The 6 Best Inch Pound Torque Wrenches – Reviews 2018
How technology has advanced! Nowadays you don’t need to just turn a wrench and hope that you have chosen the right degree of tightness. You can choose in advance and pre-set the exact pressure that your bolt will need in order to turn.
This is quite important for safety in many situations such as when applying bolts to a car.
There is a vast array of such wrenches from which to choose. They work to different specifications and sometimes in quite different ways. Let’s have a look at some of the best inch pound torque wrenches on the market to help you choose the one that is right for you.
Table Of Contents
- Top Picks Of Best Inch Pound Torque Wrenches 2018 Review
- 1. TEKTON 24335 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
- 2. EPAuto 1/4-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
- 3. Performance Tool M195 0-80 in/lb & 0-7 Newton-meter Beam Style Torque Wrench
- 4. TEKTON 24340 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
- 5. Tacklife DIN Calibrated 1/2" Torque Wrench
- 6. Capri Tools 31200 20-150 Inch Pound Industrial Torque Wrench
- How to choose the Perfect inch pound torque wrenches
- Final Note
Top Picks Of Best Inch Pound Torque Wrenches 2018 Review
1. TEKTON 24335 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
The first thing to consider is the torque resistance you will need. In the case of this wrench, you will have 10-150 foot-pounds. In other words, you can set your wrench to need anything between 10 and 150 pounds to move your bolt one foot around a radius of one foot.
The ratchet head of this model turns in both directions but only measures when turning in the clockwise direction.
Torque can be measured either in inch/foot pound or in Newton Meters. A nice feature of the Tekton 24335 is that it displays both on a high contrast scale that is very easy to read.
2. EPAuto 1/4-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
The EP Auto caters for a completely different range of torque, 20 to 200 pounds. It is made from quality materials too, with a steel alloy that’s has been hardened and covered with chrome vanadium.
In other respects, it is fairly similar in design to the Tekton. Again, the ratchet moves in both directions but also only measures in a clockwise direction.
It too, boasts a high contrast dual range scale giving readings in both inch pounds and newton meters. Another nice feature is the knurled handle that provides a good grip. This torque wrench comes in a strong plastic storage case.
3. Performance Tool M195 0-80 in/lb & 0-7 Newton-meter Beam Style Torque Wrench
The Performance Tool covers a 0-80 inch pound range although this beam style torque wrench works in a completely different way to the click torque wrenches we have looked at previously.
You do not pre-set the torque. You see live what level you have reached as you tighten your bolt.
Many people feel that this type of deflection beam wrench is both easier to use and more accurate than the conventional type where you ratchet till you here a click when you reach a pre-set level. With this type of wrench measurement is possible in a both clockwise and anti-clockwise direction.
4. TEKTON 24340 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
The Tekton 24340 is like the adult version of the Tekton 24335. It is both bigger and more powerful, making it suitable for larger vehicles such as lorries and trucks. This model can be set to between 25 and 250 ft-pounds.
A longer handle is also provided to offer easy access and maneuverability with those larger vehicles. The handle is 25 inches as opposed to the nearly 18 in handle of the 24335.
Otherwise the two Tektons are fairly similar – same style design and ratchet head that turns in both directions but only measures when turning in the clockwise direction. It has the same high contrast scale that measures in both foot pounds and in newton meters.
5. Tacklife DIN Calibrated 1/2" Torque Wrench
This Tacklife Torque Wrench has a 10 to 150 pound-foot range. Whilst it also wrenches in both directions and has the same type of high contrast dual range scale (foot pounds or newton meters), it does have some extra features.
The first is that it includes a socket reducer and extender so that it can fit every type and size of socket that you might encounter. The complete set comes in a convenient case and includes a warranty card.
The second extra feature is that every single unit that is manufactured is tested and certified to be calibrated to the DIN-ISO-6789 international standard, thereby guaranteeing its accuracy.
6. Capri Tools 31200 20-150 Inch Pound Industrial Torque Wrench
The Capri Tools 31200 has a 20-150 pound range. This model is considerably more expensive than the other wrenches in this review. The extra price is down to the finish of the product.
The scale, still in both inch pounds and newton meters, is actually engraved onto the tool so that it ever fades. The knurled, textured handle makes it easy to hold firmly without the danger of slipping.
As with the Tacklife Wrench described above, all Capri Tools are tested and certified at manufacture. They certify to two standards - ASME B107.300 and ISO 6789. Tests show that accuracy is maintained for 10,000 cycles while a year’s warranty is offered.
How to choose the Perfect inch pound torque wrenches
What is the nature of your needs?
For what torque stress do you need to cater? Are you going to be working on large lorries, on motor cars on industrial equipment? You need to have clear in your mind, from the outset, the sort of job you will be undertaking.
What is the torque stress that you need to be able to handle? This is the first question that you need to ask yourself. It might be that you need more than one tool to be able to cover different ranges. Also think about the size and type of bolts with which you will be working. Would it be useful to have the different attachments (socket extender and reducer) that come with the Tacklife?
Would it be useful to have the leverage of longer handles that is afforded from models such as the Tekton 24340? On what size bolts will you be working? If working on motor vehicles you will mainly need 3/8 of an inch in the 15 to 75 foot pound range or half an inch in the 30 to 250 foot pound range. Most garage mechanics use click-stop ratchet torque wrenches that can be pre-set to the required level.
What style of torque wrench do you prefer?
Will you be working at a workbench or at individual pieces of equipment such as motor vehicles? Many people do prefer the deflected beam type of wrench rather than the click stop pre-set ratchet type.
However, you only have to see a picture of a deflected beam torque wrench to understand that this is only suitable on a workbench setting. You can read the setting exactly as you reach it and you can go back if you overstep the target. Ideally you will have seen and felt a wrench before you buy.
Ordering on the net does not really lend itself to this approach, but you might have the chance to see and feel torque wrenches that friends in the trade have already bought. How easy do you find it to read the calibrations under different light levels?
If you are working at a bench how easy do you find it to use a deflected beam style wrench such as the Performance Tool M195? What is your budget? Can you afford to pay for the extra workmanship that goes into making a torque wrench such as the Capri Tools 31200?
How important is extreme accuracy for the type of work you undertake?
If accuracy is your top priority, then you might consider one of those brands that test and certify to internationally recognized standards. In this case the Tacklife or Capri Tools wrenches that we considered might appeal.
If your work is work-bench related, you might find that the deflected beam style of the Performance Tool M195 gives you the greatest accuracy. This is what some people claim though others claim that they are the least accurate. Look at a few You Tube clips on this topic.
Types of Torque Wrenches
There are fundamentally three types of torque wrench, click stop wrenches, electric click stop wrenches with digital display and thirdly deflected beam torque wrenches. The second option of electric click stop wrenches are simply an electronic version of the first type and this article is focussed mainly on the manual click stop wrenches while taking a little look at the less popular deflected beam torque wrenches.
On the click stop torque wrenches, you reset the torque level to which you want to tighten your bolts. Sometimes the torque will be measured in inch pounds (or foot pounds) or in newton metric. Often both systems of measurement will be shown on the tool.
Sometimes only one. Having set the desired torque, you attach the wrench to the bolt you want to tighten. When you have tightened as far as the pre-set level, you will hear a click sound to show you that you must stop ratcheting damage could result to the wrench if you carry on past the click).
This is the type of torque wrench that practically every garage mechanic uses. He sets the torque, ratchets up the bolt and does not even have to look at anything to see if he has reached the desired point. The click says it all. Calibration to +/- 4% seems to be a typical level of accuracy.
With the deflected beam style such as the Performance Tool M195 nothing is pre-set. You see the torque level you have reached as you ratchet and you can ratchet backwards if you ratchet too far.
Because of the long arm that separates the wrenching part from the measuring part, this tool is only really suitable for workshop situations, it is not one to carry around. In the right working environment some people love them. Others hate them. It would be good to try one somewhere before you buy.
Well we hope this article helps you find your way round the best inch pound torque wrench for the money. There is a lot to mull over, but we hope to have put the points to consider into a logical order that lets you make an informed choice when you make your purchase.
We have also highlighted some of the special features of our favorite ones. One final word of advice would be to check out what other people think of these products. When you read the catalogue descriptions, read also the reviews that other purchasers have made. Good shopping!