What is an Impact Wrench

What is an Impact Wrench?

An impact wrench is an important tool to have for mechanics, drivers and technicians who want to tighten or loosen a screw.

According to Nick Moore of Nick282K, the impact wrench is a power tool that “stores energy in a heavy rotating mass and then releases it all at once in small impacts against the output shaft”.

This series of spins and impacts take the load off the wrist or hand, which can be tremendous because of the force needed to deal with nuts and bolts.

Nick added that the mass takes off the load from one’s wrist and transfers it to the bolt, putting “a lot more force on the bolt or nut that you are trying to tighten or loosen”.

A normal wrench would require a substantial amount of force and consume a lot of time from a person. An impact wrench makes life easier by having an automatic power tool that winds and unwinds lug nuts or bolts faster.

Great tool for tightening and loosening

Impact Wrench Reviews defines the impact wrench as a tool that applies a rotational force (or torque) in short bursts (or impacts)”. Torque is measured in foot-pound.

The higher the torque, the more rotations it can output. Every time the impact wrench spins, it delivers a powerful impact towards the target.

The site added that impact wrenches are “driven by a motor which is powered by air, mains electricity or batteries (usually referred to as a “cordless impact wrench”). Cord or no cord, the impact wrench still acts the same.

Its main job is to deal with those pesky nuts and screws that are hard to remove with a manual tool.

Its job is to apply as much torque as possible for the job be done. When you have 100 screws to remove in five minutes, nothing but an impact wrench can deal with these in a short amount of time.

Makes life easier for the operator

The job of an impact wrench is fairly simple – to apply as much torque as possible in tightening and loosening bolts without putting too much strain on the wrist of the user.

Manual wrenches can cause injury, especially if the bolt is tight in its place and is forced out in a bad position.

Impact wrenches can use air, be corded or run on cordless technology. Whatever form it may take, its job remains the same – to remove lugs and nuts with a high amount of torque and impacts.

Manufacturers list the amount of torque, rotations per minute (RPM) and impacts per minute (IPM) along with the product. Normally it is better to have high numbers on an impact wrench.

High RPM guarantees more spins; greater IPM can create more contact with the targeted bolts or nuts and more torque means the tool can output a fair amount of tightening and loosening in a short amount of time.

A fair trade

Weight can also be an issue. Manufacturers can create lighter tools but at the cost of performance. Other companies opt to throw everything in the basket and just go with maximum features at the price of heftiness.

But some brands can create a lightweight device that has killer features, higher torque and great IPM’s and RPM’s. A simple search on the Internet can give more information about other, more accomplished brands.

Reviews are very helpful, especially if you do not know which power tool you should go for. The brand is important because the name of a company can define how reliable it is as a hardware maker.

A requirement for the garage

The price of impact wrenches do not usually stray far away from each other. A cheaper variant can mean less focus is given to the parts, with quality and durability suffering as the tool is pummeled until the battery loses juice.

This does not happen a lot but it could potentially be annoying, especially if it suddenly breaks down in the middle of an important tightening job.

Mechanics, drivers and carpenters rely on the steady torque this provides to forward their living so it’s a must for this tool to be at peak performance.

A lower price does not mean the power tool is bad; it just means quality may be lower than expected.


3 Comments

  1. Very useful article for beginners.

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