The best hexagonal Allen keys in the UK 2023

For repairs and various maintenance work at home or in a professional capacity, the hexagonal Allen key is often necessary. Ideally, you should have a whole set of them in all sizes. With so much on offer, it's not easy to find the right one. Rest assured, our buying guide with the best hexagonal Allen keys will help you.

Meterk Allen Keys 36 pcs 1

Best value for money

Meterk Allen Keys 36 pcs

The best hexagonal allen wrenches in 2021

This Meterk wrench set consists of 35 Allen wrenches including metric, imperial and torx. It has everything you need for small household jobs and more.

12,79 £ on Cdiscount

If you're in the habit of buying products online to assemble, you'll need these 3 sets for a total of 36 Allen keys. In all, this Meterk pack consists of 13 metric wrenches, 13 imperial wrenches and 9 torx wrenches. The manufacturer also provides a CR-V material grip to prevent wrist pain with prolonged use.

This set offers Allen wrenches in all sizes. Spherical tips allow some wrenches to screw or unscrew on a 30° incline. Each set comes with its own storage case with a click system for each wrench. They can be used for loosening and tightening fasteners, repairing electronics, bicycles, appliance repair, electrical work and rolling stock.

Set of 13 S&R Allen keys 2

Best value for money

Set of 13 S&R Allen keys

The best entry-level hexagonal allen wrenches

With this set of wrenches, S&R has thought of the small budget with this set of 13 Allen wrenches. These models are suitable for occasional use.

8,79 £ on Amazon

To continue the ranking, we present the set of 13 S&R male Allen keys. Their diameters range from 1.27 to 10 mm, including a hard-to-find 5.5 mm wrench. Each wrench has a ball end for screwing on an inclined shaft.

This set of 13 S&R wrenches is ideal for general mechanical work or home DIY. Each wrench fits perfectly in its respective location. Criticisms include the rather flimsy tan coating, the lack of a 7" wrench and the fact that the wrenches are a bit short overall. This last point does not really facilitate the handling.

Facom Wrenches 83SH.JP9APG 3

Excellent choice

Facom Wrenches 83SH.JP9APG

The best high-end hexagonal allen wrenches

For wrenches and ratchets, Facom is the reference brand. In this set of 9 Allen keys, there is no flaw, except maybe the price.

17,62 £ on Manomano

The good thing about Facom is that you know right away what you're holding in your hands. So yes, the price may seem high. But few wrenches can boast a real lifetime guarantee. Professionals and experienced DIYers alike will attest to this, this Facom 83SH.JP9APG 9-piece Allen wrench set is used every day. No matter what you're screwing or unscrewing, these 1.5 to 10 mm hexagonal allen keys will not have any play.

The wrenches are long enough, with the largest measuring 19 cm. Each wrench has a ball end that provides more access to some well-hidden screws. And for storage, the portable case has ergonomics to match the overall quality. The block locks each key in its place via a very ingenious click system. There is no risk of enlarging the slot or deforming or even losing keys.

S&R Allen key set of 30 4

Very good

S&R Allen key set of 30

The favorite

S&R can really compete with Meterk with this set of 30 allen keys. However, the small wrenches in this set seem a bit short.

11,99 £ on Amazon

At the price S&R is offering, you would be wrong to hesitate! This set of 30 metric and imperial Allen wrenches is both practical and affordable. The wrenches range in diameter from 0.7 to 10 mm. The set is also very complete, as evidenced by the presence of a 4.5 mm wrench that is usually unavailable in stores. In addition, keeping everything in the same case considerably reduces the risk of loss.

The possibilities of use are numerous. These range from DIY to shop work, furniture assembly, etc. Those who use equipment from the United States will undoubtedly get their money's worth with this case. You no longer run the risk of screwing up the head of a screw because you don't have the right wrench in imperial measure.

Buying guide • November 2023

Best hexagonal Allen keys

Any specific needs?

The best hexagonal allen wrenches in 2021

The best entry-level hexagonal allen wrenches

The best high-end hexagonal allen wrenches

The favorite

Your guide : Samuel

Rate this buying guide :
4.9/54 votes

By rating this buying guide, you are helping us to reward our best writers. Thank you!

Comparison table of the best hexagonal Allen keys

Meterk Allen Keys 36 pcs 5
Set of 13 S&R Allen keys 6
Facom Wrenches 83SH.JP9APG 7
S&R Allen key set of 30 8
Meterk Allen Keys 36 pcs
Set of 13 S&R Allen keys
Facom Wrenches 83SH.JP9APG
S&R Allen key set of 30
This Meterk wrench set consists of 35 Allen wrenches including metric, imperial and torx. It has everything you need for small household jobs and more.
With this set of wrenches, S&R has thought of the small budget with this set of 13 Allen wrenches. These models are suitable for occasional use.
For wrenches and ratchets, Facom is the reference brand. In this set of 9 Allen keys, there is no flaw, except maybe the price.
S&R can really compete with Meterk with this set of 30 allen keys. However, the small wrenches in this set seem a bit short.
1086 g
300 g
370 g
320 g
1.27 to 10 mm
1.7 to 10 mm
1.5 to 9 mm
0.7 to 10 mm
Chrome vanadium steel
Chrome vanadium steel
Chrome vanadium steel
Phosphate coated

Help us improve this table:
Report an error, request the addition of a feature to the table, or suggest another product. Thank you for your kindness!

Buying guide - hexagonal Allen keys

Primary Item (H2)Sub Item 1 (H3)

Why can you trust us?

Why you can trust us
Our mission
How to support us
We do NOT accept any sponsored posts or advertising.

We spend thousands of hours each year studying the major specialized websites, analyzing products of hundreds of brands and reading user feedback to advise you on the best products.

Our mission is to simplify your purchasing decisions.

We are a product review company with a single mission: to simplify your buying decisions. Our research and testing helps millions of people every year find the best products for their personal needs and budget.

We are a small team of geeks and enthusiasts.

To support us you can: use our links to make your purchases (which often earns us a small commission), share our articles on social networks, or recommend our site on your blog. Thanks in advance for your support!

How to choose your hexagonal Allen keys

If you are having trouble choosing your Allen wrenches, here are some criteria to guide you in your purchase.

#1 - Brand and robustness

Tools marketed by a well-known brand are both reliable and of high quality. The better the brand name, the more certain you are that your tools will last a long time. You can trust Stanley, Facom, S&R, Bosch or Meterk.

To determine how strong a hexagonal wrench is, look at its Rockwell hardness rating: a guarantee for high resistance to torsion.

High-end manufacturers often specify the Rockwell hardness rating of their steel tools to differentiate themselves from their low-cost competitors. These are most likely to have a Rockwell rating of C55 and above.

#2 - Your needs


your Allen wrenches based on the type of work you plan to do. For example, if you plan to repair your car engine or any other mechanical device (generator, motor pump, etc.), you will need Allen wrenches of all sizes.

For small jobs, you won't need a full set of wrenches. You can get the most common wrenches: 4.5 or 6 mm.

In any case, it is better to invest in complete sets of Allen keys. You can get them for about ten euros or even a little more for branded models.

#3 - Surface treatment

Surface treatments can also have an impact on the life and performance of hex keys.

Typically, hex keys have either a black oxide or zinc finish. Both types of finishes can degrade over time due to the wear of the black oxide causing the zinc to flake off, which will lead to rust.

Therefore, it is important to evaluate whether the manufacturer offers any proprietary or additional surface treatment options prior to purchase. For example, chrome plating is more durable than black oxide or zinc because of the reduced friction between the end of the tool and the screw or bolt being turned.

It also exhibits better wear resistance, especially when textured. This increased durability, however, can cause the user to over-tighten the screw socket.

#4 - Design and geometry

There are several design factors to consider such as length, end geometry, and bend angle when selecting a hexagonal Allen wrench.

Long wrenches are best suited when higher torque is needed or accessibility is limited, but they also promote over-torque if the user is not careful. Short wrenches, on the other hand, are better suited for confined spaces where longer styles will not fit.

End geometry is a major design differentiator. Standard inexpensive Allen wrenches have a hexagonal end with sharp corners designed to fit equipment with little clearance.

Because they must be used perpendicular to the screw, they require wrist angles that can prove uncomfortable for users.

Ball-end wrenches are designed to be inserted into the screw socket at an angle that provides a more natural grip and smoother tightening. Ball ends are typically found only on the long end of wrenches and save time during installation or removal because they do not need to be perfectly aligned to mate with the screw head.

However, it is important to note that ball wrenches should only be used to start the operation as they do not have full surface contact with the socket. Trying to fully tighten a screw with the ball end of an Allen wrench will not work and it may even break the ball end in higher torque applications.

#5 - Practicality

Focus on wrenches with ball ends as this is ultra convenient when inserting them into the screw.

Other than that, the main problem with Allen wrenches is that they can be easily lost. This is usually due to their dark finish not to mention that most of the surfaces these wrenches are used on are also dark and cluttered with other tools.

Therefore, opt for hexagonal Allen keys with a colored finish. This will make them easier to identify on your work surface, the floor or in your toolbox. This reduces the amount of time wasted searching for cheap assembly tools.

In addition, the color is an indicator of the size of the wrench, making it easier to quickly select the right size. Another convenience is having the size engraved or stamped into the wrench. Having the size stamped on the wrench makes identification simple and saves time.

#6 - The handles

Each Allen wrench has a different handle including textured finishes, coatings, rubber or plastic sleeves, padded handles, and some are simply shaped to fit your hand.

As a result, some wrenches are grippier than others. If you handle oil, coolant, chemicals and other slippery contaminants, look for wrenches with a more grippy, easy-grip coating.

Other than that, wrenches that can withstand extreme temperatures and are neither too hot nor too cold to the touch are also great choices.

#7 - Versatility

To meet all kinds of needs, invest in a complete toolbox consisting of a set of Allen keys, a set of socket wrenches, a set of combination wrenches with one end polygon and the other flat, a ratchet wrench and a few sets of screwdrivers.

How to use a hexagonal Allen key?

An indispensable tool for metal work, the hexagonal Allen key is used with special screw heads. Of course, blunt with a hexagonal shape, the end of this wrench fits into screws with hexagonal recesses. But there are a few rules to keep in mind in order to use this wrench properly.

First, before tightening or loosening hex head screws, you will need to determine the proper Allen wrench that has the appropriate size for your bolts. This will prevent damage to the screw's footprint. To find the right size, insert a different size of Allen wrench into the head slot. It is even better if you insert the short end of the wrench for more leverage.

To tighten a bolt, first insert the end of your Allen wrench into the hexagonal cross section of the bolt. Then, gently turn the wrench clockwise until it is tight. To loosen your bolt, you will need to insert the tip of your wrench, likewise, into the hexagonal cross section of the bolt and then turn the wrench counterclockwise or to the left. Do not stop until it is loose enough.

That said, it is also important to keep the bolt steady between your thumb and forefinger to prevent it from wobbling. This is because if it wobbles, it will go in or out of its hole at an angle. So you need to do this slowly as you turn the Allen wrench to make sure it stays steady.

Hexagonal Allen key or hexagonal screwdriver?

Hexagonal Allen key

The hexagonal Allen key is a 6-sided unscrewing tool, designed to fit bolts of different sizes. Different hexagonal wrenches put together form an Allen wrench set. They are perfect for fixing or loosening bolts, having all the tools that have a 6-sided screwing.

As they are able to work on extremely small bolts, they have a role to speed up your working time. Hexagonal Allen keys even come in ball-head models for more precision! The 6 contact sides ensure a good grip and turn the screws efficiently. However, it is difficult to use them if the bolt pattern is damaged or rusty.

Hexagonal screwdriver

Also known as a Torx screwdriver, the hexagonal screwdriver has a 6-sided head like the hexagonal Allen key. It is suitable for carpentry work and unscrewing machinery. The user does the job faster with less effort. Besides, the hexagonal head screwdriver is widely used in the manufacture/repair of household appliances as well as vehicles.

Its significant advantage is its high efficiency due to the hexagonal head which supports high torques. Due to the deeper slots, the hexagonal screwdriver cannot be stripped easily. The disadvantage is that its bit size must match the screw size. Otherwise, you can't use it properly.


Choose hexagonal screwdrivers if your tools are not very complicated to unscrew. Hexagonal Allen keys are practical for bolts or screws that are too small for standard keys.

Why buy a hexagonal Allen key?

They use six contact points

They are called "hex keys" because they use six points of contact. In other words, a hex wrench touches half a dozen different surfaces of the hex screw. Using six points of contact allows the hex wrench to easily grip the hex screw. If a tool uses five or fewer contact points, it is not considered a hex key.

Very practical

The reason for this is that it has six contact surfaces. In addition, it can fit even the smallest bolt heads. In addition, these contact surfaces of the head are also protected against external influences.

best solution

As hexagonal recesses are currently starting to take up a lot of space in our daily lives, the Allen key is the best solution for this. The Allen wrench set is therefore an indispensable tool to put in our toolbox. Whether you are a carpenter, a mechanic or just a handyman, the Allen wrench will always come in handy.

Available in several sizes

Hexagonal Allen keys are available in a variety of different sizes, which are measured by cross flats (AF). This is essentially the distance between the two opposite ends of the flat side. It is important to choose the right size hex key, as trying to use too large a one can damage the fastener or the tool. However, you have a wide selection on the market.

Less risk of stripping

There is less risk of stripping the bolt or screw when the hexagonal design is used. This alone is a huge advantage that encourages engineers to choose hexagonal hardware. Hex screws can still be stripped, it just takes more time than other designs. That said, because of its shape, they are more effective than other types of wrenches.


Keep your Allen keys in their holder

When you buy your Allen wrenches, they come with a plastic holder that keeps them in order, but also tells you the size of each wrench. Be sure to keep your wrenches in the holder at all times so that they don't get scattered around. Also, make sure that each wrench you use finds its place, or you may get confused with the sizes the next time you use them.

Place them in a suitable place

As Allen wrenches are metal tools, they should be stored in a safe place, out of your children's reach. Children could get hurt with them or cause damage. Also, it is important that your wrenches are protected from humidity to avoid any risk of corrosion, especially if they are not covered with a protective substance.

Do not wear gloves while working

Contrary to other types of wrenches, the Allen wrench has a rather slippery handle that will be even worse if you ever wear gloves. The wrench will then easily slip out of your hand and fall on your foot. That's why it's best to avoid wearing gloves when working with an allen wrench, even though it's often required when doing DIY.

Use strong glue to dislodge a damaged Allen screw

When the head of an allen wrench is damaged by wear and tear, it becomes difficult to dislodge the wrench with a simple allen wrench. You'll need to insert a slightly smaller wrench than would normally be used. Then fill in the gaps with strong glue and proceed to unscrew.

Recycle your old keys

If one of your wrenches is quite worn and you want to replace it, definitely don't throw it away. You can, for example, attach it to a stand to make a coat rack or use it as an emergency rod for your lock.


What are the characteristics of a hexagonal Allen key?

The Allen wrench, as the name suggests, is identified by its hexagonal head. The design is called "cold forming" and has two ends that serve the same purpose and can be used for other purposes. Usually, the entire assembly is made of reinforced steel, which makes the wrench very strong. Depending on the brand and the need, the Allen wrench comes in several shapes; L or Y. There are other less conventional shapes, such as the S-shaped Allen key.

Why use an Allen key?

The Allen wrench is very popular in the field of mechanics and crafts. It is an essential tool for both professionals and small DIY enthusiasts, as screws with hollow hexagonal heads are increasingly used. This type of wrench is also very much in demand by electricians for various interventions in the field. In addition, an Allen wrench set can be indispensable for bike riders, especially size 7 and 10.

Can an Allen key be replaced with other tools?

If you don't have an Allen wrench in your toolbox, but you need to unscrew a screw or a socket bolt, the trick is to use a flathead screwdriver that you place at each end of the socket. When this is in, try to turn slowly, making sure the socket doesn't break. You should be able to remove the screw or bolt after a few turns.

How to measure an allen key?

A hexagonal Allen key is used to install or remove a 6-step clamping system. But sometimes the screw or bolt is difficult to access. You can avoid this by measuring the accessibility of the fastener if you have no space. For example, for an M10 socket head screw, it is best to have 50 mm of free space above it, which allows you to handle it well.


Note: Below are some of the sources we have consulted in writing this article. Links to other sites are not continuously updated. It is therefore possible that a link may not be found. Please use a search engine to find the desired information.
  1. ,
  2. ,
  3. ,
  4. ,
  5. ,
  6. ,
  7. ,
  8. ,
  9. ,
  10. ,
  11. ,
  12. ,
  13. ,
  14. ,
  15. ,
  16. ,
  17. ,
  18. ,
  19. ,
  20. ,
  21. ,
  22. ,
  23. ,
  24. ,
  25. ,
  26. ,
  27. ,
  28. ,
  29. ,
  30. ,
  31. ,
  32. ,
  33. ,
  34. ,
  35. ,
  36. ,
See more


March 2022 : Translation of this buying guide from our partner

See more
Our selection
Meterk Allen Keys 36 pcs 9
Meterk Allen Keys 36 pcs
Set of 13 S&R Allen keys 10
Set of 13 S&R Allen keys
Facom Wrenches 83SH.JP9APG 11
Facom Wrenches 83SH.JP9APG
S&R Allen key set of 30 12
S&R Allen key set of 30


Every month we help more than 1 000 000 people buy better and smarter.

Copyright © 2022 - Made with by

Your reviews and buying guides 0% advertising, 100% independent!