A hammer drill machine is an excellent tool primarily designed for drilling hard surfaces. It is a type of rotary drill that produces a hammering motion. The best hammer drill works much faster than a regular concrete or brick drill.
Hammer drills are more expensive and bulkier than regular drills. They are, however, used to drill concrete blocks or wood studs. For example, when an electrician needs to mount an electrical box to a wall, they can use the same hammer drill to drill into either wood studs or masonry walls.
All in all, what really makes this mallet drill stand apart from the rest? Alterations have been made to it that empower the client to make use of it to the most extreme. Also, it is practically on the moderate side as contrasted with its partners. Maybe, the main drawback to hammer drills is that the battery and charger come independently.
Hammer Drill Reviews
Dewalt DCD996B — Best cordless hammer drills
Undoubtedly, Dewalt produces the best cordless hammer drills on the market in terms of durability and longevity. This particular model is often compared to the previous one — the DCD985. The main difference between them lies in the motor power level: the previous model has a less powerful 535W brushed motor, while the DCD996B is equipped with an 820W brushless motor, providing more power and offering better versatility.
The DCD996B is a battery-powered model, which main benefit is not only an increased power level but also efficient energy use. The device’s battery has a long enough lifespan to enable drilling approximately 100 holes before requiring a recharge. This number may increase when working with softer materials.
The appliance features 3 variable speeds that can be adjusted using a dedicated shifter located on top of the device. It may require some effort to move the shifter.
The LED, located on the bottom, serves for lightening up the work area. The 3 light settings (low, medium, and spotlight) can be controlled via a slide switch on the handle. Among all the hammer drills that I’ve tested, this is the first one that allows changing the light intensity level.
The Dewalt brushless hammer drill offers 11 clutch settings for removing a wide array of fasteners with ease.
The drill is compact, having 4 inches long and 10 inches wide. The tool’s weight is 4 pounds.
- The chuck is made of nitro-carburized metal, which offers superior gripping strength for the bit.
- The 360° handle ensures a safe and comfortable tool operation.
- The battery and charger are not included and must be purchased separately.
- Sometimes, the drill can stop working for no reason.
Video Dewalt DCD996B
Overall rating: 9/10
Dewalt DCH273B — Best rotary hammer drills
This model will help you deal with difficult jobs, being one of the best rotary hammer drills for advanced builders and carpenters. Besides, the device is easy to use, so if you are a DIYer, searching for a premium-quality hammer drill that could serve you for many years, the DCH273B will also work for you.
As a battery-operated tool, it delivers ample power for both occasional and professional use. The motor is able to deliver up to 1100 RPM, so it took me about 10 seconds to create a neat and precise hole in a concrete block. Therefore, this model can be a valuable addition to the list of concrete hammer drills.
The tool features 3 modes for various applications:
- Hammer Drill
Having 6.4 pounds, the DCH273B is heavier than most other cordless models. However, the drill’s dimensions are quite compact (13 by 4.2 by 8.6 inches). It has a belt clip, so you can easily carry it with you.
Please be advised that the unit generates a significant amount of noise. Therefore, it is recommended that ear protection be worn while using the tool, but, still, this is the best hammer drill for the money.
- The drill is equipped with a dedicated vibration control system that helps to provide a more comfortable grip on the handle while drilling.
- Thanks to its rugged construction, the tool can withstand rough usage with ease.
- The SDS Plus chuck type ensures a firm grip over the bit.
- Please note that this model does not feature an LED light for working in poorly-lit spaces.
- The drill comes without any storage case.
Video Dewalt DCH273B
Overall rating: 8/10
Milwaukee 2804-20 M18 — Best 1/2″ cordless hammer drills
Many hammer drill reviews agree that the Milwaukee manufacturer produces one of the best compact drills on the market. This cordless model runs on a brushless motor. The unit is small (5 by 9 by 11 inches) and weighs only 4.5 pounds. The tool feels lightweight in the hand, making it suitable for a wide range of jobs. Putting in screws using this model is a breeze.
Like most hammer drills from Milwaukee, this model offers 2 speeds to choose from (550 and 2000 RPM). The speed selector is located on the top of the tool.
Unfortunately, the drill tends to become excessively hot after drilling only 10 holes. The handle is not heat-resistant, which makes it difficult to hold the tool without gloves. You may need to take frequent breaks while using it.
For the user’s convenience, there is a LED light located on the unit’s bottom (near the battery) to illuminate the workplace. The drill features a metal keyless chuck that allows for a single-handed bit change.
This cordless hammer drill also provides 1200 in-lbs of torque that can be varied by turning the selector collar clockwise and counterclockwise.
- The overload protection is integrated to keep both the battery and the motor safe during intensive work.
- The tool features a convenient bit holder located on the bottom part of the drill.
- The clutch helps regulate the drilling depth.
- The chucks are wobbling, so it’s hard to use this drill for precision work.
- The external cover of the tool may not feel very sturdy, so it is recommended to handle the drill with care.
Video Milwaukee 2804-20 M18
Overall rating: 7/10
The Bosch 11255VSR SDS-plus BULLDOG Xtreme is among the best corded hammer drills in the market, delivering impressive power and versatility. This drill features 3 modes — rotary hammer, hammer only, and rotation only — providing flexibility for different drilling tasks. The D-handle design offers a secure and comfortable grip, making it easy to control and reduce operator fatigue. The SDS-plus bit system allows for quick and easy bit changes, further increasing efficiency on the job. The 7.5 amp motor produces a maximum of 1,300 RPM and 5,800 BPM, making it suitable for heavy-duty drilling applications.
The Bosch 11255VSR also features Vario-Lock Positioning, which allows users to rotate and lock the chisel into different positions for optimal work angle. The variable-speed reversing trigger offers precise control over the speed and direction of drilling, enhancing accuracy and versatility. Additionally, the integral clutch helps to minimize torque reaction, thereby increasing safety on the job.
Overall, this electric hammer drill is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a reliable and powerful corded hammer drill. Its rugged construction and advanced features make it suitable for a wide range of applications, from DIY projects to professional construction work. If you’re in the market for an electric hammer drill that can handle tough jobs, the Bosch 11255VSR SDS-plus BULLDOG Xtreme is definitely worth considering.
- The ergonomics of the tool are quite good, with a comfortable grip and a weight that helps maintain a smooth action.
- The build quality of the Bosch hammer drill is consistent with other products from the brand, featuring a solid construction with a good mix of metal and sturdy plastic components. It doesn’t feel cheap and is built to last.
- The depth-stop may not lock down securely, which could be a concern for some users.
- The depth stop on the Bosch hammer drill did not effectively prevent a user from accidentally drilling through a garage floor and into the dirt beneath, possibly due to issues related to visibility, dust, and vibration.
Overall rating: 9/10
Those, looking for the best hammer drill for concrete, should take a closer look at tThe ENEACRO SDS-Plus hammer drill. It is an impressive power tool that delivers exceptional performance for a variety of drilling applications. The drill features a powerful 20V, 13Amp industrial motor that provides ample power to drill through even the toughest materials. Additionally, the drill’s four different functions — hammer, drill, chisel, and hammer drill— make it a versatile tool for a wide range of projects.
The design of this hammer drill is ergonomic, making it easy and comfortable to hold and operate. The drilling tip is durable and designed to withstand heavy use, while the drill’s overall construction ensures that it will last for years to come.
The ENEACRO SDS-Plus hammer drill is among top-rated hammer drills that boast an impressive drilling capacity and wide application range. It’s perfect for both professional contractors and DIY enthusiasts looking for a reliable and powerful tool. Overall, this drill is an excellent investment for anyone in need of a high-quality and versatile hammer drill.
- The machine features a robust metal gear and head, and the plastic screws that secure it in place make it a sturdy piece of equipment, despite its large size.
- This tool operates quietly and smoothly, with minimal vibration transmitted to your body.
- The case hinges are made solely of plastic, which may be a potential drawback for some users.
- After approximately 20 hours of use, I noticed that the drill emitted a slight squealing sound as it decelerated to a stop.
Overall rating: 7/10
This model can be considered the best hammer drill for heavy-duty jobs in this review. It’s equipped with a 1500W motor and operates at a speed of 880 RPM.
The drill is supplied with a tube of grease that should be added to the pot on top of the tool every two weeks of active use, as indicated in the manual.
Having tested the tool, I can claim it’s pretty easy to use. Except for the power trigger, there are only two controls:
- A large orange dial to activate the drilling function;
- An orange lever to control the hammering action.
Of course, it’s heavier and larger than most standard models: this impact hammer drill has dimensions of 15.5 by 10.5 by 4.3 inches and weighs 16 pounds.
The vibration control system that is vital for such heavy-duty units works as it should, reducing the fatigue and allowing working with higher precision. The polyurethane grip is soft and convenient to hold.
The body of this heavy-duty hammer drill features large vent openings to prevent excessive heat buildup.
- The motor is heat-resistant, which means you can safely use the drill for extended periods without worrying about overheating.
- The bottom of the drill is dust-resistant, keeping the inner parts safe and increasing the service lifetime.
- The tool features a special clutch safety system designed to protect your wrist.
- The storage case provided with the tool is of low quality.
- I’ve adjusted the front handle position since it seems to be too low out of the box.
Overall rating: 9/10
The Dewalt hammer drill is able to easily penetrate into tough materials having the powerful brushless motor inside.
This rotary model has 3 operating modes:
- Rotary drilling
- Rotary hammering
The first mode is suitable for both screwdriving and drilling into hard materials, while the second mode is designed for use with concrete and masonry. The third mode is intended for light chipping.
The Dewalt 20V MAX hammer drill delivers a speed of 1500 RPM, ensuring stable operation. Speaking of my experience with the drill, I’ve noticed that it works very well for ripping up tile.
However, it’s worth noting that the drill tends to heat up after about 10 minutes of intensive use. While this isn’t a major issue, it can result in the battery charge depleting quickly if you don’t take frequent breaks.
This model measures 16 inches in length but only 8.5 inches in width. The unit is lightweight (5 pounds) and quite compact.
- It maintains the same speed during the drilling session.
- The item is equipped with a helpful depth guide.
- The tool is equipped for dust collection, allowing you to use it with a dust removal system to keep your work area clean.
- The drill may be poorly balanced, which can cause shaking when using long bits, potentially leading to inaccurate performance.
- The side handle can loosen during use.
Overall rating: 8/10
Important Things to Know About Hammer Drills
So what is a hammer drill?
The hammer drill, otherwise called a percussion or impact drill, is prevalent because of its capacity to bore holes on very hard surfaces. Technically speaking, any drill that utilizes a hammer mechanical motion to bore a hole can be considered a hammer drill.
These drills are regularly utilized when extreme force is required. Initially, China’s primary boring strategy was designed during the Han line. The procedure included two to six men hopping on a level at intervals. The reason was to raise a substantial iron piece joined to long bamboo links. By using mostly cast iron bits and instruments made of bamboo, the early Chinese were able to penetrate depths that were as much as 3000 ft. (910 m). The development of percussion boring machines took more than a few years to accomplish.
The starting point of the primary sled drill broke out a dispute among the communities. At the time, the German organization Fein licensed a Bohrmaschine Mit Elektro-Pneumatischem Schlagwerk ( which means to drill with an electro-pneumatic striking system”) in 1914. Until then, the German-owned company Bosch delivered the first-ever “Bosch-Hammer” around 1932 in large-scale manufacturing.
What is a Hammer Drill Used for?
Hammer drills are good tools to drill holes in the material that might be difficult to work with when using less powerful tools. Regardless of whether you have to tear apart ceramic tiles or boreholes in concrete, a high-quality hammer drill won’t disappoint. This tool is suitable for drilling holes in hard materials such as concrete, brick, and stone, allowing you to embed screws, bolts, and small fittings. Additionally, a hammer drill is ideal for light brickwork.
The main point is that you don’t need to spend huge amounts of money on a hammer drill. But more often than not, expensive top rated hammer drills are normally equipped with superior carbide tips, and the tips are more safely attached to the shank, which in turn lessens breakage in their use.
How to Use Hammer Drills?
At the stage where you need to drill holes through solid surfaces, a hammer drill will be a helpful tool for the job. Push and draw movements along with the drill and impact are the main highlights that render a drilling hammer successful in breaking through very hard materials quickly. Below are the steps on how to use a hammer drill.
Step 1– Get the Right Measurement. Get the size for the bit to be used for the ideal estimation of the hole. If you need to drill a large hole, it may be necessary to bore a pilot hole beforehand to maintain the accuracy of the bit and prevent it from wandering or deflecting while drilling.
Step 2 – Pick the Right Bit. Pick the correct piece for the material you will be drilling. It is also important to take into account the sharpness of the bits and opt for those with a carbide tip for increased toughness.
Step 3 – Attach the Bit. Put the bit into the hammer, ensuring the tightness of the attachment. Use a chuck to tighten it.
Step 4 – Mark the Drill Bit or Set up the Depth Stop. Measure the depth of the hole. If your hammer drill features a depth stopper, set it up to the ideal depth. However, if your hammer drill does not have that feature, simply wrap the bit using concealing tape to check the depth that you want to drill.
Step 5 – Plug It Up. Search for the secure and nearest outlet to your project to dispose of the use of an extension cord. However, if you need one, ensure that you use a heavy-duty cord for this type of power tool. Plug it up and then turn it to a hammer setting. Make sure that you have protective goggles, ear protectors, and safety gloves ready. Wear them before starting to drill.
Step 6 – Point It Out. Place the tip of the bit on the preferred area. You need to make sure that you are decisively pointing at the correct spot. Pull the trigger and then start drilling. You don’t need to apply a lot of pressure on the drill. Simply put light pressure on the drill as it does its job.
Step 7 – Blow It Away. Occasionally, it’s necessary to blow away debris and rock particles from the hole. When you are done drilling, just change the switch to the reverse setting to pull the bit out of the hole. There are times when a drill does not work as you intended, like when you hit a significantly tough material. At the point when this happens, you should simply place a concrete nail into the hole and start pounding. Using this technique can help break through tough materials, allowing you to resume drilling with the hammer drill afterwards.
How do Hammer Drills Work?
To better address this question “how does a hammer drill work”, we’ll use a simple explanation. To begin with, the hammer drill gets its name from making a sledge-like movement when using a hammer drill. It’s quick and tedious “pounding” against solid or stone or brick causes the device to make holes in these super hard surfaces.
To better understand the process, you can envision someone breaking through a wall with a sledgehammer while you simultaneously drill through to reach the other side. This is what happens when a drill is mounted. The difference is that in this case, the strikes are quick and heavier. This kind of device is extremely loud and sounds like a jackhammer when you’re holding it. That said, In the event that you utilize a drill on a hard surface, you would find that it doesn’t have all the ability to penetrate the hole by itself. So, you may have to add some force and even control the movement sometimes. The best hammer drill on the flip side is different from other drills because it does not rotate. It simply works by chiseling away concrete, stone, cement, or brick until they’ve made a hole large enough for a screw to fit into.