If your work involves tightening and loosening stubborn nuts, then you know how much of an asset a cordless ratchet is. This is the perfect and affordable alternative to an air impact wrench when you are on a budget and also have a bit less torqueing to do. Cordless ratchets are not bulky and also have low chances of damaging the threads on a bolt.
You need the best cordless ratchet for you to have an easy time with your project and also make sure that the bolts you’re working on do not get damaged. Choosing a cordless ratchet can be time-consuming and tedious especially if you don’t know what exactly you are looking for. Read this guide first to get a hint of what to look for when buying a cordless ratchet and how to select the best for your project.
Factors to consider when choosing the best cordless ratchet
Finding the best cordless ratchet needs a lot of research; we’ve made it easier for you by listing some of the key features that will help you choose the best cordless ratchet for your mechanical tasks.
- Power and torque
A cordless ratchet’s efficiency, just like any other machine, is determined by its power and speed of getting work done. Torque is the physics word for the tendency of a force to twist or turn. The speed of the cordless ratchet is normally indicated in terms of revolutions per minute (RPM).
The amount of power and speed that you will require will be determined by your type of project. If your work doesn’t involve a lot of tight bolts, you can go for medium power and speed ratchet that will be efficient and also cheaper for you. Heavy and consistent projects will require a more powerful tool that will last longer.
- Flexibility and ease of use
A cordless ratchet has to feel right and safe in the hands of the user regardless of the user’s level of experience. When selecting a cordless ratchet, it is advisable to go for one that is easy to hold and operate switches even with hand gloves on. It is also important to select one that has anti-shock insulators and that can handle both loosely and tightly fitted bolts easily.
A cordless ratchet should be flexible enough to fit in both wide and narrow spaces so that it doesn’t limit the range of projects you can undertake. Always make sure that the handle of the ratchet that you end up choosing is well touted to avoid injuries caused by losing the grip of the tool.
The best cordless ratchet is the one with a lithium-ion battery. These batteries are efficient because they store more power yet weigh less compared to other batteries made of other materials. They also hold a charge for a relatively long time and recharge quickly. Lithium-ion batteries are affordable and go well with almost any type of project. You could consider getting a backup battery if it suits your budget as a longer battery life means a shorter time to finish the project.
- Weight and length of the cordless ratchet
Always choose cordless ratchets that are weightless, simple, slim and efficient. These are easy to handle and make work painless and efficient. The weight and length of a cordless ratchet determine the ease you will have when handling the project. A good cordless ratchet should have a length of between 12- 14 inches the weight should also be minimal for easy handling of large batches of work.
- The brand
When choosing a cordless ratchet, it is important to consider its brand. Most brands are reputable for making quality and durable tools and it’s advisable to go for these brands. When choosing a brand that you haven’t used before, always look out for reviews from other customers to ensure you get value for your money. Ingersoll and Milwaukee brands are the most popular brands for cordless ratchet as they have all the great features you look for in a cordless ratchet.
- The cost of the cordless ratchet
The price of purchasing a cordless ratchet often varies depending on its output, power, and quality. It is important to consider the type of work you will use the ratchet for before you set a budget. For mechanics that will most likely use the cordless ratchet for commercial gain, it is advisable to invest in a powerful tool that will cost more. A handyman that will probably use the tool occasionally can opt for a cheaper tool that will get the work done.
Make sure you do your research before settling on a cheap brand to help you get the most out of your tool. It is also important to shop around and know the prices for you to come up with a budget of what suits you the best.
A warranty is the manufacturers’ way of showing faith in its products. Warranties are available for exact years and if your tool stops working within that period, the manufacturer should provide a free replacement or repair. Manufacturers will, therefore, give a warranty that is only as much as the tools worth. In most cases, if a manufacturer feels the product will give you great service for 3 years, they limit the warranty to 2 years but if they feel it will last longer, they will be comfortable with an extended warranty. It is safe to safe that a warranty is a guarantee for replacement and also a measure of the quality of the cordless ratchet. It is important to read brand reviews before you purchase for you to know how reliable the warranty is.
Top 5 Cordless Ratchets In 2020 (Best Picks)
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Summary of the Best Cordless Ratchets For 2020
We researched to give you an easy time finding the best cordless ratchet for your project that meets all the great qualities. Here’s a list of the best six cordless ratchets that have stood the test of time:
|Product name||Features to look at|
|Milwaukee 2457-20 M12 Cordless 3/8″ Sub-Compact 35 ft-Lbs 250 RPM Ratchet w/ Variable Speed Trigger||Recessed backward-forward switch that prevents accidental actuation|
Low profile head design Onboard fuel gauge that shows how much charge is left
The LED lighting that enables you to work in dimly lit spaces
Has a 12V motor that produces up to 35ft-lbs of torque and 250 RPM
|ACDelco Cordless 3/8″ Ratchet Wrench 57′-Lb of max Torque Tool Set with 2 Batteries & Charger, Carrying Case ARW1201||Produces up to 57ft-lbs of torque and 170 RPM with a speed trigger for better control G12 universal battery platform that optimizes performance and overload protection using system communication between the battery, tool, and charger.|
One year warranty Has an ergonomic soft grip with built-in LED light
|Milwaukee 2457-21 3/8-in Cordless M12 Lithium-Ion Ratchet Kit||Has a powerful 12-volt motor that produces up to 35 ft-lbs torque The kit includes one m12 battery, a charger, and a carrying case|
Its has a fuel gauge that helps you monitor the charge left Superior fastening speed of 250 RPM with variable speed trigger for greater control Reinforced metal housing for longer tool life.
|Ingersoll Rand R3130 3/8-Inch Cordless Ratchet, R3130-K12 – Ratchet plus 1-Battery Kit||Produces 54 ft-lb of torque providing power you expect only from an air tool It is durable with a metal casing that is lightweight and protects it from damage More battery power thus giving you longer working time and portability The kit contains the tool, two batteries, a charger, and a carrying case|
|AirCat 805-HT High Torque 3/8″ Air Ratchet, Small, Red||130 Ft-Lbs of Torque 2 Year Warranty Latest ratchet head design Ergonomic Composite contoured comfort grip and variable speed trigger Very quiet|
Review of Popular Cordless Ratchets One By One!
1.Milwaukee 2457-20 M12 Cordless 3/8″ Sub-Compact 35 ft-Lbs 250 RPM Ratchet w/ Variable Speed Trigger
This product tops our list since it has best-in-class power, speed, and durability. It is the ideal tool for repair professionals and auto mechanics looking for maximum performance and productivity. It has a powerful 12-volt motor that can produce up to 35ft-lbs of torque and 250 RPM. It is powered by a lithium battery that delivers more work per charge but is sold separately. This tool is portable with a low profile head design that allows it to fit in the most compact spaces. It has a reinforced steel housing that provides maximum durability.
- Recessed backward-forward switch at the back of the head that prevents accidental actuation when you are working. This feature ensures the safety of the user when handling the tool.
- Low profile head design that enables it to fit in compact spaces effortlessly
- Has an onboard fuel gauge that lets you know how much power you have left thus reducing interruptions due to the battery running low
- The LED lighting that enables you to see what you are working on in dimly lit spaces
- Color: red
- Material: steel, plastic
- Voltage: 12V
- Torque: 35 ft-lb
- Battery type: lithium-ion
2.ACDelco Cordless 3/8″ Ratchet Wrench 57′-Lb of max Torque Tool Set with 2 Batteries & Charger, Carrying Case ARW1201
This tool stands out because it is ergonomically designed specifically for mechanics to work in tight spaces. It is a powerful tool with a torque of up to 57ft-lb and 170 RPM. Its battery also stands out as being efficient by optimizing performance and providing overload protection. The package comes with two lithium-ion batteries of 12 volts, a quick charger, and a carrying case.
- The package comes with two batteries of 12 volts each, 1 quick charger and a carrying case.
- Has an anti-slip soft grip
- Ergonomically designed to fit in tight spaces
- Has variable speed with reversible control and an electric brake switch
- Battery: lithium-ion
- Material: metal
- Power source: battery powered
3.Milwaukee 2457-21 3/8-in Cordless M12 Lithium-Ion Ratchet Kit
This product has outstanding features that make it every professional’s favorite. It has overload protection that shuts off the ratchet when the fastener is too tight and this prevents you from pinning your hand against something. This tool can still be used as a standard ratchet by breaking the bolts by hand then using the tool to remove the fastener. The tool has a compact design that helps it to fit into spaces effortlessly.
- The kit comes with a battery, charger and a carrying case
- It has a fuel gauge that helps you monitor the amount of charge left, this feature helps to reduce downtime when working on a project
- The tool has a built-in LED light that illuminates work surfaces in the dark
- It has a reinforced metal housing that increases its tool life
- Color: red
- Battery cell type: lithium-ion
- Torque:35 ft-lbs
4.Ingersoll Rand R3130 3/8-Inch Cordless Ratchet, R3130-K12 – Ratchet plus 1-Battery Kit
This kit was made with the user’s need in mind. It brings together all the qualities one might be looking for in a cordless ratchet. It is lightweight and portable making it easy for you to work on a wide range of tasks. It provides a higher torque compared to other tools of its size. Its battery placement is also better with a flatter profile that enables it to fit well into compact spaces. It is also easy to use even for beginners.
- It is durable and has a metal casing that is lightweight and protects it from damage in case of a fall
- More battery power thus giving you longer working time and portability
- The kit contains the tool, two batteries, a charger, and a carrying case
- Voltage: 20 volts
- Battery cell type: lithium-ion
5. AirCat 805-HT High Torque 3/8″ Air Ratchet, Small, Red
This tool has been built to retain high torque power while reducing the noise level during work. It is easy to use and has an ergonomic handle that reduces stress on your hands and wrists. The device is portable and weightless thus making it flexible for a wide range of work. It comes with a two-year warranty and this is a great guarantee that in case it breaks down, you can get a replacement.
- It has the latest head design and this eliminates head spreading
- It is ergonomically designed to give you a comfortable grip
- It has a variable speed trigger that helps the user control the total power output.
- It doesn’t produce noise thus very comfortable to use even for long hours
- Torque:130 ft-lbs
- Warranty: 2 years
Frequently Asked Questions on the Best Cordless Ratchets
Having given you all the information that you need in selecting the best cordless ratchet for your project, you probably have a few questions in mind. We have answered some of the commonly asked questions to help you find answers to questions you might be having. Read on:
Q. What is the difference between an air impact wrench and a cordless ratchet?
Air impact wrenches are used for projects that require greater torque and higher speed. They are powered by the use of compress air and can, therefore, be used in wet conditions without fear of shorting. They do not have moving parts and this makes them produce less noise and rarely break down, however they lack mobility and portability since you have to be near your airline when working on them.
Cordless ratchets, on the other hand, are more efficient for projects that require lesser torque. They are powered by batteries and this makes them more portable. Cordless ratchet cannot be used on wet conditions since the water might come into contact with the battery. Cordless ratchets have lots of moving parts thus generating more noise and increasing their risk of breaking down.
Q. Which is the best material for cordless ratchets?
The best cordless ratchets are mostly made of magnesium and aluminum. These materials are preferred because they are extremely durable yet lightweight giving you the best of both worlds.
Q. Can cordless ratchets be used to remove lug nuts?
Yes, they can. Log nuts are normally fastened with a torque of 100 lb/ft which is easily achievable using a cordless ratchet.
Q. Is it possible to control the torque and rpm of the ratchet?
Yes, most cordless ratchets normally indicate they have variable trigger speed. This means that the power and speed changes depending on the amount of force you apply. If you want to apply 50% of the ratchet’s total power, you only need to depress the trigger only 50% through. By controlling the force you apply, you also control the revolutions per minute and the torque of the ratchet.
Q. How do you know when the ratchets battery is fully charged?
Most cordless ratchets have a light indicator that turns green when the battery is fully charged. It is important to turn off the charger once the battery is fully charged to avoid overcharging since it reduces the lifespan of the battery.
Q. What maintenance practices does a cordless ratchet require?
The maintenance of a cordless ratchet is easy since it only requires regular surface and battery cleaning. After you’ve finished using a cordless ratchet, use a dry cloth to wipe off dust or chemicals on the surface. It is also advisable to open the body of the ratchet carefully and wipe the battery clean.
Cordless Ratchets-Snap-on Tool Tips
A cordless ratchet is a must-have tool for any professional whose work involves tightening and loosening nuts and bolts. It is also a great asset for hobbyists who come across such tasks since it makes work easier and saves on time. When selecting a cordless ratchet, it is important to have in mind your requirements as well as how much you are willing to spend. This makes it easier to know which tool amongst the many in the market best suits your needs.
When choosing a cordless ratchet, it is important to consider some of the key features that play a major role in its efficiency. The power, torque or speed is one such feature. The power of the ratchet determines which project it can handle and also how fast you can tighten and loosen nuts and bolts. It is also important to consider the capacity of the ratchets battery and the material used to make the battery. Make sure you go for a long-lasting battery that will enable you to work for long hours without interruption.
A cordless ratchet should be flexible and easy to use. It should fit even in compact spaces to give you the best service and also have a nice handle that is easy to grip without slipping out of your hand. The weight of the ratchet should be relatively light so that you can use it for long without straining your muscles. The weight of the ratchet is also directly proportional to its portability therefore you need to ensure the weight does not limit your usage of the tool.
The brand and material of the cordless ratchet is a factor that cannot be ignored. Most brands are reputable for making durable ratchets and it is, therefore, advisable to go for these brands. When buying a cordless ratchet, always make sure it has a warranty and it is from a reliable manufacturer. The warranty gives you a guarantee that you will use the product for a longer period without breaking down and getting a replacement in case it breaks down within the warranty period. It is also important to consider the cost of the ratchet and make sure it suits your budget. Always make sure you invest wisely to avoid buying a cheap brand that won’t serve you long enough.
We hope this guide will make your search for the best cordless ratchet smooth and seamless and also make your project fast and efficient.