Ryobi HP Compact Brushless 1/2-Inch Impact Wrench Review

Ryobi 18V One+ HP Compact Brushless 1/2-Inch Impact Wrench Review

Ryobi 1/2-Inch Compact Impact Wrench Puts Power And Control In The Palm Of Your Hand

Any auto mechanic will tell you that an impact wrench is a must-have—and you’re likely going to need more than one. Ryobi is improving its game with an 18V One+ HP Compact Brushless 1/2-Inch Impact Wrench and we’re taking a closer look to see what benefits it offers.

Ryobi 1/2-Inch Compact Impact Wrench Performance

Fastening Power

Ryobi 18V One+ HP Compact Brushless 1/2-Inch Impact Wrench Review

Many fastening jobs don’t require a ton of power to tighten or remove nuts and bolts, especially in the automotive industry. Too much force while tightening can damage your material, strip threads, or even snap the head off altogether.

Stepping down to the compact class from the larger P262 and PBLIW01 models, the Ryobi PSBIW25 is capable of producing up to 275 ft-lbs of breakaway torque. It can also reach speeds up to 2,800 RPM and has a max impact rate of 3,800 IPM.

I got the opportunity to put this model to work when I changed out the brakes on my Honda Ridgeline. This compact impact wrench had no problem loosening the lug nuts or breaking those stubborn caliper bolts. That’s not a surprise with the power level this model is at. What’s nice is how easily I was able to work in tighter spaces (more on that in a minute).

Ryobi 18V One+ HP Compact Brushless 1/2-Inch Impact Wrench Review

Thinking more broadly, Ryobi touches a higher power level than most compact impact wrenches. It can handle most of your passenger vehicle needs along with large construction fasteners. Stubborn lugnuts and neglected fasteners may still need a true mid-torque or even a high-torque option, though.

4-Mode Speed Selection

Mode Selection

Control of the performance centers around a 4-mode speed selection that dials in the brushless motor. The controls sit on the foot of the tool. Just press the button to cycle between its three standard modes and an auto mode.

The auto mode is incredibly helpful. In forward, it runs at 2,200 RPM, similar to mode 2, up until the first few impacts before automatically shutting off. Once it sets lightly, you can use your torque wrench to set the proper torque without worrying about over-torquing.

When in reverse, the auto mode will automatically stop rotation once the nut or bolt breaks loose. This is really nice because it allows you to hand-thread it the rest of the way instead of having it roll away.

Ryobi 1/2-Inch Compact Impact Wrench Design Notes


Ryobi 18V One+ HP Compact Brushless 1/2-Inch Impact Wrench Review

The grip on this compact impact wrench is definitely on the larger side compared to many of the tools that pass through our shop. That’s normal for Ryobi, though. It has the feel of a full-sized tool and feels very secure in my hand. They even incorporated a small finger choil on the front of the rubber overmold for a little extra bit of comfort while using this tool.

From end to end this impact wrench measures 5.75 inches and it stands 9.75 inches tall with a 4.0Ah High Performance battery. As far as weight is concerned, it hit the scale at 2.4 pounds as a bare tool and 4.0 pounds even with a 4.0Ah High Performance battery. If you wanted to lighten things up a little, consider using one of Ryobi’s 2.0Ah High Performance batteries—this configuration only weighs 3.4 pounds.

Remember the higher power level we talked about? This is where the trade-off occurs. Compact impact wrenches are typically a bit smaller and lighter than Ryobi’s when you’re looking at premium professional brands. What we have is an impact wrench that sits in between premium compact and mid-torque classes.

But what about other Prosumer specialists in the 1/2-inch class with similar power? Compared to the high-value Skil PWRCore 20 IW5739, Ryobi offers a 3/8-inch shorter length. It’s more than 1 1/4 inches shorter than Craftsman’s CMCF921. It’s also lighter than both.

LED Light

Tri-Beam LED

One thing I really like about this tool is that Ryobi moved away from the typical foot-mounted light and instead uses a tri-beam design around the anvil. This style provides much better visibility in low-light situations. The only real disadvantage to this setup is larger sockets can obstruct the light and cast a shadow on your work surface. Other than that small issue, we’re happy with this design.

Ryobi 1/2-Inch Compact Impact Wrench Price

This compact impact wrench retails for $139.00 as a bare tool and at the time we’re writing this there are no kit options available. Ryobi warranties this impact wrench for 3 years so be sure to register your tools for fast and easy customer service!

The Bottom Line

We’re used to Ryobi bridging the gap between DIY and Pro models. By moving ahead of its Prosumer competition in both power and size, the PSBIW25 bridges the gap between Prosumer and Pro models and stands alone as the top Prosumer compact impact wrench currently available.

Check out more Ryobi impact wrenches by clicking here.

Ryobi 1/2-Inch Compact Impact Wrench Specifications

  • Model: Ryobi PSBIW25
  • Power Source: Ryobi 18V battery
  • No-load Speed: 0-850/2,100/2,800/2,200 RPM
  • Max Torque: 275 ft-lbs
  • Impact Rate: 3,800 IPM
  • Anvil Size: 1/2 in.
  • Anvil Type: Friction ring
  • Weight: 2.4 lbs (bare), 3.4 lbs (with 2.0Ah High-Performance battery), 4.0 lbs (with 4.0Ah High-Performance battery)
  • Head Length: 5.75 in.
  • Warranty: 3-year
  • Price: $139 (bare)

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