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Our pick: Four torque wrenches for your home garage

You own carbon stuff. We all do, but not all of us are treating it with the care it deserves. Prevent catastrophic failures — or at the very least, expensive blunders — by investing in a torque wrench.

Look carefully at that new carbon component you just bought and you’ll notice a rating, written in Newton meters (nM). That’s the amount of force you need to use to properly secure that component to your bicycle. Exceed that rating and you risk damaging the carbon. How do you know when you’ve reached that measurement? You guessed it. A torque wrench.

Set the torque wrench to the specified nM rating, and tighten away. When the torque wrench clicks, you’ve reached the rating and the wrench will disengage. That’s when you should stop turning. This prevents over-tightening, which could potentially lead to carbon failure.

Here are a few torque wrench choices for just about any budget. Consider cost, size, and function when deciding which wrench to purchase. Pro tip: Always keep a small torque wrench in your travel tool kit if you need to make last-minute adjustments to your carbon seatpost.