It is imperative that every tool in your box is reliable. More importantly, certain tools need special attention to continue to stay in working order. Accurate torque wrench calibration should be done by a professional at least once a year. If you are really good about keeping it clean and turning the torque back to its lowest setting, you might be able to go a little longer.
A torque wrench is a precision instrument and the smallest amount of dirt can throw off the calibration, causing a stud to break, a thread to strip, or a nut to become dangerously loose. It is recommended by professionals that you prep your torque wrench before each use. You simply need to: 1) set the torque to the middle of the range and 2) twist the wrench with consistent pressure until it clicks five to six times. The only thing that is left at this point is to set your torque wrench to the proper setting, and you are good to go.
Why Torque Wrench Calibration is Necessary
There is no question that torque wrench calibration makes your instrument more precise and effective. A torque wrench that has not been calibrated can trigger particular hazards in your home or automobile, since the information it is giving you inaccurate information. Experts state that a 4% error is the maximum amount acceptable in torque applications. Still, you want a properly, advanced measuring instrument to make sure you stay within that tolerance.
For example, if you are wrenching on your expensive automobile or connecting gas lines in your home, you want to be right on target with the torque specifications for every nut or bolt you turn. You can cost yourself a whole lot of stress and spent money by turning your wrench too tight and twisting it a few more unnecessary times for insurance. The fact of the matter is overtightened nuts and bolts are more likely not to work right than correctly torque fasteners.
Under-torqued nuts or bolts can come loose prematurely from their connections. This is the reason professional torque wrench calibration is recommended. However, we will give you the steps to perform a torque wrench calibration on your own if you cannot afford to get it done by a specialist. This method will make your torque wrench as operational as if a professional performed the torque wrench calibration.
To keep your torque wrench functioning properly, it should be lubricated and clean at all times. This will prolong its life. In addition, you should always have the setting at zero, so you will not exhaust the spring. This eliminates the need to have a torque wrench calibration every time you are ready to use it.
Having a professional perform a torque wrench calibration does not justify the expense, especially when you consider how much an inexpensive, consumer-grade torque wrench costs. On the other hand, you need to have accurate wrenches to feel confident about your work. Luckily, it is very easy to check the accuracy of your torque wrenches right from your work bench in your home.