Hose Clamp Pliers- Types and Application

Hose clamp pliers are the perfect tool for tightening or loosening hose clamps on your car.  Get to know more about them in this article.

Hose clamp pliers, cable type 
Hose clamp pliers, cable type 
Resource: https://www.toyotaownersclub.com

Hose clamp pliers are an invaluable addition to any home garage and can be used in a variety of applications. If you’re a professional mechanic, you probably know what this hose clamp tool is. Or if you spend time working on cars, and have to use lots of car repair tools. But if not you’re wondering what automotive hose clamp pliers are, this article will sort you out. It has all you need to know about them.

What are Hose Clamp Pliers?

Also called hose clip pliers, hose clamp pliers are a type of hose clamp removal tool that allows you to adjust, tighten, and loosen all sorts of different types of hose clamps. These tools basically consist of special jaws or cable operated mechanism to squeeze clamps.

Hose clamps or hose clips are circular components that secure hoses to pipes and other fittings. You will normally find them anywhere where hoses are located; on hoses for brake fluid, fuel hoses, hoses for oil, and so on.

Hose clamps make everything neat and organized. They also help to keep hoses out of the way or secure them to the engine or other parts to prevent damage. When these or the hoses themselves need replacing, clamp pliers usually come in handy.

What are Hose Clamp Pliers Used for?

Hose clamp pliers loosen, remove, or install hose clamps or clips with ease. They allow you to grip various thicknesses and shape of the clamp, which makes it more convenient and versatile the regular pliers.

Hoses can leak or wear out and require changing. In order to replace hoses, you need to loosen the clamps that secure them. Because hose clamps are located in the farthest ends and in small spaces, you need special tools to reach and work on them- hose clamp pliers.

Hose clips can also get old and rot. Some clamps may also press against a hose too much and causing damage or a constriction. In such situations, you need to replace the clamp. Using clamp pliers makes the job convenient and easier.

There are several different types of hose clamp pliers
There are several different types of hose clamp pliers
Resource: https://www.clublexus.com

Types of Hose Clamp Pliers

There are different types of hose clamp pliers, each having their own specialty and function. These pliers can also exist in two different forms or styles. Some are more commonly used in auto repair work than others, and some more versatile. The two main types of clamp pliers are the cable and non-cable types.

Hose Clamp Pliers with Cable

The most popular type of clamp pliers uses a strong cable to squeeze the ends of a clamp, with a way to lock and cause it to stay in place one pressed. Hose clamp pliers with cable mechanisms mostly work with spring clamps. They’re often required when working on fuel, coolant, and oil hoses.

Hose Clamp Pliers without Cable

There are also hose clamp pliers without cable mechanisms. These come in various styles, ranging from swivel jaws to all types of jaws. Swivel jaw hose pliers are among the most versatile, and one of the most used.

Specialty Hose Clamp Pliers

Some pliers are also clamp specific. These include coolant hose clamp pliers, gas line pliers, and so on.  A radiator hose clamp tool or pliers, for example, will usually work on flat band clamps. Specialty pliers are often called by their names such as ear clamps pliers for ear clamps, band clamp pliers for band clips, and more.

In comparison to non-cable hose clamp pliers, cable pliers are the most convenient. They reach the farthest, and can be used in small spaces. Specialty pliers, on the other hand, allow you to remove or install specific Clamps.

Hose Clamp Pliers Set

In order to remove different kinds of clamps and from different vehicles, it’s necessary for every mechanic or DIY-er to own several types of hose clamp pliers. Auto tool manufacturers understand that and sell these pliers as a set. A typical set may contain these types of pliers:

  • Flexible hose clamp pliers with cable
  • Swivel jaw hose clamp pliers
  • Cross-slotted hose clamp pliers
  • Curved hose clamp pliers

A hose clamp pliers set, therefore, is a collection of pliers meant to support different vehicles and clamp types. As a standard practice, a pliers set will contain the most common type of the tool. A hose clamp pliers kit or set is more versatile but you could also buy individual pliers.  

How do Hose Clamp Pliers Work?

Hose clamps come in all sorts of designs. They can ear clamps, spring clamps, quick-release clamps or snap-grip clamps, among other types. These require different tools to install or remove. You can use a hose clamp wrench, for example, or pincer. Hose clamp pliers remove the squeeze type of clamps. Here is how they work.

Hose clamp pliers use jaws that lock onto a hose clamp. Upon pressing the pliers’ handle, the jaws squeeze against the ends of the clamp, forcing it to loosen. The pliers, meanwhile, locks itself in place and prevents the clamp from returning to its former position.

With the clamp loosened, you can now remove the hose from its fitting. Likewise, you can use the pliers to place a new clamp using the same procedure. The pliers then acts as both a hose clamp removal tool and hose clamp installation tool.

How to use hose clamp pliers
How to use hose clamp pliers
Resource: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eT4wEbIC_pU

How to Use Hose Clamp Pliers

Automotive hose clamp pliers are simple tools that are also straightforward to use. However, you need to operate them correctly or risk causing damage to the hoses, nearby components, or even the clamp itself. So here, I will show you how to use hose clamp pliers the right way. Follow these steps to loosen, remove, or install a clamp.

Important! Always make sure your car is switched of and the engine cool. Never work on a filled hose. In most cases, you will need to empty the specific reservoirs of fluid such as coolant, gas, or oil.

  • Ensure everything is clear before trying to place your pliers on the hose clamp.
  • Next, attach your hose clamp removal pliers so it fits the outer edges or ends of the hose clamp.
  • Squeeze the pliers to collapse the clamp.
  • The clamp will open and be ready to be removed or adjusted.
  • Slide the clamp through the hose’s male fitting.
  • You can now open the pliers locking mechanism to release the clamp.
  • Remove the hose using your hands or with the help of a removal hook.
The best hose clamp pliers should suit your needs
The best hose clamp pliers should suit your needs
Resource: https://www.corvetteforum.com

Best Hose Clamp Pliers

The best hose clamp pliers should help you loosen, adjust, or remove and install clamps with utmost ease and safety. They should also last a long time, in addition to being comfortable to hold in the hand. Ensure all these requirements by looking for the features explained below.

Clamp Pliers Opening Size

Your pliers should be able to work on standard automotive hose clamp types. That means a large enough opening to accommodate different clamp sizes.  A hose clamp pliers set will normally contain sizes to cater to that or you can choose the most versatile type if buying a single piece.

Clamp Pliers Cable Length

For hose clamp pliers with cable mechanisms, ensure the cable is adequately long. Longer means more convenience, and a tool that will work on most cars. Sizes generally range from 1 to 2 feet, so choose wisely.

Clamp Pliers Handle

The clamp pliers handle should have a slip resistant design for complete safety. It will also be comfortable to hold onto without being too big or too small. You may want to choose handles with a slightly carved design than straight handles. These are more ergonomic.

Clamp Pliers Jaws

Prior to buying hose clamp pliers, take a look at the jaws. Ensure that they’re smooth and sharp enough to grip your hose clamps securely. Make sure they fit snugly in your hands. The tool shouldn’t move around when you’re using it.

Clamp Pliers Locking Mechanism

Almost all automotive hose clamp pliers use a locking mechanism. Locking mechanisms make the tool more convenient to use or operate. However, you need to ensure the mechanism is tight enough. The last thing you want when working on your car is the pliers releasing accidentally.  

Other equally important considerations include the type of material. Hose clamp pliers can be hardened steel or aluminum. Steel is the most durable and high strength, but expensive. Aluminum pliers are less durable and inexpensive.

The best hose clamp pliers are made from hardened and heat-treated alloy steel. These will be very strong and slip-resistant, among other benefits of steel.

Where to Buy Hose Clamp Pliers

You can purchase hose clamp pliers from automotive supply stores, or choose to buy from online retailers. The tool is usually offered as a set. A hose clamp pliers set includes different sizes and styles of the tool, from band clamp hose pliers to ear clamps pliers.

Before deciding to purchase your hose clamp pliers set, be sure to compare both prices and features. That way, you know what to expect from the tools. More importantly, you will know how to measure the quality of the particular set based on description and cost.


Hose clamp pliers enable you to service your radiator hoses, fuel hoses, and other hoses without having to take your car to a mechanic.  When buying yours, be sure to pay attention to the requirements discussed in this post.  These include the pliers style, jaw size, cost, and other features. Ensure also, that you choose a good brand that will not disappoint you in terms of quality and reliability.

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About Author
Richard Johnson
Richard Johnson

Richard Johnson is a writer and a content marketer who works for hand in hand with Sunbright Automotive Tools. Beforehand, Richard Johnson worked for multiple industries that had helped both small and big businesses to build better brands online through web page contents that productized services.

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