What’s the Best Filter Wrench?

If you’ve used enough filters on your lenses then I’ve no doubt that you’ve got one stuck at some point. Sometimes a filter gets stuck on a lens, sometimes a filter gets stuck to another filter if you’ve been stacking them, and sometimes a filter will get stuck to a step-down ring.

In the past I’ve tried a few different methods to unstick filters, including putting rubber bands around them for added grip, and putting the lens or filters in the freezer to allow the metal to contract. I’ve also tried buying a cheap pair of filter wrenches, but I ended up with the Sensei wrenches that are sold at B&H Photo, and didn’t like the at all. I have no idea why they are rated so highly by the hundreds of customer reviews on there! I couldn’t grip anything with them so I had to go looking for something else.


Actually the trick of putting things in the freezer works quite well for unwanted filter-to-filter or filter-to-step-down ring locking, but it’s not always a good idea to put a lens in the freezer, so a wrench is definitely handy if you get one stuck directly to the lens thread.

In the end I took to Amazon to see what they had to offer, and having been unsatisfied with the flexible plastic of the Sensei wrenches, I was drawn to the Neewer Filter Wrenches which are constructed from rubberized metal. Whilst they are twice the price of the plastic Sensei ones, we’re still only talking about $10 for a pair of them, so I doubt it will break the bank for most people.

Cheaper plastic wrench on the left, Neewer rubberized metal wrench on the right.

Available For 48mm to 82mm Threads

As soon as I got the Neewer wrenches out of the packet I knew immediately that these were the ones I had been looking for! Finally, a simple set of cheap wrenches that I can recommend to people when they run into this problem. The price is totally reasonable, and the rubber coating grips the filter rings very well. If you’ve ever run into stuck filters before, throw a pair of these in you Amazon basket next time you shop there and they’ll probably come in very handy one day.

Photo of author
Professional photographer based in Yukon, Canada, and founder of Shutter Muse. His editorial work has been featured in publications all over the world, and his commercial clients include brands such as Nike, Apple, Adobe and Red Bull.

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4 thoughts on “What’s the Best Filter Wrench?”

  1. Dan: Are the rubberized metal wrenches thin enough to grasp the slim thread ring of a circular polarizer or are they just to meaty, leaving this as a better job for the plastic wrenches? I’ve broken a few plastic ones and I’m ready to purchase the metal ones, but not if they are too big to grab the tiny polarizer rings.

    • Same question, one month later! I have a very thin 82mm polarizer on a 300mm lens. I have got to get it off because I am seeing some aberrations that may be in the filter. Someone?


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