A torque wrench is one of the most indispensable tools in any shop or garage. Putting the proper tension on fasteners, without damaging components or mating surfaces, requires an accurate torque wrench. Without one, fasteners can break, mating surfaces can be stripped, or components can come loose during operation. Any one of these problems can result in expensive and dangerous failures. To avoid these problems, every shop should have an accurate torque wrench on hand.
Of course, there are many types of torque wrenches to choose from. In the old days, mechanics had to choose between bar-and-beam torque wrenches (which were never terribly accurate) and the more common click-type wrench. Today’s mechanics, who need more precise accuracy than ever, typically choose either the click-type, or the newer digital torque wrenches. Both have benefits and liabilities, and are far more accurate than the wrenches of just a few years ago.
Click Type Torque Wrench
One of the most common types of torque wrench is the “click” style. It’s so named for the audible “click” that is generated when the wrench reaches its set torque value. When the desired torque is reached, a clutch releases inside of the wrench, creating a clicking sound and allowing the wrench to briefly swing free. This positive tactile and audible feedback assures the user that the proper torque value has been reached.There are certain advantages to using the click style wrench. Since the wrench provides both tactile and audible feedback, they can be reliably used in areas where the wrench itself isn’t visible. There is no scale to monitor or gauge to watch, the user simply turns the wrench until the clutch disengages. In a noisy shop or garage, where the audible click may be drowned out, the positive tactile feedback still serves as a “can’t-miss” indication that the proper torque has been reached.
Digital Torque Wrench
Digital torque wrenches are quickly gaining popularity in many shops and garages. Though slightly more expensive than click type wrenches, their ease of use and high accuracy have made them a popular choice. As opposed to an internal clutch, these wrenches use a strain gauge to measure tension. When the correct torque is reached, an electronic signal is sent to the control, which can provide several methods of alerting the user.
Digital torque wrenches are easy to set, and switching between different units of measurement is as simple as pushing a button. Torque is adjusted by simply pushing up or down arrows, allowing users to quickly and easily change from one setting to another. Users can also set a “torque window” which will send an audible alert when they are approaching the desired torque.
Torque alerts are handled differently with a digital torque wrench. The display shows the current torque load, which is useful in situations where the user has an unobstructed view of the wrench. As the set torque is approached, the wrench issues an audible ringing tone. When the set torque is reached the tone changes and tactile feedback is provided in the form of a vibration in the handle of the wrench. All of these alerts combined make it highly unlikely that a user will under or overtighten a fastener.
The Right Wrench
Getting the “right” torque wrench depends entirely on the specific needs of the shop or garage. Both tools have their advantages, and each should be considered carefully depending on the intended use and scenario. Evaluating the needs of the users, and the work to be performed, is an important step in making any tool purchases. Whichever wrench is chosen, they will provide years of accurate, trouble free service.
MountzPro offers both configurations in their True Dual Scale Click Torque Wrench and Digital Flex Head Torque Wrench. Both models are guaranteed to provide accurate and precise torque readings for your specific applications. Click here to learn more about these high quality torque wrenches.
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