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Old 08-23-2012, 02:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default what is the good size of torque wrench for brake & rotor change

Hello all,

Based on the How To Install Replace Front Disc Brakes Ford Taurus Mercury Sable 01-07 1AAuto.com - YouTube

I need a torque wrench for the brake work but I don't know what size is good for this task.

I have searched harbor freight and here is my finding:

1/2" or 3/8", or 1/4", or 3/4" Drive Click Stop Torque Wrench

So what is the dimension I should buy for it?

Thank you

Last edited by q0987; 08-23-2012 at 02:45 PM.
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Old 08-23-2012, 02:59 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Depends on the torque specs of the fasteners you will be working with. You should purchase the size that has the torque range you will encounter (and not at the extremes of the range).

Probably a 3/8" will do but you may need the 1/2 " for the wheel lug nuts to put the wheels back on.
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I would go 3/8 and 1/2". I don't use a torque wrnech when it comes to brakes though. You can usually get it tight enough.
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Well those numbers you list are for the socket fitting sizes. You'd probably have either 3/8" or 1/2" drive sockets. I'd get the 1/2" drive even if you have 3/8" drive sockets and then just use an adapter from 3/8 to 1/2.

The most important number you need is the max torque you'll be tightening the nuts or bolts to, and get a torque wrench that will go more than that by around double. The middle of the torque range is the most accurate. For example if you need to torque to 40 ft lbs, get a torque wrench that will go up to 80 ft lbs.

Note make sure not to get "ft lbs" mixed up with "in lbs", 1 ft lb is 12 times tighter than 1 in lb.
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickpark View Post
Depends on the torque specs of the fasteners you will be working with. You should purchase the size that has the torque range you will encounter (and not at the extremes of the range).

Probably a 3/8" will do but you may need the 1/2 " for the wheel lug nuts to put the wheels back on.
@rickpark, If possible, I only want to invest on buying one good torque wrench that can work on both the wheel lug and caliber bolt. In the video, I saw the guy use the same torque wrench to fasten the bolt on caliber and wheel. However, he didn't mention the specification of this tool.
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:15 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mt_goat View Post
Well those numbers you list are for the socket fitting sizes. You'd probably have either 3/8" or 1/2" drive sockets. I'd get the 1/2" drive even if you have 3/8" drive sockets and then just use an adapter from 3/8 to 1/2.

The most important number you need is the max torque you'll be tightening the nuts or bolts to, and get a torque wrench that will go more than that by around double. The middle of the torque range is the most accurate. For example if you need to torque to 40 ft lbs, get a torque wrench that will go up to 80 ft lbs.

Note make sure not to get "ft lbs" mixed up with "in lbs", 1 ft lb is 12 times tighter than 1 in lb.
very informative comments.

The guy mentioned that the bolt on caliber should be fasten up to 20 ft pound and the bolt on the wheel up to 70 ft pound to 100 ft pound. So based on your suggestion, I should buy one torque wrench with 200 range. Interesting, I saw lots of senior people don't even bother to use torque wrench at all.
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:50 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by q0987 View Post
very informative comments.

The guy mentioned that the bolt on caliber should be fasten up to 20 ft pound and the bolt on the wheel up to 70 ft pound to 100 ft pound. So based on your suggestion, I should buy one torque wrench with 200 range. Interesting, I saw lots of senior people don't even bother to use torque wrench at all.
I wouldn't torque a lug nut more than about 85 ft-lbs myself. And sometimes you can't do it all with one torque wrench, but in your case one that will go to about 150 ft-lbs would probably do fine. I probably wouldn't even use a torque wrench on the caliber.

I have 3 torque wrenches, one for small in-lbs stuff (3/8" drive), one that goes to 150 ft-lbs (1/2" drive) and one that goes to 250 ft-lbs (1/2" drive).

I always use a torque wrench on lug nuts, spark plugs, crank shaft bolts, oil pan bolts...things like that.
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I would get the 1/2 because in all honesty 20ft lbs is almost nothing, you could easily do that with a wrench or ratchet and with the wheel nuts the taurus needs to be torqued at 100 ft lbs so yes the one with 150 range will do you fine
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:24 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I use a 3/8 socket and get the bolts snug with a little blue locktite. Do not over think it. I have a 3/8s and 1/2 inch torque wrench. Got them at Ace Hardware for $40 for the two of them. Broke the 1/2 inch and got new one no questions. I use for suspension and critical bolts. Caliper bolts can be done with some touch and feel. If in doubt get a mechanic over your shoulder?
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Old 08-24-2012, 03:57 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I bought a 1/2 drive torque wrench from harbor freight tools. It proved to be adequate for pretty much all wrenching I have done so far. The handle is pretty long, which is handy when working with bolts that won't cooperate.


I got this model:

1/2" Torque Wrench
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