If you require a quick answer, the best socket set is the WORKPRO 108 Piece Set, which has been designed specifically for mechanics working with cars. It includes all the popular socket sizes, a 72 teeth ratchet and even an extension bar. However, if you only require a compact set that features the most used socket sizes, the Draper 16359 Set is perfect.
To rate the socket sets within our roundup, we based our recommendations on testing, our experience of using multiple sets whilst working on cars, the latest research and several factors. Some of the factors that we took into consideration included the number of components, variety of sizes, socket types, construction quality, warranty and value for money.
Best Socket Set Overview
- Best Overall: WORKPRO 108-Piece
- Best For Mechanics: Mannesmann Complete
- Best Portable: Draper 16359
- Best Value: AmazonBasics Mechanic Set
- Best All-Rounder: Stanley 1-94-668
- Best Quality: DEWALT 181
Without a socket set, you’ll find it difficult to carry out car repairs and other maintenance tasks. Although complete sets can be expensive, they are a worthwhile investment that’s long-lasting and suitable for a range of applications.
Below is a list of the best socket sets that are ideal for mechanics or enthusiasts carrying out car repairs.
The Best Socket Sets
1. Best Overall: WORKPRO 108-Piece
WORKPRO is a brand that specializes in socket sets and this particular 108-piece set is the perfect option for a mechanic. It’s a complete set that includes a socket and bit set, a ratchet wrench and an extension bar. In terms of the construction, the sockets are made from a high-quality CR-V, which is designed for maximum strength and durability.
Whether you are a mechanic or an enthusiast that loves working on your car, this socket set won’t disappoint. It also offers great value for the money when you compare the quality and quantity of the sockets to the alternatives.
2. Best For Mechanics: Mannesmann Professional Socket Set
One of the most popular and best value socket sets in the UK is the Mannesmann 215-piece set. It’s a German-designed socket set that’s VPA/GS approved and built to the highest of standards. The complete set includes a mixture of sockets, three ratchets, multiple extensions, T-bars, screwdriver bits, Allen keys, spark plug sockets and so much more.
Although the Mannesmann socket set is more expensive than many of the alternatives, it’s a worthwhile investment. The German-made sockets are built to the highest of standards and are backed by a 10-year warranty for peace of mind.
3. Best Portable: Draper 16359 Square Drive Set
Draper has an excellent reputation in the UK for its build quality and this socket set follows that great reputation. It’s an 18-piece set that’s designed for mechanics on the move and it’s also packed in a convenient plastic storage case.
To maximize the durability of the chrome vanadium steel sockets, they have been hardened and tempered with a satin finish. They have also been tested in accordance with DIN3122 and ISO3315 specifications too.
If you require a small socket set that’s well-made and suitable for everyday use, the Draper 16359 set won’t disappoint. Although the brand offers more comprehensive sets, they do come with a much larger price tag.
4. Best Value: AmazonBasics Mechanic’s Socket Set
If you want a high-quality socket set that offers the best bang for your buck, the AmazonBasics mechanic’s set is the best option. It’s a 145-piece set that includes a mixture of the most popular socket sizes, wrenches, hex keys, extensions and ratchets. In terms of the two ratchets included, they are both suitable for tight areas and include a quick-release switch and reversible design for added control and convenience.
Overall, the AmazonBasics socket set is an excellent all-round option that combines superior build quality and value for the money. It’s an extensive set that includes all the popular socket sizes required for most car repair tasks.
5. Best All-Rounder: Stanley 1-94-668 Socket Set
Another compact socket set that’s produced by a reputable UK brand is the Stanley 1-94 668 set. It’s a 96-piece socket set that’s perfect for mechanics or enthusiasts that regularly work on their cars.
Although expensive, the Stanley socket set is one of the best socket sets on the market that’s perfect for working on cars. It’s not a large set but it includes everything you need as well as a high-quality 32 teeth metal ratchets.
6. Best Quality: DEWALT 181 Piece Mechanics Tool Set
DEWALT is one of the largest tool brands in the UK and they are well-known for producing high-quality products. Their socket sets follow that great reputation and are available in a range of sizes but the best socket set (in our opinion) that the brand offers is their 181-piece set which comes with an impressive lifetime warranty. It’s a complete set that includes 1/2, 3/8 and 1/4-inch drive sockets that are suitable for all car-related tasks.
Overall, the DEWALT socket set is a high-quality option that’s backed by a lifetime warranty for complete peace of mind. It does come with a premium price but it’s a worthwhile investment that’s able to tackle any car repair task.
How We Tested & Rated
Whether we are removing a car’s bumper or overhauling the suspension, we own and use several socket sets to make the job go smoothly. We are a strong believer in “you get what you pay for” and this is certainly relatable with regards to socket sets. However, with that being said, there are plenty of budget/value socket sets on the market that are ideal for those that require lots of socket sizes but without paying a fortune.
To distinguish the good socket sets from the bad, we carried out plenty of testing whilst repairing and maintaining our cars. During our testing of the socket sets, we analyse the contents of the socket set, construction quality, sizes and tools included as well as its portability with a carry case.
To keep up our commitment to reviewing and testing the latest socket sets (for this article), we are continually testing the latest socket sets from top brands in the UK. This means that when we notice a brand has released a new and improved socket set, we will attempt to purchase it for testing (where applicable).
As well as testing and our experience using a range of socket sets for car repairs and maintenance tasks, we also based our recommendations on the latest research and several factors. Some of the factors that we considered included the number of components, variety of sizes, socket types, construction, warranty and value for money.
A socket set is essential for any mechanic or car enthusiast working on cars and without a set compromising of a variety of sizes, you may struggle. Most of the socket sets available in the UK range from as small as a 5-piece set to those suitable for mechanics with over 200 pieces that cover all of the most popular socket types and sizes.
To avoid disappointment, we strongly recommend investing in a quality set that’s built to last. There is nothing worse than breaking one or two of the sockets because you can guarantee you’ll need the broken socket for a future task.
If you require further information regarding our socket set recommendations, feel free to get in touch and we will try to provide our assistance where possible.
Socket Set FAQ's
For working on cars, a socket set that includes 1/4-inch and 3/8-inch sockets is highly recommended. The 1/4-inch drive sockets are used for tighter spaces whereas the thicker 3/8-inch drive sockets have extra torque for more demanding bolts.
As long as you have the correct adapter, you’ll be able to use impact sockets with a ratchet. This may be particularly useful when you need the extra torque from the thicker impact sockets to tackle stubborn bolts.
The majority of socket sets are built to last and they also come with long warranties for peace of mind. However, depending upon their usage, the chrome on some sockets may begin to strip from constant heavy-duty use.
Luckily, this type of damage is usually covered under warranty and even if it isn’t, the damaged sockets can be replaced fairly easily. Therefore, it’s for this reason that we recommend buying a socket set from a reputable brand that has replacement sockets readily available.