The 4 Best Locking Pliers You Can Buy

Use them to clamp metal for welding, grab onto stripped bolts, pull nails . . . with locking pliers, suddenly you’re Superman.

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Zack and Buj

NOTE: You may have noticed that all of the pliers we reviewed got five stars. That’s not a mistake. It’s also not something we’ve done before. For the first time ever, all of the tools in this test deserved our highest rating. You can’t go wrong with any of them.

C.H. Hanson 10CJ

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CH Hanson


5
5

The clamp mechanism is a marvel of design. A small machine screw with very fine threading allows for minute adjustments. You can get the exact amount of pressure on whatever it is you want to clamp. Even at maximum force, these pliers were the easiest to release of the products we tested.

Knipex 40 14 250

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Knipex


5
5

This beautifully made German tool has a unique pivoting lower jaw that makes it much easier to clamp around pipes and nonstandard shapes. It’s more expensive than the competition, but that’s because it’s made of chrome vanadium, an extremely tough and fracture-­resistant material.

Milwaukee 48-22-3510

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Milwaukee


5
5

The Milwaukee has a hefty eyebolt threaded into its handle. Insert a screwdriver and twist, and you can really clamp down with some force. The chrome molybdenum construction makes it corrosion resistant.

Irwin Vise-Grip 10WR

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Irwin


5
5

The original locking plier is simple, well-built, and still great in all respects. The new model has built-in wire cutters and a recess in its adjusting knob to accept a 3/16-inch Allen wrench that lets you more easily and precisely adjust and release the tightening force.

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