What Impact Wrench Should I Buy? (Best Impact Gun of 2022)

What Impact Wrench Should I Buy? (Best Impact Gun of 2022)

A mechanic’s tool chest always includes an impact wrench. There is an overwhelming number of choices on the market nowadays. When faced with these choices, users get confused and ask themselves, what impact wrench should I buy? or Are cordless impact wrenches better than corded impact wrenches? or Is an impact wrench better than an Impact driver? When choosing the right tool, you have to consider your needs and your budget.

No matter whether you’re trying to remove stubborn wheel lugs or salvage an engine block that hasn’t been used in quite some time, an impact wrench is just the tool for the job.

You can use these tools to loosen lug nuts on cars and trucks, among other uses. There is a possibility that you should be opting for cordless impact wrenches instead of tethering your tool to the power source.

Even though you can remove rusted nuts and bolts with just a simple wrench, why will you let yourself go through so much trouble when the job is easily done with an impact wrench??

In addition to their use for many different tasks, impact wrenches can also be invaluable to those working in the most demanding markets, such as automotive repair, construction, heavy equipment maintenance, and even construction.

We will discuss the most significant power tool and its varieties in this article.

What is an Impact wrench?

An impact wrench is a powerful tool that is used to loosen or tighten lug nuts and large bolts, as well as to unlock or repair fasteners.

Impact wrenches are able to do this by using a mechanism similar to a hammer, as well as having a similar shape. This is caused by the motor accelerating the rotating mass, which then delivers the energy to the output shaft known as the anvil, which results in the high torque impact.

what is an impact wrench
Impact Wrench

Impact wrenches come in three basic types: air-powered (pneumatic), electrical-powered (corded), and battery-powered (cordless). All three are easy to operate. It is an essential tool when it comes to repairing cars, building machine tools, or even having to undertake large construction projects.

What type of Impact wrench should I buy – Corded OR Cordless Impact Wrench?

What Impact Wrench Should i Buy
What Impact Wrench Should I Buy

It appears that power tool manufacturers are not making any effort to upgrade and increase the torque of corded impact wrenches to make sure that they are as powerful as they can be. However, the corded impact provides adequate functionality to work with 90% of fasteners using corded impact, although they can be a bit big, bulky, and heavy.

It’s still a good idea to get a quality corded impact unless you are specifically seeking cordless features. Ridgid corded tools weigh approximately half as much as cordless Ridgid tools, and they do not require batteries or chargers to operate.

A battery-operated cordless impact wrench can continue to operate for a considerable period of time. The hours of operation of these tools depend also on the battery’s capacity. Because of this, you can safely use this wrench for an extended period of time without getting tired of it.

To choose the best cordless impact wrench with interchangeable batteries, you should go for ones suitable for your needs. Listed below are a number of cordless impact wrenches which will hopefully assist you in finding the right one for you.

What Impact Wrench Should I Buy At a Glance:

  1. M12 Fuel Stubby 3/8″ Impact Wrench
  2. Neiko 1/2 Cordless Impact Wrench
  3. Dewalt Impact Wrench with Detent Anvil
  4. Makita 4 Speed Brushless Impact Wrench
  5. Ingersoll Rand Pneumatic Impact Gun
  6. Ridgid Octane 18V Impact Wrench
  7. Porter-Cable Corded Impact Wrench
  8. Craftsman Corded ½ Impact Wrench
  9. Hammerhead 1/2 Inch Impact Wrench
  10. Bauer Heavy-duty Impact Wrench

Best Cordless Impact Wrenches You can Buy Today


M12 Fuel Stubby Impact Wrench
M12 Fuel Stubby Impact Wrench

M12 Fuel Stubby 3/8″ Impact Wrench

Best 3/8″ Impact Wrench

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎2554-20 | Power Source: Cordless | Torque: 250 Foot Pounds | Weight: ‎2 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.9 |

REASONS TO BUY

Very compact and powerful

Lightweight

Affordable

Auto-shutoff mode reduces over fastening and increases productivity

REASONS TO AVOID

Very light duty

A most powerful compact cordless impact wrench, the M12 FUEL 3/8″ Impact Wrench provides up to 1,400 in-lbs of torque. And it’s the best 3/8″ impact wrench on the market in its class. The compact size and weight of the system allow it to fit into small areas, which provides users with greater control, less exertion and enhanced productivity when performing tasks that are particularly challenging.

In short, using a right-angle impact wrench has its advantages in terms of more power and having a smaller profile when compared to a regular 18-volt impact wrench.

The 4-Mode Drive Control makes it easy for you to easily adjust the speed and torque according to your preferences. The Stubby Impacts are able to handle various fastening applications with exceptional control, power, and precision and at an unmatched rate of speed and power that will not be hindered by any limitations.

A brushless motor combined with REDLINK technology gives you an industry-leading 250 foot-pounds of torque that will break the strongest nuts with ease and allow you to remove even the most stubborn bolts and fasteners.

NEIKO Cordless Impact Wrench
NEIKO 10878A 20V 1/2-Inch-Drive (Image credit: Amazon)

Neiko 1/2 Cordless Impact Wrench

Best Impact Wrench for Stuck nuts and Bolts

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎10878A | Power Source: Battery | Torque: ‎300 Foot Pounds | Weight: 10.88 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.6 |

REASONS TO BUY

Very high RPM – 3000

Recognized for outstanding performance

Budget-friendly

Different torque ranges for dual fastening

Faster charging capabilities and battery indicator

REASONS TO AVOID

It’s Bulky!

Limited 1-year warranty

It may not come with batteries

The Neiko Impact Wrench has been designed to handle heavy-duty jobs and provide lifetime use for experts and DIYers. As a fastener, the tool delivers 300 ft-lbs of torque and as a bolt breaker, it delivers nearly twice as much torque when it is time to remove the bolt.

It is assured that the Neiko cordless battery-powered impact wrench will deliver maximum torque on every nut and bolt it touches. A powerful motor with a frequency of 0-3500 rpm allows it to maintain a constant speed, making it the best impact wrench for stuck nuts and bolts.  This budget cordless impact wrench has a no-load speed range of 0 – 3,000 rpm, making it ideal for applications requiring high torque while keeping its control.

On top of that, there is a variable-speed trigger on the wrench head, in addition to a forward and reverse switch, as well as an indicator light that shows the battery level. Having a belt hook at the base of the portable and durable impact wrench makes it very easy to transport from one job to another.

DEWALT 20V MAX XR Impact Wrench DCF899B
Dewalt Max XR Impact Wrench DCF899B (Image credit: Amazon)

Dewalt Impact Wrench with Detent Anvil

Best High Torque Impact Wrench

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: DCF899B | Power Source: ‎Battery-Powered | Torque: ‎2000 Inch Pounds | Weight: ‎6.4 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.8 |

REASONS TO BUY

High torque for the design

Powerful

Compact design

Users can choose the speed with a speed regulator

REASONS TO AVOID

An ordinary household may find it a bit costly

Battery drain issue

Powered by the DCF899 brushless motor, the Dewalt impact wrench is one of the best high torque impact wrenches on the market; it can provide 700 ft-lbs of maximum torque and 1200 ft-lbs of maximum breakaway torque.

There is an anvil included with detent pins for applications that need to be fastened. Due to their multi-speed control for applying a variety of applications, these impact wrenches are more effective than many other similar impact tools.

The machine comes with a three-speed regulator, so it is very easy to use. The LED lights automatically dim after 20 seconds, so the user can work in areas where there is no lighting, without sacrificing visibility. You can adjust the speed according to your particular task. If you need to adjust the tark

In terms of weight, the tool weighs about seven pounds and is about eight inches long. As a result, it is extremely durable and cannot easily be broken or sheared.

There is no battery or charger included with the kit, but they are worth the price. As you work in a dark environment you will have added comfort, safety, and speed control.


Makita XWT15Z 18V LXT
Makita XWT15Z 18V LXT (Image credit: Amazon)

Makita 4 Speed Brushless Impact Wrench

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎XWT15Z | Power Source: ‎Battery-Powered | Torque: ‎‎240 ft-lbs | Weight: ‎‎3.1 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.8 |

REASONS TO BUY

Brushless motor

Makita’s Extreme Protection Technology

4 speeds for fastening control

Lithium-ion battery

REASONS TO AVOID

Underpowered and low torque value

Makita’s 18V LXT offers improved fastening control, is ideal for applications in the automotive sector, and is known as the best 1/2″ Impact wrench. Combined with speed control, it ensures unmatched fastening performance.

The Makita brushless motor makes this tool able to run for a longer period of time. It offers 240 horsepower and 430 foot-pounds of torque that are guaranteed to break any nut with its brushless motor.

When the fastener is sufficiently loose, the system offers a variety of rotation auto-stop modes that enable it to operate more efficiently.

In addition to the versatile design of the Makita impact wrench, a 4-speed power selection switch allows for precise control of the fastening process. When the full-speed mode is in use, the trigger pull will be reduced in order to reach full speed.

The Star Protection computer controls work with Star Protection batteries, allowing them to transmit data in real-time while simultaneously monitoring conditions during use to prevent overloads, over-discharges, and overheating.

This enables tools and batteries with Star Protection to last longer. Water and dust are channeled away from key components under harsh conditions using Extreme Protection Technology.


Ingersoll Rand 2235TiMAX-R 12” Drive Air Impact Wrench
Ingersoll Rand 2235Ti 1/2” Air Impact Wrench (Image credit: Amazon)

Ingersoll Rand Pneumatic Impact Gun

Best Air Impact Wrench for Automotive

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎2235TiMAX-R | Power Source: ‎‎Air Powered | Torque: ‎1350 ft-lbs | Weight: ‎‎4.6 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.8 |

REASONS TO BUY

Built to be rugged and easy to operate with good ergonomics

Powerful motor that’s ideal for home and professional use

Compact and lightweight

Regulator that adjusts speed in four ways

REASONS TO AVOID

Price is higher than similar impact wrenches.

By reducing hand fatigue and offering the best power-to-weight ratio in its class, the Ingersoll Rand Air Powered Impact Wrench makes a productive workday possible. This is the best air impact wrench for the automotive, oil and gas, rail, heavy equipment, and car/truck industries.

The power source of this pneumatic wrench is an air compressor, and the air compressor is connected to the air wrench through an air hose. In addition to its versatile applications, the Ingersoll Rand (green) also adds a custom look to your toolbox while making it easy for you to spot the tool quickly on any job, automobile garage, or construction site.

Ingersoll Rand’s twin-hammer impact mechanism delivers up to 1350 ft-lbs of torque to the toughest bolts. These air impact wrenches are equipped with titanium hammer cases to protect their internal components. Impact- and chemical-resistant housing protects against drops and chemical exposure.

A steel wear plate protects the tool from repeated drops; All components, mechanisms, and functions have been rigorously tested for long-lasting performance. With its four power settings and one-handed forward-and-reverse mechanism, it’s easy to switch between power modes and adjust output to suit different tasks.


Ridgid R86011B OCTANE 18V Impact Wrench
Ridgid 18V Impact Wrench (Image credit: Amazon)

Ridgid Octane 18V Impact Wrench

Best Impact Wrench for Car work

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎R86011B | Power Source: ‎Battery-Powered | Torque: ‎‎450 Foot Pounds | Weight: ‎4 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.7 |

REASONS TO BUY

Comfortable and vibration-isolating grip

Easily replaceable socket system

Sturdy and lightweight construction

Three LEDs are included for even more illumination

REASONS TO AVOID

Limitations on the duration of operation

Large sockets might be cast in shadow by the light

Whether you’re working in a garage or on an automotive job site, this is the best impact wrench for car work. There may be times when the lights in brightly lit areas don’t cast enough light into the areas that you need it.

As a solution to this concern, Ridgid added three LED lights to the front body of the unit. As soon as you press the switch or trigger, the LEDs will illuminate. With an RPM range of 0-2600 and torque of nearly 300 ft.-lbs., mode 3 renders the highest performance.

The extension consists of a hog ring and a socket connector so you can retain the extension or connect it to a socket if you wish.

As a result, this cordless impact wrench for changing tires can handle vibrations and the hand remains protected. Further, the battery is thoroughly protected so that it will not get damaged when being bounced around in the back of the car or tool bag.

From medium-duty trucks to simple lug nuts, it is one of the best rigid impact wrenches that can handle many different vehicles.


Best Corded Impact Wrench

As compared to cordless impact wrenches, corded impact wrenches are lighter. They are easier to handle with both hands. A corded impact wrench provides constant power. With this, you can work more efficiently and with more precision because they have more torque and power. Let’s look at some of the best corded impact wrenches on the market.


PORTER-CABLE cored Impact Wrench
Porter-cable Impact Wrench 7.5 amp (Image credit: Amazon)

Porter-Cable Corded Impact Wrench

Best corded Impact Wrench for Lugnuts

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎PCE211 | Power Source: ‎‎Corded-electric | Torque: ‎‎450 Inch Pounds | Weight: ‎7.5 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.6 |

REASONS TO BUY

LED auto lights

Easy to use, no fatigue at all

Rocker switch for forward/reverse

REASONS TO AVOID

Torque range is low

The PORTER-CABLE, the best-corded impact wrench for lugnuts is equipped with a 7.5 amp motor, which provides plenty of power for all kinds of Jobsite tasks. In order to guarantee high productivity, 240 ft-lbs of torque are delivered with 2,700 IPM and 2,200 RPM, ensuring fast application speeds and superior productivity.

An important feature of this impact wrench is its cast metal gear housing which dissipates heat effectively and adds to its longevity. For scaffolding fitting workers, soft-grip handles provide a comfortable grip that reduces fatigue.

With 7.5 amps of power, it’s one of the best electric impact wrenches available. By offering the PA6-GF30 (a polyamide material reinforced by 30 percent glass fiber), Porter-Cable has delivered an impact wrench that is exceptionally sturdy in use. Power cables are well-secured. The cord is easy to handle. It comes with a thick and robust aluminum housing.


Craftsman Electric Impact Wrench (CMEF901)
Craftsman Electric Impact Wrench (CMEF901) (Image credit: Amazon)

Craftsman Corded ½ Impact Wrench

Best Impact Wrench for DIY use

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎CMEF901 | Power Source: ‎Corded-electric | Torque: ‎450 Foot Pounds | Weight: ‎8.95 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.7 |

REASONS TO BUY

Solid RPM and BPM

Easy to mount

3-year limited warranty

REASONS TO AVOID

No variable settings

It is the best impact wrench for DIY use if you work on kitchen and lawn decorations projects. Featuring 2,200 RPM and 2,700 BPM, the Craftsman impact wrench delivers consistent and reliable performance.

One of the advantages of a 1/2-inch electric impact wrench is its hog ring anvil, which allows you to change sockets easily.

I think this is a good deal for the price you will pay since it has 450 ft-lbs of torque. There is a torque of 2,700 inches per minute on this tool, which requires less effort to remove larger fasteners.


Hammerhead 7.5-Amp 12 Inch Impact Wrench
Hammerhead 7.5-Amp 1/2 Inch Impact Wrench

Hammerhead 1/2 Inch Impact Wrench

Best Corded Impact Wrench for Stuck nuts and Bolts

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: ‎HDIW075 | Power Source: ‎‎Corded Electric | Torque: ‎‎240 Foot Pounds | Weight: ‎8 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.5 |

REASONS TO BUY

Lightweight and compact

Budget-friendly price

Durable all-metal housing

Non-slip grip makes it easy to use

REASONS TO AVOID

It does not have LED working lights

With a 1/2-inch drive, Hammhead provides secure socket retention and high torque. This impact is regarded as the best corded impact wrench for stuck nuts and bolts which has 240 ft. lbs of torque to ease rusted-on or overtightened lug nuts.

Especially good for installing auto/machine parts, heavy maintenance, and fasteners. This Impact Wrench comes with an ergonomic design that provides a comfortable grip during heavy-duty applications, and this ergonomic design enhances handling. The machine comes with a powerful motor that provides 2,200 RPMs and 2,700 IPMs at 7.5 amps.

Moreover, the switch is easily operated using two fingers for intuitive forward and reverse motions. A 120V outlet is required for the device to work properly.

The weight of this impact wrench is lighter than the weight of most other impact wrenches that can be found on the market. Additionally, it means that you won’t feel fatigued for a longer period without feeling like you’re straining your muscles.


Bauer 64120 12 Inch Impact Wrench
Bauer 64120 1/2 Inch Impact Wrench (Image credit: Amazon)

Bauer Heavy-duty Impact Wrench

Best Heavy-duty Corded Impact Wrench

SPECIFICATIONS

Model: 64120 | Power Source: ‎Corded Electric | Torque: ‎1050 ft-lbs. | Weight: ‎‎9.14 pounds | Amazon Ratings: 4.3 |

REASONS TO BUY

8.5 Amp motor

Ideal for high impact projects

Protector rubber nosepiece for rims

Budget-Friendly

REASONS TO AVOID

A wrench with high torque need expertise

Bauer Impact delivers 1050 ft. lbs. of bolt breakaway torque to effectively remove stubborn fasteners. It’s a power drill with bolt breakaway torque of 1050 ft. lbs. that can handle stubborn fasteners, making Bauer the Best Heavy-Duty Corded Impact Wrench, a worthwhile purchase.

This impact wrench is designed with high-impact housing and heavy-duty metal gears to ensure it will hold up to heavy shop use.

During the time you are working on the project, an integrated rubber nosepiece will protect the wheels.  The high-impact housing and all-metal gearbox make this option suitable for handling tough tasks and is highly durable enough to keep it from breaking down.

The motor, which has a power rating of 8.5 amps, delivers 1050 foot-pounds of torque for bolt breakaway. There is a heavy-duty hog ring installed around the anvil in order to keep the socket securely in place.

The sturdy metal gear construction ensures high durability, as well as a longer life Rugged rubber nose and lightweight high impact housing, provide enhanced impact resistance.


Shopping Tips – Best Impact Wrench to Buy in 2022

Torque: Torque is a measure of the work required to achieve a certain level of rotation. Torque is measured in ft-lbs. For most tasks, you’ll want an impact wrench with at least 300 ft-lbs of torque.

It is a force applied over a specified distance and is measured in foot-pounds. If you apply more torque to a nut, it will take longer for the nut to rotate than if less torque is applied.

RPM is a measure of speed and can be used to determine how fast the tool will complete its task. For example, if you have an impact wrench with 2,000 RPM, it means that the tool will rotate 2,000 times per minute. This factor affects how long it takes for the nut to rotate and therefore contributes to whether you have selected an impact wrench with enough power for your required task.

IPM (Impacts per minute): IPM measures the rate at which an impact wrench delivers blows. If you plan on using your wrench for long periods of time, make sure it offers an IPM rating that won’t cause significant vibration or fatigue on your hand and arm muscles.

IPM is essentially the number of times the hammer hits per minute. The higher the number of impacts per minute, the more efficient your work will be completed.

Weight: When choosing an impact wrench make sure the weight won’t cause fatigue when using it for extended periods of time or while working overhead or in tight spaces.

A lightweight model will also allow you to work more efficiently than a heavier one because it takes less effort to use. The weight of tools can make a big difference in how much work you can complete in one day.

If your tool is too heavy, it can also be more dangerous to use as it becomes harder to control as it kicks back when being used. There are some tools available with anti-vibration technology that reduces this kick.

Selecting the Right motor: Torque, RPM, and IPM are all important if you want to know how well a motor performs. The motor of a power tool is one of the most important features when it comes to its place among the best power tools on the market. 

These wrenches come with both brushless and non-brushless motor options so you can determine what kind of wrench best fits your needs. When a tool is more powerful, it is likely to have more uses since it can accomplish a greater number of tasks since the power makes it possible.

Mostly, Impact Wrenches are often equipped with brushless motors because they are more powerful and efficient than conventional motors. As well as being more efficient, brushless motors also last for longer periods of time. A non-brushless motor, on the other hand, is more cost-effective and less bulky.

Safety features: Always look for safety features such as:

  • Trigger locking button: This prevents accidental starting, which could cause injury or damage.
  • Built-in surge protector: Another thing that can help make your impact wrench safer is a built-in surge protector. This will allow you to use the tool without having to worry about electrical surges, which can be a big problem if you live in an area with lots of thunderstorms or other inclement weather
  • Anti-vibration rubber handle: When using an impact wrench for long periods of time, vibration can really take its toll on your body. Having rubber molded onto the handle helps absorb this vibration.

A good grip requires an Adequate drive size: If you have ever used an Impact wrench, you are familiar with the struggle that comes with trying to find something that will last for a long time. Impact wrenches come in a variety of sizes and shapes depending on what kind of bolt or screw it is used.

Considering their shape and size, they will certainly require a good grip, so make sure you keep this in mind as well. With cordless wrenches, you usually have the option of choosing between several different drive sizes.

Ideally, a good grip should have easy-to-hold triggers, and raised or rubberized surfaces that make it possible for you to handle them with just your fingers. When the drive size is larger, you will get more torque. Because of this, it makes more sense to use 3/4-inch drivers.


Is an Impact wrench worth it?

In the automotive industry, impact wrenches are widely used in order to remove and replace damaged parts. When it comes to replacing a car’s tires, lug nuts are usually used the most. In addition, impact wrenches can also be very helpful for a number of tasks – from home repair to everything else in between.

As a matter of fact, the tool can be used in many other applications, such as assembling automobiles, assembling heavy equipment, maintaining machinery, building machine tools, and undertaking construction projects. If the situation is right, it can even turn out to be an indispensable tool for completing things.

Conclusion

There are many types of impact wrenches available, from mini impact wrenches to air impact wrenches. Choosing the best impact wrench can be challenging, but there are a few important factors to consider:

Having these relatively inexpensive tools available can really come in handy if you’re going to be doing regular repairs on your car or if you’ll need to replace your tires from time to time.

For those garages where space is limited or where the user’s muscles are severely strained, the cordless impact wrench like Milwaukee M12 is a great choice. Having these tools such as a modified impact wrench in hand means you do not have to pull a cord out of your wall socket or use a lot of muscle energy to loosen and tighten even the heaviest of bolts.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much torque do I need in an impact wrench?

When a driver has a torque of 1500-1800 pounds force, it is typical that they run at a higher RPM. However, to remove lug nuts from a vehicle, an impact wrench requires about 500 ft-lbs of torque, which is adequate to remove a lug nut.

Usually, the amount of torque required to remove a lug nut is the same amount of torque that was used to tighten it. In other words, if the bolt is overtightened, then you may need more torque than 500 ft pounds. Yet, if a tool can lift more than 1500 lbs, it will perform 95% of the work much faster than a tool with less torque and a slower speed.

Which is the stronger impact driver or impact wrench?

A good impact driver can spin up to 3600 RPM at its peak. A typical impact wrench has a torque rating of 700 ft-lbs, while a standard impact driver has a torque rating of 110 ft-lbs. A torque wrench provides more power and torque than an impact driver for tightening or loosening bolts. These tools are typically under 2000 RPM. Air tools change the trend. A mid-torque air impact wrench can reach 8,000 RPM or more.

Do I really need an impact wrench?

An impact wrench can be very useful when it comes to auto repairs, maintenance of heavy machinery and equipment, equipment assembly and manufacturing, and large construction projects.

Do impact wrenches snap bolts?

With an impact wrench, it is absolutely impossible to break bolts – in fact, it will actually be easier to break the drive of the wrench than to loosen the bolts. It is advisable not to apply constant leverage, which will cause the threaded shank to crack, in order to break a “frozen” nut or bolt free of corrosion.

Bahram Shahab
Bahram here! A certified Electrical Engineer who knows his way around using power tools like a professional. My journey of using these robust tools started back when I graduated. Since then, I have finished almost a dozen DIY woodworking jobs. Apart from that, I have developed this habit of jotting down my personal experience about using a specific tool. So, I write on them to help the community in the best possible way.