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Should Lug Nuts be so Tight?

notsohandy's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 111

03-25-05, 12:32 PM   #1  
Should Lug Nuts be so Tight?

Went out to get in my car this morning. Flat tire. No problem. Grabbed my lug wrench and doughnut spare. I was really mad when I discovered that the lug nuts were so tight that I couldn't loosen them. The road service gentleman used a "torque wrench" to loosen them with ease. He said you don't really have to own a torque wrench -- you can just get an iron pipe about two feet long that fits like a sleeve over your standard lug wrench handles. And that will give you the extra leverage needed to loosen stubborn lug nuts.

Would that work? How does a "torque wrench" work? Obviously it makes loosening lug nuts easy, but why does it work better than an ordinary wrench? Thanks for any comments.

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kerry's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 506

03-25-05, 12:44 PM   #2  
get yourself a good 4-way lug wrench. you can push down on one side and pull up on the other making the nut much easier to loosen. also keeps you from rounding off the nuts by keeping the "socket" inline with the nut.
hard to explain, but you will understand after you use one.

car nut's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 478

03-25-05, 02:37 PM   #3  
A torque wrench is used to tighten a bolt or nut to a specific value usually measured in inch pounds or foot pounds.

zzzz1486's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 335

03-25-05, 02:45 PM   #4  
yeah i agree with getting a 4 way lug wrench, i havn't encountered a lug nut i couldnt bust with a 4 way wrench. if its really stuck you can even stand on one side and pull back on the other.

bejay's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 2,538

03-25-05, 03:32 PM   #5  
it was just a longer wrench wich gave him more leverage to be able to loosen the nuts easier a pipe on your factory one would also do the same thing the longer the handle of the wrench the easier it will be to loosen bolts on the downside you will be able to easily overtighten them also.
wheel lug nuts have a tightening spec such as an example say 80 foot pounds the torque wrench is able to tell you when you reach this spec so you dont overtighten or undertighten the lugnut.

wagonman76's Avatar
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03-25-05, 08:57 PM   #6  
A torque wrench is for tightening nuts/bolts only (not loosening), and for tightening them to a certain torque. Perhaps he used a breaker bar (longer lever arm so less force needs to be applied), or an impact wrench (which acts like hammering the nut off). All automotive bolts have a torque spec and a torque wrench should be used for tightening. Most lug nuts specs Ive seen are 100 ft lbs, which is not as much as youd think. It comes out to 66 lbs on an 18" lever arm. It does not mean reefing on them as hard as you can. Sadly, most shops ignorantly disregard torque specs and just reef the nuts down as hard as they can with the impact gun. Wheel studs get stripped. Brake rotors get warped. And when it comes time to change a tire, youre pretty much SOL with the standard lug wrench the automaker gives you, which works fine if the lugnuts are torqued to spec.

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