Strap wrenches are a very unique tool indeed. Most homeowners have probably never heard of a strap wrench, as they are more commonly used by plumbers. However, a strap wrench can be an excellent addition to your tool box. There are several different styles of strap wrenches as well, which may be something to consider when you are ready to add one or two to your own tool box. If you are daunted by your lack of knowledge about this tool or how to use it, a strap wrench is actually quite easy to use. You might find it very useful for a lot of DIY tasks. Here is a little more information on the variety of strap wrenches, how to use each, and what you might need them for.
Most strap wrenches, as the name implies, are comprised of some sort of strap and a handle for manual torque. The straps themselves can be woven nylon, rubber, metal bands, chains or hard flexible plastic. The ones you want for your tool box and home use will have rubber, metal bands and/or woven nylon straps. The other two strap types are used for automotive purposes, so do not really need those (unless you also do your own auto repairs).
Depending on the strap material, each of these wrenches works just a little bit differently. Although the concept and function are essentially the same, the different straps are secured, pulled and tightened differently. The strap material is also designated for a different task, so that can get confusing too. The instructions on how to use each style of strap wrench are spelled out under their following subheadings.
Rubber Strap Wrench
Rubber strap wrenches may seem a little flimsy because of the rubber, but when used properly they have amazing strength.
That is it–you now know how to use a rubber strap wrench.
Woven Nylon Wrenches
Woven nylon strap wrenches work just like rubber strap wrenches, except that you are dealing with a strap material that has absolutely no give and will not stretch or wear out when wet. The straps on a woven nylon strap wrench are also wider and thicker to handle bigger objects that are more difficult to remove. The thickness of the woven nylon strap adds a little more grip and torque to what you are attempting to do. Additionally, woven nylon strap wrenches rarely come with a handle. They only have a buckle on one end.
To use a woven strap wrench:
That is the correct way to use a woven nylon strap wrench.
Metal Band Wrench
A metal band style strap wrench has a metal band in place of the rubber band, but still, has a handle to help you get the most out of your own body strength. The metal band works almost like a ratchet in that there is a metal locking clasp or button lock system. Some metal band strap wrenches also have a swivel feature so that you do not have to crank your wrist and hand into an uncomfortable or cramped position before pulling and twisting the wrench in the right direction.
To use a metal band strap wrench:
There you go!
Finally, here are some things you might use strap wrenches for:
Basically, anything that cannot be gripped with bare hands or easily removed with other wrenches is the perfect project for strap wrenches.