Best Torque Screwdrivers for the Money | 5 Reviews and Buyers Guide

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If you are researching torque screwdrivers for the first time, you may be bewildered by terminology and new technology. With so many models available, choosing the best torque screwdriver can be confusing. Here is our handpicked list of torque screwdrivers. Please look at each product to learn more about it and find the one that best suits your needs.

 

torque screwdrivers

Torque screwdrivers are for screws, while torque wrenches are for bolts. They work on the same principle to tighten to a specific tightness, where there’s no room for your best guess.

Given the level of accuracy needed for some jobs, you must select the right torque screwdriver. The good news is there are now several on the market and within most people’s budgets. However, not all are made to the same standards, and there’s a difference in their accuracy.

We have tested and reviewed 5 of the best currently available in this article. We have arranged them into an easy-to-read comparison table, written a detailed report on each, and selected our Best Overall and Best Value picks.

At the bottom of the page, you’ll see our Buyers Guide, which we have written so you can better understand your needs and what features your new tool must have. Remember, it’s not about buying the cheapest or most expensive. This is about your requirements.
It’s almost impossible to recommend tools for each person as we all have varying tasks to use them for. So, this is why we take the time to thoroughly research each tool and write the report and buyer guide so that you can make a purchase right for you.


Comparison of our favorite torque screwdrivers

 


5 Best Torque Screwdrivers – Reviews

 

1. CDI Torque 401SM (Best Overall)

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Easy to read window scale
  • Has strong and secure magnets
  • Accurate
Cons
  • Expensive

 

2. Capri Tools CP21075

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Very accurate
  • Calibration certificate included
  • Includes case and accessories
  • Warranty
Cons
  • Question marks over durability

 

3. NEIKO PRO 10573B (Best Value)

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Versatile
  • Easy to read
  • Accurate
  • 20 detachable bits included
Cons
  • One of the shafts is exceptionally long.

 

4. Wheeler 553556

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Easy to use
  • Reliable & accurate
  • Wide torque range
Cons
  • The analog version can be hard to use

 

5. CDI Torque Products

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Certificate of calibration
  • Highly functional
  • Ergonomic handle
Cons
  • Check torque range for your task

 


Torque Screwdrivers Buyers Guide

Our buyer’s guide intends to give you ideas to consider when deciding which torque screwdriver is right for you. We’ll walk you through their features that can either add value or diminish the quality of the tool.

Torque range

This is the most critical aspect to consider when purchasing a torque screwdriver.  

It’s important because it determines the tool’s overall accuracy and what projects you will use it on. Torque screwdrivers are accurate from 20% of their max range to 100% of their max capacity, so a tool with a max torque range of 10 inch-pounds would be inaccurate on anything under two inch-pounds.

Knowing the maximum range of the tool is very important because you can damage internal components if you exceed it, and it can destroy the torque screwdriver. Make sure you know what torque level your task requires and use a torque screwdriver that is accurate within that range, and you will ok.

Increments

Many torque screwdrivers are the same and can work to the same maximum range. However, having a tool you can adjust in smaller increments is likely more helpful.

For example, if you have two torque screwdrivers with a range between 10-50 inch-pounds and regularly do tasks requiring 40-inch-pounds of torque, both will be good. But, if you have a job that requires 37-inch-pounds of torque, having one that adjusts in smaller increments will be needed.

Those more versatile torque screwdrivers are more money, but they are more accurate and will generally come with a calibration certificate that you can trace back to a lab.

Calibration certificate

A calibration certificate’s purpose is to formalize a tool’s accuracy from a given date for a specified period – usually 12-months. The certificate will state the percentage of accuracy the device has to the set measurement.

The torque screwdriver can be re-calibrated on the due date to maintain its accuracy for years ahead. We recommend getting a tool that is calibrated if you use it in your workplace.

As with any tool, torque screwdrivers go wrong, and it will be easier to obtain a refund or replacement if it is calibrated. It will also give you peace of mind that the tool you buy has been tested and is in excellent working order.

Torque screwdrivers that come with a calibration certificate will cost you more money. Still, this additional cost is balanced by knowing you are getting a highly accurate tool – and that is the sole purpose of a torque screwdriver.


Conclusion

The CDI Torque 401SM torque screwdriver won our Best Overall award thanks to its high accuracy level, versatile adjustment, and lifetime warranty.

Our Best Value pick went to NEIKO PRO 10573B as this tool offers a decent torque range, great accessories, and an automatic tension lock feature.

We hope you have found our reviews and buyer’s guide helpful, giving you a clear idea of which torque screwdriver is right for you. 

Remember, this is not about just buying the cheapest or most expensive. It’s about assessing your needs and purchasing the best tool to serve you well for years ahead.


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Walts DIY is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.

Walter Snyder