An adjustable wrench is a tool that is open-ended with a jaw that is movable allowing you to use it with a variety of fastener head such as bolts and nuts compared to the conventional wrenches with a fixed size.
The use of an adjustable wrench does not require an exceptional talent though. And to be honest, anyone, even those who only saw it for the first time, can quickly learn how to use adjustable wrenches. With its adjustable size feature, this tool is versatile enough to get a variety of tasks done.
The main benefit and advantage of an adjustable wrench is that it gives you the convenience of having to use only one tool instead of switching from one type to another, while also saving your energy because you will only need to carry just one tool instead of the entire toolbox. Not to mention the money get to save since this device makes buying different sets of tools for a variety of tasks unnecessary.
How To Use Adjustable Wrenches: General Guidelines
Adjustable spanners or wrenches are an essential part of every toolbox. They are used to loosen or tighten bolts, screws, pipes, and nuts. Here are the things you should keep in mind when using this tool:
- Choose the right size of the wrench for the job.
Make sure that you select a jaw size that fits the fastener that needs to be loosened or tightened to prevent yourself from getting hurt and avoid damage to the fastener. Also, before you apply pressure, make sure that the fastener is in full contact with the jaw to prevent the wrench from slipping.
- Pull and do not push.
When using any wrench, make sure to position yourself in a way that will enable you to pull the tool and not push it, so you do not bark a knuckle in case your wrench slides off the fastener. However, if you really need to push, then make sure to use your hand’s heel to avoid hurting yourself in case the wrench slips.
- Do not add more leverage on pipes.
The use of cheater bars to gain more leverage when you want to tighten a fastener can damage your adjustable wrench by jacking up the head or by bending the handle. You can also cause harm to others and yourself in case the cheater bar slips off the handle while turning it. So, instead of using a pipe, just get a longer wrench.
- Do not use a hammer to hit a wrench.
Do not hit the wrench with anything at all. Even if the fastener is particularly stubborn, do not use a hammer to hit your wrench with a goal of adding more power to make it turn. Try to apply a penetrating oil instead to help loosen the thread.
- Stick to quality wrenches.
If the jaws appear to be wider than they originally were, and if the handle is bent, then stop using the wrench. Yes, they are designed to last long, but if they are broken, then buy a new one. Do not buy cheap tools because they break easily, and can cause damage to the property or yourself and others.
How to Use an Adjustable Wrench: The Steps
An adjustable wrench is designed to help you put pressure on both movable and fixed jaws, although the bulk should be done while applying the pressure on the fixed and stronger jaw. Too much pressure on the adjustable and weaker jaw can break the wrench and cause a bark on your knuckle. Additionally, you should locate the adjustable jaw on the side where the rotation is to be done, so the pressure is placed on the fixed jaw.
Below are the steps on how to use your adjustable wrench:
Step 1: Identify the bolt or nut that needs to be tightened.
Step 2: Move the screw mechanism to open the adjustable wrench’s jaw. Make sure to open it to a size enough to fit the nut in, or into a size a little bit bigger than the nut size.
Step 3: Fit the open jaw onto the bolt or nut and then keep it steady before you move the screw mechanism to tighten its clamp around the nut.
Step 4: Place the open jaw over the nut and then make sure to keep it steady. Clamp the jaw around the nut tightly by turning the screw mechanism.
Step 5: Rotate the wrench in a counter-clockwise motion to loosen it, or clockwise to tighten it. Turn the tool until it is loose enough for you to remove the wrench or until you feel the nut tightened.
Step 6: Loosen the screw mechanism to remove the wrench.
After a thorough discussion above on how to use adjustable wrenches, we can say that it is pretty simple in a sense that it will not require special skill or training to be able to use one. It will not only allow you to save money for the costs of hiring a professional to get the job done, but it will also give you a sense of pride and satisfaction that you can do things on your own with the help of this tool.
However, you should also keep in mind that there are different types of adjustable wrenches and each has designated functions and uses to get the job done correctly. And though versatile enough, it is best to stick to their specific usage to prevent the tool from getting damaged and preventing any untoward accidents as well.
Overall, we can say that regardless of whatever tool you are using, your knowledge about it and its proper use is vital in ensuring that you get your job done properly while also keeping you safe and preventing damage to the tool. It is advisable and recommended to refrain from using a tool without understanding how it really works. So, go ahead and familiarize yourselves with what is inside your toolbox and you will be amazed about what you can do.