Every mechanic and vehicle DIY enthusiast knows how essential a torque wrench is when it comes to carrying out maintenance works and repair tasks on vehicles. This is why Naijauto.com has put up this article to help you in choosing the best torque wrench when you are shopping for one. Before we get into the tips that will help you in choosing a torque wrench, let’s briefly talk a bit about the tool itself.
What does a torque wrench do?
To loosen or tighten a bolt or nut, you need a torque wrench. It’s a tool that allows you to accurately apply torque or force that is required for you to loosen or tighten a bolt or nut. It even comes with a gauge that indicates the amount of force or torque you are applying for the task you are carrying out with it. There are various types of torque wrenches, but the most common ones are found at auto repair shops.
A torque wrench is helpful when it comes to car repair
Tips when buying a torque wrench tool
To ascertain the quality of the torque wrench you are about to buy, there are some features we think you should look out for. These 5 helpful buying tips we have discussed below will help you in making the right choice.
1. Confirm the accuracy
Due to the fact that precision is needed in most of the tasks that a torque wrench will be used for, it is highly essential that you check the accuracy of each one you pick.
You might find varying accuracy degrees in different wrenches you pick out but a good torque wrench should feature less than a ± 5% accuracy in the foot-pounds setting of such wrench. A certificate of calibration normally comes with the tool if you are buying from a renowned brand, this can also help you to determine the accuracy of the ones you pick.
A good torque wrench has less than a ± 5% accuracy in the foot-pounds setting
2. Check the make materials
We can’t deny that the make materials used also determines the quality of this torque wrench tool. You will find a high number of plastic materials being used in cheap torque wrenches. You don’t really need anyone to tell you that these plastic-bodied wrenches wouldn’t last long even though they could work fine throughout their short life-span.
And to even add to this point, the quality of the materials used will also affect the accuracy and calibration of the torque wrench to some extent. We strongly recommend you choose the ones of pure metallic make. They have proven to be more durable and stable over the years.
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3. Check the ratcheting
This feature is very much connected to the convenience of the tool for the person that will use it. Tightening with both left-hand and right-hand threads is possible with bi-directional (both anti-clockwise and clockwise) ratcheting. So, keep in mind that the beam-type wrenches might not offer you this advantage, but the electric and click-type torque wrenches offer this bi-directional feature.
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4. How’s the grip
Most of the time, while using the torque wrench tool, your hands will be covered with fluid and grease so, you must take note of the torque wrench’s grip. A good grip matters a lot when choosing a torque wrench to buy. If the torque wrench feels too slippery within your grip while using it, you will experience difficulties in getting your work done with such a tool.
5. Be practical in your consideration
It can be enticing to you sometimes when you see some fancy torque wrenches especially the ones with Led readouts and you might start getting tempted to buy those ones. We are telling you; Don’t fall for it!
We are not against or condemning digital or Led readout torque wrenches at all, rather we are only advising you to be more practical and focus on which one would serve and suit you best, and which is affordable at the same time. We recommend that you go for a sturdy metal torque wrench with good accuracy that costs you less to buy.
You may visit spare parts markets but had better go for an OEM
Torque wrench prices can be as low as ₦3,600 ($10) and as high in price as ₦720,000 ($2,000). Nonetheless, we would just advise that you stay away from the overly pricey ones and the extremely cheap or cheapest ones. Use all of the tips we have discussed above in picking a good one for yourself that is moderately priced and will serve you best. If you maintain the tool well enough, it can serve you for many years.