ThePipingMart Blog Fasteners Jam Nut Vs. Hex Nut – What’s the Difference?

Jam Nut Vs. Hex Nut – What’s the Difference?

Jam Nut Vs. Hex Nut - What's the Difference?

When it comes to selecting the right type of nut for your stainless steel profiles, two options usually come to mind: hex nuts and jam nuts. While they may look similar in shape, some fundamental differences set them apart. This blog post will explore the differences between jam nuts and hex nuts and provide insights into which one might fit your unique stainless steel needs.

What is Hex Nuts?

Hex nuts are the most commonly used for stainless steel profiles in various industries. They have six sides and are available in various sizes, making them perfect for different thread sizes. Hex nuts are often used in applications where the fastener must be removed and reinstalled frequently. With various finishes and coatings available, including stainless steel or black oxide, hex nuts can be customized to meet your requirements.

A hex nut, also known as a hexagon nut or a six-sided nut, is a fastener that has become ubiquitous in various industries and everyday life. Its name comes from its shape – a polygonal body with six sides and an internally threaded hole in the center. This design allows easy tightening and loosening using a standard wrench or pliers.

Hex nuts are commonly used to secure bolts, screws, or studs in place by creating friction between the two surfaces. They come in different sizes and materials, including steel, stainless steel, brass, and nylon. In addition to their traditional use for fastening purposes, they also have other essential roles, such as preventing leakage by sealing joints or acting as spacers.

What is Jam Nuts?

Jam nuts are thinner than hex nuts and are used as a secondary nut to help prevent loosening or backing off the primary nut. They work best when tightened against another nut, bolt, or screw and can be used to adjust the tension on a threaded assembly. The smaller size of jam nuts makes them ideal for application in areas with limited space.

A jam nut is a fastener commonly used in the mechanical industry. It is a thin, low-profile nut that is designed to provide extra security and stability to bolts and screws. Unlike regular nuts, which tighten an object in place, jam nuts are used as a backup or locking mechanism.

The name “jam” comes from tightening these nuts against another nut or fixed surface. This creates friction and prevents the primary nut from loosening due to vibrations or movements. This makes them ideal for high-torque applications where safety and reliability are crucial.

When to Use Jam Nuts:

Jam nuts are often used in low-torque applications as they allow for greater control over the amount of clamping force applied to the fastener. They are also used in applications with minimal space between the nut and the surface of the work piece. Jam nuts can secure threaded metal inserts in soft materials such as plastic or aluminum.

When to Use Hex Nuts:

Hex nuts are the go-to option for high-torque and heavy-duty applications. They are easy to use and provide a reliable and secure fastening solution. They are also ideal for use in places that are difficult to access, thanks to the availability of hex nut drivers, which make tightening and loosening them a breeze.

Choosing the Right Nut:

In general, the choice between jam nuts and hex nuts will depend on the specific application they are being used for. If you need greater control of clamping force or are working with limited space, then a jam nut may be the way to go. But if you are looking for a strong, reliable, easy-to-use fastening solution, a hex nut is probably the better option.


In conclusion, while jam nuts and hex nuts may look similar, they differ in size, torque requirements, and use cases. Each nut type has advantages and disadvantages, which must be carefully considered before choosing the right one. By understanding the differences between jam nuts and hex nuts, you can ensure that you are selecting the best fastening solution for your particular stainless steel profile project.

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