Types of Socket Wrenches

Sockets Wrenches on Wooden Board

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Is a new socket wrench on your shopping list? With a hexagonal head, a socket spanner is a valuable tool for installing and removing fasteners. Standard wrenches offer less torque than socket wrenches, making it easier for you to install and remove fasteners. However, each type of socket wrench operates differently.

Common hand tools for tightening and loosening fasteners, such as nuts and bolts, are socket wrenches. The ratcheting design of these tools enables the user to apply torque more easily, with less fatigue and strain, than traditional spanners and wrenches.

You can buy socket wrench sets individually to fit various nuts and bolts, but most DIY enthusiasts and professionals choose to buy them in sets. There are a variety of head fittings and adaptors available to accommodate a broad range of imperial and metric drive sizes and shapes.

1. Ratcheting

Socket wrenches are most commonly ratcheted. Ratcheting socket wrenches feature a ratchet mechanism. Ratcheting socket wrenches are used to install or remove fasteners without lifting them every time.

2. Flex Head

There are swiveling socket wrenches with flex-heads. The drive head of flex-head socket wrenches isn’t fixed as with ratcheting socket wrenches. The head can be rotated during use, thanks to attachments. Despite being less common than ratcheting socket wrenches, flex-head socket wrenches are useful in tight spaces applications.

3. T-Handle

The T-handle socket wrench is one of the most basic types of a socket wrench. As the name suggests, these socket wrenches have T-handles. The end of the horizontal beam is equipped with a socket head. A horizontal beam forms the shape of the letter on the other end. After inserting the socket head into a bolt, you need to turn the horizontal beam of the T-handle socket wrench.

4. Nut Driver

In addition to socket wrenches, nut drivers are also available. In essence, socket wrenches with a nut driver head are handheld, manually operated screwdrivers. The heads are not Phillips or flat. Instead, they have a socket head, which makes them suitable for fastening applications with hexagonal heads.

5. Gearless

The last type is gearless socket wrenches. The gearless socket wrench, also known as a gearless ratchet, is a relatively new type but is becoming more popular because of its unique design. With gearless socket wrenches, fasteners can be tightened or loosened without using gears.

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