Expertpickhub Tools Wrenches Best Pass-Through Socket Set Reviews
5/51 rating

For the situations when a regular socket can’t do its job, you may want to get some other tools that would help you do mechanic work. That is why you are browsing through the best pass-through socket sets to find the one that would meet your needs.

As you add the pass-through socket set to your toolkit, you’ll be able to deal with the screws on long threads as well as the ones that sit in awkward spots.

But as there are hundreds of options on the market these days, it might be an ordeal to set on a particular kit. That’s why I am at your disposal. I will answer the most common questions and review the pass-through sockets that may be of interest to you.

Our pick
best pass-through socket set
GEARWRENCH 893823
Best pass-through socket set
Built up to 40% stronger than traditional ratchets by eliminating the drive tang
Name Set SAE (metric) sizes Drive tang size Weight Review
GEARWRENCH 893823best overall 23 pc 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm), 3/4(17mm-19mm) 3/8 in 1.74 lbs/0.45 kg Review
Crescent CX6PT25budget 25 pc 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm), 3/4(17mm-19mm) 3/8 in 2.77 lbs/1.25 kg Review
Bahco S530T 53 pc 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm), 3/4(17mm-24mm) 3/8 in 5.37 lbs/2.44 kg Review

Best pass-through socket set reviews

GEARWRENCH 893823 – best overall

GEARWRENCH 893823

Go with the GEARWRENCH 893823 set to gain versatility when loosening extra-long fasteners, even in hard-to-reach places.

This pass-through socket set includes a well-designed flex-head ratchet with a 5° swing arc for utmost flexibility. The ratchet’s head profile is 50% thinner than in standard ratchet systems to provide you with a broader range of access. The dual material comfort grip handle doesn’t slide in your hands. With 11 locking head positions, you can configure the ratchet to meet your project needs.

Unlike the Crescent CX6PT25 that comes in a plastic bag, the GEARWRENCH 893823 set is packed in a blow mold case for convenient storage of 23 individual alloy steel pieces of all common sizes and two extensions.

GEARWRENCH 893823 wrench

This set is slimmer than conventional sets, but the adaptors grip the nut head pretty tight. However, I wish there were longer extensions to be able to do more with the kit. Also, I figured out that the 3/8″ and 1/4″ adapters can’t be used with the included extensions for some reason.

Regardless of minor issues, the GEARWRENCH 893823 is the best pass-through socket set. It will give you the versatility you require to get the wrench into tight spaces.

Key specs

  • Set: 23 pc
  • SAE (metric) sizes: 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm),3/4(17mm-19mm)
  • Drive tang size: 3/8 in
  • Material: Alloy steel
  • Weight: 1.74 lbs/0,45 kg

Pros

  • Well-designed ratchet with a 5° swing arc for flexibility
  • 23 alloy steel pieces with two extensions come in a case
  • The ratchet head is 50% thinner for extra accessibility
  • Convenient grip due to the dual-material handle.

Cons

  • The extensions’ length options might be insufficient for some projects
  • Some adapters are not compatible with included extensions.

Crescent CX6PT25 – budget

Crescent CX6PT25

For the situations when a standard ratchet can’t help you get a fastener off, consider the Crescent CX6PT25 kit.

Unlike a chrome-coated 23-pcs GEARWRENCH 893823 set, this kit includes 25 pieces finished with black oxide. It fits six fastener types and has nine sizes. It also features a 3/8″ drive bit adapter socket for a broader range of use.

It comes in a plastic piece for storage instead of an enclosed case. But there is a good part of it – you can hang it on the wall to save storage space.

Crescent CX6PT25 wrench

The ratchet has a 5° swing arc to allow you to reach the bolts in tight places. The lack of extension makes the use of the ratchet somewhat challenging. Some of the sockets have the center pattern off, making them completely useless. Regardless of the socket flaws, the set does its job pretty well and helps deal with rounded or corroded fasteners.

The Crescent CX6PT25 is the best budget pass-through socket set for amateurs in mechanics. This toolkit provides you with the most popular socket sizes and styles, so you do not pay for less common drive types you will never use.

Key specs

  • Set: 25 pc
  • SAE (metric) sizes: 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm),3/4(17mm-19mm)
  • Drive tang size: 3/8 in
  • Material: Alloy steel
  • Weight: 2.77 lbs/1.25 kg

Pros

  • Includes the most common socket styles and sizes
  • Comes with a 3/8″ drive bit adapter socket for covering more tasks
  • The black oxide finish prevents corrosion
  • The ratchet with a 5° swing arc for enhanced flexibility.

Cons

  • Doesn’t have a case for storage
  • Some of the sockets are not properly centered
  • No extensions included

Bahco S530T

Bahco S530T

If you are looking for a versatile go-through socket set, you will never go wrong with the Bahco S530T.

13-pass through steel alloy sockets covered with chrome are neatly packed in a robust orange case. You will also find one pass-through extension bar, adaptors of the common styles and sizes, and bits, which are not available in GEARWRENCH 8946.

But the ratchet is the star of this set. Featuring a multi-position pass-through flexible head mechanism, it ensures easy access to nuts that require the socket to pass through the thread. The rubber-coated handle provides a firm grip. But the ratchet swivel might weaken and slip over time.

Bahco S530T other view

The storage case looks impressive, and it is made of heavy-duty plastic. It closes securely with two latch locks that prevent accidental unfastening. I’ve lost one though, but that didn’t affect the strength of the case.

Overall, this go-through socket set includes a great combination of sockets, adaptors, and bits. You’ll find almost everything you might need to disassemble/reassemble the car or other equipment in this case.

Key specs

  • Set: 53 pc
  • SAE (metric) sizes: 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm),3/4(17mm-24mm)
  • Drive tang size: 3/8 in
  • Material: Alloy steel
  • Weight: 5.37 lbs/2.44 kg

Pros

  • Combines common go-through sockets, bits, and adaptors
  • Comes in a durable case for convenient storage
  • The multi-position ratchet provides require versatility
  • The elements are made of steel alloy covered with chrome.

Cons

  • The ratchet may get flimsy over time
  • One of the latch locks might fall off.

GEARWRENCH 8946

GEARWRENCH 8946

Pro mechanic artisans require a pro toolkit like the GEARWRENCH 8946. It is a godsend for everyone involved in the mechanic work as it includes everything you may need to effectively tackle any task.

The set comes in a blow mold case that includes 46 pieces made of alloy steel and then finished with chrome for added rust resistance. Unlike the Bahco S530T featuring one ratchet, this kit will equip you with two differently-sized ratchets (1/4″ and 3/8″ to be precise). Also, every ratchet piece boasts the 5° ratcheting arc and 11 locking positions to get to the tightest places. The dual-material handles are slip-free, and they allow to increase the torque strength for effective fastener loosening. You will also find an adapter that enables the use of standard sockets and drive tools.

GEARWRENCH 8946 wrench

With this pass-thru socket set, you will find it much easier to work in hard-to-reach places. I also like that the ratchet allows me to set the angle on the flex and fix it. But it takes some effort to insert or remove the socket from the ratchet’s head, which is inconvenient. At the same time, some sockets do not stay in the ratchet well.

If you are looking for a versatile toolkit for working with hard-to-reach areas, the GEARWRENCH 8946 is a good match due to the go-through socket design and great performance.

Key specs

  • Set: 46 pc
  • SAE (metric) sizes: 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm),3/4(17mm-19mm)
  • Drive tang size: 1/4 in; 3/8 in
  • Material: Alloy steel
  • Weight: 5.26 lbs/2.38 kg

Pros

  • Comes with two ratchets of different sizes: 1/4″ and 3/8″
  • Includes the common socket sizes
  • Comes in a durable case.

Cons

  • Might be challenging to insert or remove sockets from the ratchet
  • The ratchet fails to hold some sockets securely.

SATA

sata

SATA offers a functional and well-designed toolkit for projects that require the pass-through approach.

In contrast to a 46-pcs GEARWRENCH 8946 set, the SATA kit features 80 individual pieces, including Slotted, Torx, Hex, Phillips sockets of various sizes. You will also find two pass-through socket extensions (4” and 6”), differently-sized bit adapters, a screwdriver handle with matching bits to help you cover a wide range of mechanic jobs. All the elements come in a plastic case, but it doesn’t look sturdy. I put it in my car, gave it a ride, and all the sockets were dislodged.

sata wrench

The metal elements are made of steel alloy with chrome coating, but they feel light and brittle. Don’t expect much from the ratchet as well. It is fine for some minor projects, but it won’t cover all your needs due to the lack of flexibility. It doesn’t allow you to adjust the angle, so it can be used as it is.

This is a good pass-through socket toolkit for cases when you are not planning to use it much. It will give you peace of mind that you have some pass-through instruments to unfasten the bolts when there is a need for that.

Key specs

  • Set: 80 pc
  • SAE (metric) sizes: 3/8 (10mm), 1/2 (11mm-16mm),3/4(17mm-19mm)
  • Drive tang size: 3/8 in
  • Material: Alloy steel, plastic
  • Weight: ‎7.63 lbs/3.46 kg

Pros

  • Includes around 80 pieces, namely differently-sized sockets, bits, adapters, and even a screwdriver handle
  • Packed in a plastic case for easier storage
  • A great solution for DIY mechanics who do not use the set frequently.

Cons

  • The material doesn’t feel durable
  • The ratchet won’t let you adjust the head angle
  • The case is not as secure as you would want it to be.

FAQ

What is the pass-through socket set for?

The pass-through socket set allows you to fasten nuts and bolts with sockets without taking them off. Think of an old-fashioned mechanic’s socket wrench, where a square hole in the middle fits over the bolt or nut. You attach your ratchet into this square hole and then turn it clockwise/counterclockwise to tighten/loosen the nut. Now imagine you can do this without having to take the socket on and off of your ratchet each time – that’s what a pass-through socket set is.

What are the benefits of using a pass-through socket set?

Pass-through socket sets are great for car or motorcycle mechanics, who often need to remove and re-attach small bolts. With a more traditional ratchet and socket set, it’s common to spend minutes (or more) taking off the old socket each time you want to put on another bolt – even if they all have the same thread diameter. If you have a pass-through socket set, it is as simple as dropping the old one out of the way and sliding the new one into place. This results in less downtime for your customers or clients.

What size of pass-through sockets do I need?

This really depends on the size of your bolts and nuts, as well as what you’re using the tools for. If you’re working with small bolts like those found in a bicycle or motorcycle engine, then a 3/8″ pass-through socket set should suffice. If you need something larger, we suggest getting a through-1/2″ socket set.

What is better: a 6 point or 12 point socket?

This question goes back to the age-old “six versus 12” debate. In a nutshell, it’s a matter of personal preference. Twelve-point sockets have slightly rounded corners on each socket to produce less shear pressure when tightening or loosening a bolt/nut. This can be good for those who want to tighten down bolts slowly or those working in a sensitive environment. As the name suggests, twelve-point sockets have 12 points on the – one in each corner of the socket. Six-point sockets have more pronounced corners, so they don’t round off the corners of your bolts/nuts when you’re tightening/loosening them.

The pass-through socket set is designed so that you can use both six and twelve-point sockets in one, so it’s really just a matter of preference.

What are 8 point sockets used for?

Eight-point sockets are typically used for extremely large, heavy-duty bolts/nuts. Because they have eight points on them, they provide a more significant deal of torque when tightening or loosening large items.

How do I stop my pass-through socket wrench from slipping?

The best way to ensure that your pass-through socket wrench does not slip is to ensure that the teeth on the socket are digging into the bolt head or nut. If it’s not, then you’re probably using too large of a socket for your application. This just means that more space is left between your socket and the surface of whatever you’re working with, which allows the tool to slip off easily.

Can I use a 12 point socket on a 6-point nut?

Technically you can, but it is generally not recommended. 6-point sockets are designed for 6-point hex nuts, with one smaller diameter face on the nut. This means that there is less chance that your socket will slip off, and your wrench will turn at an odd angle. Using a 12 point socket may cause this to happen.