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How Much Torque Do You Need In An Impact Driver? | Video

How much torque do you need on an impact driver

How Much Power Do You Need on an Impact Driver? More Is Always Better, Right?

In today’s world of power tools, pushing the envelope of more power is more than just a 1990’s Tim Allen sitcom. When you look at two impact drivers with the same price tag and one has more power than the other, you want more power, right? Maybe not. So how much torque is enough?

Pros of Higher Torque

  • Capable of replacing the need for a light-duty impact wrench
  • Perfectly capable of general screwdriving in lower speeds

Cons of Higher Torque

  • Requires an adapter for sockets that breaks easily on hard metal fastening

Generally speaking, an impact driver in the 1500 to 1800 in-lb range that puts more emphasis on higher RPM will do 95% of the work faster than one with more torque and slower speeds.

Our rule of thumb is that if you need to reach for a socket adapter, you’re better off grabbing an impact wrench. 

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I believe that manufacturers have reached the point of diminishing returns on increasing the torque output of a 1/4″ Hex impact driver. Speaking from experience using my Milwaukee 2857, which touts 2000in-lb, it tends to break bits fairly readily. I find that this level of torque is not generally required for wood fastening applications. Also as you stated previously hard metal fastening only exacerbates the bit breaking issue. With that said, I love the idea of having extra torque to perform high torque fastening needs with a single tool. I think going forward more manufacturers should look into adopting Bosch’s… Read more »

Last edited 1 year ago by Alex
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