Purchasing a drive socket isn't as simple as grabbing the first one you'll see in the market. You may find it hard to make your choice because firstly, there are a lot of them to choose from and, secondly, you need to consider many important factors that will help you decide if the socket you're thinking of purchasing is really worth your bucks.
Whether you're purchasing a socket to complete the tools needed for your DIY project, or you simply want to include it in your roadside emergency kit, here are some tips that will help you make a more informed decision:
Determine the type of drive socket you need.
There are two measurement classifications for sockets.metric and imperial. A metric socket is designed for metric bolts while an imperial socket works for standard bolts. Using an incompatible socket can strip or damage the bolt head, which can cause serious problems. Since bolts and screws are of different sizes, sockets are also available in various drive sizes, which means you can always get a socket for a particular application.
So before heading out to purchase a drive socket for your automotive use, find out first the type that you need or the one you'll find most useful. If your purpose for purchasing is to complete your roadside repair kit, might as well get both types of socket or a complete socket set.
Go for a drive socket that's of excellent quality.
Since one of its tasks is to deal with stubborn or damaged fasteners, the socket you'll get must be good quality so as not to give up and break down while dealing with hard-to-remove components. If you get poor-quality drives, don't be surprised if they suddenly get twisted, warped, or bent after a while. Something worse can happen if the socket gives up while you're using it under pressure. You must also pay attention to the drive socket's ratcheting portion. It should also be well-designed and in good shape.
Consider the drive socket's point shapes.
The standard socket point shapes are hexagon (six-point) and dodecagon (12-point) or double hexagon. The six-point socket matches a bolt or screw head while a 12-point socket is designed for items that have multiple .starting. points.
If you're going to use the socket for vehicle repairs and maintenance, a six-point unit will come in handy because you have to deal with several screws and bolts while doing an automotive DIY task. Most automotive fasteners also have a hexagonal shape, making a six-point socket an even more practical choice for automotive DIYers.
Socket length must depend on the application requirements.
When it comes to the length of your drive socket, you have two options.shallow and deep. Shallow or standard sockets can be used in tight working areas, close angles, and even in open spaces. Deep sockets can be used to deal with hard-to-reach bolts and screws. Their more practical use, however, is for .inverted. ratcheting or in cases when the bolt is screwed upwards.