An impact wrench is a valuable tool that professionals in a number of different industries, including the automotive, the construction and the metal fabrication industries find useful. It’s also extremely useful to DIY enthusiasts and driveway mechanics who like to take a hands-on approach to their work and don’t mind getting a little grease on their hands. Of course, before an individual can get down to work, they have to find the best impact wrench available. And that’s where I believe I come in. I’ve gathered together the tools that I feel are the best impact wrench models, and I feel pretty good about them. Hopefully, this list will serve both professionals, and amateurs alike in their search for the perfect tool.
10. Dewalt DC820B 1/2-Inch 18-Volt Cordless Bare Tool
Although this 1/2-inch cordless wrench is sold as a bare tool, which simply means that it doesn’t come with a battery, it’s still good enough to be considered one of the better models available. Its motor has replaceable brushes that allow it to be serviced to extend its service life, and has an anti-slip grip that’s textured so it’s easier to hold on to yet remains comfortable. This tool delivers 1,740 inch-pounds of torque, and has two different speeds: 0 to 2,400 RPM and 0 to 2,700 RPM. And since it has a compact design, it’s not only easy to hold but can be used in tight work areas.
9. PowRyte 1/2-Inch Twin Hammer
Designed to deliver true power when the user demands it, this air wrench has a twin hammer design that delivers up to 600 foot-pounds of max torque, and a speed of up to 8,000 RPM at 90 PSI. With a 1/4-18NPT air inlet valve, this tool consumes approximately 4 cubic feet of air per minute but also has a built-in silencer that helps to limit the noise level it produces. It’s adjustable and has a full-power reverse that makes it easier to accomplish a lot of different jobs. Which makes it ideal for a number of different tasks include repairing brakes, rotating tires or tightening down bolts.
8. Hammerhead 1/2-Inch HDIW075
Featuring a 1/2-inch square drive with friction ring and delivering up to 240 foot-pounds of torque and up to 2,700 BPM, this tool is useful for any number of different types of projects. Its 7.5-Amp motor has two speeds: 0 to 2,200 and 0 to 2,700 BPM, has a metal gearbox that adds extra durability and has a forward/reverse rocker switch which has a two-finger operation. This tool is an easy-to-use model that can be used by both professionals and amateurs alike and has a design that should give the user years of service.
7. AC Delco ANI405 1/2-inch Heavy-Duty Twin Hammer
This twin hammer wrench is designed to take on some of the toughest jobs and help the user complete them easily and efficiently. It’s designed with an aluminum alloy housing that’s designed to withstand the test of time and to hold up to frequent use in a rugged environment. This tool can deliver up to 500 foot-pounds of torque, which is enough force to bust out just about any nut, and it has a built-in forward/reverse for easy switching. Also equipped with a three-speed power regulator, this tool allows the user to get the perfect amount of tension on their lugs nuts.
6. Campbell Hausfeld 1/2-Inch TL140200AV
This impact driver has a number of features which make it useful both in professional shops and in home garages. It has a three-speed power regulator that allows users to get the right amount of tension on their lug nuts every single time they use this tool, and it has a twin-hammer mechanism that delivers up to 550 foot-pounds of torque. That’s more than enough power to remove lug nuts for changing tires, or for using for brake repair. This pneumatic wrench needs to be paired with a compatible air compressor to work, but if it is, then it will deliver the power needed for just about any job.
5. Dewalt 20-Volt MAX Lithium DCF880HM2
This wrench kit comes with a powerful wrench and a number of accessories that go with it. The 1/2-inch wrench is lightweight, cordless and has three LED lights that are equipped with a 20-second delay that allows users to have the light they need where they need it. It has a hog ring anvil that makes it easier to change sockets, an anti-slip comfort grip and is powered by an XR Li-Ion battery. This kit comes with the wrench, two batteries and a charger that makes it a useful tool for just about anyone who needs to get their work done with speed and power.
4. Ingersoll Rand Super-Duty 1/2-Inch 231C
This super-duty wrench isn’t built for the casual hobbyist but is built for those individuals who need a heavy-duty tool that produces a lot of power. This model has a twin-hammer design that can deliver upwards of 600 foot-pounds, which is more than enough power to blast off just about any nut around, and it also has an adjustable power regulator that offers variable torque output. This tool’s 2-piece construction is simple to maintain, and it is shipped fully lubricated and ready to be used right out of the box. It’s a pneumatic tool with real power.
3. Milwaukee Fuel 2763-22 M18
This tool is quite possibly one of the more powerful wrenches currently available on the market today and is certainly one of the most powerful cordless models. It delivers up to 700 foot-pounds of fastening torque, and up to 1,100 foot-pounds of nut-busting torque. All in a tool that delivers twice the run-time of comparable cordless tools. This 1/2-inch model has an anvil with friction ring for faster socket changes, has an easy-to-maintain brushless motor and is powered by a Red Lithium XC 4.0 battery pack. All of which makes it useful for handling amateur and professional tasks.
2. Aircat 1150 1/2-Inch
This pneumatic tool not only looks powerful but it can deliver the power necessary to get the job done. It can deliver up to 1,295-foot-pounds of loosening torque and maximum impact torque of 900 foot-pounds, all thanks to its twin hammer design. This 1/2-inch tool can deliver up to 1,400 blows per minute, which makes it one of the more hard-hitting tools available. And although it has all of this power, it also is designed to be quieter than other pneumatic models with a maximum decibel level of 86-decibels. All of these features make this a useful tool in a professional or home garage.
1. Dewalt DCF899HB 20V MAX XR
Equipped with a hog ring anvil and a high-quality brushless motor, this wrench is designed to be powerful and durable. It can deliver up to 700 foot-pounds of torque and has a maximum breakaway torque of 1,200 foot-pounds. It has a three-speed selector switch that allows for drive control, and it has an LED work light that illuminates work areas. And since it has a high-quality design, it can hold up to just about any work. In fact, it’s so well designed that it’s capable of being able to handle a six-foot drop without ill effects happening to this tool. Which makes it a useful tool to keep around the house or the shop.
A Simple Guide To Impact Wrenches
Most service shops and workshops use impact wrenches because of their versatility. They can be used to quickly and effortlessly perform any number of different jobs and can do so without fatiguing the operator’s hands or arms the way that other tools tend to do. Their versatility isn’t just limited to machine shops and garages, however. We feel that anyone, particularly DIY enthusiasts or amateur car mechanics, can get good use out of these wondrous tools.
As great as these tools are, however, it’s not always easy for a person to find the one that suits their needs. Although just about all impact wrenches look the same to most people, there are considerable differences between different models that have to be considered before a person buys one of them. And that’s why we’ve decided to write this guide. We hope this guide will make it easier for everyone to buy the best impact wrench for their needs. With that being said, let’s just jump right into the thick of things and find out what you need to consider before buying a new impact wrench.
As we just stated, not all impact wrenches are the same, so the consumer should take their time and consider the features of any model they’re considering buying. They should then match those features against their needs to sort the good wrenches from the not-so-great ones. Below are a couple of things that should be considered during the buying process.
The amount of torque that a wrench has is probably the most important thing to consider. Although wrenches come with all different torque levels, the consumer should choose one that delivers at least 150 foot-pounds of torque, at the bare minimum.
No-load speed is another important consideration. What no-load speed means is how fast the wrench can turn when it’s not under pressure. Generally speaking, the higher the no-load speed the lower the torque, so it’s important that you balance the two specifications for the best results. As a general rule, however, be sure to get an impact wrench with at least 800 RPMs of no-load speed for best results.
Another important consideration before buying a new impact wrench is the type of motor that’s installed in it. As a general rule, you should choose a wrench that has a brushless motor because it will provide the best performance over other types of motors. Sure, it does raise the price of the wrench a bit, but over the long run, it’s more than worth it because brushless motors last longer than comparable electric motors.
Multi-Speed Or Variable Control
Multi-Speed Control, also known as Variable Speed Control, is a feature that makes impact wrenches a lot easier to use. On models that have this feature, the operator can select a slower speed for some jobs and a higher speed for tougher jobs. This ability to dial in the correct speed settings makes the tool a whole lot easier to use.
Corded Or Cordless Models
Although choosing between corded or cordless impact wrenches is a highly personal decision, the consumer should consider the pros and cons of each type of wrench. For example, corded wrenches never need to be recharged and are always ready to operate at full power. However, on the flip side, the motion and range of the operator are limited by the length of the cord. Cordless impact wrenches, on the other hand, can be used anywhere, but they don’t have as much power as corded models and require their batteries to be frequently recharged. All of those things should be kept in mind before buying a new wrench.
Choose Shape & Socket Size
The last two things to consider are the shape of the impact wrench and the socket sizes it’s capable of handling, and these two things go hand in hand. When it comes to these types of wrenches, consumers have a choice between Inline Impact Wrenches and Pistol-Grip Impact Wrenches. Let’s examine the pros of each type and find out which sockets they tend to use to find out which one is best for your needs.
Inline Impact Wrenches
These wrenches have a slimmer profile, so they’re better at getting into tighter spaces than pistol-grip models. However, they tend to also have less power and a more limited choice of socket sizes. Most inline wrenches (other than Butterfly Wrenches) can only accommodate a socket of 1/4-inch.
Pistol-Grip Impact Wrenches
These wrenches are bulkier to use, but they usually provide good power and are available in several different socket sizes. Some pistol-grip models can accommodate 1/4-inch, 3/8-inch, 1/2-inch, 3/4-inch, 1-inch, or 2-inch sockets. However, you should be advised that most pistol-grip wrenches are heavier and harder to maneuver than inline models, so you may experience more hand fatigue while using them.