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Do I need to own a Torque Wrench?

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  • Do I need to own a Torque Wrench?

    So brand new car,a Hyundai i-30 Active X.
    Crash course last 2 months on how to care for it. Tried to take a wheel off to see if I could with my standard wheel brace and could not, so had to use an extension pipe. I have cleaned that wheel both sides and sprayed with liquid wax.

    I have not taken the other three wheels of yet but want to. I have never owned a Torque wrench in my life. Seems I can get a good one for $100 Aussie dollars.
    Seems everyone I ask says dont bother just tighten and they wont fall off I dont think I am strong enough to over tighten, but common sense tells me I am only guessing without a Torque Wrench?

    Thoughts please.

  • #2
    Once you use a torque wrench to tighten you wheel nuts or bolts you will realise you have been over tightening them for years.

    For the price of them I wouldn't hesitate especially if your doing any head work in the future.

    Sent from my Nexus 9 using Tapatalk

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    • #3
      Thank you. I am no mechanic and would only ever use one for my wheel nuts. I am also thin and not super strong
      I have read that even many mechanics / car dealers who use rattle guns do over tighten ?

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      • #4
        I regularly use my torque wrench for wheels, and other bits and bobs on the car. Highly recommend owning one.

        A couple bits of advice from using them a lot at work. Buy a 3/8" wrench with a range of around 5 to 140 nm as this will cover 99% of the car usage, they are smaller than 1/2" so fit in tighter places and cost a little less. Also i would highly recommend a 'deflection beam' style one over a ratcheting or spring loaded one. The reasons being, spring loaded ones go out of spec the older they get (and the more you use them) as they use a preloaded spring inside as one of the main components, springs wear out over time. If you forget to store it unloaded you can't guarentee that it will be in spec later on, unless you get it calibrated. Also if you are a newbie adjusting the spring loaded style while it is in the locked position will also ruin its performance.

        The deflection beam requires a little more time to use as you need to reset the pin every time you hit your torque spec but they are a lot more fool proof than the spring style. No storage issues, provide a visual indicator as well as audible and there are no issues with adjusting it to different settings.

        Never use a rattle gun to put on lug nuts.

        120nm is the standard torque spec for wheel nuts and is actually a LOT less than what you would think.

        Always tighten in a star pattern.

        Last edited by MitchH; 29-05-2017, 02:23 PM.

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        • #5
          Funny little anecdote on Torque Wrenches, did you know dentists use them. I have a dental implant, and when they screw the pin into your jaw, they use a torque wrench. They have to hit 90Nm to ensure it's secured to the bone.
          Remember,
          Silence is Golden,
          and Duct Tape is Silver.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Dags View Post
            Thank you. I am no mechanic and would only ever use one for my wheel nuts. I am also thin and not super strong
            I have read that even many mechanics / car dealers who use rattle guns do over tighten ?
            I'd say almost every one who uses a rattle gun on wheel nuts over tightens them. First thing I do when I get home from having new tyres fitted is loose the buts and torque them correctly.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by apsilon View Post
              I'd say almost every one who uses a rattle gun on wheel nuts over tightens them. First thing I do when I get home from having new tyres fitted is loose the buts and torque them correctly.
              Same here.

              You can buy torque bar extensions for rattle guns that twist at the torque they are rated to to stop over tightening but it's still best practice to hand tighten then do a final turn with a torque wrench.

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              • #8
                Never use a rattle gun on a sump plug either. A torque wrench will pay for itself in no time (just dont drop it!)

                Because if you do, you will have to send it in to get re calibrated.

                If you dont want one thats ok also, just stick the diagram as per posted ^^^.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for the replies

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                  • #10
                    Since you are not experienced it's a good investment to get a torque wrench that could also teach you how much torque you apply to your wheel nuts when you don't have a torque wrench handy ie doing it up with a breaker bar.

                    You would want to invest in a breaker bar also, rather than using an extension pipe over a wheel brace. Don't use the torque wrench for un-doing wheel nuts.

                    I would suggest a 1/2" setup ie breaker bar, extension bar, single hex socket (impact type if you intend to use impact gun in the future ) and torque wrench with a 40-200 Nm range for this application.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by EG30 View Post
                      You would want to invest in a breaker bar also, rather than using an extension pipe over a wheel brace. Don't use the torque wrench for un-doing wheel nuts.

                      I would suggest a 1/2" setup ie breaker bar, extension bar, single hex socket (impact type if you intend to use impact gun in the future ) and torque wrench with a 40-200 Nm range for this application.
                      Good tips there that those of us that have been doing it for a while often forget to mention to new comers.

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                      • #12
                        Great thread thanks.

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                        • #13
                          Thanks I bought a 600mm long breaker bar, and long hex socket today.

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