Use a torque wrench instead of guessing if something is tight enough
Use a torque wrench instead of guessing if something is tight enough
10:18

Use a torque wrench instead of guessing if something is tight enough

Cars
Speaker 1: After the proper air pressure in your tires, the number one specification, most of us blow off on our car is toque. We grab any old wrench to let's say, take a wheel on and off. And then we just honk on it really hard and say, it's on there. Good and tight. That's neither good. And might not even be sufficiently tight unless you use one of these, a torque wrench. I know you've seen them in. Yeah, I don't need that. Yeah, you do. Let me show you why and show you how to buy one of these. That's gonna do the job Speaker 1: [00:00:30] Before we get started a quick discussion of torque. What is it? This will make some people's eyes glaze, but I'm gonna give it to you. The simple, full way you engineers, you may cringe, but I think I got this basically, right? It's twisting force. When you take a wrench like this and you rotate it and turn a nut or a bolt, a certain amount of twisting force is what you feel. That's that resistance. It's analogous to the clamping force that you are creating, holding, whatever it is [00:01:00] on to wherever it's to be. But since we have no gauges, most of us that can directly measure the clamping force. We need to sort of make an analog for that. With the torque force that we apply to the fastener. Now, a car maker will tell you, you've gotta put 80, 90 foot pounds. Let's say of torque on a Lu nut to put a wheel on your car. Speaker 1: That way it's not so tight that it, it deforms anything or breaks anything, but also not so loose that it's gonna come off after many miles of shock and vibration. The [00:01:30] clamping force is key to making sure that happens, but they give it to you as torque, because they've looked at the metallurgy of the hub, the stud, the Lu nut, uh, the thread profile and said, if the mechanic provides this much torque to this fastening assembly that holds on the wheel it'll result in the clamping force we want. So that's why you're doing torque is to get to the real goal, which is the clamping force that holds on a wheel, an engine pan, a transmission pan, a cylinder head [00:02:00] that applies to so many parts of working on your car. That's the nuts and bolts of why you care about torque. Now let's see how we apply the proper amount of it. Speaker 1: Okay? So let's show you how to torque in real world practice. The most common situation you'll encounter is putting a wheel on. For whatever reason, you took it off to rotate tires, change of flat, whatever it may be. So what I want to do you is impress upon you that you want to get the right amount of force, not ample amount of force, which can be over the top. If [00:02:30] you do that, you might distort or crack an alloy wheel. You could strip or break a stud or a nut, which are these two fasteners that hold this thing on. You might even crack or pull out this part from the hub behind where it all attaches. All of these. You can get your me like to look at you. Like you're an idiot. When you limp this thing in to have them repair the damage that you've caused, don't do it for your own pro and for your own pocketbook. Speaker 1: So here's what I do. I start by getting my fastener in this case, a lug nut on just moderately tight. I use any old wrench and I [00:03:00] just go, eh, okay, I know that's nowhere near enough, but it's fully contacting, right? It's up against the part that it's holding on. In this case, the wheel I take off the conventional wrench. Now I grab my torque wrench. And the first thing I do is set it to the correct torque setting for this Lu nut. How do I know the, you Google it today, a hundred foot pounds. That's how torque has expressed most often foot pounds. I'm not even gonna deal with the definition. Don't worry about it. I have to set my wrench to that though, to 100. [00:03:30] This is a wrench that uses what's called a Verne scale and a click stop head. I'll show you that in a minute, there are other wrenches that have a digital readout. Speaker 1: They show you the foot pounds in that way. Uh, I like 'em. If you spend a lot of money on them, I don't like cheap ones. And speaking of cheap, there's a really cheap kind of wrench that uses this sort of wavering needle. Almost like a water defining rod. Those are junk. Don't use those. Either spend the middle amount of money. It's not a lot of money and get a good torque wrench that has a Verveer scale and a click [00:04:00] stop head. So what I do now is I look at my veneer scale, which may be foreign to you. If you never did anything with slide rules or CS, here's how it works. I've got a number right there that says 100. I follow that little line. And I wanna line up the zero on the handle with that 100 line. And there is that right there. Speaker 1: That is 100 plus zero, which is a hundred, that's a hundred foot pounds. And that's what this wrench is now set to. If I wanted 95 foot pounds, I would back this thing down [00:04:30] to zero on the 90 right there. And then I'd go forward another five and that's 90 plus five that's 95 foot pounds, et cetera, et cetera, anywhere you want. I'll cross the range that this will deal with. Now, the next thing I do is stick a socket on here that fits the Lu. Not I already have that figured out it's 13, 16 on this car. And I go to put this on and do my toking, got a problem. Doesn't reach this nut is too dished. It's too inset in this wheel for [00:05:00] me to get to it. So now I'm gonna add an extension rod. And here's where an awful lot of discussion goes on. Speaker 1: Where people say that this extension rod is gonna screw up the accuracy of your torque reading. It will not. It will be fine. The only possibility is if this is made of such crappy metal, that it twists. It's not a big variance, unless you're using some kind of real piece of junk tool. It's about to fail. I'm gonna assume that's not the case. In which case, this does not alter the torque reading in any meaningful way. I'll show you what does in a minute, [00:05:30] I placed my torque wrench on my fastener. I've already set it to the right weight, a hundred foot pounds. I gotta get up now, cuz this is a fairly good size fastener. I a pretty good piece of torque going to it. You don't want to do this in a few little pieces like tap, tap, tap, and you don't wanna do it twice. Here's how you do it. You do it in one sweep. Start kind of high and bring it down smoothly until you hear this a click. I like these a lot, cuz there's that [00:06:00] physical communication you get from the wrench. Here's what you don't want to do say, huh? I wonder if I got it tight enough. Let me go ahead and do it again. No, you don't double torque a fastener. If you wanted to check it, you've gotta do this. Take a wrench back it off again. UN torque it. There we go. Get it. Just barely snug again and start the process from scratch. Not doing it again on a previously torqued nut. Speaker 1: [00:06:30] There we go. Now I know I've got it. So you're okay to use an extension. You wanna do your Tor working in one smooth arc. And the last thing is you wanna hold the wrench in the right place. There's a very pronounced handle here for a reason because this head and this scale and calibration are calibrated to you. Applying force at this length of the beam, don't choke up on this thing. It'll screw it all up and you will not get the right fastening. You gotta hold it where it indicates [00:07:00] you hold it. And I support the head. If I've got a long extension here also, that's also very important. Once you get this done, you know, your fasteners are in good shape, but what if you're doing a bunch of fasteners, like in this case, I would be doing five in real life. There's a certain pattern to torquing things, whether it's five log nuts or 20 engine pan bolts or transmission pan bolts or a dozen cylinder, head bolts, whatever they are. Speaker 1: You don't just go after 'em willynilly you want this to attach flatly. As you're putting torque on it now in a factory, on an assembly line, [00:07:30] they often have big tools that would Fasten all of these at once. So they don't worry about it. The clamping force is gonna be applied evenly and flatly all you don't have that tool. So what you do is this. Instead let's say I started here on this Lu nut, which I did. The next one I want to do is as far away as I can, let's say this one opposite. Then I go over here and then here and then here, see what I did. I kept moving as far away as I could from the previous nut to distribute [00:08:00] my clamping force around the part it's by no means perfect, but it's good enough for the average mechanic, unless you're working in an industrial facility, that's how we do it. Speaker 1: Now you may say, okay, putting a wee on a car, lots of people do it, who don't torque it. And I, I don't see a lot of wheels coming off of cars. All right, I'll give you that. Although I bet there's a lot of damaged wheels out there from over toking or running loose, but leaving that aside, [00:08:30] toking fasteners properly is really critical. If you do any kind of engine work, if you're just putting on a water pump or if you're just, uh, replacing some other fastener here on the engine that has any kind of need to seal something, it's gotta be torque, right? Or it probably won't seal even something as simple as the oil pan, let's say you've got one of those weepy oil pans and the thing leaks a little bit all the time. And you're sick of it. You drop this pan off, you put a new gasket in and you redo all these fasteners down here. Speaker 1: There's a bunch of them. If you don't torque them to the right spec [00:09:00] or don't torque them in the right order, like I showed you on the wheel example, you're gonna have a leak again. And you did all this for nothing. And it's not because the gaskets bad. It's not because you didn't put the right parts on it's because you didn't torque the fasteners properly. So toking is a very integral part of how an engine's design is carried out from the way it was built and cast and machined to the way it's assembled. So everything can work the way it was designed to and not with weird leaks and distortions that can make a mockery of [00:09:30] all the beautiful engineering and a modern engine. Speaker 1: So in some, when you wanna get yourself equipped to torque things properly on your car, I recommend you have two torque wrenches. One would be a foot pounds wrench that has a three eights drive. This is pretty common stuff. The other a little less common would be an inch pounds wrench with a quarter inch drive. This is for smaller fasteners, smaller sockets thing of that nature. If you have these two in your toolkit, unless you're working on some pretty big [00:10:00] trucks, you're in great shape to torque, anything from a small, critical fastener to big stuff like lug nuts and cylinder head bolts. And then you're gonna make sure everything is on tight enough, but not too tight. Don't dis the engineering that went into your car by just honking on everything.

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