Have you decided to install PEX pipes in your home? Having the right tool can make you job easier especially if you need to work in tight spaces. But what is the best PEX crimp tool for tight spaces?
The best PEX crimp tools for tight spaces are designed to be compact and versatile, allowing plumbers and DIY enthusiasts to maneuver and crimp PEX fittings with ease, even when space is at a premium.
For instance, tools like the iCrimp ATSM F1807 Angle PEX Two Crimper Set are highly regarded for their ability to navigate such challenging environments. Additionally, manufacturers have created specialized tools, which further simplifies the task of crimping in tight spaces.
These tools are not only time-savers but also ensure that each crimp is secure, without the need for excessive force or awkward positioning, which is crucial for maintaining the integrity of the PEX connection in any installation.
Best PEX Crimp Tool For Tight Spaces
1.)Best Value For Money
This red tool from IWISS weighs 1.9 pounds and its handle is made from quality rubber. It can be used with 1/2″ and 3/4″ PEX Copper rings, PEX Tubing and PEX Barb Fittings.
The IWISS tool has angled heads for access to tight spaces with ease. It won’t damage pipe or ring. The IWISS PEX crimp tool is 20% lighter than the majority of PEX crimp tools. This means that you can work for longer and applying the same strength again and again without your hand hurting.
Some customers complained that the tool’s handles are too short to get leverage. However, this problem occurs if the user’s hands are small. You need to apply some strength in order to use this tool. This problem occurs because the tool does not have interchangeable jaw dies.
- Access to tight spaces
- Check system
- Reduces fatigue
- Lighter than similar tools
- High customer satisfaction
- Handles are too short
- They fit just one size crimp connector
- Tight Space PEX Crimping Tool: IWS-C close quarter PEX copper ring crimper tool set is...
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- Go/No-Go Gauge: Connections may be checked for security using the Go/No-Go Gauge...
2) Premium Pick
The Sharkbite tools have a catchy name that suggests your crimp connections will be very secure. But is it so? Let’s see what the features of this tool are!
- Compatible with multiple pipes and fittings
This tool can be used with SharkBite PEX Copper Crimp Rings in all the popular sizes. It is compatible with 3/8 inch, 1/2 inch, 3/4 inch, and 1 inch fittings. One tool can be used with multiple pipe and fitting sizes.
- Does not require calibration
Moreover, it allows each joint to be checked with the included go/no-go gauge tool to verify your connection is secure.
- Can be used for commercial and residential projects
The Sharkbite tool meets standards for both commercial and residential plumbing applications.
- Made in the USA
Where the tool has been manufactured can be a very important aspect for some buyers. In this case, the tool has been made in the USA.
The 6” handle provides approximately 5000 pounds of crimping force to get the job done fast and easy.
- Comes with carrying case
Many tools come in a cardboard box you can’t use for a long time. This PEX crimp tool from SharkBite comes with a compact carry case.
- Provides good leverage
The tool is long enough to provide good leverage, but it does require some effort to close and open.
- No replacement parts are available
A customer noticed that SharkBite does not sell replacement dies for this crimper. This means that if you lose a die, you have to buy a whole new set. The manufacturer could send you a courtesy replacement die, but they are not obliged to do so. This could be a deal breaker for some customers.
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3) Budget Pick
A medium-priced tool, the iCrimp 1/2 and 3/4-inch Combo Pex Pipe Crimping Tool is made from durable steel. This is a tool you can use for multiple projects, representing an excellent investment.
- Compatible with two sizes
The iCrimp tool is compatible with 1/2-inch and 3/4-inch copper ring in PEX pipe connection.
- No damage to rings
In order to avoid damage to copper rings and leaking, manufacturers have provided this tool with well-polished jaws.
- Long service life
The tool is made from durable steel that ensures an integrated mechanical property and calibration function.
- Suitable for tight spaces
The iCrimp tool has lightweight and short handles that make it easy to operate in narrow spaces.
- Best value for money
The tool has a rating of 4.8 stars out of 5 on Amazon. Considering its convenient price, we can say that iCrimp offers an excellent value for money.
- Hard to remove a wrong fitting
Crimping with this tool makes it hard to remove a fitting if you have made a mistake. This is why some customers prefer the cinch tool and fittings.
- Too big for some narrow spaces
The iCrimp tool may be too big and difficult to maneuver in some very tight spaces.
- Not a professional tool
Are you planning to use this tool every day at work? It works fine, but it may not be the best choice in the long run.
- Meet ASTM F1807 Standard, compatible with 1/2-inch and 3/4-inch copper ring in PEX pipe...
- Well-polished jaws ensure no damage to the copper rings to avoid leaking
- Constructed of durable steel ensure an integrated mechanical property and calibration...
4) IWISS Pex Crimping Tool
Back to the IWISS brand of tools, but this time with a more affordable item. Like all IWISS tools, this one also meets the ASTM F1807 standard, with some other benefits included as well:
- Minimizing user fatigue
The ergonomic design of this IWISS tool ensures excellent comfort so user fatigue is minimized.
- Perfect crimp connection
The jaws are polished so the user does not cause any damage to copper rings.
- New function!
This tool comes with a new function of reshaping deformed ½” and ¾” copper crimp rings by itself.
- Compatible with multiple rings and fittings
This tool works with fittings, metal brass and copper rings which meet ASTM F1807 standard.
- Checking tool
The IWISS tool includes the go/no go gauge for checking the crimp. We hope all your crimps are perfect!
- Handles too short
Some customers wish the handles would have been a little longer for better leverage.
- Poor instructions
Just using the instructions that come with the tool may not be sufficient to figure out how the tool works. This can be more of a problem for beginners.
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5) Apollo PEX 3/8-inch – 1-inch Multi-Head Crimp Tool Kit
The last item on our list of top picks is this crimp tool kit from Apollo. Many customers have reviewed it as outstanding and having an impressive level of quality.
- Has go/no go check system
The go/no go gauges are used to check the crimps after compression. This way, you are 100% sure your crimps are correct.
- Comes with a case
Unlike many PEX tools sold online, this item from Apollo does have a case. This is very convenient if you need to carry the tools with you to some other place.
- Has spare screws
The kit also includes two spare screws. The small screws are loosened with the provided wrench when removing the dies.
- Universal tool
This is a well-built universal crimp tool that fits various pipe sizes.
- Saves a lot of money in plumbing costs
Do you have some plumbing work at your home, such as replumbing from polybutylene to PEX? You can rely on this tool for the entire project and for more projects to come.
- Too large for very tight spaces
- Tool failure
The Apollo tool may be too big for some very tight spaces, so consider an alternate method for these situations. A number of customers have reported failure of this tool, such as the snap rings falling off constantly.
- Product Type:Tools
- Item Package Weight:3.039 Kilograms
- Item Package Dimension:7.62 cm L X26.162 cm W X46.99 cm H
How do you choose the right crimp tool?
A crimp tool is not very expensive. Even so you want to make the right choice from the first try. The features you should look at when choosing a PEX crimp tool include:
- Tool length – longer handles ensure more leverage and access to tight places;
- Crimping clasp size – ranging from ¼ inches to 1 inch;
- Calibration – the crimp tool should allow you to recalibrate it back as it can become stretched out with use;
- Go/no go gauge – this system helps you check if your crimp fittings are correct;
- Ergonomics – a good tool should be designed in a way that prevents user fatigue.
How do you make a crimped joint?
Using PEX crimp tools is not difficult. Unlike soldering copper pipes, crimping PEX is easier and does not require formal training. Here are the main steps of this simple process:
- Cutting PEX pipes to the required size;
- Sliding the crimp rings onto the pipe you just cut;
- Fitting the pipe to the tube and pushing it on;
- Opening the crimping tool by pulling both handles;Best PEX Crimp Tool For Tight Spaces
- Placing the opening of the crimping tool firmly over the crimp ring;
- Closing the crimping tool by pushing the handles back together. This move creates a watertight seal as the crimp ring is fixed in place.
How do you know your crimped joints are good?
The ultimate test is running water through your pipes and checking for leaks. In some cases, this could spell disaster. You definitely don’t want to flood your home due to improper crimp fittings.
Fortunately, the tools presented in this post come with a go/no go gauge check system.
How do you use it?
After completing the crimp, complete the following simple steps:
- Slide the ‘go’ side for the gauge over the crimp. The gauge should pass over the ring with no impediments.
- Turn the gauge over. Pass the ‘no-go’ side of the gauge over the crimp ring. The ring should not be able to enter the ‘no-go’ side of the gauge at any point.
Did you fail the test?
Cut the wrong fitting out and replace it with a new crimp ring and fitting.
Our choice is the SharkBite 23100 Pex Crimp Tool. Its main strengths are the good price-for-value ratio, being manufactured in the USA, and being a universal tool. Moreover, it provides proper leverage and comes with a handy case.
Any of the tools presented in this article will get you the job done.
Are you good at DIY stuff and have basic plumbing skills? You can make wonders with PEX and a good crimp tool!
Michael Davis is a heating & plumbing expert who currently works as independent contractor in SC. He also writes for Plumbertip.
For almost 10 years he worked on various plumbing tasks across South Carolina.