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Our number one choice for the best pry bar around is the Stanley 55-515 12-3/4-inch Wonderbar Pry Bar. Made from heat-treated forged high carbon steel, this durable yet thin pry bar has beveled edges for easier scraping and cutting. Whether you want to pull up nails or even lift your carpet, a pry bar is one of the highly-rated tools that you can get fo your home.
To find the best pry bar for mechanics or general DIY home improvement, we’ve compared materials and specs and put the top pry bars to the test to see what they’re really made of. For best corrosion resistance we looked for materials such as stainless steel and forged carbon steel with a rust-resistant finish. We also considered features like overall length and shape, looking for the bars that provided the greatest leverage for nail removal. We looked for durability and for performance on common tasks such as pulling up nails, loosening rusted bolts, and removing moldings. Keep reading to learn more about other high-grade pry bars available for purchase.
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: Angled nail pulling slots and beveled edges on both sides make this thin pry bar more efficient at pulling up nails and more effective at scraping and cutting tasks.
This useful and relatively slim 12 3/4 inch pry bar is close to ideal for pulling up nails in flooring, moldings and other household renovation projects. It has beveled edges and well-designed angled nail slots to allow for easier scraping and provide more leverage on nails and construction staples.
Whether you’re pulling up carpeting to replace or put in new flooring, replacing a rusted hinge or loosening stripped bolts, this thin yet strong pry bar is generally up to the task. It’s shorter than some alternatives on the market but its small size helps when working in tight spaces or when precise handling is necessary. If you’re looking to expand your at-home DIY kit, check out our guide to the best levels.
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: This lightweight pry bar features a sharp scraping edge for removing tile, slats and veneers, along with an angled end and a nail puller whose shape accommodates differently sized nail heads.
If you’re looking for the best pry bar for trim and detail work, this 9 and 1/4-inch model may fit the bill nicely. It has a broad, sharp scraper edge that makes it well suited to taking off paint residue, calk and adhesive from hard surfaces. It also features an angled head with a wedge-shaped chisel blade that allows it to work well in tight spaces. And if you want to eliminate the most persistent dirt then you should check out the best power scrubber.
This chisel-like design works great for removing baseboard and veneer and for work on all kinds of moldings and trims. It has a beveled nail puller with a useful shape that makes it able to get a grip on a wide variety of different sized nail heads. If your job is a bit bigger, you might want to look at our guide to the best axe instead.
Award: BEST ALL-PURPOSE
WHY WE LIKE IT: This corrosion-resistant high-strength steel pry bar comes in a versatile 15-inch size and has three nail slots plus a well-shaped rocker end for good leverage on the nail and bolt heads, making it useful for many different nail removal and dismantling tasks.
This angled pry bar comes with sharp, wedge-shaped chisel ends to slide into cracks and crevices and help it get under utility staples and nail heads. It also benefits from three nail slots, one beveled slot on each end, and a central slot that’s well placed for using the bar’s angle as a fulcrum and gaining the most leverage on the nail.
Made from forged, high strength steel, it has an enamel finish that won’t chip or flake easily and helps make it corrosion resistant and free of rust. It works well for scraping and trim pulling tasks as well as general-purpose nail removal. You’ll quickly add this pry bar to your collection of best tools.
Award: BEST AT NAIL PULLING
WHY WE LIKE IT: This 15-inch bar comes with a classic “shepherd’s crook” design that offers great leverage for pulling up nails, studs and tacks. It has polished chisel blades to help get under baseboards and tile.
Among the simple, classic one-piece pry bars, this 15-inch model delivers great performance when it comes to the traditional pry bar uses such as removing nails and studs, separating wood slats and pulling up baseboard. It may not be as adept at small scraping tasks in tight spaces as some of the smaller, flat pry bars, but its angled shape offers superior leverage for pulling up big, tough nails. Having this pry bar and the best rubber mallet will allow you to do some pretty heavy tasks around your home.
Designed with the typical crowbar “shepherd’s crook,” form, it provides a convenient fulcrum to maximize leverage when extracting nails or other fasteners. This helps it remove rusted-in and bent nails. It does lack some of the features you can get on the best wrecking bars and pry bars for mechanics, such as an indexing head and ergonomic grip. If you’ve got a tough job ahead, you might also be interested in our guide to the best chisels.
Award: BEST GRIP
WHY WE LIKE IT: A padded, secure grip for added power and safety, plus a flat, heavy duty striking surface make this indexing pry bar a good choice for home improvement projects requiring some demolition.
This heavy duty pry bar is great for DIY enthusiast projects or general home improvement tasks, demolition and repurposing. An indexing head that can lock in 15 different positions over a range of 180º adds versatility and helps gain access to tight spaces. Chiseled, flat edges and a beveled nail slot helps it work as a nail puller.
Along with a high-quality black oxide finish, this pry bar comes with a comfortable and secure grip, which helps add confidence when using force to chip and pry at a piece of wood. A flat striking surface on the back of the head allows it to work as a wedge. This pry bar will quickly become an essential part of your best mechanic tool set.
Award: BEST REACH
WHY WE LIKE IT: This extendable indexing pry bar is 33 inches long, so it reaches where other pry bars won’t, and the head adjusts through 180º for good leverage in different positions.
Designed for heavy duty DIY applications and automotive work, this tool is definitely worth a look if you’re looking for the best pry bar for mechanics. It’s also one to consider if you’re looking for the best wrecking bar that both expands for long reach and has an indexing head that can still perform under load. The head locks in 15 different positions with a 180º range of motion. The bar expands from 33 to 49 inches for expanded reach.
Meeting or exceeding ANSI and ASME (American National Standards Organization and American Society of Mechanical Engineers, respectively) standards for strength and durability, this heavy-duty pry bar works for tasks like loosening differential and transaxle seals. This pry bar would be a helpful addition to your best mechanic tool set.
Award: BEST ON A BUDGET
WHY WE LIKE IT: This budget-friendly pry bar set comes with four pieces in convenient 6, 12, 16 and 20-inch sizes and each bar has a pointed end and a rounded hook head with a chiseled point for wedging into tight spaces and gaining leverage.
This pry bar set gets you four high quality bars of different sizes, well suited to various home and industrial tasks. The rolling head design offers good leverage for prying up baseboard, moldings, and tile or splitting a piece of wood. The rounded, pointed end lets you use these pry bars as stakes or pegs.
The smaller 6 and 12 inch long bars are useful for trim and various remodeling tasks, while the largest bar in this pry bar set is twenty inches long and affords ample leverage for pulling up flooring materials and baseboard. These lack nail slots, however, making them in some cases less convenient for pulling nails.
In order to select the best pry bars out there for a wide range of DIY enthusiasts and home improvement tasks as well as automotive work, we looked for versatility, effectiveness, safety, and durability.
We only included pry bars with proven corrosion resistance, limiting our search to those made from chrome or stainless steel or with an enameled, powder-coated or black oxide finish to protect against rust.
In addition, we looked for features like a bent or rounded head for good leverage when removing nails or prying away rusted together parts. We selected pry bars ranging in size from 6 inches to 33 inches. Versatility was a plus, and we gave preference to flat pry bars with beveled nail slots and sharp, chiseled points.
We included pry bars with indexing or rotating heads that allow you to adjust the angle of the head relative to the bar, only if they met or exceeded ASME standards for strength under load. We gave preference to pry bars and pry bar sets that displayed a high level of strength and bending rigidity, with materials like forged heat-treated steel and hardened high strength alloys.
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