What are Snap Pliers?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 16 October 2019
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Snap pliers are a hand held tool that is often utilized to attach and remove various types of snaps from different kinds of fabrics. With a general shape that is similar to that of most types of pliers, snap pliers are distinguished by the shape of the flat blades at the business end of the device. The main function of the blades is to provide a secure surface that allow snaps to be gently but firmly secured to a piece of fabric.

Sometimes referred to as grommet pliers, snap pliers also may be used in the installation and replacement of grommets. The process of installing a grommet using snap pliers is relatively simple. A small hole is punched into the fabric at the point where the grommet is to be placed. The body of the grommet is worked into the hole. The larger flat blade of the snap pliers is positioned underneath the grommet, while the upper and slightly smaller flat blade is positioned above the grommet. The handles of the snap pliers are squeezed, placing pressure on both sides of the grommet and driving it into the surrounding material. As a result, the grommet is securely fastened into place.


Replacing grommets with snap pliers follows the same basic pattern, although it is necessary to pry the old grommet away from the fabric first. Some types of snap pliers come with a small protrusion that is somewhat like the blades on needle nose pliers. This protrusion can be used to unseal the old grommet. Once the old grommet is removed, the installation of the new grommet can commence.

Snap pliers employ the same basic approach when used in installing or replacing snaps. After removing the old snap, the new snap is moved into position. The blades of the snap pliers are then positioned above and below the snap. As the handles on the pliers are squeezed, the blades close and exert pressure on the snap. Once the procedure is complete, the snap is firmly in place.

There are snap pliers specifically designed to handle various types of material. Some are designed for heavy duty use, such as the installation of snaps or grommets on heavy canvas fabric. Other types are designed to handle fabrics that are ideal for drapery panels or similar applications. There are snap pliers that are specifically designed for use with light materials that are used for shirts and blouses. In general, snap pliers are a very affordable tool, and can be purchased at craft shops, hardware stores, and any retail outlet that carries craft notions or camping tools.


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