For professionals and DIY enthusiasts, having the right tool for the right job is something that assures efficiency. And this is no exception when it comes to installing pex pipes.
If you have taken plumbing more seriously or want to do the plumbing stuff on your own, make sure you have the best pex crimp tool in the toolbox.
Sealing the pipes is something we cannot overlook for the sake of maintenance of a building or household. This is where crimp tools have the upper hand over other tools.
Don't get confused, seeing the overwhelming numbers of brands and their tools. To keep things straight and easier, I have dug deep and found these 10 crimp tools to have the most customer satisfaction.
10 Best Pex Crimp Tool Review
Whether you are to get a tool kit for doing plumbing yourself or a professional who needs to have the best tool regardless of the price, the list has the right one for your needs.
1. Apollo PEX ⅜-1 Inch Stainless Steel Pinch Clamp Tool
When plumbing requires you to install pex pipes of average dimensions, this can be the best pex crimper that you can get as your first pinch clamping tool.
Using the tool, you can attach a wide variety of pinch clamps from ¾ inch to all the way up to 1 inch. If your plumbing has to mostly deal with pipes of this size, you will not need another clamper for this reason.
What's more, is that the tool can also be used on Apollo pex and Murray pex of ⅜ to ¾ inch pinch clamps with great sealing results. You can make pex pipes waterproof by sealing properly to make sure you don't need to plumb again to fix the pipes.
The handle measures 15.25 inches that allows you to reach hard to access areas. You will get a decent amount of leverage when the plumbing requires it. The head is made of quality stainless steel material to assure you of its durability. Sealing stainless steel crimp bands won't be an issue for this one.
If you are concerned about the weight of the tool, its 1.5 pounds of weight feels comfortable to hold and use for a long time.
2. IWISS Pex Cinch Tool ⅜-1 Inch
For pex piping, Iwiss is a well-familiar name among professional plumbers. Its durable construction along with top-notch pex pipe sealing performance make it the best cinch tool on the list.
When you use this tool, it will assure you whether the clamp ring is well secured or not. Its convenient and user-friendly self-releasing mechanism doesn't release the tool unless a secure connection is made. So, even if you don't have additional tools to further check the leakage, you can rest assured about the sealing.
The head is made of durable quality steel that forces stainless steel clamps without any issues. You can work flawlessly with ⅜, ½, ⅝, and ¾ inches of clamps along with a calibration gauge. If the piping requires you to deal with these sizes, you can rely on this tool.
However, the tool doesn't work with the Zurn quick clamp; otherwise, you are good to go with the rest of the other clamps without any issues. It comes pre-calibrated with great accuracy; thus, no adjustment would be needed.
To make you comfortable to work with the tool, it has a rubbery coating on the handle, and this handle is 20% longer than conventional ones. Tasks where you will need high leverage, it will require you to put half the effort compared to regular clamping tools.
3. IWISS Angle head PEX Pipe Crimping Tool for Copper Rings
For those who are looking for a combo deal for PEX piping, this deal includes some great tools and kits that you shouldn't miss.
Inside the toolbox, you will get a crimping tool and pex cutter. In addition, there are a total of 30 pieces of copper rings of ½ and ¾ inches. The box makes you pretty much ready to go for PEX pipe installing or fixing without any additional tools.
Using the crimping tool, you can make PEX pipes of ½ and ¾ inches secure enough to prevent water leakage. Ideal for those who only deal with pipes of these sizes, it reduces the hassle of replacing clamps every now and then.
The pex cutter cuts pipes while making the edges smooth and ready to work on. With the clamper, you can make leak-free connections without any blurry textures on the pipes.
Compatible with fittings of different brands, you can rest assured about the sealing quality. In addition, the pressure doesn't cause any damage to the copper rings as the jaws are well polished for this purpose.
The clamper was designed to make reaching into tight spaces easier. So, the pipe installation using it will be a lot easier than what it is used to be with conventional ones.
There is a 'Go-No Go' Gauge inside the box to make sure the connection is properly made. If the pipe doesn't pass the test, you can remove the C clamp easily, adjust the pin by a single increment, and make the tool correctly deal with pipes.
4. IWISS Pex Pipe Crimping Tool Kit for ⅜ ½ ¾, and 1 Inch Copper Ring
If the previously reviewed tool kit wasn't the right one for your pex piping needs due to the size factor, you could consider getting this combo deal that is compatible with standard pipe sizes. Apart from being able to use on pipes of different sizes, its comfortable handle and ease of use make it the best pex tool in its class.
The crimper itself is 1 inch; however, there are ½, ⅜, and ¾ inch jaws to handle all piping installation and fixes. Switching between the jaws is fairly easier and doesn't take too much time. Jaws are well polished and don't cause any damage to pipes or fittings.
Even if you have to work for a long time, you will find its ergonomic anti-slip handles to be comfortable enough. It comes with a calibration function in case you need to re-calibrate the settings for correction.
The crimper makes sure the copper doesn't slip when you crimp it first. Use its pre-crimp function to make the copper ready for fitting tightly onto the pipe, and then crimp. In case you end up with deformed copper rings, you can give the correct shape using the corresponding size jaw and prop the holder.
Inside the box, you will get a pex pipe cutter with a sharp stainless steel blade, which opens fast and makes smooth and well-finished cuts on pipes. Also, there is a Go-No Go gauge to ensure the precision of crimping.
5. iCrimp SharkBite ½ ¾ Inch Tool with Copper Crimp Ring
If you are a plumber, you must have heard about iCrimp, a well reputable tools manufacturer that makes reliable tools for both professionals and enthusiasts. For those who don't like to attach different jaws for a couple of sizes, this clamper would make more sense to them.
So, the tool is designed for securing ½ and ¾ inch pex pipe with a copper ring connection. I must say, it does what it was made for. Jaws are well polished and don't cause any issues to the copper rings whatsoever. If you need to re-calibrate the size adjustments, there is a function for that too.
The manufacturer used durable steel material to construct the clamper, which feels pretty rigid in hand. It's durable enough to withstand abuses and light impacts easily.
As the handle on this one is relatively shorter, it reduces some weight. Compared to other clampers, it feels pretty lightweight in hand. If you are to work for a prolonged period, your hands won't feel fatigued whatsoever. You don't need to put extra strength to get this thing worked.
For convenient piping, you can use its pre-crimping feature to make sure the copper doesn't slip-off while securing it onto the pipe. This also allows dealing with deformed copper rings using its ¾ inch hole.
6. Zurn QCRTMH Steel Multi-Head Copper Crimp Tool
Enthusiasts want to make sure they get pretty much all they need in a deal that would provide value for money. Keeping that thing in mind, Zurn introduces this five-tool set that includes all you will need for PEX piping.
There are some clamps that aren't compatible with Zurn rings. If your piping system is like this, this is the one you need to get.
Using the tool, you can install 3/8, ⅛, ⅝, and ¾ inch fittings. The fittings seem to be well-secured and tight. You can conveniently interchange the jaws without wasting much time.
Durability is more than up to the mark due to its quality steel material. Reliable steel material should withstand abuses and falls without much problem.
The handles also feel comfortable to hold. Unlike the previously reviewed one, the handle is 11.5 inches long on this one. So, you can expect it to provide a decent amount of leverage.
Having an averaged sized handle doesn't make it weigh too much. Weighing around 2.6 pounds, the tool doesn't feel heavy while working for a long time.
You can check whether the fittings are properly sized or not using the Go-No Go gauge that comes inside the box.
7. Astro Pneumatic Tool 9-Piece Professional Quick Interchangeable Ratchet Crimping Tool Set
When you need to crimp electrical connectors for both insulated, non-insulated terminals and butt-splices, as well as barrel connectors, you should have an interchangeable ratchet like this one. From its 6 different jaws, you can crimp connectors of different shapes and types without spending much time.
The jaws come with a double crimp design. You can either choose single or multiple crimps as per the connectors require. So, even if you need to crimp on two or three times on a terminal or wire, you can do it in a single-use. No need to crimp one by one.
Once the desired crimp is delivered, the ratchet releases on its own. If you find the crimp to be too loose or tight, be sure to adjust the position using the integrated adjustment cog.
The ratchet itself is made of high-quality steel to make sure it lasts for years. Light abuses and falls will not impact much of its durability. In addition, it features ergonomically designed handles with rubber grips to make you feel comfortable while working using the tool. Your hand won't experience much fatigue.
For convenient operation, both right and left-handed people will be able to operate the crimper without any problem.
8. IWISS PEX Cinch Clamp Crimping Tool
Yet another clamp crimping tool kit from the Iwiss, one of the leading piping and water solution accessories manufacturers. The set includes a crimper, 10 pieces of ¾ inch, and 20 pieces of ½ inch clamp.
The clamper comes factory calibrated and is accurate enough for handling most piping tasks. Its reliable ratcheting mechanism releases when you crimp it properly, and the clamp is properly pinched. Therefore, you don't need to worry whether you clamped correctly or not.
To ensure you about its quality, the head of the ratchet is made of high-quality, durable steel, which performs crimping with ease. In addition to that, its ergonomic and non-slip handles feel comfortable in the hand while working for hours.
This universal tool is compatible with stainless steel clamp that is ⅜, ½, ¾, and 1 inch in size. Thanks to its calibration gauge, which makes it the best pex crimping tool in its class.
You can also remove the stainless steel rings if needed, using the same crimper. Just take a screwdriver to pry the band end, and grip the end with the pincher, and pull over it to remove the ring from the pipe.
Whether you are a professional plumber or a person who is looking forward to doing the piping and stuff all by yourself, you will find the tool to be beneficial enough for the purpose.
9. IWISS Ratchet PEX Pipe Cinch Tools
It's hard to find a cinch tool that can handle pretty much all the sizes of clamping tasks. This one from Iwiss is one of those rare ones that allow you to clamp ⅜, ½, ¾, ⅝, and 1-inch pipe tubing. For its compatibility with different sizes and the price tag, it's the best pex cinch tool that you can get.
This one is ideal for those who don't carry a lot of tools and stuff in their toolbox. The ratchet can replace a few cinching tools and make it easier for you to carry and use them with great convenience.
As this one clamps stainless steel rings, the manufacturer ensured that it doesn't show any durability issues while operating. Made of high quality steel, you can rely on its durability and withstanding ability against falls and abuses.
To make you feel comfortable while working with the ratchet, the handles got an ergonomic grip. So, even when your hands sweat, you won't face many issues to get a good grip on it.
When you use the tool to close the clamp ear, its auto releasing mechanism will release it when the desired pinch is delivered. You can further check the size using the given gauge whether it's correctly sized or not.
Due to the single-hand design of the ratchet, using it is fairly easier and requires less effort than most conventional ratchets.
10. iCrimp Ratchet PEX Cinch Tool with Removing Function
Last but not least, a ratchet cinch tool with removing function, which suits those who are looking forward to doing pex piping themselves. In case the clamped size is wrong, you have the option to remove the ring and repeat the clamping correctly.
Compatible with all sizes of stainless steel clamps of different manufacturers, this one is the best pex crimp tool that you can buy at this price range.
Using this multi-functional ratchet, you can clamp pipes and cinch clamps or remove them to resize the fitting. Also, there is a pipe cutter inside the box. So, for professional plumbing, this deal includes pretty much all you will need to make pex pipe installation conveniently.
Talking about the clamp size, it handles all ⅜ to 1-inch clamps like a pro. Note that the tool only deals with stainless steel clamps and rings. So, if you have copper rings or want to use copper rings while pipe installation, this isn't the one for your need.
Durably made using high-quality steel with a tough forging process, the tool stands up even for commercial usage. The jaws got wire EDM cutting to make the cuts more precise and cleaner. You can expect it to last years without facing any issues regarding its durability.
The self-releasing mechanism eases cinching. As I have said earlier, you can easily remove any cinched ring and cinch it correctly. There is no need to calibrate the tool as it comes pre-calibrated from the factory.
For your operational convenience, the package includes 20 pieces of ½ inch clamps and 10 pieces of ¾ inch clamps.
Key Considerations Before Buying Best Pex Crimp Tool
If this is the first time that you are to get a crimping tool, it's important that you set some filters to make sure the tool or toolkit serves your purpose the best. To make it easier, I have set a list of things that you must consider before making the final purchase.
PEX Piping Type - Cinch or Crimp
Installing PEX pipes requires two tools; cinch and crimp tools. They both work differently, although the function is pretty much the same.
The crimp tool seals the diameter of the metal ring around the pex pipe. It comes in different sizes. If you need this, make sure the tool is compatible with your piping size. Compared to the cinch tool, it's much easier to use. A newbie can easily figure out how to use it correctly.
On the flip side, a cinch tool only compresses one edge or ear of the metal ring. It contacts the ring lightly. A cinch tool will work with different sizes, and you don't need to worry whether the tool will work according to your desired size or not. These are tools that fit all sizes.
As I have stated earlier, crimping tools come in different sizes. ⅜, ¼, ½, and 1 inch are the most commonly used sizes for pex piping. The size refers to the internal diameter of the ring that holds or seals the pipe.
You must consider the size that you mostly deal with. If you work with only one size, there are lots of tools that come with a single crimping head. However, if you work with multiple sizes, be sure to get a tool that features multiple holes or jaws for different sizes.
Another factor that you also need to check is the size of the crimping tool head. If the head is a larger one, then it won't get you access to tight spaces. If you need more convenient piping, get one with a relatively smaller head. You will be able to crimp in narrow spaces easily.
After years of use, your pex tool will be stretched out a bit, which will not securely crimp clasps into pipes. In that case, you will need to re-calibrate the tool to make it accurate and precise.
All crimping tools come factory-calibrated. However, not all of those features further calibration function. Make sure you get one that allows you to re-calibrate it further.
As crimping and cinching require a bit of strength to be able to seal the pipes; therefore, the handles need to be comfortable enough to hold. Otherwise, when you work for a long time, your hand will fatigue and feel uncomfortable.
Go for the tool that has ergonomic or rubbery, or anti-slip handles. These handles won't tire your hand, and you can continue working even when the hand gets sweaty.
Handles come in different sizes as well. A tool with longer handles will make leverage much easier. It's quite hard to get a decent amount of leverage with short handles.
Go-No Go Gauge
This particular gauge tells you whether the piping is done correctly or not. Many models or toolkits come with a Go-No Go gauge; be sure to get one of those. If you are not an experienced plumber, then having this part is a must for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is PEX crimp or clamp better?
Both crimp and clamp rings are much reliable when it comes to sealing pipes, and making them leak proof. However, stainless steel clamp rings are corrosion-resistant, and copper crimp rings don't have such properties. This is something that is going to affect direct-burial applications.
Also, PEX clamps are easier to remove, which is good for beginners and occasional plumbers.
How long do PEX connections last?
PEX connection manufacturers claim that their products' life expectancy is more than 100 years. This life expectancy meets ASTM international standard, which needs to be at least 50 years. These connections are extremely durable and don't require much maintenance. You can expect to get a long service once installed.
Is PEX plumbing safe?
If there is any chance of PEX pipings to get exposed to chlorine, petroleum products, and oxygen, it can cause issues. Sometimes toxic chemicals leach from pipe material when it comes to such solutions or chemicals.
Can you crimp PEX with pliers?
Using the best PEX crimp tool, one will be able to break stainless steel PEX clamp with pliers. So, it's pretty much manageable to do so.
Why is PEX banned in California?
Water quality studies found that PEX pipes were leaching chemicals into drinking water. As it was pretty much poisoning drinking water, put residents at exposure to carcinogens, and could cause birth defects, California State strictly banned using PEX pipings.
Once you get the best PEX crimp tool that meets your PEX piping requirements, you should be able to handle plumbing by yourself without any professional assistance. However, for cinching, this can be tricky. If you don't want to take the risk, be sure to let a plumber take the hassles for you.