HART Impact Sockets Up Your Impact Wrench Game Without Breaking Your Wallet
So you bought an impact wrench and you’re ready to get to work. To save some money, you’re just going to use the chrome sockets in the mechanics set you have. As you reach for them, there’s a nagging feeling that maybe there’s a reason impact sockets exist. We decided to take a closer look at HART Impact Sockets to see if they’re a contender for the best impact sockets for the money.
Why Use Impact Sockets?
It seems like everyone knows someone who saw someone else get their eye cut by flying chrome when a standard socket on an impact wrench had a catastrophic failure. While it’s possible in extreme circumstances, most socket failures are less newsworthy and simply crack.
Typical chrome sockets are designed to use with ratchets—even cordless ratchets. They can handle a lifetime of use with those tools with little more than a bit of wear in the corners. Impact wrenches are much more powerful, though, and chrome-plated sockets typically aren’t thick enough to handle that much impacting force over time.
Impact sockets are thicker and the metallurgy is specifically blended to handle the force of an impact wrench. They also forgo the chrome plating that really can create sharp shards when it fails.
HART Impact Sockets: Best Impact Sockets for the Money?
If you walk into any home improvement store, you have some good options to save money on impact sockets. Between house brands and Prosumer/DIY brands, the best impact sockets for the money might simply depend on which store you’re in.
HART impact sockets are compelling for several reasons. With the top priority being price, they match or beat the pricing of their closest competitors. The 10-piece 3/8-inch sets run $31.28 for either SAE or metric. If you want to go up to a larger 1/2-inch drive, 11-piece sets are $40.98 each.
Then there’s convenience. You can grab the sets from your local Walmart or online. Chances are, there’s a Walmart close by if you’re anywhere near even a small town.
Of course, we can’t ignore the construction of the sockets themselves. There’s a difference between cheap impact sockets and high-value ones. Cheap might skimp on the materials or thickness and be more likely to fail. HART’s impact sockets use chrome vanadium steel (CR-V) and are forged to the thickness we expect for the material.
All things considered, CR-V “can” be more brittle under stress. Under certain conditions, it can shatter and fragment. Typically, impact-rated sockets do some additional things to the steel to make it safer to use (like thickening the socket walls or adjusting the steel mix overall). The advantage of CR-V over CR-MO is that CR-V sockets won’t deform as easily. It’s ultimately a trade-off.
We warned against the use of chrome earlier, but HART seems to have made these sockets thick enough to handle consumer-level impact duties. As part of the material blend, the CR-V material should help improve the hardness of these impact sockets and resist long-term wear.
HART Impact Socket Sets
|3/8-Inch Metric||3/8-Inch SAE||1/2-Inch Metric||1/2-Inch SAE|
The Bottom Line
HART impact sockets are a great option for putting the right accessory on your impact wrench so you can do the job correctly. Their low cost compared to traditional Pro brands is appealing for DIYers, and the quality of their construction can meet the needs of Pros as well.
Isn’t there a drawback to using CR-V on impact sockets?