digital, it has a digital display and also can keep memory. The display is often LED, which means it will be easy for you to read. Also, because it keeps memory, it can review previous torque levels. You can save this memory on a memory card. However, keep in mind that these are often expensive.

Torque Wrench Designs

Torque wrenches are designed for different applications for both industrial and automotive use. Capacity and designs range from small, medium, and large depending on usage.

The small range model design for a torque wrench is ¼ inch or 3/8 inch. To be precise somewhere between 30 to 200 in. lbs or 4 – 22 Newton meters. It is the best design for day to day use because it has a low torque application and in most cases, you will find them in use for transmission services.

This are torque wrench of low ranges, which are normally referred to as the medium design, ranges between 20 or 30 ft lbs or in Newton meters, 17 or 34 Nm. These types have a high torque wrench of about 332 Nm which is approximately 250 ft. lbs. They come with a ½ square drive adaptor. If you are having reconditioning or engine rebuilding, then these are the torque wrench to use.

Even up the ladder are the largest capacity torque wrench designs that range up to 1320 Newton-meters which is roughly 1000 ft. lbs that come with a ¾ drive and useful when handling applications for industrial use such as heavy plant maintenance, truck and machinery and also for heavy automotive.

How To Use A Torque Wrench?

Handling a torque wrench calls for a firm, steady hand. Always follow the steps in any sequence of tightening things like cylinder head bolts, wheel nuts, internal engine parts, transmission parts, and so on. This helps to ensure proper operation and prevent damage to your tool.

Use the tips listed below to help you get the most out of your torque wrench, and keep it working properly for a long time to come.

  • To ensure accurate reading when using the tool, hold it at the marked loading point and apply pressure from there. This torque wrench comes already calibrated for the pressure that will be exerted on it from your hands at that point, at that set angle.
  • Your torque wrench has a set range of force that it can safely handle, and you should avoid going above 25% of the maximum torque as this will place a lot of strain on your tool’s inner working mechanisms, lessening its lifespan.
  • When using your click torque wrench, build up pressure steadily and smoothly until you hear that click.
  • Make sure that you always unwind the torque wrench when you’re finished using it to reset the inner mechanism which is essentially just a big spring. If you store it unwound, it releases the pressure on the spring, which helps to give it a longer lifespan.
  • Last, but definitely not least, never use your torque wrench to undo bolts – only to tighten them. This is because if the bolt you’re trying to undo is too tight, you may accidentally apply more torque force than your wrench can handle safely.

Remember to store your torque wrench in its protective case when not in use, and get it calibrated at least once a year so it can stay within tolerances.

How Much You Must Spend on A Torque Wrench

Before you decide on the budget factor, you must remember that with a lower price, there could be a trade-off. Longevity is a priority, particularly if you don’t necessarily need to use the torque wrench frequently.

For consumers that work very frequently or even on a daily basis on their cars, a high-quality torque wrench with extra features would be the ideal choice. This way, users can get plenty of use out of it and really be able to take complete advantage of the benefits instead of having it sitting in a tool box for a number of years.

You must also consider how much time you can save with the extra features of a torque wrench. If utilizing one can speed up your work, then it could pay for itself in hours over the course of a few years or possible even a few weeks depending on how much you’re going to use the torque wrench.

What is Accuracy Tolerance

This factor is the system for measurement that’s used to compare the precision of various torque wrenches.

With an accuracy tolerance rating, you need to plus and minus percentage that would look like this: +/- 4%. Meaning, the reading compared to the actual torque is give or take 4$ short of perfect precision. Anything below or at 4% ought to be fine for typical use. On the other hand, some premium digital torque wrenches have an accuracy tolerance of as little as less than 1%.

Conclusion

From the above, hope you can now pick the torque wrench that will meet your specific needs. Make sure you consider the various explanations I have given above to avoid some of the dishonest companys who are making bad quality products and selling them at a affordable cost that is not even worth your little coins. Go for a product that is quality and good value for your cash. Better to spend a little more but get something that is going to last you for some time.

Don’t forget to keep your focus high when you are using the products as you can be harmed due to lack of concentration. Remember you are dealing with a tool which is dangerous and causes an accident when not used properly. Your safety comes first before anything else. It is critical to correctly tension the lug nuts and bolts of automotive components and that is why you have to get the best out of the many in the market. Enjoy your wrenching with the right tool.