If you are in the market for a torque wrench you are probably well aware of the fact that the shopping process has the potential to get pretty expensive. Today our goal is to teach you that that doesn’t need to be the case. The topic on the docket is budget torque wrenches: a field that can be tough to navigate if you don’t have all of the information you need.
After all, you don’t want to get a lemon, right? And isn’t the budget market filled with lemons? Not if you know where to look. That’s where we come into play.
Today, we have for you a list of five of the best budget buys out there. Sit back, relax, and enjoy your budget torque wrench reviews!
|Model||Price||Max. Torque||Editor Rating|
|Tekton 2435||250 ft-lbs||4.8/5|
|Performance Tool W3001C|
Best for the Money
|Tacklife 3/8”||80 ft-lbs||4.3/5|
|J&R Quality Tools Adjustable||16 ft-lbs||4.0/5|
Coming in first and in our top pick slot, we have the Tekton 24340—a high performing option that may be the perfect addition to many shopper’s tool bags.
Utility is the name of the game with this option. The Tekton features a reversible ratchet head that drives in both directions, a high-contrast dual-range scale that is easy to read, even in conditions where lighting is limited, and a durable all-steel construction has no plastic parts that you have to worry about wearing out.
All and all it really is a pretty simple wrench, but then wrenches also just really don’t have to be complicated.
The biggest problem that we were able to detect is that the metal of the wrench is prone to taking cosmetic nicks and dents.
This is not a problem that harms the overall function of the wrench but it is kind of a bummer for the user that likes to keep their tools looking really nice.
In second, another Tekton wrench. This option benefits from many of the same features that we appreciated in the last Tekton that we looked at, like the all-metal construction, the reversible ratchet head, and the visible dual range scale.
It is undoubtedly an excellent wrench but simply falls short of our top slot, pick for being a little it lower tier without providing much in way of savings.
In other words, you can get similar but slightly better quality without spending a lot more money if you decide to go with the first Tekton wrench. Still, if components of this tool interest you, it remains a viable option.
In third, and in our best for the money slot, we have the Performance Tool W3001C. The first thing that most people are probably going to notice is the price. By a pretty wide margin, the W3001C is the most affordable option on this list, making it a great choice for anyone looking to save some money.
The unit is mostly durable (we will talk about the implied asterisk to that statement in a moment) and most importantly, it is just very capable of making your work easy and effortless.
These things said, there is a reason that this unit didn’t find itself in our top two. There are a couple of problems. For one thing, this option just isn’t as well calibrated as some of the other options on this list, which could hinder the accuracy of your work.
The grip is also fairly flimsy which may affect the lifespan of the tool. These things aside it is a good buying opportunity for anyone looking for a deal.
In our second to last slot we have the Tacklife, an acceptable though flawed option that may be a good pick for shoppers trying to stick to a strict budget.
At a glance, this actually looks like a really excellent wrench. The price is definitely right, and it boasts a lot of the components that we look for: an all-metal built, a reversible ratchet head, and the promise of precise calibration.
The problem is that it also has a lot of performance defects that it needs to work out. The wrench is very unreliable for torque levels exceeding 40 lbs. The adapters are very flimsy and prone to malfunctioning or breaking, the metal scratches, and chips easily.
In short, it just doesn’t perform to the standards of a professional environment. For more casual use it should be fine but more serious shoppers will be better served looking somewhere else.
Last, we have the J&R Quality Tools. While this option will of course function as a torque wrench, there are unfortunately a lot of cons that keep it at the bottom of our list.
There are a few problems here. For one thing, there is a durability problem. The metal of the unit shows signs of use very prominently, meaning it’s not going to look too pretty after even just a few weeks of short use.
It also just requires a lot more effort to use than the other options on this list. The short of it is this: if you want a quality wrench that is going to make work quick and easy, keep looking because this isn’t it.
On the other hand, if your goal is simply not to spend a lot of money, this will be a passable option, though most users will be much better off with our best for the money pick.
Now that you know what is out there in the world of torque wrenches, here are a few considerations that will help you to make your ultimate buying decision a little bit easier.
Most torque wrenches will, of course, be made mostly of metal. However, you will often encounter wrenches with various degrees of plastic incorporation as well.
A little bit of plastic is fine, but the more present this material is in the wrench, the less durable it is ultimately going to be.
Torque wrenches are not necessarily known for being extremely heavy, but if you are going to be working for extended periods of time you will probably find that a unit that trends lighter is probably going to be more comfortable.
Determining the ideal weight of a wrench is a simple as picking it up and seeing how it feels in your hands or checking the unit weight online if you are e-shopping.
Are you looking for something that will be able to get into tight spaces? If so you are definitely going to want to get a compact wrench.
On the other hand, if your wrench is just going to be for general use you will be able to get away with a little more bulk.
Well, there you have it. You have read the reviews of budget torque wrenches, and now you have a decision to make on your hands. Which of these options are you going to want to take home?
If quality is your top concern and you are looking for the very best of the best, then we recommend the Tekton 24340. It provides a level of quality and features that you just aren’t going to be able to find anywhere else.
On the other hand, if budget is your first concern then there is no beating the Performance Tool, an excellent affordable option for shoppers looking to be kind to their budget.
Of course, at the end of the day, we aren’t trying to tell you how you should spend your money. Our only goal is to help make your buying decision a little bit easier!
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Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!