10 Best Torque Wrenches of 2022

Find out which torque wrench is best for you, from the basics to the more advanced wrenches. Learn what to look for in a good quality torque wrench.

8 Best Torque Wrenches

There are tons of jobs you come across where you should take the time to torque down bolts properly. Heck, every time you take off your vehicle’s tires you should torque the lug nuts back down to the correct specifications.

While some mechanics and technicians swear they can “feel” when it’s at the right torque spec, there’s only one way to know for sure. And all it takes is one mistake for something to fail.

The stakes are high with a torque wrench, which is why you don’t want to just trust any torque wrench and hope it’s doing the job correctly. That’s why we took the time to highlight ten of the best torque wrenches on the market today.

Not only that, but we came up with a comprehensive buyer’s guide after the reviews so you know exactly what you’re looking at and can get the perfect torque wrench for whatever job you’re trying to complete.

Disclaimer – This article may contain affiliate links, this means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for qualifying purchases.

Best Overall

Gearwrench Micrometer

GearWrench Micrometer

A high-quality torque wrench with accurate measurement and with a good mix of quality and price.


Best Performance

Cdi Dual Scale Micrometer Torque Wrench

CDI Dual Scale

Extremely high quality and accurate torque wrench made for professionals and workshops.


Best Budget

Pittsburgh Pro Reversible Torque Wrenches

Pittsburgh Pro Reversible

A very affordable torque wrench kit with three different torque wrenches in different sizes.


10 Best Torque Wrenches

1. GearWrench Micrometer – Best Torque Wrench Overall

Gearwrench Micrometer
  • Brand: GearWrench
  • Size: 1/2”
  • Torque Range: 30 to 250 ft/lbs

If you’re looking for a top-notch torque wrench you can rely on year after year, then you really should consider GearWrench’s Micrometer Torque Wrench. GearWrench is one of the top names in the industry, and with products like this torque wrench, it’s not hard to see why.

While it’s not the lowest-priced torque wrench out there, it’s also extremely durable and high-quality. This means you won’t have to worry about replacing the torque wrench in a year or two and you know you’re getting reliable results every time you use it.

Even better, it can handle non-stop use, which is great for mechanics technicians that use a torque wrench as a part of their job.

Another outstanding perk of this torque wrench is the operating range. With a range that starts as low as 30 ft/lbs and goes all the way up to 250 ft/lbs, few jobs are too small or too big for this torque wrench to tackle.

However, it has a larger design that can create problems if you have limited space to work. But while that’s a problem in those environments, it’s an advantage if you need the higher torque values. You won’t find yourself struggling to reach even the highest torque amounts because of the additional leverage the larger size gives you.

Pros

  • Outstanding range
  • Very durable tool
  • Extremely accurate torque wrench
  • Very easy to use

Cons

  • Slightly more expensive
  • Made in China

2. Pittsburgh Pro Reversible Torque Wrenches – Best Budget

Pittsburgh Pro Reversible Torque Wrenches
  • Brand: Pittsburgh Pro
  • Size: ¼”, 3/8”, and ½”
  • Torque Range: 20 to 200 in/lbs, 5 to 80 ft/lbs, and 20 to 150 ft/lbs

If you’re looking for the best deal on the market today for some torque wrenches, you won’t beat this deal. That’s because while it’s priced similarly to many of the other torque wrenches on our list, you’re not getting just one torque wrench.

Instead, you’re getting three, and they all come in different sizes for different jobs. You get a ¼”, 3/8”, and ½” torque wrench, giving you the versatility to tackle any job you can think of. Even better, because there are three different torque wrenches you get a consistent range all the way down to 20-inch pounds and all the way up to 150-foot pounds.

No single torque wrench has that kind of range, so if you have a wide range of jobs you need to complete and a limited budget, you’re not going to find a better choice than this.

The only real drawback to these three torque wrenches is that they’re not the most durable. So, if you’re going to use your torque wrenches quite a bit then you probably don’t want these. But if you just need a torque wrench for the odd job around your house or car, then this is a great DIYer set.

Finally, just because they don’t last the longest doesn’t mean that they don’t give you accurate results. They still come calibrated and do a great job when you need them to.

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • You get three torque wrenches
  • Accurate readings

Cons

  • Not the most durable

3. CDI Dual Scale Micrometer Torque Wrench – Premium Choice

Cdi Dual Scale Micrometer Torque Wrench
  • Brand: CDI
  • Size: 3/8”
  • Torque Range: 10 to 100 ft/lbs

If you want an outstanding torque wrench for professional use and don’t mind spending a little more, then the CDI Dual Scale Micrometer Torque Wrench is the way to go. While it’s a little more expensive for a single torque wrench, it’s durable and reliable enough to last you a lifetime no matter how much you use it.

It also gives you extremely accurate ratings, which is a huge deal for many applications. Add in the versatile torque range that starts as low as 10 lb/ft and goes all the way up to 100 lb/ft, and there aren’t many jobs it can’t handle.

It’s also easy and quick to use, which is extremely important in a professional setting. As another benefit, it has both a ft/lb and an Nm scale, which means less time converting the measurement from one to the other.

Really the only drawback to the CDI Dual Scale Micrometer Torque Wrench is the price, but since it’s durable and sturdy enough to last a lifetime, it’s still a pretty good deal.

Pros

  • Extremely reliable and long-lasting
  • Easy to use
  • Versatile torque range
  • Very accurate

Cons

  • More expensive option

4. Neiko Pro – Best ¾” Drive

Neiko Pro
  • Brand: Neiko Pro
  • Size: ¾”
  • Torque Range: 100 to 700 ft/lbs

Sometimes you need a torque wrench for a really big job. If that sounds like you, then you should consider this ¾” drive Neiko Pro torque wrench. With a ¾” drive and a minimum 100 ft/lb setting it’s not for smaller jobs, but you’re also not going to find another torque wrench on our list that can come anywhere near 700 ft/lbs.

There are a few different jobs that would require a torque wrench of this size, but if you don’t have ¾” sockets, you won’t be able to use it without an adapter. Luckily Neiko understands this and it’s why they include a whole litany of adapters for you to pick from.

However, keep in mind that while the adapters work great, you can still only push the sockets so far. If you’re not using impact sockets, then you can’t expect them to hold up to 700 ft/lbs of torque.

But if you’re only trying to torque something down to about 150 ft/lbs, then the adapters should be fine if you’re using a higher-quality socket.

Still, even after considering all this you really shouldn’t get this ¾” torque wrench unless you need the higher torque values. It’s not because it’s not a high-quality torque wrench though, it’s because the larger size significantly drives up the price.

Not only that, but if you need a torque wrench for smaller jobs, even something like the tires on a passenger car, this torque wrench doesn’t go low enough to give you an accurate reading. It’s a larger torque wrench for larger jobs.

Pros

  • Insanely high maximum torque
  • It comes with tons of adapters
  • Very durable tool

Cons

  • Very expensive option
  • Only has higher torque ranges

5. ACDelco ARM601

Acdelco Arm601
  • Brand: ACDelco
  • Size: ½”
  • Torque Range: 14.8 to 147.5 ft/lbs

When it comes to torque wrenches, few options make more sense than a sturdy ½” drive option. That’s because ½” drive torque wrenches come with tons of adjustability, making them outstanding choices for both low and high torque specs.

And it’s also why it takes quite a bit to earn our nod as the best ½” drive torque wrench. This ACDelco ARM601 torque wrench is an outstanding mix of price and quality. While it’s far from the most affordable option on our list, it’s a great value considering it should last a lifetime.

It also has a wider range of torque specs, starting as low as 14.8 ft/lbs. And with a maximum torque of 147.5 ft/lbs, it’s more than capable of handling most larger jobs you’ll come across in a DIY setting. It uses a digital display and a buzzer-activated system that’s easy to use.

Finally, it has a soft grip handle that makes it more comfortable to use, but it also is a bit harder to clean than the solid steel alloy handles that the other options have.

Pros

  • Digital gauge is easy to use
  • Great mix of price and quality
  • Buzzer-activated design
  • Very durable torque wrench

Cons

  • Not everyone likes the digital display
  • Harder to clean
  • You need to replace the batteries

6. EPAuto Torque Wrench

Epauto Torque Wrench
  • Brand: EPAuto
  • Size: 3/8”
  • Torque Range: 10 to 80 ft/lbs

If you don’t have a ½” socket set, there’s not much reason to invest in a ½” torque wrench. 3/8” drive sockets are by far the most common type of socket for DIYers out there, which means this is one of the most useful torque wrenches for that application.

Even better, since it’s a 3/8” torque wrench you don’t have to spend nearly as much compared to some of the other options on our list. But even for a typical 3/8” drive torque wrench this one by EPAuto is available for a great price, and that’s a big part of the reason it’s our top 3/8” drive option.

It also comes with a storage case for the torque wrench and two extensions which can help you get the socket onto any bolt no matter where it’s at. However, the lower price tag does come with two main tradeoffs.

First is the maximum torque value. At 80 ft/lbs it’s high enough for most DIY jobs, but there’s certainly a chance you’ll come across a job calling for higher torque specs. Second, it’s not the most durable option.

While it’s perfectly fine for DIYers, if you know you’ll use it consistently, you might want to spend a little more upfront and get a better option.

Pros

  • Affordably priced
  • It comes with two extensions
  • It comes with a storage case
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Lower maximum torque
  • Not the most durable

7. BullTools Torque Wrench Set

Bulltools Torque Wrench Set
  • Brand: BullTools
  • Size: ¼”
  • Torque Range: 20 to 200 in/lbs

If you need a torque wrench for smaller bolts and jobs, then the BullTools Torque Wrench Set is an outstanding choice for you to consider. It’s a ¼” drive torque wrench set, which means it works in inch-pounds instead of foot-pounds.

It’s an important distinction, but it gives you far more precise results for jobs with lower torque values. This is common for jobs like head gaskets or even oil pans because they use smaller bolts with lower torque values.

It’s also why it’s so beneficial that this torque wrench set comes with so many adapters. Often smaller bolts use different bolt heads, and this torque wrench recognizes that by giving you many of the Torx bit and hex head sockets you might need to use for those bolts. Of course, it works just fine with a regular ¼” drive socket set too!

The entire set comes with a convenient carrying case for both the sockets and the torque wrench, making it easy to keep track of everything for when you need it. It’s also easy to use and comes at an affordable price considering all the sockets you’re getting.

However, some of the sockets aren’t quite as durable as we’d like, but for the most part, we simply view those as a bonus to go with this great ¼” torque wrench!

Pros

  • It comes with tons of adapters
  • Great for smaller jobs
  • Easy to use
  • Affordably priced
  • It comes with a carrying case

Cons

  • Not the most durable sockets

8. Tekton Torque Wrench

Tekton Torque Wrench
  • Brand: Tekton
  • Size: ½”
  • Torque Range: 10 to 150 ft/lbs

While this Tekton torque wrench doesn’t get a specific accolade, that doesn’t mean it’s not worth you checking out. It’s another extremely versatile and affordable torque wrench, and with a range between 10 and 150 ft/lbs, it can handle just about any DIY job.

It also has a storage case that makes it easy to take from place to place. Pair that with how easy this torque wrench is to use and it’s not hard to see why it’s such a great torque wrench. However, while we really like this Tekton torque wrench, it did miss one of our accolades for a reason.

First, it’s not the most durable torque wrench out there. While it’s a fine choice for occasional use, if you need to use it quite a bit, it likely won’t last as long as you want it to. Second, while many lower-budget torque wrenches come with some socket accessories, that’s not the case with this torque wrench.

Still, it’s an accurate torque wrench at a great price, so if you just need a ½” torque wrench for the occasional job this one is hard to beat.

Pros

  • Affordably priced
  • Great torque range
  • It has a storage case
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Not the most durable
  • You only get the torque wrench

9. Lexivon Torque Wrench

Lexivon Torque Wrench
  • Brand: Lexivon
  • Size: ½”
  • Torque Range: 25 to 250 ft/lbs

Alright, the Lexivon Torque Wrench might not be the most affordable or the highest-quality torque wrench out there, but what it does offer is a great intermediate option. It’ll last longer than most of our budget choices, but it’s still not a lifetime quality tool like many of our premium options.

And as an intermediate option, it has a price to match. You don’t have to break the bank to get this Lexivon Torque Wrench, but you’re also not spending pennies for something you know you’ll have to replace at some point down the road.

Another perk this torque wrench offers is the outstanding torque range. At the low end of things, you can torque things down to as low as 25 ft/lbs, but for larger jobs, you can crank it up all the way to 250 ft/lbs.

Still, with this larger maximum torque it needed a larger design to give you the leverage to get there. And while that’s great for larger jobs, if you have limited space then it can be a bit of a problem. Just know what you’re getting and what you need it before that way you don’t end up with a tool that doesn’t work for your job.

Pros

  • Great mix of price and quality
  • Outstanding torque range
  • Durable and long-lasting

Cons

  • It doesn’t work for smaller jobs
  • Larger design

10. Capri Tools 31007

Capri Tools 31007
  • Brand: Capri Tools
  • Size: ¼”
  • Torque Range: 50 to 245 in/lbs

This Capri Tools torque wrench is another ¼” drive torque wrench that you should consider for smaller jobs. It’s an outstanding mix of price and quality for a ¼” torque wrench. It’s not the most affordable option out there for a ¼” option, but since it’s a smaller torque wrench it’s still not all that expensive.

Even better, you know you’re not going to need to replace it any time soon, even if you use it quite a bit. It’s extremely accurate with measurements you can fine-tune to a single in/lb, but it does start at 50 in/lbs. While that’s not all that high, sometimes for very small bolts on sensitive equipment there will be a smaller torque spec.

Still, this torque wrench is easy to use and goes all the way up to 245 in/lbs, which works out to just over 20 ft/lbs. Because of this it only works for small jobs, but those are often the jobs where you really can’t afford to miss the correct torque spec. It’s a great tool, but don’t expect to use it to torque down your vehicle’s tires!

Pros

  • An outstanding mix of price and quality
  • Great for smaller jobs
  • Easy to use
  • Very accurate tool

Cons

  • It only works for smaller jobs
  • Higher minimum torque

Torque Wrench Buyer’s Guide

Now that you know a little more about some of the best torque wrenches out there, it’s time to figure out which torque wrench is right for you. Not only that, but too many people get an excellent torque wrench only to ruin it because they don’t know how to care for it properly.

We’ll break down everything you need to know to get the perfect torque wrench for you and keep it working year after year for you here.

Picking Your Torque Wrench

With so many great torque wrenches on our list it can be a challenge trying to narrow it down to just one. But the thing is there are a few different things you should look at when you’re picking out a torque wrench because what is the perfect torque wrench for one person might not even work for the job you’re trying to complete.

Torque Range

This is by far the most important thing to look at when you’re picking out a torque wrench. It doesn’t matter how much or how little you spend if the torque wrench you’re looking at doesn’t have the range you need.

Take a look at all the jobs you need a torque wrench for and all the recommended torque specs, and then match those numbers up with the torque wrench you’re looking at. If you need a wide range of torque specs, there’s a good chance a single torque wrench won’t be able to handle it all.

In that case, you’ll need to invest in multiple torque wrenches to properly torque everything down. While that can be a little frustrating, if you’re trying to save a little money the Pittsburgh Pro torque wrench set we highlighted above comes with three different torque wrenches that should be able to handle just about any job you have.

Drive Size

After you verify that the torque wrench you’re looking at can handle the job, the next thing you need to consider is the drive size. The drive size refers to the size of the connecting bit on the head of the torque wrench, and this size needs to match the backend of whatever socket you’re using.

Otherwise, you won’t be able to connect the socket to the torque wrench and you won’t be able to use it! While there are adapters you can purchase, you need to be careful when using adapters because it’s easy to end up putting too much pressure on either the adapter or socket and end up breaking it.

It’s typically best to invest in a socket set specially for the drive size of the torque wrench. This is especially true if you have higher torque specs.

Cost vs Durability

While nobody wants to spend a whole bunch for anything, this is one of those cases where the old saying “you get what you pay for” holds true. It’s not that the lower-cost tools won’t properly torque things down because they will, it’s that they won’t last quite as long.

But if you store them properly the amount of time they’ll last really comes down to how much you use them. If you’re only occasionally using the torque wrench for a DIY project, you don’t have to worry as much. 

But there’s no doubt that the more expensive options will last longer and there’s a much lower chance that you’ll need to replace them. If you’re looking for the best bang for your buck in the long term it’s probably best to spend a little more upfront for one of our premium choices since you shouldn’t ever need to replace them.

Unloading Your Torque Wrench

This is the most important thing you need to do after you finish using your torque wrench. Torque wrenches are extremely sensitive and leaving a load on the torque wrench for an extended amount of time will throw off the calibration.

The good news is that keeping this from happening is easy. After you use the torque wrench simply lower the torque wrench to the lowest setting. You shouldn’t “bottom out” the torque wrench, put it on the lowest setting it has.

For instance, our top choice, the GearWrench Micrometer Torque Wrench, has a low-end torque setting of 30 ft/lbs. This is the setting you want to store the torque wrench at to keep the calibration correct for as long as possible.

Storing Your Torque Wrench

Torque wrenches are extremely sensitive pieces of equipment, and as such you need to store them properly to keep the calibration intact. Most torque wrenches come with a case, and we highly recommend storing them in this case whenever you aren’t using them.

This helps protect them from impacts as other tools shift around, and it can help keep them calibrated. Moreover, when you’re picking a place to store your torque wrench we recommend a dry area without extreme temperature swings.

This will help protect your torque wrench, keep the calibration intact, and help it last year after year.

Calibrating Your Torque Wrench

Even if you do everything correctly, it’s only a matter of time until the calibration shifts a bit. Because of this, we recommend calibrating your torque wrench once every 12 months. There are a few different companies that offer this service, and as a general rule, you should expect to spend between $25 and $200 to calibrate a torque wrench.

A big factor in this cost is the size of the torque wrench. Torque wrenches with higher calibrations tend to cost a little bit more than smaller torque wrenches.

Still, because torque wrenches lose their calibration over time, it’s extremely important that you take the time to calibrate them each year. That way when you go to use them, you know you’re getting the exact right torque spec on the bolt, which is the whole point of having a torque wrench in the first place.

Using Your Torque Wrench

Now that you know a little more about what to look for in a torque wrench and how to care for one, now it’s time to learn a little bit about using them.

The most controversial topic surrounding torque wrenches is whether or not extensions affect the torque specs of a bolt. While we tend to agree that if you use an extension correctly, it shouldn’t affect the torque spec of a bolt, we still try to play it safe whenever possible and avoid extensions unless we absolutely need them.

It’s not that we think the extension will affect the final torque spec, it’s just that all it takes is for you to get a little off-center to get an errant reading. If you use it properly there shouldn’t be a problem though.

But that leads us right to our second tip, always get the torque wrench and socket completely flush if you want an accurate reading. With torque wrenches there’s no such thing as “close enough.” It’s either flush or it isn’t, and you need it flush.

Finally, if you’re torquing down a series of bolts to a higher torque spec, it’s almost always better to start a lower torque spec and work your way around. For instance, if you’re torquing down tire bolts to 100 ft/lbs, we recommend this.

  1. Hand-tighten each lug nut following the star pattern.
  2. Torque each lug nut to 50 ft/lbs following the star pattern.
  3. Torque each lug nut to 75 ft/lbs following the star pattern.
  4. Torque each lug nut to 100 ft/lbs following the star pattern.

This gives you the most even torque across each lug nut, which is the whole point of using a torque wrench in the first place. Just keep in mind that this philosophy applies to anything with multiple bolts.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a torque wrench used for?

Torque wrenches are used to measure or apply a particular level of torque to nuts or bolts that require a specific amount of torque. There are both digital and analog torque wrenches to get, depending on what you need it for.

Do I really need a torque wrench?

It depends on what you’re doing. If you’re just casually tightening down some bolts in the interior, then probably not. But if you’re working on a more serious project like internal parts of the engine, then a torque wrench is definitely the way to go.

Can you over-tighten with a torque wrench?

Yes, it is possible to overtighten a bolt with a torque wrench. This can either happen if the user sets the torque on the torque wrench to a higher setting than necessary, or if you ignore the sound when the required torque is met and continue to tighten it. Over-tightening a bolt can damage the threads and make it difficult to remove the bolt in the future.

Should you push or pull a torque wrench?

It is better to always pull a torque wrench for better control. The same goes with any wrench, because if you pull and the bolt comes loose, you won’t fly forward if you pull the wrench instead.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know a little more about torque wrenches all that’s left is for you to get the torque wrench you need on order. Because while good-n-tight might be a great torque spec for some jobs, it can lead to catastrophic failures for others.

Don’t take a risk the next time you’re working on a job with torque specs, do it right with one of the torque wrenches we highlighted here!

Learn more: 10 Best Lug Wrenches – Review & Buyer’s Guide

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Magnus Sellén
Written by:

Magnus is the owner and main author of Mechanicbase. He has been working as a car mechanic for over 10 years, and the majority of them specialized in advanced car diagnostics and troubleshooting. Certified Automotive Diagnostic Technician.