The 5 Best Cheap Torque Wrenches – Reviews 2018

Torque wrenches can range in price from the ridiculous to the reasonable. If you own a garage or a workshop then you would expect to pay the extra dollars for a hard wearing, heavy duty torque wrench, that you can use day in and day out.

 For those of us that are only going to use it at weekends on restoring a car or helping a neighbor then we don’t want to pay over the odds. I’ve had a look at some of the best cheap torque wrenches that are available now. Nothing quite beats buying yourself a new piece for your toolbox.

Comparison Chart

5 Best Cheap Torque Wrenches 2018 Review

1. Performance Tool W3001C, 1/2 in Drive Beam Style Torque Wrench 0-150 ft/lb

The W3001C is manufactured by Performance tools and is a torque wrench in the beam style instead of the almost customary click and go and will give readings up to 150 ft./lb.

The handle is in a ball style ensuring you can maintain optimum grip and keep the force where you need it.

Performance Tool Drive Beam Style Torque Wrench

Check More Photos & Price at: amazon.com

The beam style readings are considered more accurate than when you compare them to a click style wrench, and you will find that the beam style will give you more accuracy in its readings over the course of its life, as it does not wear or tire like click style wrenches.

2. EPAuto 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench, 25 ~ 250 ft./lb., 33.9 ~ 338.9 N/m

The ratchet head on this wrench is reversible meaning that you can have drive in either direction although it is only possible to measure what torque you have while using it in the clockwise motion.

It arrives in its own handy and durable carry case that is made from plastic, keeping it clean, while being easier to store at home.

EPAuto 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench

Check More Photos & Price at: amazon.com

The wrench itself has a 25 inch long knurled handle for an easy grip while it measures in ft./lb. and N/m, with the click sound telling you when you have reached your optimum torque. EPAuto state that the readings are accurate to +/- 4% and will work up to 250 ft./lb.

3. TEKTON 24335 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench

Another click style torque wrench, this time from Tekton. The white writing inlayed into the black handle, makes it simple to see what readings you are entering even when the light is minimal.

Similar to the EPAuto wrench, this model will give you a great drive in both directions but will only measure the torque you have pre-set while being rotated clockwise.

TEKTON 24335 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench

Check More Photos & Price at: amazon.com

The settings are also in Newton meters and foot pounds with it’s top load being 150 ft.-lb. The handle on this wrench comes in at 18.5 inches and with the entire product being made from durable steel, there is less chance of any failures occurring as there are no small plastic parts that could break off during use.

4. Pittsburgh Pro Reversible Click Type Torque Wrench

This great set of 3 different size torque wrenches come in the most popular usage sizes. They are made from long wearing, heavy duty steel with a maximum range on the largest wrench being 300 ft./lbs.

All 3 come in their own well built yet compact, storage cases so you can store them without worrying that you might upset the calibration.

Pittsburgh Pro Reversible Click Type Torque Wrench

Check More Photos & Price at: amazon.com

The click style design of these torque wrenches makes it easy to know when you have reached the desired pressure. Again, they can be used as a normal wrench in both directions while only telling you thee torque pressure in the clockwise direction.

5. GearWrench 2957D Beam Torque Wrench (0-150 Feet/Pounds

The second beam style wrench in our review is the all American Gearwrench. This 20 inch long handle is made to fit in your palm so give added accuracy and control while measuring in ft./lbs. and N/m with a handy pointer to tell you your pressure.

GearWrench 2957D Beam Torque Wrench

Check More Photos & Price at: amazon.com

They have given the product a finish in a satin style so that it is easier to read while reducing any glare so that you can always see what you are doing.

Like previous products we have looked at, the maximum load that you can put the wrench under is 150 foot pounds, making it more than suitable for any jobs you will need it for in the home.

Quick Tips On Buying Cheap Torque Wrenches

All the bolts on your car, motorcycle, SUV or truck has a correct torque setting. Too loose and the fastener might free themselves due to vibration, too tight and the bolt might break.

Some bolts are well known for needing a correct torque, like engine head bolts. 

Many people will say that they don't need one and can tighten bolts by feel, you certainly do get a feel over time but using a torque wrench is a great way to ensure and develop that feel safely over time.

Sizes

They come in standard socket sizes (e.g. 1/4", 3/8", 1/2" etc.), sockets are usually not included unless you purchase them as a whole kit, but if you already have the sockets the wrench on its own is a more cost-effective way to purchase. 

They also come in different lengths, the ones reviews here are standard but if you need a torque wrench for heavy machinery you can purchase longer lengths up to 1m+.

It might be that a single torque wrench can fulfil all of the needs or maybe a pair of wrenches are a better idea, such as a 3/8" drive for most fasteners and a 1/4" drive for smaller ones.

Types

When looking for Best Cheap Torque Wrenches available you will need to decide on which type to buy.

Here we have reviewed two different types, “The Click” and “The Beam”

The click is designed so you preset a value into the handle, and as you tighten your bolt it will make a click noise when the correct torque is achieved. 

Do not keep tightening when you hear the click as this will overtighten the bolt.

The Beam has a display next to the handle, as you tighten your bolt a pointer will move across the display and when it reads the required torque you can stop.

There is a lot of conflicting information about which is best, the click is by far the easiest to use but the beam appears to be slightly more accurate.

Please ensue that when you've finished using the torque wrench you reset it back to ) to ensure the configuration isn’t altered for future use.

Range and accuracy

All torque wrench has a usable range (e.g. 0 to 150 ft-lb), and often a stated accuracy, (e.g. +/_4%).

If you are working primarily on one vehicle, have a read through your service manual and see what the torque values are, and also which torque measurement is used.

If you buy a torque wrench that only displays in ft-lb and your service manual only uses N/m, you'll have to work out and do a conversion each time you want to use it. 

Also make sure the usable range is compatible for your vehicle as some have a higher range than others.

Construction

You also need to take into consideration what the torque wrench is made from, it is recommended to look for an all steel construction as this usually lasts longer than other types of material, but the choice is yours with other compatible metals now being available.

Handle Grip

if you want to use a torque wrench for an extended period of time, you should look carefully at the handle selection.

It should be soft and comfortable. 

Lots of the recognized brands offers torque wrenches with ergonomic grip handles for comfort.

Ratcheting / Reversible

A torque wrench that can work both clockwise and counter clockwise is known as bi-directional.

If you pick a torque wrench with ratcheting or reversible features than both left and right-handed people can still use it effectively.

Scale Visibility: Whether it’s a mechanical twist handle setting like the click ones shown above, or a printed scale like the beam systems, pick one that you can read easily.

Guarantee: Several of the big-name manufacturers now offer lifetime guarantees with their tools.

Final Note

I hope that the information and reviews I have shared with you today will enable you to make an educated choice from the best cheap torque wrenches available to you

Remember some lower quality manufacturers are making inferior tools, but a cheap price doesn’t mean you need to settle for a cheap product, they will not give the accuracy you require and will break with very little use. You can get great quality for a cheap price.

Always stay focused on what you’re doing when using these tools, loss of concentration can affect the safety of your vehicle, and yours and your family’s safety is what matters most.

Dennis P. Baughman
 

Dennis P. Baughman is the Editor of UnbeatenRolling. His disabilities couldn't stop him to be self driven person. He started this blog to share his personal knowledge about all kinds of wheelchairs and different tips and advice about chairs.

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