twolittlebroncos Reader
11/12/14 8:55 a.m.

Looking for an electric impact wrench basically for changing tires (snow tires etc) in my garage. I don't have the need for portability nor the budget for a Snap-on cordless unit. Basically looking at the HF plug-in electric 1/2" unit. Is there a better value out there? Will it last? I don't have a tool-capable compressor and probably won't have one in the near future.

twolittlebroncos Reader
11/12/14 12:00 p.m.

Bumping this back to the top with the flood that is occurring. Any input?

Nick_Comstock PowerDork
11/12/14 12:04 p.m.

I have a Craftsman corded impact. I don't know the specs off hand but it does sometimes struggle with tight lug nuts. It doesn't get used a lot.

CarRacer New Reader
11/12/14 12:08 p.m.

This isn't what you want to hear but the corded craftsman impact has only gathered dust while the dewalt cordless has been basically indestructible after w decade of hard use at the race track and shop.

I say this while I still prefer the corded sawzall to the portable dewalt one. I know it's not in the budget but buying the superior tool once is the better option especially for something that will get as much use as an impact wrench.

oldtin UberDork
11/12/14 12:13 p.m.

torque your lug nuts.

Zomby Woof
Zomby Woof PowerDork
11/12/14 12:35 p.m.

My son has a corded one that has digital torque settings and it works really well. It's from Canadian tire (usually junk like HF), but I've been impressed.

logdog GRM+ Memberand Dork
11/12/14 12:38 p.m.

I have a corded Kobalt unit and love it. Wish I bought it years ago.

Dashpot Reader
11/12/14 12:53 p.m.

I had a 110V DeWalt that worked well for ~7 years but began to poop out. Moved on to the cordless Ingersoll Rand ($$$) last year. No complaints with the DeWalt for occasional use.

gearheadE30 New Reader
11/12/14 1:01 p.m.

I've never had a corded one, but I have a Hitachi 18v lithium that was $200 new, and it's been great. Rated at 400 ft-lbs, which enough for most jobs.

And of course, don't use a rattle gun to tighten your lugs. To bump them on, sure, fine, but do the final torque with a real torque wrench.

Nick_Comstock PowerDork
11/12/14 1:08 p.m.

I know the Craftsman wouldn't loosen the lug nuts on my truck torqued to 110 ft-lbs. I'd break them loose with a four way then run them off with the impact.

EvanB GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
11/12/14 1:19 p.m.

I have the Harbor Freight 1/2" corded impact. It worked for fine for about 5 years until the trigger recently stopped working.

bigev007 New Reader
11/12/14 2:15 p.m.

I have Mastercraft cordless and corded impacts. The corded definitely has more torque. Especially since the battery on the cordless is invariably dead. I have noticed that neither of them work well on the open end lugs I have, which like to corrode on. I briefly used a 20v impact driver (which surprisingly worked), but found the real deal on sale a couple weeks later.

HappyAndy UltraDork
11/12/14 3:30 p.m.

I have the HF 1/2" corded impact gun. I call it my AK47. It's crude, loud, kicks hard, is made in China and works every time. I use it for loosening nuts and bolts on big industrial vehicles, often with an adapter to take 3/4" drive sockets. It gets the job done, and I don't feel bad if it gets dropped in mud.

If I were using it every day I'd spend the money for something nicer, because I'm not exaggerating about the noise and vibration.

BTW, I would never use it to tighten lug nuts on a car.

Teh E36 M3
Teh E36 M3 SuperDork
11/12/14 5:49 p.m.

There is no better value for a corded impact wrench than the HF. I have one, it kicks ass, and its only downside is that it is corded.

BTW: I have used it to tighten lugnuts on a car. Torqued them afterward with a torque wrench. If I was in the market for a corded impact wrench, I'd get this one. That said, I love cordless tools, just not for $200 more.

chaparral HalfDork
11/12/14 6:51 p.m.

My uncle has a Makita corded 1/2" drive electric impact. It's the only thing that'll break completely rusted New England bolts loose sometimes. It cost a fortune. It was worth every penny.

DeadSkunk SuperDork
11/12/14 6:52 p.m.

I've got a Makita 6905 corded impact that I've had for at least 17 years. It was a gift and a darned great one. The most used tool in my garage over the years, wouldn't be without one. I have lots of outlets and a cord reel in the middle of the garage so the cord isn't an issue.

twolittlebroncos Reader
11/13/14 10:28 a.m.

Thanks for all the input. I went ahead and swapped snow tires last night sans impact wrench. I may put the HF impact on my Christmas list. I just don't wrench enough to justify a cordless unit, but the HF sounds like it would be a good addition for me.

rcutclif GRM+ Memberand Reader
11/13/14 12:03 p.m.

I'd say start with the HF unit. Wait for a coupon to get it for 27 bucks or whatever, they come around all the time.

After I got one I hardly use the air compressor anymore...

And I like the AK comparison.

Basil Exposition
Basil Exposition Dork
11/13/14 2:31 p.m.

I've got the HF one. It has held up fine and works well. I don't use it very often any more, though, because I've got an air impact and a cordless now. My main complaint is that it is bulky, heavy, and hard to control, but I bring it out when the other ones won't break something loose.

dean1484 GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
11/13/14 4:09 p.m.

Recommend one of these.

Got something similar to this on sale some palace years back it will bust about anything off. Not cheap but I use it a lot. It will brake non impact sockets in a hurry LOL

shuttlepilot Reader
11/13/14 10:24 p.m.
dean1484 wrote: Recommend one of these. Got something similar to this on sale some palace years back it will bust about anything off. Not cheap but I use it a lot. It will brake non impact sockets in a hurry LOL

Yep, I got the variable speed (VSR) Millwahkee corded impact. The variable speed is great for being able to gently blast things loose instead of shredding things to pieces. The only thing that has stopped it is a very overtightened control arm bolt. Needed a 6 foot breaker for that. Works great on everything else.

Petrolburner Reader
11/13/14 11:33 p.m.

I have a corded DeWalt unit. I used it a lot before I got an air compressor and air impact. I liked it for changing tires and stuff. Seemed like it was too long for a lot of automotive stuff, just couldn't fit it into the space available to do the job.

Gearheadotaku GRM+ Memberand PowerDork
11/14/14 8:22 a.m.

I bought a Dewalt corded at a pawn shop years ago. After using the daylights out of it for several years, it finally quit. Dewalt repair shop rebuilt it for $80 and it's quieter and more powerful than ever. Heavy and too bulky for tight spots, but if you can get it in there, it will do the job. Bought it mostly for lugs, but have found lots of other uses for it. Biggest trick I found is to hold it very tight against the bolt, otherwise it shakes around and you lose alot of torque.

WonkoTheSane GRM+ Memberand Reader
11/14/14 10:02 a.m.

For the price, I throw in you can't beat having the HF corded one.. Mine's been kickin' for 8 years or more now, and if it dies I'll buy another one for $25 or whatever without batting an eye.. The AK comparison is very apt here.

I just got a "new" compressor (that I haven't assembled yet), and I'll be getting an IR to go with that, but I'll probably never be without the HF one.

Nick_Comstock PowerDork
11/14/14 10:11 a.m.

It sounds like the craftsman is way down on torque from the competition. I was severely disappointed with it.

You'll need to log in to post.

Our Preferred Partners