Lug nuts can be really tricky to get off. Tires are often exposed to the elements and other corrosive materials. Your lug nut can get cemented in rust and other gunk, making it impossible to remove. There are a lot of times that the standard wrench or tire iron won’t cut it when it comes to the force required to budge stubborn lug nuts. Below are some of the most common tools used on to get lug nuts unstuck.

  1. Cheater Bar A cheater bar is a length of pipe that slips over the handle of your wrench so that you can leverage more torque on the lug nut. Using a cheater bar helps you apply more force behind your wrench. Be careful. When the lug nut suddenly gives it is easy to lose your balance and fall over. The wrench or lug nut can also go flying so be sure to wear protective eye gear. Since this method can be potentially dangerous and takes a lot of strength it isn’t used in professional or industrial settings.

  2. Impact wrench – an impact wrench is a socket wrench power tool. It can be powered by electricity or compressed air. The design relies upon rotation to repeatedly strike a hammer and anvil mechanism, producing more torque than a simple cheater bar. The tool does most of the work and there is little exertion required on the part of the user.

  3. Pneumatic Torque Wrench – A pneumatic torque wrench uses compressed air to turn an internal gear mechanism to produce more torque. Since force is produced through the air motor it is very easy to use. The downsides of this method is that you almost always have to take your car into the shop or rent an air tank yourself to get your pneumatic gun to run.

  4. Torque multiplier – The Cheater Wrench is another torque multiplier. Similar to a pneumatic torque wrench it uses gears to multiply torque but has the convenience of being hand powered. The handle is specially designed so it doesn’t require a huge amount of force. Plus, it is small enough to easily store in your car.