Automotive Ratcheting Box Wrenches

All wrenches are constructed to tighten and loosen fasteners. A ratcheting wrench is used when working with nuts and bolts in a limited space. Whether you need a ratcheting tool for DIY tasks or professional jobs, you can get a quality wrench set that caters to different requirements; ratcheting box wrench sets are available in ranges of 4 pieces to 16.

What is a ratcheting wrench?

A ratchet wrench is made up of a wrench body that has a switching assembly and a gear unit on one end. This side is responsible for the ratcheting while the other end locks onto a fastener to tighten or loosen it. You can fit removable sockets on the switching assembly to suit the task. Ratcheting wrenches are available in standard and metric sizes. Some box wrenches have pivot ends that make them suitable when working in extremely tight spaces.

It is possible to get a non-switchable ratcheting wrench, but in this instance, you will need a whole wrench set because you can’t remove the fastening components. Instead of the switching assembly, this box wrench has a spring loaded, engaging member on one side. Also called a unidirectional wrench, the non-switchable offers the advantage of less moving parts, meaning fewer chances of breaking. Combination, open-end, and stubby are other wrench alternatives to look at.

How does a ratcheting wrench work?

The ratchet wrench allows you to apply force on a fastener without the need to remove and reset when turning the wrench. When working, you set up the switching assembly in such a way that, when the wrench switch moves, so does the engaging member. As the wrench turns in different directions, it engages one side of the geared unit. A small spring in the wrench puts on force on the engaging member, and that allows the gear to engage when it turns in one direction and slip when it goes the other way.

What is a ratcheting flare nut wrench?

In ratcheting tasks that involve fasteners with delicate materials, you require a box wrench that won’t cause damage. Ratcheting flare nut wrenches are designed to generate the necessary force and grip when fastening or loosening nuts without compromising the shape of the fasteners.

How do you use a socket with a ratcheting wrench?
  • Picking the appropriate parts for ratcheting is the first step towards using your wrench properly. Know which size you need by checking the measurements of the fastener you will be ratcheting. There are usually size markings, so you just have to match one to the other.
  • The next step is fastening it into the ratcheting wrench. Ensure that the drive squares on both tools correspond in size. If they don’t match, an adaptor will be needed to connect them. Link the two drive squares and press until the bearing snaps into position.
  • Before using the ratcheting wrench, ensure that it turns in the right direction. Hold the newly attached piece in one hand then move the handle of the box wrench left and right. It should turn clockwise to fasten and anticlockwise to loosen.