5 Best Torque Wrenches Under $100
5 Best Torque Wrenches Under $100
5 (100%) 1 vote[s]


Most recommended
1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
  • Brand LEXIVON
  • Material Metal
  • Item Weight 6.4 Pounds

A good choice too
Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench
  • TEKTON 1/2
  • Material Steel
  • Item Weight 2.94 pounds

A good choice too
1/4 Inch Drive Dual-Direction
  • TEKTON
  • Item Weight 12.8 ounces
  • Style Wrench

Click-Style Torque Wrench (1/2-Inch Drive)
  • Brand ETORK
  • Mechanical
  • Item Weight 3.31 Pounds

CRAFTSMAN Torque Wrench
  • Brand: Craftsman
  • Item Weight 5.85 pounds
  • Fixed Square


Choose the Best Torque Wrenche Under $100е

Customer’s Choice: the Best Rated Torque Wrenches Under $100

6 users answered this survey. Please help us improve this review!

83.33% of users selected 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench, 0% selected Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench, 0% selected 1/4 Inch Drive Dual-Direction, 0% selected Click-Style Torque Wrench (1/2-Inch Drive) and 16.67% selected CRAFTSMAN Torque Wrench. Every month we analyze your answers and change our rating.

Do you know how to tighten the lug nuts on your car? If not, it’s time to learn. Torque wrenches are an important tool for any mechanic or DIYer. They’re a must-have if you want to do things right and avoid future problems with your vehicle. 

Benefits of torque wrenches under $100:

  • Affordable prices;
  • Variety of sizes and styles to fit your needs (including manual, digital, click style);
  • Some offer a warranty;
  • They’re easy to use, so you can work on your car or bike at home;
  • It helps prevent over-tightening which could lead to stripped threads;
  • No more guessing what size bolt you need;
  • Some offer a laser to help with precise measurements;

However, there are so many torque wrenches out there that it can be hard to decide which one is best for you. That’s why the experts have compiled this list of the best torque wrench under $100, complete with reviews and tips for finding the perfect price range!

LEXIVON 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench – the Editor’s choice!

The Lexivon 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench boasts a 6.4 pound weight and the widest wrench opening of its class, measuring a full inch which makes it easier to fit onto bolts that are in hard-to-reach areas.

The durable chrome alloy steel with black finish provides rust and corrosion protection, as well as making for easier reading thanks to yellow markings on an easy to read dual range scale in both low light conditions and ideal lighting!

This precision instrument is perfect for those who are dealing with difficult machinery parts all day long. It can produce high torques on the lowest setting just by turning the handle one click.

Pros
  • Made with metal;
  • Fixed square head;
  • Accurate;
  • Reinforced reversible ratchet;
  • Protected from rust and corrosion;
  • Easy-to-read dual-range scale;
Cons
  • Not durable build;
  • Not for heavy-duty use;
  • Too heavy to be portable;

To improve your ability to tighten nuts and bolts on tough projects without having to muster up more force than necessary, try Lexivon 1/2-Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench.


Tekton 1/2 Inch Drive Click Torque Wrench – the best for portability!

This Tekton wrench is incredibly durable and easy to use. All of the parts are made of durable steel and nothing is made from plastic, so you know this tool will last! It has a clear, dual-range scale that’s visible even in low light conditions. An audible click indicates when preset torque value is reached so you don’t have to keep checking your work!

The ratchet head works easily on all screws in both directions for quick turning with no guesswork involved. You won’t find another tool like this at such an affordable price anywhere else!

Pros
  • Portable carrying case;
  • Made with alloy steel;
  • Decent torque range;
  • Includes a product manual;
  • Emits a loud click;
  • Visible even in low light;
Cons
  • Not accurate;
  • The 0 mark on the handle doesn’t align with the indicators;
It is easy to read, even in low light with its high-contrast scale. Durable steel construction and no need for replacement plastic parts.


Tekton 1/4 Inch Drive Dual-Direction Click Torque Wrench – the best for beginners!

With a finely geared 72-tooth ratchet head measuring torque in clockwise and counterclockwise directions, this Tekton 1/4 inch drive dual-direction click torque wrench has been pre-calibrated for accuracy.

Available in a variety of styles to suit your needs, it emits a click that can be heard and felt when the preset value is reached. The spring-loaded adjustment collar locks into place at the desired torque to ensure accurate measurement while you’re hard at work on car repairs or wherever else.

Pros
  • Lightweight and portable;
  • Zipper case;
  • Precise and smooth;
  • Reversible 72-tooth ratchet head;
  • Shipped pre-calibrated;
  • Great for beginners;
Cons
  • No noise/feel;
  • May twist small bolts;
  • Not for delicate fasteners;

The combination of high-tech craftsmanship, reliability, and precision make Tekton the ideal wrench for any job, especially if you are a beginner.


eTORK Click-Style ½-Inch Torque Wrench – the best for easy readout!

This eTORK Click-Style ½-Inch Torque Wrench is a top quality tool for such a price. Although classified as entry level because it has up to 150 ft/lbs of available torque, this professional tool exceeds all your expectations in power and durability.

Available for left- or right-handed users, with ratchet style mechanism to turn the handle at desired angle for ease of use. This two-way click type wrench might be small but packs a punch.

Pros
  • Feels expensive;
  • Lightweight;
  • Easy to read;
  • Calibration certificate;
  • Solid click;
  • Includes a sturdy plastic locking case;
Cons
  • Flimsy pullout locking mechanism;
  • Can’t be disassembled;

This eTORK is easy to use and can be set with ease. The click-style head makes it so that you know when it’s set, no more guessing what the tiniest little fraction of a line on your wrench means about torque.


CRAFTSMAN SAE 1/2-Inch Drive Torque Wrench – the best for durability!

Made of high quality steel, this Craftsman torque wrench is built to withstand years and years of wear and tear. The durable case makes this torque wrench perfect for use on multiple job sites in your company or around town when you’re looking to shop around a site.

This is one tool all DIYers and professionals need! It features a bi-material handle for comfortable grip as well as an easy locking feature and quick identification.

With the Craftsman 1/2-Inch Drive Torque Wrench, you’ll have easy access to accurate torque readings without all of that hassle. This Torque wrench is portable and durable enough for occasional use or storage.

Pros
  • Fixed square head;
  • Includes a durable case;
  • Bi-material handle;
  • A locking feature;
  • Meets ASME specs;
Cons
  • Heavy and bulky;
  • Doesn’t click sometimes;
  • 1-year warranty;

The Craftsman SAE 1/2-Inch Drive Torque Wrench is one you can count on in tight spaces. It also includes a durable metal carrying case for easy storage or transport.


The Buyer’s Guide

Torque Wrench Working Principle

A wrench is a tool used to provide an adjustable gripping action on another object. The grip can be adjusted by turning the head of the wrench which either tightens or loosens the bolt, nut, ill-fitting part such as a hexagonal screw thread (usually referred to as “hex” bolts), square nuts, and screws with one of four different types of heads: flathead slotted, Phillips, Allen or Pozidriv

In order for torque wrenches to work effectively, they must apply pressure in line with their axis without slipping off so that torque can be applied evenly along its length. 

Torque wrenches are primarily designed for use where fasteners need tightening properly and safely often at high levels of force.

Size

There are different sizes of torque wrenches. The larger size means more force is needed to tighten and loosen the nuts or bolts. Some common sizes are ¼-inch, ½-inch, ¾-inch, and in metric measurement it would be respectively 13mm, 19mm (aka 18 mm), 23 mm for a medium-sized wrench. 

The larger size also provides higher accuracy because they have a greater range of applying pressure on the nut or bolt heads compared to smaller-sized wrenches. For general use purposes, it is recommended to use one from around 17 mm – 22 mm depending on what you plan on doing with your wrench most often whether that’s tightening down small screws or loosening up large pieces that need some elbow grease.

If you’re someone who likes to carry their tools around with them then a smaller one will be better suited for easier transportation but if space isn’t an issue or weight doesn’t concern you then more power can come in handy by having a larger version because they offer higher precision levels. 

Overall, between these two types, there really isn’t much difference so experts would recommend picking whichever feels most comfortable in your hand after trying out different ones at the store.

Torque range

The most common torque ranges for torque wrenches are the following: 20-150 ft-lbs, 15-125 ft-lbs and 12.44-80 N/m.  The range of the torque wrench is an important factor to consider. 

For example, if you are only going to be tightening nuts that need a torque of 40 lbs., then there is no point in buying a wrench with an 80 lb. range because the higher-end models will not provide any additional value. On the other hand, if you plan on working with different types of bolts and screws around your home or business (e.g., assembling furniture), a flexible range may help prevent unnecessary purchases down the line when your needs change over time.

Accuracy

Accuracy is measured in a unit called Inches Per Pound. If you are dealing with very small torque values (i.e., tightening the lug nuts on your car), then an accurate wrench can be important to prevent over/under tightening them and damaging the threads on your wheels. 

For most other applications it isn’t as critical – a few extra pounds of force will not make much difference when securing bolts that hold heavy objects like engines together for example since these have more room before they break loose and start spinning freely again. 

A general rule of thumb is anything below about 100ft-lbs should use accuracy less than +/-0.25%.

A good way to test how accurate a particular torque wrench is to compare it with a known accurate wrench. For example, if you have one that is +/-0.25% and another that is +/-0.03%, then the latter one will be more accurate over most of its range but won’t be as good for fine-tuning applications (e.g., adjusting the tension on strings).

Materials:

  1. Steel. The most common material, used in products from companies like TEKTON and ACDelco. Steel is durable and easy to produce at a low cost. However, it’s also heavy – up to six pounds for the average 12-inch wrench (the more bearings there are on an adjustable torque wrench, the longer they can last). Steel is also not as resistant to corrosion, so it needs to be coated or covered;
  2. Stainless steel. A lighter material than steel, though more expensive and difficult to produce at a high level of quality with the best materials. Stainless steel provides less friction on precision work pieces like nuts and bolts due to its smoother surface, but can get stuck in between tighter spaces that are especially prone for rusting (like car exhaust pipes) because there’s no space around edges for crevices to form. It will last longer if you’re using it every day instead of once a month – just don’t keep your torque wrench in places where water or chemicals might spill onto it;
  3. Aluminum. The lightest metal used for torque wrenches, but the least durable. If you’re looking for a wrench that will last as long as possible and have low corrosion resistance, aluminum is not your best choice – unless you can afford one of those really expensive “space-grade” products;
  4. Titanium. The lightest metal used for torque wrenches, with high strength and durability. However, titanium is also more difficult to produce in quality finishes at an affordable price range (although it’s cheaper than stainless steel), so titanium wrenches are often sealed or coated before they enter the market;
  5. Carbon fiber. A more expensive material than any of the others listed here – but without question the long-lasting one! Carbon fiber is made up of woven threads that are bonded together at extremely high temperatures and pressures; once they’re cooled down, these fibers will never corrode or wear out from regular use. If you want an investment tool for torque wrenches that will last decades (without breaking or wearing) while still being lightweight and compact enough to be useful every day at work/home, this might just be what you need;

Different Types

There are a few different types of torque wrenches available on the market:

  • A clicker-type wrench clicks when it reaches and overcomes the preset tightening level;
  • Micrometer type, which has a jackscrew to control pressure or torque applied. This style works by either twisting an adjusting knob that will increase or decrease tensioning power as needed. It typically features a ratchet lever for manual tightening;
  • The dials can be calibrated in pounds per square inch (PSI) or newtons per meter (N/m). Dial gauge based, with scales marked in PSI and N/m. A dial gauge works by turning a small knob until the desired torque is reached. Dial type features an indicator that will rotate to show the torque applied;

FAQ

Who makes the best quality torque wrench?

The best torque wrench brands:

  • Craftsman is one of the most popular brands in America. Their torque wrenches are built to last and their warranty lasts for a lifetime on all products;
  • Ingersoll-Rand offers a wide variety of different types, sizes, and grades that will suit your needs no matter what you’re looking for. They also have an impressive lifetime warranty on these tools too
  • Tekton might not be as well known as Craftsman or Ingersoll Rand, but they make some excellent quality pro series torque wrench models at affordable prices. The company has been around longer than many other competing manufacturers which means they’ve had time to refine their designs into high-performance pieces with extreme precision levels – even down to fractions of an inch of torque;

Do cheap torque wrenches work?

Cheap torque wrenches work well for simple tasks like tightening a bolt to the correct pressure. The wrench is not designed to withstand repeated use, so you’re going to have trouble with anything more complicated than that. They are good for occasional jobs around the house or garage but everyone should own an adjustable one as well if they do any kind of serious mechanical work on their vehicle or other machinery.

Are digital torque wrenches better?

Digital wrenches can be more accurate, but they can also be pricier. It all depends on what your needs are and how often you need to use one.

Some advantages of digital torque wrenches are that they can provide a more accurate reading and give you measurements in either inch-pounds or foot-pounds. They also work faster than traditional wrench, which is especially helpful if you need to make many different adjustments throughout your day!

The main disadvantage of the digital versions is their cost; some models retail for over $500.

Do you need a torque wrench for valve cover?

The answer is, it depends. For many OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers), they will provide a torque spec for the valve cover bolts that you should follow to prevent any damage or leaks on your engine. If there isn’t an explicit guideline from the manufacturer then most people typically use 16-25 ft-lbs of torque per bolt but again this varies based on make and model.

How accurate are Craftsman torque wrenches?

Craftsman torque wrenches are accurate to +/- 4%. This means that the socket wrench is not perfectly accurate, but it is close enough for most users and will give a good baseline of what you need in order to tighten any bolts correctly. 

The Craftsman model has been tested by many users over the years so while there may be some claims about inaccuracy with other brands, this tool definitely does work well without being too expensive. 

That said if your car needs an exact number on how tight each bolt should be then you’ll want to invest more money into something like a Snap-On setting device as these tools can measure within one-thousandths of an inch per pound which gives you much greater accuracy for your needs.

Are Craftsman torque wrenches lifetime warranty?

The answer to this question is no. Craftsman offers a lifetime warranty on other products, such as their hand tools and drills but not torque wrenches. However, they also have a customer service team that will take care of any issues you may encounter with your product – this includes the option for an exchange or refund in some cases!

How accurate are Harbor Freight torque wrenches?

Harbor Freight torque wrenches are not very accurate tools. There is no way to calibrate them, which means that the accuracy of their readings can vary greatly depending on how long they have been used and maintained. For this reason, it’s generally best to use Harbor Freight tools in conjunction with another more precise measuring device for calibration purposes (like digital calipers).

How accurate is the Pittsburgh torque wrench?

Pittsburgh torque wrenches are accurate up to ±%20. It features a durable, yet lightweight aluminum alloy head that will last for years with minimal maintenance necessary. In order to ensure maximum accuracy and longevity of your new tool, the calibration is recommended every six months or so.

Are Husky torque wrenches any good?

Husky is a brand that has been around for over 50 years, and they have many more torque wrench reviews than any other company on the list of best wrenches under $100.

The Husky torque wrenches are great because they come with extra features like an integrated bubble level to help you ensure your work is done correctly, along with soft grips to make it easier on your hands. The only downside? They’re not made in America. 

How much does it cost to calibrate a torque wrench?

Unless you are a calibration technician or have only one torque wrench, it is not worth calibrating your own tools. Tools should be calibrated as part of the manufacturing process and when they show signs that their accuracy may be compromised (such as if dropped). If you need to get your tool recalibrated: contact an organization like the National Institute for Calibration Standards to inquire about service availability in your area. Be sure to tell them what type of instrumentation and torque range you would need because costs will vary depending on those factors.

Useful Video: Top 10 Best Torque Wrenches Under $100 | Reviewed 2020

Final thoughts 

If you’ve made it this far, congratulations! And if you’re still looking for the perfect torque wrench under $100, hopefully, these reviews and tips have helped. Now go out there and find your new favorite tool that will last a lifetime.


I’m a Matthew Johnson, and I’m a motor mechanic. I like my profession and every day I use many tools, but a torque wrench is most useful of them. I’m going to write about my experience of using different torque wrenches and share with you.

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