One of the most essential tools you’ll need in your garage workshop is the cordless ratchet.
Not only does it allow you to tighten and loosen screws and bolts, but it makes the whole process so much easier because it’s battery-operated.
Do you really need a cordless ratchet?
You might think it’s no big deal to use a regular ratchet, but while ratcheting wrenches achieve the task at hand, you can spend minutes trying to tighten or loosen just one bolt or nut.
You want to save time on small tasks so that you’ll have more time and energy to get bigger ones done, and that’s the main reason why you should purchase a cordless ratchet. Now the question is which one you should buy.
When purchasing a cordless ratchet, important features to look for relate to its size, weight, and accessories, as we can see in the above table. But there are many other features you should look for.
Not sure where to start?
Don’t worry. Let’s look at the five best cordless ratchets on the market in greater detail.
Best Cordless Ratchet – Reviews For 2021
Best Overall: Milwaukee 2457-20 M12 Cordless Ratchet
This cordless ratchet tool will make easy work of your must-do tasks. While you might think the fact that it’s battery-powered means it won’t be up for the job, you’re wrong. Here’s why it’ll actually make your work easier.
- 35 foot pounds torque
- LED lighting
- Fuel gauge light
- This ratchet comes with a forward/backward switch that’s conveniently located on the back of the head so you can reach it without looking, helping you to pay attention to your task.
- It has a low-profile design that doesn’t get in the way of your tasks. This also means you can work in really tight areas, such as corners of your garage.
- It’s got fuel gauge lights so that you never have to guess how long you have left to use it. This is especially beneficial if you’re using it far away from a power source.
- This cordless ratchet is equipped with LED lighting so you can work in poor visibility conditions without a problem.
- It’s built with a smart chip so that it communicates with the battery – this helps to prevent issues such as overheating, therefore ensuring that it will last a long time.
- It doesn’t come with batteries, which means you’ll have to purchase those separately.
- It doesn’t come with any extra accessories, which is a bit disappointing considering that many other cordless ratchets on the market do as we’ve already seen in our comparison table.
- This ratchet can be carried on your belt for the ultimate convenience.
- It’s built out of reinforced steel and plastic so it’s strong and built to last.
Designed to be strong and useful for getting into those nooks and crannies, this ratchet tool by Milwaukee costs $86.99. It’s durable, while easy to use and portable, so we can actually overlook the fact that it doesn’t come with any accessories!
Runner Up: KIMO Cordless Electric Ratchet Wrench
What if you’re looking for a complete cordless ratchet kit, not just a ratchet?
This ratchet wrench kit is worth considering as it gives you everything you need to start working on those DIY jobs around the house.
- 40 foot pounds of torque
- Ergonomic handle
- Copper motor
- This ratchet tool has 400 RPM, so it’s already a bit more powerful than the previous product we featured.
- It works just like an air ratchet, but with the bonus of you not having to deal with loud noise or power cords. Simply take it to where you need to do work and nothing will get in your way.
- Its head is very slim, which makes it easy to get into any tight corners.
- You don’t need to worry about aches and pains after using this ratchet because it’s built with an ergonomic handle, thanks to its rubber construction that makes it much more comfortable to use.
- It’s got an LED light so you can light up the area in which you’re working.
- It also has a fuel-gauge display to tell you how long the battery will last.
- The ratchet has a lock-off switch to prevent accidental triggering, therefore keeping you safer on the job.
- Its motor is made out of copper. This is not only lighter but also cooler, enhancing its performance.
- Some people who purchased this ratchet kit reported that the batteries don’t last very long before needing to be replaced.
- This ratchet tool comes with two KIMO power batteries that have a 1,000-charge cycle.
- When you purchase this cordless ratchet, you’ll also get other accessories in the pack, such as a case, seven sockets, a drive adapter, and a 60-minute fast charger so that if you forgot to charge it you won’t have to wait too long before you can use it again.
- This cordless ratchet only weighs 1.72 pounds, so it’s really easy to carry around with you and will feel more comfortable to use because it’s so light.
This ratchet kit will save you time and money. It costs $89.99, which is value for money if you consider all the great accessories it comes with to make your job easier. We also love its safety features.
Alternative: ACDelco ARW1209P Ratchet Wrench Tool Kit
This ACDelco ratchet tool kit is focused on making your work easier but also offering you comfort and safety, no matter what task you’re doing. Here’s what you should know about it.
- 45 foot pounds of torque
- Electronic brake
- This ratchet tool contains an alloy steel head to make it more durable.
- It comes with an electronic brake so you can feel safer when using it.
- It’s got a soft-grip design that’s ergonomic for more comfortable work.
- Another safety feature it has is that it comes with a built-in safety lock.
- Some people who have purchased this ratchet tool have reported that it’s a bit noisy.
- Others have said it’s a bit heavy to carry and use.
- It’s also worth mentioning that the switch on the ratchet tool tends to catch on things, so that’s something to bear in mind.
- While it might be a bit heavy for some people to use, this ratchet has a slim body that makes it easy to use in tight places. This has become the standard for quality cordless ratchets on the market.
- This ratchet comes with other accessories, such as a 12 Li-ion battery and a fast charger that enables you to charge the battery in just 30 minutes! That’s something that will come really handy when you need to use your cordless ratchet ASAP.
This ratchet tool costs $69.95. Despite its low price, it’s packed with all the features you need to make your work go faster, smoother, and feel more comfortable.
Alternative: ZFE Cordless Electric Ratchet Wrench
This ZFE cordless ratchet wrench has some interesting features and it’s also focused on making your DIY work so much more convenient. Here’s what you need to know about it.
- 30 foot pounds of torque
- Heat-sinking capacity
- Non-slip grip
- This ratchet has a 12-volt motor that provides you with 40N.M torque so you can work faster and more efficiently.
- It has a forward/reverse switch so that you can quickly and easily remove or install screws and bolts.
- It comes with an ergonomic non-slip grip, which makes it ideal for when you’re working with it for long periods of time.
- It’s got a battery indicator light that changes from green to yellow to red to tell you when you need to charge it.
- The motor has a strong heat-sinking capacity. This is one of its interesting features we mentioned earlier. What this means is that it stabilizes the battery’s temperature, making it safer to use and helping the ratchet to last longer.
- Some people have commented that this ratchet is a bit bulky to handle.
- Others have reported that it’s not very user-friendly to have to use both hands to change the rotation direction. One hand has to hold the tool while the other turns the rotary switch. For an ergonomic model, making this easy to do with one hand would have been a nice feature.
- You get lots of extras in the pack to make your work so much more convenient. These include the lithium-ion battery, metric sockets, socket adapter, fast charger and a toolbox. You also get eight different bolts so that you will definitely have all the bolt sizes that you need.
With all its extra features, this cordless ratchet is definitely value for money. It costs $59.99, so it’s cost-effective while giving you extra features you’ll appreciate when you need to use a ratchet.
Alternative: Shieldpro Cordless Electric Ratchet Wrench Kit
This Shieldpro ratchet kit will make your DIY projects much easier.
- 40 foot pounds of torque
- Press trigger feature
- Bi-directional heat output channel
- This electric ratchet wrench has variable speed that’s easy to control with a press trigger.
- It comes with two battery packs as well as many other accessories, like a carry case and fast charger.
- It’s got a bi-directional heat output channel. What this means is that it maintains the working temperature of the batteries to prevent issues like overheating.
- It’s got a rubber handle that prevents slipping and is comfortable to hold. It also minimizes vibration.
- It’s got an adjustable paddle switch trigger. This makes it easy to adjust the speed by hand, so it’s great for beginners.
- Some people who have purchased this ratchet tool on Amazon reported that it works well on smaller projects as long as you don’t need a lot of torque.
- This Shieldpro cordless ratchet weighs five pounds, so it is the heaviest one on our list of cordless ratchet reviews.
- This ratchet tool comes with an LED light and battery indicator light so that you can see better in your working environment while also being sure the ratchet will have enough power to help you complete your task.
This Shieldpro ratchet costs $99.99. It’s suitable for many projects you’d do at home and will make your job easier, thanks to its user-friendly features.
Cordless Ratchets FAQ
The best cordless ratchets on the market that we’ve featured in our buying guide will help you choose the best one, but maybe you’re not that familiar with cordless ratchets and would like to know more information about them.
Read on to learn some important info about cordless ratchets and how they work.
How does an electric ratchet work?
An electric ratchet has a motor with a high RPM and it moves in one direction to either tighten or loosen bolts. The energy from the motor goes through gearing to decrease the tool’s speed but increase its torque.
This output then engages a crankshaft that has an offset pin which swings the yoke from side to side. This is a similar design to what you’d find in a manual ratchet, but it moves much faster – and that’s one of the benefits of using a cordless ratchet!
The yoke also has gear teeth that interact with the pawl-based ratcheting mechanism. This is important because when the yoke swings, the teeth will lock with the pawl to turn the tool output.
When the yoke then swings back, the teeth will be able to move past the pawl without any movement of the tool output. The tool usually has a forward-reverse selector so that the pawl’s direction can be changed.
What is the difference between electric and air ratchet?
While an electric and air ratchet will look almost exactly the same, the main difference between the two tools is that electric ratchets are powered by rechargeable batteries, while air ratchets are powered by air compressors.
There are many good reasons why you should choose electric ratchets over air ratchets. They are slim and compact, as well as safer to work with because you don’t have to worry about stepping over electric cords.
This also means that you can use them for jobs that you need to do when there’s no power source nearby. They’re completely portable so you can work with them in your garage workshop, basement, or even far away from home without a hassle.
Some even come with convenient clips that you can attach to your belt, such as the Milwaukee cordless ratchet we featured in our reviews, which makes them even more of a grab-and-go tool.
How to use electric ratchet?
Electric cordless ratchets are really easy to use. Here’s the rundown on how to use them to tighten or loosen nuts or bolts.
To tighten bolts:
- You need to start by installing the proper socket to match the nut or bolt that you want to tighten.
- Then, make sure you apply some pressure to keep the socket fastened to the nut or bolt.
- Put the forward/reverse lever in position for forward rotation to begin.
- Apply a bit of pressure to the paddle switch and gently increase the speed.
To loosen bolts:
- To loosen a bolt, you’ll install the socket you need that fits the nut or bolt you want to loosen.
- Apply pressure to keep the socket fastened to the nut or bolt.
- Use the forward/reverse lever, this time choosing the reverse function.
- Apply a bit of pressure to the paddle switch and increase it once you feel in control.
This is basically how a cordless ratchet would work, regardless of the specific model or brand you’re using.
What is the difference between a ratchet and a socket wrench?
To define a ratchet, we can say it’s a device that enables you to either tighten or loosen nuts and bolts. It’s basically a wrench device.
A socket wrench can be defined as a handle with a 90-degree ratchet. It also has a set of “sockets,” which are cylinder-shaped. These sockets, or interchangeable heads, basically just snap onto the fitting that’s located on the wrench’s handle.
You can usually purchase socket wrenches that come with socket sets. They will be in different sizes so that you will be able to use them on a variety of nuts and bolts.
Now, many socket wrenches will also have a ratcheting handle – otherwise known as a ratchet. This is useful because it allows you to reverse the tool in a small space without first having to remove the socket from the head of the bolt or nut.
The ratchet is also beneficial because it gives you greater leverage so that you can turn the socket. In fact, the longer the ratchet, the better leverage you’ll get which will make it easier to turn the socket.
You can set the ratchet so that it either has a loosening or tightening function, and then you can ensure the socket remains in place on the nut when you turn the handle. It’s clear to see that, while they have some differences, socket wrenches are a type of ratchet.
A cordless ratchet is a must-have because you never know when you’ll need to be able to install and uninstall screws.
This is a basic task that’s made so much easier when you have a cordless ratchet handy. In this article, we’ve featured five of the best cordless ratchet tools on the market.
We’ve also looked at some important facts you should know about cordless ratchets and how to use them.