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How to Use Lock Nuts without Spending Too Much Time

Fact checked by Teddy B.Miller

how to use lock nuts

Do you want to know how to use lock nuts? Although they look like simple items, lock nuts can prevent bolts from loosening unintentionally. As we know, a loosened bolt can cause damage to the machine, or worse, injure a person. In seconds, you can perform a lock nut installation.

Whether to secure the bolts on your bike or a washer, we will guide you to use lock nuts properly. If not correctly installed, you may still have trouble with your bolts. Aside from following the steps, you also have to prepare the items specified.

What You Need

Installing lock nuts is easy if you have the right tools in your hands. Before starting with the tutorial, make sure you have the specified items. Preparing them beforehand will save you from any hassles or inconveniences.

  • Lock nuts – There are different lock nuts, such as nylon lock nuts and jam lock nuts. A nylon lock nut is typically used in securing the bolts of appliances, computers, vehicles, and many more. On the other hand, jam nuts are two nuts that jam the bolt to prevent it from loosening.
  • When choosing the lock nuts, make sure they fit the bolt. Also, if you use them for more intense jobs, they must be durable and sturdy enough to prevent the bolts from loosening.
  • Drive ratchet and socket (optional) – If you are installing a nylon lock nut, you will need a ⅜-inch driver ratchet to tighten a lock nut properly. The benefit of using a driver ratchet is that you can easily adjust the torque that you have to exert to the lock nut. For the sockets, the most used are ¼”, ⅜”, ½”, ¾”, and 1”.

If you don’t have any drive ratchet and socket, you can also use your hands to tighten the lock nut. Be sure, though, that you can exert the needed force to turn and pull it. Also, wear a pair of gloves so that the lock nut won’t slip as you tighten it.

Way to Use the Lock Nuts


1. Installing a nylon lock nut

  • Step 1: Put the nylon lock nut at the tip of the threaded bolt

After you have ensured that the nylon lock nut is in good shape, place it at the tip of the threaded bolt. Then, using your hand, turn the nut clockwise until you cannot move it.

Make sure that you can see the top thread of the fastener. After you have placed it correctly, move to the next step.

  • Step 2: Drive the nylon lock nut with a ⅜-inch drive ratchet to tighten it

Put a socket that will fit the nut to a ⅜-inch drive ratchet. Next, drive the nylon lock nut with a ⅜-inch drive ratchet.

To tighten the nut, turn the ratchet clockwise. You may feel a little bit of resistance, but it is normal. Keep turning the ratchet, but don’t tighten the nut too much since this may damage the fastener.

2. Installing a jam nut

  • Step 1: Put the thin jam nut on the bolt.

Since the order is crucial to attaining the proper locking mechanism, you must ensure that the nuts are in the appropriate place.

Put the thin jam nut on the bolt first. Once it is in position, tighten it with 25% to 50% of the total tightening torque.

Ensure you have the right amount of torque, or it will not lock the way you expect it to be.

  • Step 2: Place standard heavy hex bolt at the top of the thin jam nut

Hold the thin jam nut so that it won’t rotate. After that, place the standard heavy hex bolt at the top of the thin jam nut, then tighten it with full torque.

Once there is a vibration, the bolt won’t lose since the two jams will bump against each other, preventing the bolt from moving.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are the uses of lock washers and lock nuts the same?

Both lock washers and lock nuts are used to prevent bolts from loosening. Also, lock washers use lock nuts to add security to the bolts, especially if the vibration is more intense.

2. How will I use a lock washer?

To use a lock washer, you only need to insert it into the bolt. Next, put the threaded fastener at the top of the lock washer. After that, tighten the threaded fastener using a wrench.


Is our tutorial on how to use lock nuts helpful? By following the steps carefully, it is easy to install any locknuts. Indeed, you don’t have to call for professional help. You can install the lock nuts by yourself, whether a traditional lock nut, a nylon lock nut, or a jam lock nut.

Do you find this article helpful? You are free to share this post with your friends! Also, we love to hear your opinion if using a lock nut is more straightforward than using lock washer. Leave a comment below.

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