Best Socket Set for Home or Garage (2022 Reviews and Guide)

Finding the best socket set for the amount and type of work you’ll be exposing it to can be complicated, especially if you are new to the world of DIY projects. If you want to make the right choice, you might first need to learn a bit about points, lengths, driver sizes, shapes, and different measurement systems. That’s why we not only created a list of the best sets on the market but also made sure to provide you with an informative buyer’s guide.

Quick Overview of Our Top Socket Sets

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Milwaukee Socket Set

Best socket set overall

  • Anti-roll design
  • Four degrees of arc swing
  • Removable inner storage tray
  • Slim profile ratchet
star
10

$249.99

Read Review

Stanley Black Chrome Socket Set

Great socket set for mechanics

  • Large, versatile case
  • Everything you need for 1/4” and 3/8” fasteners
  • Finish enhances rust resistance
  • Easily visible size markings
star
9.5

$125.00

Read Review

Gearwrench Socket Set

Excellent professional socket set

  • Sturdy sockets
  • Outstanding build quality
  • Quick-release ratchet
  • Surface Drive technology
star
9.8

$897.04

Read Review

Neiko Socket Set + Impact Adapter and Reducer Set

Top-quality socket set bundle

  • Corrosion-resistant finish
  • Great versatility
  • Two sets in one
  • Chrome vanadium sockets
star
9.6

$217.98

Read Review

K-T Industries Socket Set

Great metric socket set

  • Chrome vanadium steel
  • Great for metric fasteners
  • Simple and effective
  • Includes convenient extensions
star
9.9

$124.10

Read Review

Kobalt Socket Set

Excellent socket set for car maintenance

  • SAE and metric sockets
  • Anti-rust design
  • Comes with three adapters
  • Flip socket included
star
9.2

$174.00

Read Review

Tekton Socket Set

Great socket tool set

  • Amazing durability
  • Great variety of sockets
  • Mirror chrome-plated finish
  • Includes a universal joint
star
9.4

$150.00

Read Review

DeWalt Socket Set

Most complete pro socket set

  • Sturdy set with no filler tools
  • Great for any project
  • One-hand operation ratchet
  • Durable carrying case
star
9.7

$225.99

Read Review

Klutch Impact Socket Set

Amazing impact socket set for the money

  • Deep/regular impact sockets
  • SAE/metric
  • Chrome molybdenum
  • For high-torque applications
star
9.3

$249.99

Read Review

HART Socket Set

Excellent budget socket set

  • Great price-to-quality ratio
  • SAE/metric sockets and tools
  • Amazing versatility
  • Chrome finish
star
9.1

$159.00

Read Review

Socket Set Reviews

Even though our overview of the top products may have already given you an idea of which set might be right for you, we encourage you to give other products a look as well, as you might find one that suits you even better.

Milwaukee Socket Set

star
10

Best socket set overall

  • Pieces: 56
  • Portability: Portable carry set
  • Warranty: Lifetime warranty
  • Shipping and Returns: Shipping fees apply; 30-day returns

A 56-piece, 3/8’’ socket set in a quality portable case? Yes, please! Arguably, the Milwaukee socket set is one of the most versatile sets on the market. Wrench-ready out of the box, these sockets come with a removable inner tray, stamped socket sizes, flat outer walls to deter rolling, a slim profile head, and a flush direction lever.

This top-quality hex socket set has both metric and SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) components, enabling you to do your own household and auto repairs without having to get professional help.

As far as reviews are concerned, most buyers are highly satisfied with the Milwaukee set. As users state, the quality is great for the price, and the ratchet simply feels good in your hands. On the other hand, some didn’t like the fact that the ratchet doesn’t have a quick-release button, but even so, they were overall satisfied with this topvalue socket set.


Pros

  • + Anti-roll design
  • + Four degrees of arc swing
  • + Removable inner storage tray
  • + Slim profile ratchet

Cons

  • No quick-release button on the ratchet

Stanley Black Chrome Socket Set

star
9.5

Great socket set for mechanics

  • Pieces: 141
  • Portability: Portable carry set
  • Warranty: Limited lifetime warranty
  • Shipping and Returns: Free ground shipping over $199; 30-day returns policy

With an impressive number of sockets, joints, and extensions packed into a durable blow-mold case, the Stanley’s Black Chrome set is undeniably one of the best deals for mechanics who are looking for a wide variety of sockets with an anti-rust finish and at a reasonable price. This quality socket set comes with SAE sockets, making it perfect for mechanics and those who enjoy working on their own cars.

To be exact, you get 18 regular 1/4” 6-pt drive sockets, 10 1/4’’ 6-pt drive deep sockets, 15 drive nut bits (1/4”), 30 1/4” specialty bits, a 1/4’’ pear head ratchet, and a 6” drive extension (also  1/4’’) along with a universal joint, and a multi-bit ratcheting screwdriver (all 1/4’’). Plus, you will get 20 3/8” 6-pt drive sockets, 10 deep drive sockets (3/8”), accessories for said sockets, and lastly, 12 short and 16 long hex keys.

User opinions are mostly positive, with buyers largely satisfied with the quality of the set. While some users were so impressed with the set that they wished it had metric sockets, their addition would make the set significantly more expensive. In short, if you’re all about car repairs and looking for a top-quality mechanics socket set, you may have just found what you’ve been looking for.


Pros

  • + Large, versatile case
  • + Everything you need for 1/4” and 3/8” fasteners
  • + Finish enhances rust resistance
  • + Easily visible size markings

Cons

  • Only SAE sockets

Gearwrench Socket Set

star
9.8

Excellent professional socket set

  • Pieces: 27
  • Portability: Metal storage box
  • Warranty: Lifetime warranty
  • Shipping and Returns: Free within the contiguous US; 30-day returns

With this pro-grade set, you get 21 standard sockets that range in size from 7/8” to 2-3/8“. You also get a 24-tooth quick-release teardrop ratchet, coupled with a 19” flex handle, 18” sliding T-handle, and 8”, 5”, and 16’’ extensions. To top it off, this highquality socket set comes with a very convenient metal storage case, which might even have enough spare room for you to add a reliable headlight restoration kit or something else you might need on the road.

The drive tools and sockets are made of polished chrome and feature the Surface Drive technology, which aims to reduce fastener rounding. Lastly, the sockets have large hard stamp size markings for easy identification. 

Users describe this set as a reliable product that’s easy to work with. Most of them said that the quality of this set is unbeatable for the price, especially when considering the service life of most Gearwrench products. On the other hand, some buyers did mention that the metal storage box could be sturdier, but with proper care, it should last you for a long while.


Pros

  • + Sturdy sockets
  • + Outstanding build quality
  • + Quick-release ratchet
  • + Surface Drive technology

Cons

  • Storage box could be stronger

Neiko Socket Set + Impact Adapter and Reducer Set

star
9.6

Top-quality socket set bundle

  • Pieces: 65
  • Portability: Carry case
  • Warranty: N/A
  • Shipping and Returns: Shipping fees apply; 30-day returns

This bundle includes one of Neiko’s toprated socket sets, boasting heavy-duty, drop-forged impact pieces made of chrome vanadium steel, a material that is also used in most of the top-quality screwdriver sets because of its durability. The hex socket heads are designed to prevent rounding, and they feature highly visible markings that make it easy to find the socket you need.

Apart from the 65-piece socket set, you will also get an 8-piece impact socket adapter and reducer set. These allow improved flexibility for both the sockets and the drive tools, providing better versatility. 

People are generally happy with the product, stating that it’s a great heavy-duty set, with all the right tools for more or less every job. On the other hand, several buyers complained that they’d received their sets with missing parts. While this is a problem, most of them were able to contact the manufacturer and get everything that was missing. 


Pros

  • + Corrosion-resistant finish
  • + Great versatility
  • + Two sets in one
  • + Chrome vanadium sockets

Cons

  • Occasional missing parts

K-T Industries Socket Set

star
9.9

Great metric socket set

  • Pieces: 21
  • Portability: Carry case
  • Warranty: N/A
  • Shipping and Returns: Shipping fees apply; 30-day returns

If you want a solid metric set, then it doesn’t really get much better than this. Containing all the essentials, this set comes with 21 3/4” sockets and tools made of chrome vanadium steel, which have been heat-treated and tempered to withstand the abuse in even the busiest auto repair shop.

It includes a total of 17 12-point metric sockets between 19mm and 50mm. Apart from these, you also get a 20” reversible ratchet, an 18” sliding T-handle, two extensions, and a carrying case. Most users are satisfied, claiming this is a good-quality socket set, partly thanks to the fact it’s made of chrome vanadium steel, which is known to be sturdy and durable. The carrying case, the extensions, and the additional tools are also of outstanding quality.

Even though not all of the user reviews of this product are positive, the negative ones mostly mention minor issues, like the fact that some of the sockets seem to have an orange peel finish. Since this is only a matter of aesthetics and doesn’t impact the set’s durability or functionality, most users heartily agree that this is the top metric socket set that you can find at this price.


Pros

  • + Chrome vanadium steel
  • + Great for metric fasteners
  • + Simple and effective
  • + Includes convenient extensions

Cons

  • Occasional imperfections in the finish

Kobalt Socket Set

star
9.2

Excellent socket set for car maintenance

  • Pieces: 55
  • Portability: Blow-molded carry case
  • Warranty: Lifetime guarantee
  • Shipping and Returns: Free shipping; 90-day returns

This great assortment of shallow and deep impact sockets, along with all the necessary drive tool accessories, will get the job done on any heavy-duty project. This 1/2” drive impact set comes with 24 SAE/metric deep and shallow sockets, a total of 3 adapters, 3 extensions, and a flip socket.

Possibly the top 1/2’’ impact socket set around, this kit boasts 6-point chrome vanadium steel sockets with a black-oxide rust-resistant finish, which do a great job at preventing rounding and slippage.

Overall, buyers are highly satisfied, saying that this is probably the best impact SAE/metric set on the market. On the other hand, some had problems with the carry case not holding everything tightly and the sockets falling out of their places if the case is opened too forcefully. While this is a concern, making sure you are careful when opening the case should eliminate the problem.


Pros

  • + SAE and metric sockets
  • + Anti-rust design
  • + Comes with three adapters
  • + Flip socket included

Cons

  • Sockets are not fixed firmly in the case

Tekton Socket Set

star
9.4

Great socket tool set

  • Pieces: 45
  • Portability: Case
  • Warranty: Lifetime guarantee
  • Shipping and Returns: Free shipping available; 30-day returns

If you’re looking for a reliable set that has every size from 5/16 to 3/4 inch and 8mm to 19mm both in deep and shallow lengths, then give this Tekton set a closer look. The kit also comes with an extra-long 6’’ extension, a universal joint, and a handful of other tools that are rarely found in other similar socket kits.

This rather popular mechanics socket set also includes a 72-tooth ratchet that only requires a 5-degree working swing arc. Lastly, every tool in the kit is made of chrome vanadium steel and comes in a mirror chrome-plated finish. Generally, people are satisfied with the quality of the tools, how they handle, their sturdiness, and overall features.

The only downside of the set that was mentioned more than once is that, because of its sensitive lever, the ratchet can occasionally slip out of the loosening or tightening position to neutral while you’re working. However, even if you get a faulty ratchet, the manufacturer offers the set under warranty, and they have a good track record of keeping their customers happy. As such, it’s worth giving it a shot, especially since it is widely considered the top craftsman socket set on the market.


Pros

  • + Amazing durability
  • + Great variety of sockets
  • + Mirror chrome-plated finish
  • + Includes a universal joint

Cons

  • Ratchet lever too sensitive

DeWalt Socket Set

star
9.7

Most complete pro socket set

  • Pieces: 192
  • Portability: Case
  • Warranty: Lifetime
  • Shipping and Returns: Free shipping; 30-day returns

If you are looking for a quality set with a great variety of sockets, the DeWalt 192-piece mechanics set with both metric and SAE sockets might be just what you need. This set gives you the durability and quality that even professional mechanics would be satisfied with. This outstanding combo socket set also includes a 72-tooth ratchet with a low-profile directional lever.

The sockets in this set come with laser-etched markings, making it easier to identify the different socket sizes. This set is an obvious example of why so many people think that DeWalt is the top socket set brand on the market. When it comes to user reviews, we can say that most buyers are pretty satisfied with their purchases.

While some who bought the set praised it for its durability, others were pleased to find that the set didn’t include any unnecessary filler tools that would drive up the cost without offering anything of essence. On the other hand, some user reviews did mention that opening the case for the first time can result in a strong odor being released. Luckily, airing the case out for a while seems to be enough to solve the issue. 


Pros

  • + Sturdy set with no filler tools
  • + Great for any project
  • + One-hand operation ratchet
  • + Durable carrying case

Cons

  • Case can have a strong odor

Klutch Impact Socket Set

star
9.3

Amazing impact socket set for the money

  • Pieces: 94
  • Portability: Case
  • Warranty: Lifetime limited warranty
  • Shipping and Returns: Shipping fees apply; 60-day returns

The sockets in this high-quality 6-pt impact set are made of high-quality chrome-molybdenum steel and are designed specifically for high-torque applications. The sockets feature a manganese phosphate finish that resists corrosion, making them ideal for both construction jobs and plumbing. Obviously, this can also be a great socket set for cars for any mechanic or DIYer.

The set includes 19 deep and 19 regular 3/8” drive sockets (SAE 5/16”– 3/4”, metric 9mm–19mm), 2×28 (deep and regular) 1/2” drive sockets (SAE 7/16” –1-1/4’’, metric 10mm–27mm). Lastly, you also get a heavy-duty plastic storage case. All in all, we were pretty happy with this set, given that it comes with a wide assortment of different regular and deep sockets (SAE and metric) in an overall sturdy package.

When it comes to potential issues, some buyers mentioned that the size markings on the sockets can fade away fast. And while this is a valid concern, the markings can easily be reinforced with a paint marker after a while. Everything considered, this impact set is a worthwhile investment.


Pros

  • + Deep/regular impact sockets
  • + SAE/metric
  • + Chrome molybdenum
  • + For high-torque applications

Cons

  • Size markings can get worn off

HART Socket Set

star
9.1

Excellent budget socket set

  • Pieces: 215
  • Portability: Storage box
  • Warranty: Lifetime limited warranty
  • Shipping and Returns: Free shipping available; 90-day returns

If you need a large assortment of different sockets and tools but you’re also budget-conscious, give the HART socket set a closer look. This large, 215-piece toolset delivers more than just sockets. You also get an extensive range of great socket drive tools, a 90-tooth ratchet, a reverse switch lever, and 13 more tools and adapters.

Additionally, this great mechanic socket set also comes with a durable case that has strong metal latches and enough additional storage space for you to be able to add more tools or even your favorite windshield repair kit. All in all, this is a great deal for the money. It’s a great budget toolset that can help you tackle everything from simple DIY projects to heavy-duty tasks. Because of this, the HART is among the highest-rated socket sets on the market. 

On the other hand, some users who bought the set mentioned that the design of the box leaves a lot to be desired. Namely, the trays can prevent the box from closing, and it’s generally unwieldy. However, this is hardly surprising considering the number of pieces in the set and is a minor issue compared to the overall quality of the set.


Pros

  • + Great price-to-quality ratio
  • + SAE/metric sockets and tools
  • + Amazing versatility
  • + Chrome finish

Cons

  • The box could be more convenient

 

How to Pick the Best Socket Set

— Buyer’s Guide —

When it comes to buying reliable tools for DIY projects, your best bet is to do your research and then start looking for everything you need. So, let’s see what goes into finding the right socket set. 

Measurement Systems

First of all, when you’re looking for the top socket set for the money, make sure that you know which kind of fasteners you’ll be dealing with, i.e., which measurement system they use. The SAE system uses inches, while the metric uses millimeters. For most seasoned DIYers or handy craftsmen, this probably won’t be a problem. However, those with less experience might end up choosing the wrong tools. If you know exactly what you need the set for, checking the fasteners is easy; if not, finding a reliable SAE/metric combo set might be your best option.

Drive Size and Shape

First of all, the term “drive socket” refers to the square hole used to attach the socket to a tool (wrench or ratchet). So, the drive socket size is the distance between the opposing inner walls of the drive socket. Top-quality socket sets will usually sport one of five sizes (1/4″, 3/8″, 1/2″, 3/4″, and 1″). Note that drive sockets will always be listed in imperial units. The socket’s drive size must match the drive size of the turning tool. As far as sizes and different types of socket heads go, there are:

  • Hex sockets: It’s difficult to imagine a great socket set for a mechanic that doesn’t include a range of hex sockets. As their name implies, these sockets have six points. There are also twelve-point sockets (bi-hexes), which can be used on a greater variety of fasteners than hexes.
  • Impact sockets: A high-quality impact socket set will typically include sockets with thick walls, often sporting a dark industrial surface finish. They are made especially for strong power tools like power impact wrenches, which apply more torque and strength when removing fasteners.
  • Spark plug sockets: As the name suggests, they are for fitting or removing engine spark plugs. They are longer than most standard sockets and tend to have rubber inserts.
  • Socket bits: While not every good socket set necessarily has to include socket bits, larger sets usually will. The term refers to sockets with standard drive sockets on one end (so they can be attached to a ratchet) and a bit on the other. These bits can include everything from screwdriver heads to a number of other extensions, and they can work great with both manual and impact tools.
  • Universal joint: These sockets have a ball-swivel that allows great flexibility in terms of the angle of the approach and can help you get into the tightest spots.

Points

Points refer to the intersections where the socket head’s inner walls meet. A high-quality socket wrench set can come in several point variants, with the most common options being:

    • 6-point: As mentioned above, hex fasteners are extremely common, making these sockets an obligatory part of every toolbox.
    • 12-point: Bi-hexes, the second most popular option, are a bit more flexible in terms of attachment. They are also great for lightweight repair but might not take heavier wrenching that well.
  • 4-point: These are great for square-headed set screws, smaller engines, etc.
  • 8-point: Less common, but when you need them, they’ll come in handy!

Length

Generally speaking, there are two different sizes that you’ll come across. These are:

  • Standard sockets: Whether you have a great cheap socket set with a relatively low number of pieces or a high-quality assortment, standard sockets will probably end up being used much more often than anything else in the set. They have shallow heads and allow you to work with fasteners that would be difficult to reach with larger sockets.
  • Deep sockets: These are typically used for long bolts that would extend too far into a regular socket to allow it to reach the nut. They are also handy for reaching fasteners in recessed cylinders or other inaccessible places.

More often than not, a good set will have both standard and deep sockets.

Number of Sockets

This refers to the actual number of sockets in a set. Professional socket set reviews will usually tell you that you should focus less on the numbers and more on the sizes. What does this mean? For most DIYers, a 400-piece pro-grade socket set is probably an overkill. While there’s no universal prescription, starting with a 3/8″ and 1/2″ socket set and building the setup as you go would probably be a good idea.

Durability and Surface Finish

Higher-end socket sets are made of durable materials, with the best of the best coming with lifetime guarantees. Even so, most sockets will suffer some wear and tear as time passes. The ratchet’s quick-release mechanism can give out, and rough usage can even cause the sockets to crack. Luckily, proper maintenance and careful handling can reduce the likelihood of something like this happening.  

Surface finish is another important consideration, as it protects the socket against corrosion. Chrome and black oxide are some of the more commonly used materials, but there are other options.

Compactness and Portability

Even though this is not a rule, quality socket sets will usually include a carry case for your tools. These cases are made to be sturdy, and the best-made ones will not only allow you to conveniently transport your sockets, but will also keep them protected from environmental factors. Finally, these cases (or boxes that come with larger sets) provide you with a convenient way to organize the sockets for quick and easy access.

FAQ

What is the best socket set?

The best set will be the one that has all of the tools that will fit your needs the most. As such, if you are a DIYer, you should first assess the projects you’ll be doing and, consequently, the types of sockets you will need. 

Which brand of socket set kits is the best?

Using the brand as guidance can be a good idea if you already know what you need, you tested a few sets, and know what suits you the best. If you are new to the DIY world, looking at a few guides might help you assess what you need and go from there. That being said, in our book, Milwaukee and Gearwrench sockets sets performed the best.

What socket sets do mechanics use?

For the most part, 3/8” drive socket sets are the most practical for the majority of automotive jobs and, as such, are a mainstay in most toolboxes. On the other hand, mechanics will also need 1/2” drive socket sets. These are the largest an average mechanic is likely to need, and they are reserved for changing bulkier parts like wheels, brake calipers, suspension components, and so on. Lastly, diesel mechanics also use 3/4” drive ratchet sets, but only when working on large construction equipment.

How do I select a socket set?

First of all, think about where you will have to use it and about what it should or must include. You can always opt for an all-in-one set that will have you covered in a variety of different situations, but most experts will tell you that you might be better off starting with the basics and expanding your tool collection slowly.

How many sockets should I have?

Honestly, only you can tell. In short, it’s always a good idea to have a wide range of different sockets for every possible issue. As such, try to focus on your current project, and if you don’t have the necessary sockets for it, you should be able to buy them individually or find another set that complements the one you already have.

Conclusion

Hopefully, our reviews and buyer’s guide have helped you find the best socket set for your particular needs and given you at least a general idea of what kind of issues are common with these tools. We have tried to provide you with a variety of sets for different purposes and budgets, but if you are still not sure which one would suit you best, start small and expand your set as needed.

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