Professional Tool Reviews for Pros

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers Review

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers are designed with twice the adjustment positions as traditional grove joint pliers and feature multipurpose jaws that can grip round, hex, square and flat surfaces with ease. These pliers come in many sizes that range from 6”, 8”, 10”, 12”, 16” and 20″ and are also available as both toothed flat jaw and smooth flat jaw.

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers - toothed flat style

The Irwin GrooveLock Pliers come designed with twice the adjustment positions as traditional groove joint pliers. They also feature multipurpose jaws that can grip round, hex, square and flat surfaces with ease. You can also get these pliers in many sizes ranging from 6″, 8″, 10″, 12”, 16″ and even 20″. They also come as both toothed flat jaw and smooth flat jaw. Clearly, the company understands the need for, and importance of, flexibility.

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers Features

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers

Irwin has done what only a few companies can do. They have taken a great product and found ways to make it even better. We aren’t talking about re-inventing the wheel either. Rather, they figured out how end-users typically use these tools. In the case of Irwin GrooveLock pliers, that translates into adjustability. Everyone knows that slip joint pliers are among the most versatile hand tools around. They rank up there with Crescent wrenches and 6-in-1 screwdrivers.

Irwin took the slip joint design and made it so there were about twice as many adjustment points. Then they reworked the tool so it was one-hand adjustable. Imagine not having to swing the pliers completely open to move from one joint to the next to find the right fit. With the simple press of a button at the pivot point of the pliers, these quickly and easily adjust larger or smaller as needed.

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers - standard style
Standard style Jaw 

To aid in different applications of use, there are several jaw styles available. The most versatile is the toothed standard style that allows you to grip on everything from round to square-sided. The jaws have deep teeth that ensure a good “bite” to help minimize slip. For more specialize applications, there are both smooth and toothed flat jawed pliers offered in a whole range of sizes too.

Irwin Groovelock Pliers Ergonomic Handles

The other thing that Irwin got right was their handles. These depart from the typical dipped rubber coating so often found on pliers from most manufacturers. The Irwin handles are oversized and offer a better area to grip the tools with. In the event you set your pliers too small for your workpiece, the handles will also never come close enough together to pinch you.

Testing and Use

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers application-1

In my personal tool collection, the Irwin GrooveLock Pliers have completely replaced all the slip joint pliers that I had. I have found that the ergonomics are excellent and since I have both the standard and flat jaw varieties, I found that I can tackle just about anything that you would need this type of pliers for. I have used these pliers for all kinds of plumbing repairs, working on my car, and for things that you probably would not always use slip joint pliers for. With their long handles and the deep teeth in the jaws, I can bear down without worry of damaging the pliers and I find that they grip the work pieces and fasteners extremely well.

Irwin GrooveLock Pliers application-2


The Irwin GrooveLock Pliers are a fantastic choice if you are on the market for some quality slip joint style pliers. With a lifetime warranty, quality construction, and innovative features, you really cannot go wrong. Irwin prices are very competitive with other manufacturers’ slip joint pliers yet we found that the Irwin tools offer a lot more. Pick up a set of three for under $50.

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Jeremiah McKenna

How do these compare or perform next to the Channellock speedgrip?

Rick C

I have the 6-inch v-jaw pliers in my electrical bag. The skinny jaws can perfectly grab the edges of switches and receptacles to twist them square when pushing them back into the box.

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