Ratchet Set Review 2018 – Searching for the best Ratchet Wrench Set
Whether you are looking for a set of tools to loosen nuts and bolts of different shapes and sizes or you are working with computers, having a set of high-quality ratchet wrenches is a must for anyone’s tool collection. In fact, there are many other great reasons that you’re going to want a set. However, figuring out how to pick the best one can be quite difficult and confusing. So today, we’re going to break down everything you need to know when buying a ratchet set, plus we will include some product recommendations as well as some ratcheting wrench reviews to make it even easier on you.
ToolGuards Ratcheting Wrench Set
Gearwrench Ratchet Set
Craftsman Ratchet Set
Horusdy Ratchet Wrench Set
Kesler 20-Piece Ratcheting Set
Let’s start off with the basics.
What is a ratchet wrench, what is a ratchet used for, and why does it have to be a whole set?
A ratchet is a type of mechanical device that allows a continuous linear or rotary motion by sticking to only one direction and preventing any motion in the opposite direction. The handle and the socket are the two main parts of a ratchet wrench. The ratchet snaps into one end of a socket while the other socket fits over a fastener. There’s a mechanism in the ratchet which allows for the handle to engage and tighten the fastener when you use a clockwise direction but turns freely when you use a counterclockwise direction. This is called the ratcheting mechanism, which makes this particular tool quite unique. It allows the ratchet handle to be re-positioned for one more turn while staying attached to a bolt or a nut. This tool is widely used in machinery and can be found in any handyman’s workshop. It’s a great tool to have.
Proving its utility and functionality, a ratchet becomes much better when it is readily available in a wide range of sizes. This gives you the freedom and option to choose an appropriate size that will work best for the task. And even though it is said that having a commonly sized ratchet is okay, it is certainly not enough. There are different types of ratchets and you never know when you will need a particular size, so it is better to opt for a set of ratchet wrenches in a variety of sizes instead. Sockets come in a wide variety of sizes, so having a set of ratchets will allow you to match a nut or bolt of a particular size.
Just to be clear, although ratchets perform the same functions as a conventional wrench, there are some tasks that suit just a ratchet alone. For instance, when you use a regular wrench and you make a full swing, you would have to remove the wrench, get it back to the starting point, and then continue to make another swing. With a ratchet wrench, you don’t need to remove the wrench from the fastener. The mechanism will hold and the fastener won’t rotate back. This makes the ratchet wrench a quick and efficient tool that anyone can use. It also gives you the benefit of having an easier time with fastening or removing bolts and nuts, even in cramped spaces.
The Benefits of a Ratchet Wrench
As mentioned earlier, there’s a difference between a conventional wrench and a ratchet. Below is a list of benefits when using a ratchet wrench.
- A ratchet can conveniently tighten or loosen fasteners even in tight spaces. A regular wrench cannot do this because you’d have to remove the wrench from the fastener head and then refit it when you swing.
- There is a variety of sizes of the sockets which makes the ratchet wrench work well with fasteners that also have varying sizes.
- The ratchet’s sockets come available in both standard and metric sizes. This makes it very versatile in terms of its abilities.
- A ratchet wrench allows you to work much faster since you are able to swing the handle in one direction and then back the opposite direction without having to remove it from the fastener.
- Some ratchets do not require a full swing. Instead, a simple tug or twist of your wrist will work fine.
- Ratchet wrenches don’t have difficulties working high vibrations or cold areas. They have a high level of insulation making them extremely convenient to work with.
- A lot of ratchets are designed with a textured grip on the handles to offer a greater sense of control. With these particular models, the risk of breakage and your hand slipping on the handle is exceptionally lower.
- The heads of ratchet wrenches are flexible. The ability to customize them with add-on accessories is also very easy. Some ratchet sets come with an extended arm, a few adopters, and removable joints.
- Replacing parts that get damaged is also a breeze. The heads and the size of the sockets can be changed as well, depending on the circumstances of course.
- It’s almost impossible to round off a nut or bolt when using a ratchet wrench thanks to its ability to use sockets that fit precisely. The only thing you should look out for is ensuring that you are working with the right size of the fastener.
These versatile set of tools can help repair and adjust quite a number of things. These key advantages of ratchet wrench make them utterly deserving of a place in your toolbox. They’re completely efficient and easy to use.
Best Ratchet Set Buyer’s Guide
Whenever you plan on getting a set of ratchets, it is important to invest in the best quality possible. You would want to buy a set that can offer you long periods of usage without having to deal with any difficulties along the way. To give you a better idea on what to prioritize, what to consider, and what to avoid, here are some tips when looking for the best ratchet wrench set.
Just like shopping for any kind of item, the quality should be the most important factor you prioritize. Popular brands and more expensive ones don’t necessarily translate to the best quality. A good tip is to do your research first before going to a store or browsing an online selling platform. Search for the ones made with vanadium steel as this tend to be stronger and have a longer lifespan. A high-quality ratchet should make your work easy, no matter the task and situation. And since ratchet sets are very versatile and serve a wide range of purpose, you are going to want one that will stand the test of time.
In the past, ratchet wrenches were very heavy and were quite difficult to handle. Today’s modern ratchets are equipped with state of the art features that not only makes it much easier to use, it looks better as well. When choosing a ratchet, opt for the ones with a slim body but has sheer functionality. There are also ratchet sets with grooved handles, making it ergonomically pleasing to use. Considering the design might seem a bit unnecessary, but if it offers you the comfort and ease of use, it is definitely worth it. After all, it should only be a one-time investment with many years of benefit.
The Best Value
A ratchet set complete with accessories might be the best value for one person, but one without any other accessories might be perfect for someone else. Finding the best value is very personal, so make sure to first determine your needs before you settle on what you think might be the most valuable.
Where It’s Made
It’s not surprising that the USA made ratcheting wrenches are more popular and more trusted. Not that those made in other countries are no good at all, it’s just that most of the time, a ratcheting wrench set made in the USA tends to be more high quality than a set made in China, for example. Of course, there may be a big difference in terms of the price, but you know you are paying for the quality anyway.
Things to avoid
Kinks in the Handle
Some brands that offer a more affordable option like to feature a “kinked” design on their ratchet handles. This particular kink is an offset between the pivot point and the grip and can be more noticed when it is viewed from the side. If you want nothing but the best ratchet handle, skip the kinks. In all honesty, this offset greatly increases the chances of a socket slipping off a fastener. Even if some may find it visually appealing, it doesn’t really have much sense in terms of functionality.
This is somewhat related to finding the best value for your money. If you are leaning towards a particular set just because it has more items and accessories, you might just regret buying it. After all, the reason why you are purchasing it is for the main product or set of products and not because of the accessories that it comes with. Having this kind of thinking will eventually lead you to a lot of disappointments because of bad shopping decisions. Accessories are add-ons which you can buy separately, so don’t feel pressured into buying the set that has more items.
In the end, determining the best ratchet set should all boil down to the type of work you intend to do. You decide on when and how to use a ratchet wrench so try to be more personal with your approach. And even if you don’t have the ideas for projects yet, adding a ratchet set to your toolbox will give way for some revolutionary work.
Best Ratchet Wrench Set Reviews
With the things to consider out of the way, it is time to focus on the different sets of ratchets available in the market. Taking a deep dive into each product set will allow you to understand the importance of this handy tool even more. And as you take your time to select which one will be best for you and your needs, remember that its functionality and quality should always be your top priority.
Today, we are going to dissect 5 different ratcheting sets from 5 different brands to see which one will give you the most value for your money.
Tool Guards 22-Piece Ratcheting Wrench Set + Bag
Good looks, better performance
The 22-piece ratcheting wrench set from Tool Guards is a stunning pack complete with a tool roll bag. It is a comprehensive collection of open-ended wrenches and ratchet wrenches which is a definite must-have for any roadside emergency. Made from high strength vanadium steel, this 22-piece wrench set is extremely strong and will definitely last a long time. Despite being relatively new to the tool business, no one can deny its quality. We can even say that it has got older, well-known brands a good run for their money. Each piece of the ratchet in this set is polished with a chrome mirror finish, making it a deluxe combo set that’s functional as well. It looks great and it works great. This ratcheting wrench set includes a combination of 11 SAE and 11 metric wrenches in a wide array of sizes. Compared with other ratchet sets, this one from Tool Guard is surprisingly larger and more versatile. Because it is a master set, it speeds up the work and makes emergency repairs a breeze. It has a slim profile that is not just for aesthetic purposes, but for ergonomic handling as well.
Easy, breezy work
This 22-piece set has a 72-tooth ratchet gear. It only requires a 5-degree working swing arc allowing the user to have the easiest time doing any task. It offers minimal effort with maximum results. It also has a full-drive box end that delivers undeniably reliable torque to either tighten or loosen any bolt without having to worry about rounding issues.
Neat and Organized
Thanks to the bonus tool roll case included in your purchases, you can keep all 22 pieces of wrenches neat and organized. The tool roll bag includes each wrench size printed on the individual slots which makes organizing easy. You can keep your precious toolset protected at all times as well as carry them around with no fuss at all.
- It’s unbelievably affordable for such a high-quality set of ratchets.
- Most wrench sets are made from any regular old steel while this one from Tool Guards is made from chrome vanadium steel.
- A regular chrome finish is normal for most wrench toolsets, but this one comes in a mirror finish which will carry its sparkle and shine longer than others. It’s also the least to rust compared with regular chrome finished tools.
- Unlike other sets of wrenches, this particular set has its very own custom-made tool roll with individual slots for each tool.
- The slim profile design on this Tool Guards ratchet set allows these wrenches to get into any nook and cranny without any problem.
- While the majority of wrench sets come in either SAE sizes or metric sizes only, this 22-piece pack comes in both metric sizes as well as SAE sizes.
- It has a lifetime warranty that ensures all 22 pieces against manufacturer defects.
- Despite the lifetime warranty though, this 22-piece ratcheting wrench set, like most sets, will eventually lose its shine with time and regular use.
1/4″, 9/32″, 5/16″, 11/32″, 3/8″, 7/16″, 1/2″, 9/16″, 5/8″, 11/16″, and 3/4″
6mm, 8mm, 9mm, 10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 16mm, 17mm, and 18mm
16 x 3.5 x 2.7 inches
This amazing product gets a perfect rating from us simply because they certainly outdid themselves in creating the best ratchet set for the money. Whether you are a homeowner, a mechanic, or an automotive technician, this Tool Guards 22-piece chrome vanadium steel ratcheting wrench set is the ideal toolset for any situation.
GearWrench 20-Piece Ratcheting Wrench Set
High quality and high-strength
This set of 20 pieces of ratcheting wrenches from GearWrench is one of the strongest ones you can find in the market. It meets and exceeds the requirements from ANSI, DIN, and federal torque specifications. It includes a surface drive box end that provides a very strong grip on fasteners and virtually prevents rounding.
Sleek and smart design
This particular set features a bright and high polish finish, making it quick and easy to clean. It has a slim shank design that allows easy access to fasteners in tight spots while the ratcheting box end moves the fastener with great speed thanks to its fine tooth ratchet. When swinging the wrench, it only takes a small 5-degree arc to control it while avoiding unnecessary adjustments.
The GearWrench 20-piece ratcheting wrench set has a combination of ratchets ready to secure bolts and nuts of all sizes and models, making it a perfect entry-level set. It allows you to work with both SAE standard measurements as well as metric measurements. With these 20 essential tools, you can easily tackle a variety of household and automotive jobs from small to large. With less effort required, you get more work done in half the time.
- This 20-piece ratcheting wrench set is capable of withstanding a large amount of pressure applied to it. Opening rusted nuts and bolts become just a piece of cake when using this particular set of tools.
- The ratchets are equipped with such a fine tooth that it allows the users to work quicker and easier.
- Known to be quite popular in the wrench scene, this set of GearWrench tools will satisfy everyone, be it a mechanic or a simple hobbyist.
- This GearWrench ratcheting wrench set has the life warranty of being free of defects in its material and workmanship. This warranty also allows an unsatisfied user the option to return it to a GearWrench Distributor or contact the Apex Tool Group Customer Service USA.
- Even with the assurance of the company’s lifetime warranty, the product is still prone to corrosion over time and use.
- Although it is quite known that this set is very strong, there have been reports of problems regarding the material used.
1/4”, 5/16”, 11/32”, 3/8”, 7/16”, 1/2”, 9/16”, 5/8”, 11/16”, and 3/4”
6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 16mm, 17mm, and 18mm
19 x 12 x 2 inches
The authenticity of GearWrench is, no doubt, one of the reasons why they are so popular and well-received by consumers. With more than 50 original patented designs under their belt, it’s no wonder that the company is doing so well in the business. Their high-quality products, including this 20-piece ratchet wrench set, together with their amazing lifetime warranty offers, makes GearWrench one of the best ratchet wrench brands.
Craftsman 20-Piece Ratcheting Wrench Set
Established and well-loved
This Craftsman ratcheting wrench review would not be complete without mentioning that it was previously known as Stanley Black and Decker. The brand has been in the business for a solid century and has been delivering quality tools.
Simple, but does the job
The Craftsman 20-piece ratcheting wrench set has a simple design with a 12-degree offset box which allows for an ample knuckle clearance. The ratcheting box end also lets you work as quickly as possible as there is no need for any lifting in between turns. Whether you are trying to reach a deep part of a compartment or appliance, the faster will remain in contact until the turning is finished.
Up to the standards
This ratchet set includes both inch and metric wrenches made from quality alloyed steel. It has fine tooth ratcheting action that turns faster using a 5-degree arch only. This set of open-end ratcheting wrench delivers torque and grabs bolts fast.
- 10 of the most common metric sizes in ratcheting wrenches are included in this Craftsman 20-piece set. Add to that the other half that comes in SAE measurements and you got yourself a well-rounded tool set.
- Working with these tools is quick and easy thanks to the ratcheting box end wrenches.
- The tools all have a sleek design with a reinforced handle which makes getting a good grip much easier. It also reduces the chances of injury while working on a task.
- It has the Craftsman Forever Guarantee as a warranty.
- Although this is a case-to-case basis issue, a lot of customers have complained about the product’s quality.
- Only the metric sizes of this set work with a 5-degree arc while turning.
1/4", 5/16”, 11/32”, 3/8”, 7/16”, 1/2”, 9/16”, 5/8”, 11/16” and 3/4"
6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 16mm, 17mm and 18mm
20.9 x 15.7 x 1.5 inches
As one of the most loved brands for wrenches out there, Craftsman is a good choice. Their amazing handy tools have proved to its customers how it was able to stand the test of time. They deliver quality products every single time so it isn’t far from reality that this could be the best Craftsman ratchet set you could ever own.
HORUSDY 20-Piece Ratcheting Wrench Set
Affordability in quality
This is quite a cheap ratcheting wrench set, let’s be real. But don’t let its affordability scare you. The HORUSDY 20-piece ratchet set is actually very high in quality. It has a rugged chrome vanadium steel material with a chrome mirror polished finish and a slim profile. Who would have thought that such a cheap ratchet set can look and perform this good?
Not only is the HORUSY set a stunner, it is also equipped with a clever design. It has a 72-tooth ratchet gear that only requires a 5-degree working swing arc. Its full-drive box ends gives a reliable strong torque to easily tighten or loosen any bolt. There’s absolutely no rounding at all.
- It’s perfect for automotive use.
- It’s heavy duty. The material used to construct the complete set of wrenches is very high in quality.
- It’s affordable.
- The HORUSDY warranty only lasts for a year. That is quite a short period of time especially in comparison to the warranties of other ratchet wrench brands.
- Although it includes a carry case, the material and construction of it looks very cheap and might not last a long while.
1/4″, 5/16″, 11/32″, 3/8″, 7/16″, 1/2″, 9/16″, 5/8″, 11/16″, and 3/4″
6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 16mm, 17mm, and 18mm
16 x 3.2 x 11.5 inches
This is the best affordable ratchet there is. If you need a good quality set that not only functions well but still manages to look appealing, this is a serious contender. Beginners who are looking to start building their toolkit will probably benefit the most out of the HORUSDY ratcheting set mainly because it’s cheaper than most brands.
Kesler 20-Piece Ratcheting Wrench Set
Durable for any deed
The Kesler 20-piece ratcheting wrench set is designed with a corrosion-resistant full polish finish. It’s made from quality chrome vanadium alloy steel which ensures its long lasting durability. It has a 72-tooth ratchet gear that requires as little as a 5-degree swing arc to move the fastener. The full-drive box ends deliver a good amount of torque to tighten and loosen any bolt while preventing any rounding.
This 20-piece ratchet set is a total package with it having both SAE and metric wrenches. Each wrench provides a sure fit on fasteners and offers multiple options when working around obstructions or tight spaces.
- The Kesler ratchet set is made with high-quality materials and finished with a full polish.
- It has a guaranteed lifetime warranty.
- It comes with a roll-up tool bag to keep things organized. This also allows for a portable transportation.
- The wrenches need to be flipped over with each rotation just to engage the faster.
1/4", 5/16", 11/32”, 3/8", 7/16", 1/2", 9/16", 5/8", 11/16", and 3/4"
6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 15mm, 16mm, 17mm, and 18mm
17.6 x 5.7 x 2.2 inches
The Kesler 20-piece ratcheting wrench set is good for beginners or hobbyists to start or expand their toolkit. It might not be the best ratchet set brand but it certainly does the job. The full lifetime warranty also gives this set another factor worth considering.
Buyers guide winner and Best Ratchet Wrench Brand
For this ratcheting wrench review, we’ve only chosen one set and one brand all in all. As much as we wanted to proclaim two separate brands, The Tool Guards 22-Piece Chrome Vanadium Steel Ratcheting Wrench Set wins this round with flying colors. How they designed this set to be totally easy to use while being durable as it can be is beyond our words. Add to that the lifetime warranty and we are pretty sure you’ll realize how this is such a trustworthy product that’s worth the buck. And while the rest of the brands that we’ve reviewed in this article are all in the running, here are a few others that we feel are worth mentioning.
- Tekton Ratcheting Wrench Set
- Kobalt Ratchet Wrench Set
- Stanley Ratcheting Wrench Set
- Apollo Ratcheting Wrench Set
Overall, who makes the best ratchet set shouldn’t be your only focus. There are a lot of different sets of ratcheting wrenches and there will always be something new to come out, so it’s important that you know how to break down all the factors in order to choose the best one for you. However, for now, this ratcheting wrench review should be enough to help you decide the best ratchet set of 2018.