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Home Improvement

Allen Wrench vs. Allen Key 

While many think that Allen keys and Allen wrenches are the same, these tools feature several important differences.

Understanding the differences between Allen keys and Allen wrenches can help you choose the right tool for the task at hand. This can support you in delivering high-quality work results no matter what professional tasks you undertake. 

Wondering about the similarities and differences between an Allen key and an Allen wrench? Here’s what you need to know.

What is an Allen key?

An Allen key, also known as a hex key, is a small L-shaped tool used to provide torque for manipulating fasteners.

Allen keys feature a hexagonal heat that can be inserted into a fastener. The L-shaped handle can be pushed or pulled to fasten or remove the fastener. 

What is an Allen wrench?

Like an Allen key, an Allen wrench is an L-shaped tool with a hexagonal key feature. They can provide torque and are used to manipulate fasteners.

Allen wrenches feature a longer handle and may even have a T-shaped design instead of an L-shape.

Allen wrench and Allen key similarities

Allen wrenches, and Allen keys look alike and can often be used to facilitate similar tasks. 

Both of these tools are designed to fit a hex-shaped socket and can help t provide torque for manipulating screws and bolts in difficult-to-reach spaces.

Both Allen wrenches, and Allen keys come in several different sizes, designs, and varieties. These tools are versatile and popular. They are frequently used to facilitate both home DIY tasks and professional construction jobs. 

Allen wrench and Allen key differences 

Allen wrenches and Allen keys also have several notable differences.

Typically, Allen wrenches come in more varieties and are more likely to feature different ends for working with different fastener types. 

Allen wrenches may have the class L-shape or use a T-shaped handle for better grip and power. Often, they have long handles that make them easier to hold, and they may be manufactured using stronger, more durable materials.

Conversely, Allen keys are a simple, cost-effective tool with plenty of applications. They are much more effective for working on torque screws, and they provide excellent power, even in small, compact environments.

An Allen key can be used across all kinds of tasks. Commonly, simple, standard Allen keys are included with flat-pack furniture kits! 

Making a choice

When choosing between an Allen wrench or an Allen key, it’s important to consider your needs and project demands.

Some tasks may require an Allen wrench, while an Allen key may be a wiser choice in other scenarios. Every project is different!

If possible, it’s a good idea to include both Allen wrenches and Allen keys in your toolbox. This way, you’ll always have the tools you need close by. 

Looking for an Allen key or Allen wrench set to help you with your next job? Visit RS, and see what’s in stock right now. 

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