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What is an open ended wrench?

3 min read

Asked by: Rob Singh

Definition of open end wrench : a wrench with jaws having a fixed width of opening at one or both ends of the handle.

What are open ended wrenches used for?

Box and Open Ended Wrenches. These tools are used for loosening and tightening fasteners such as nuts and bolts. They come either separately or in a combination form, with one end being an open wrench, while the other is boxed.

How do I know if I have an open end wrench?


The openings are U-shaped. These openings are not of the same size. These wrenches are useful when dealing with nuts and bolts that are difficult to access. They provide much more ease in turning such nuts and bolts.

What is a closed end wrench called?

This type of wrenches is closely related to the previous type. Box ended wrenches consist of a flat shaft that has closed loops on both ends. As a result, they have a better grip for fastening or loosening the bolts.

Why do wrenches have two ends?

By flipping a wrench over with each turn, the two-jaw open end has the ability to tighten or loosen a fastener. If the offset were any different, it would be possible for the fastener to get “stuck,” or unable to be turned in a limited-clearance area.

What’s the difference between ratchet and socket wrench?

A ratcheting socket wrench – commonly known as a ratchet – is a mechanical tool that tightens and loosens nuts and bolts more efficiently than other wrenches. Ratchets attach to different sized sockets, making them a versatile tool for your toolbox.

How are open ended wrenches sized?

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, wrench sizes were commonly named by the nominal size of the bolts whose nuts they fit, rather than the size (across the flats) of the nuts themselves. For example, a “1/2” opening might fit a 7/8 (across the flats) nut threaded on a 1/2 inch bolt.

How do I choose the right wrench?

You want to make sure that you apply the pressure against the fixed jaw. So you won't break the moving joint the pipe wrench is a heavy-duty wrench. Especially for plumbing and heating projects.

How many types of wrenches are there?

23 Types Of Wrenches And Their Uses

  • Open-end wrench.
  • Box-end wrench.
  • Combination Wrench.
  • Flare-Nut Wrench.
  • Torque wrench.
  • Allen wrench.
  • Bristol wrench.
  • Torx wrench.

What is SAE wrench?

SAE or Standard: A standard or SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) wrench is measured in fractions of inches. Small wrenches will be around 1/4 inches, while large wrenches will be 1 inch or larger. Metric: A metric wrench will work with nuts and bolts that have a metric measurement.

Should I use metric or SAE?

Typically, SAE sockets and wrenches are used on American-made cars, as mentioned previously, however, when it comes to working on imported cars (assuming you’re in the USA) you’ll most likely be looking for metric units of measurement.

How do you tell if a bolt is SAE or metric?

When you're looking at different bolts.