The DeWalt DW511 1/2″ 7.8-Amp VSR Hammerdrill is our best hammer drill and it is indeed ergonomic and lightweight at only 4.3 lbs, making it very easy to use and good at limiting fatigue. Being very versatile in its design and controllability, the drill has a 360 degree side handle which comes with a depth rod for better control and accuracy of depth. It runs on a 7.8 amp motor that also protects against overloading and it is ideal for just about any operation and size of work due to the variable speed feature. It is great for use on a variety of material and applications such masonry, steel or wood due to being a double-purpose drill and hammer drill at the same time.
Our step-up pick is the Makita XPH012 Cordless Hammer Driver-Drill Kit and it uses lithium ion battery for a longer lasting operation and battery life. A complete kit with a case and a battery along with the hammer drill itself, it has a cordless design which makes it ideal for industrial and outdoor use. It is super lightweight at only 4 lbs which makes it friendly towards users and takes away the problems of fatigue and it has a max torque of 480 in lbs for its 4-pole motor. It is great for use on most driving, drilling and hammer drilling operations and it is also has a variable speed from 0 to 400 RPM and 0 to 1,500 RPM. The drill measures 8 1/8 inches and has an ergonomic and compact design to let it fit into smaller spaces.
The budget pick is the Ingersoll Rand Air Hammer 114GQC and it reduces user fatigue significantly due to the ergonomically designed grip that is easy to handle. It comes with a 3-piece chisel set and the handle exhaust has been diffused. The piston has been heat-treated and the steel barrel has been alloyed for better durability and the chisel retainer has a quick change feature for convenience.
A Little Background
Unlike regular drills, a hammer drill is not just for drilling regular materials such as wood or steel, it is more designed for use on concrete, bricks and masonry. Compared to a regular drill that is used for standard drilling needs, a hammer drill is a very special kind of drill that is able to pierce through concrete and the like. Think of it as a mini portable jackhammer – except it is a hand drill that fits neatly onto a case and ideal for smaller tasks. For smaller drilling tasks through concrete, most workers use a hammer drill whenever they can instead of giant drills. Regular drills, of course, do not have the power to drill through such material and this is why hammer drills were invented.
Because of its sheer power, most people cannot always afford a hammer drill unless they absolutely need it for their job. Generally speaking, a hammer drill is never really cheap in comparison to a regular drill because they are specially designed to withstand the force and toughness of concrete material. They are like portable jackhammers so it is no wonder that you have to invest if you want to get an ergonomic hammer drill if you really need one.
Hammer drills are very much need for light to medium masonry and construction and to get the job done faster and more efficiently with high accuracy. A hammer drill is best used for industrial work although some DIYers and shop owners could also use a hammer drill for some purposes, depending on whatever field or material or piece they are working on.
How We Picked
We picked out of the many contenders out there and chose the best hammer drills based on the following:
Consider the amperage of the motor of the hammer drill. The amperage of the motor is a big factor, alongside the horsepower of the hammer drill. The higher power it can draw, the bigger impact it can drill on your concrete surface. It is important that you only require less effort to drill so that the hammer drill will definitely save you time in the long run when it comes to getting the job done.
Do know if the hammer drill has a variable speed feature. The variable speed must be present on any hammer drill you buy because this is highly important in any tool for better durability. If you use a specific speed for the hammer drill for a specific use then it will be used justly and not too little nor too much, which is a great practice in just about any power tool out there.
A hammer drill that is ergonomic in its design, particularly in its handle, is a must-have. Because a hammer drill is a portable jackhammer of sorts, it should be particularly easy to grip and handle so that the user will not experience too much fatigue in drilling through the concrete surface with accuracy and power at the same time.
You must know the drilling capacity / size of the hammer drill. At the very most, you will find a hammer drill that has a drilling capacity of 1/2 inch in size as a standard, but you will also find other hammer drill bit sizes out there depending on where you intend to use the drill for.
Additional accessories add up to a great hammer drill package or kit / set. For instance, the hammer drill may also include a case or a second drill. It really depends on what you buy but be careful with sets and always look for their specs as well other than the freebies that come on the way.
If it is cordless, the hammer drill should have a reliable and heavy-duty battery that lasts for a long time but does not add to the weight of the tool overall. A cordless depends on battery power and so the hammer drill’s battery should at least be a worthy lithium ion battery with a lot of charge and longer lasting battery life. The tool should also have an easy to see battery meter.
Low noise levels should be present in any hammer drill, since operating anything with concrete is never a quiet activity anyway. If you do not want a distracting hammer drill then you should go for one that is low on its noise decibels so you can enjoy a quiet and peaceful hammer drill operation – although drilling is never really quiet but at the very least you should get a low noise drill.
DeWalt DW511 1/2″ 7.8-Amp VSR Hammerdrill
The DeWalt DW511 1/2″ 7.8-Amp VSR Hammerdrill is our best hammer drill and it is very versatile in its design and controllability. It is also great for use on a variety of material and applications such masonry, steel or wood due to being a double-purpose drill and hammer drill at the same time. As for the drilling power, it runs on a 7.8 amp motor that also protects against overloading.
Being ergonomic and lightweight at only 4.3 lbs for fewer instances of user fatigue, the DeWalt DW511 Hammerdrill has a 360 degree side handle which comes with a depth rod for better control and accuracy of depth and it is completely ideal for just about any operation and size of work due to the variable speed feature.
The DeWalt VSR Hammerdrill delivers a max output of 650 watts and it can work on wood, concrete, steel and general masonry work. Being rated for use on 120 volts, this is a versatile hammer drill. As for power, it has a drilling capacity of 1/2 inch for steel, 5/32 to 3/8 inch for concrete and 1 1/4 inch for wood drilling. Furthermore, the length of the hammer drill is 11 1/2 inches while it it also has a reversible speed for a drill for your convenience and other purposes.
Many first time buyers say that this is a great upgrade from single-speed hammer drills. The DeWalt DW511 1/2″ 7 Hammerdrill includes a depth rod for accuracy as well as a chuck key with a holder. Furthermore, it comes with all the needed attachments. Being backed by a 1 year service contract for free, a 90-day money back guarantee and a 3 year limited warranty, the DeWalt 7.8-Amp VSR Hammerdrill is a sure-fire winner for the best hammer drill.
Flaws but Not Dealbrakers
Unfortunately, our top pick, too, have flaws but they are not major dealbreakers. The only concern about the DeWalt DW511 1/2″ 7.8-Amp VSR Hammerdrill is the fact that the chuck key connecting to the hammer drill can be a bit tricky to set up.
Makita XPH012 Cordless Hammer Driver-Drill Kit
The Makita XPH012 Cordless Hammer Driver-Drill Kit is our step-up pick and it is great for use on most driving, drilling and hammer drilling operations. The drill itself measures 8 1/8 inches and has an ergonomic and compact design to let it fit into smaller spaces. Being extremely portable, it uses lithium ion battery for a longer lasting operation and battery life.
Moreover, the hammer drill also has a variable speed from 0 to 400 RPM and 0 to 1,500 RPM and it has a max torque of 480 in lbs for its 4-pole motor. The Makita XPH012 Kit is a complete kit with a case and a battery along with the hammer drill itself and it also has a cordless design which makes it ideal for industrial and outdoor use.
The hammer drill is super lightweight at only 4 lbs which makes it friendly towards users and takes away the problems of fatigue. The tool runs at 18 volts of power on its battery in which the battery charges faster than most batteries and allowing for longer operation times. Its drilling capacity is at 1/2 inch and it is a multipurpose driver and drill at the same time. The Makita XPH012 gives you overall versatility and convenience in any work.
What’s more, the hammer drill has an illuminating LED work light so you feel confident even during the dark hours and it also comes with a rapid optimum charger for charging the lithium battery (3.0 Ah). You can easily switch between hammer drill and driver modes for convenience on the go. With the Makita XPH012 Cordless Kit, masonry drilling is done easier with adjustable speeds of 0 to 6,000 BPM and 0 to 22,500 BPM.
Ingersoll Rand Air Hammer 114GQC
Our budget pick is the air-powered Ingersoll Rand Air Hammer 114GQC in which the piston has been heat-treated and the steel barrel has been alloyed for better durability. The chisel retainer has a quick change feature for convenience and the drill comes with a 3-piece chisel set.
Moreover, the hammer drill reduces user fatigue significantly due to the ergonomically designed grip that is easy to handle and the handle exhaust has been diffused. As a budget option, this is an air powered hammer drill which weighs only 4.1 lbs and uses an air inlet size of 1/4 inch.
The Ingersoll Rand Air Hammer has a stroke length of 2 5/8 inches and it runs at 3,500 BPM (blows per minute). The minimum hose size required is 3/8 inch and the tool is lightweight design makes it easy to handle. Moreover, it has an air consumption of 4 CFM.
Furthermore, the hammer drill by Ingersoll Rand comes with a touch trigger, a power regulator and a shank which measures 0.401 inch while the length of the hammer drill is 8.5 inches. In addition to that, the chisel set contains a flat chisel, a panel cutter and a tapered punch. Being backed by a 1 year limited warranty, the Ingersoll 114GQC is ideal for use as well on ball joints and tie rods and it is a perfect budget saver for those who often use air-powered tools.
Pistol Grip Designed Hammer Drill
DEWALT DWD520K 1/2-Inch VSR Pistol-Grip Hammerdrill
A hammer drill that has a drilling capacity of 1/2 inch, the DEWALT DWD520K 1/2-Inch VSR Pistol-Grip Hammerdrill uses an ergonomic pistol grip design for lessening user fatigue and it also has a two-finger trigger for better control over your work. Its motor runs at 10 amps for better drilling.
Guaranteed to produce 50 percent more power due to its improved motor design, the motor also has safety features to protect against overloading. Moreover, it has two speed ranges for various types of applications, whether you need a high torque or high speed and it is a 2-in-1 hammer drill and regular drill to be used on steel, wood, masonry and the like.
Enclosed in tough metal gear housing so you can use it for industrial jobs to ensure durability, the DEWALT DWD520K Hammerdrill is rated for use at 120 volts and it weighs only 6 lbs so it is easy to manage. The tool’s speed ranges are 0 to 1,200 RPM and 0 to 3,500 RPM and the chuck key comes with a holder. Moreover, the drill set includes a steel depth rod and the locking side handle can be adjusted up to 360 degrees for greater flexibility.
When you order, the DEWALT DWD520K comes with a storage box and the tool measures 14 inches in length. Overall, it gives you great productivity in the long run. Do know that this is a bare tool only. However, the 3-position collar lets you select different functions for hammer drilling and rotary drilling in 2 speeds. The DWD520K DEWALT Hammerdrill runs at 1,100 watts of power and is backed by a 3 year limited warranty.
Best Cordless Hammer Drill
Makita XPH07Z LXT Lithium-Ion Hammer Driver-Drill
The Makita XPH07Z LXT Lithium-Ion Hammer Driver-Drill comes with a battery gauge powered by 3 stages of LED lights to indicate the charge life and it is very easy to carry at only 5.9 lbs. The tool spans at a length of 8 1/8 inches and it is very ergonomic in its design so it will not give you fatigue when using.
Moreover, this hammer drill has a drilling capacity of 1/2 inch and gives a max torque of 1,090 in lbs. In fact, the all metal transmission is at 2 speeds: from 0 to 550 RPM and from 0 to 2,100 RPM so it can cover a variety of jobs. It also comes with a side handle and a side clip and it uses an 18-volt lithium ion battery for a longer lasting charge and usability.
Additionally, its cordless design allows you to work practically anywhere and the brushless motor runs efficiently and cooler. Do know that the Makita XPH07Z Driver-Drill bare tool only but its all-metal chuck is self-ratcheting that also maximizes durability and strength due to its superb bit gripping.
Generally, the hammer drill by Makita is great for use on the most demanding on-site jobs. The battery charges really fast so you can readily use it on the go and the tool comes with a depth gauge, a tool belt clip and a side handle (XPH07). Being backed by a 1 year warranty for the battery and 3 years of warranty for the tool itself, the Makita XPH07Z LXT is great for heavy duty hammer drilling.
Hammer Drill with Brushless Motor
Makita XPH06Z LXT Brushless Hammer Driver-Drill
With the Makita XPH06Z LXT Brushless Hammer Driver-Drill, the max torque of this hammer drill is up to 530 in lbs. the variable speed function has 2 ranges: 0 to 400 RPM and 0 to 1,550 RPM so you can use it for a variety of jobs. It also uses a brushless motor so it runs cooler and more efficiently and it spans at a length of 7 7/8 inches.
Super easy to carry around at only 3.9 lbs and is ideal for reducing long-hour fatigue, it deliberately lets you perform 50 percent longer with its full charge than most regular hammer drills. Moreover, the brushless motor is also electronically-controlled so that the torque and RPM go hand in hand and it also has a drilling capacity of 1/2 inch. The drill uses lithium ion (18 volts) for battery efficiency.
The Makita XPH06Z Hammer Driver-Drill gives thorough protection against overheating, overloading and over-discharge. Even if it is a bare tool only, it also has a 3-stage LED gauge to indicate battery life as it charges fully at 30 minutes. The drill is under a 3-year limited warranty for the tool and battery.
Best Variable Speed Hammer Drill
Milwaukee 2607-20 M18 1/2″ Hammer Drill
The Milwaukee 2607-20 M18 1/2″ Hammer Drill is our best variable speed hammer drill which has a drilling capacity of 1/2 inch. It is a great hammer drill and a variable speed trigger is included as well as a switch for screwing and drilling. It is super lightweight at only 3.4 lbs, a bare tool only.
Being ideal for concrete, blocks, bricks and such, the Milwaukee 2607-20 Drill runs on a lithium ion battery at 18 volts of power and is an ideal hammer drill for its torque.
Hammer Drill with Keyless Chuck
DEWALT DWD112 Pistol-Grip Drill w/Keyless Chuck
The DEWALT DWD112 Pistol-Grip Drill w/ Keyless Chuck is a hammer drill which runs on an 8-amp motor that makes it ideal for most industrial jobs and heavy-duty work and its included variable speed allows you to be more specific on your operation without sacrificing the longevity of the tool.
Moreover, this tool has a drilling capacity of 3/8 inch and it also has an all-metal keyless chuck. The ergonomic handle has a soft grip designed to prevent user fatigue and give a lot of comfort while working while the ball bearing construction adds to the durability of the tool. Additionally, it uses a VSR trigger with a speed of 0 to 2,500 RPM.
The DEWALT DWD112 is easy to carry around at only 4.1 lbs and is rated for use on 120 volts. The drilling capacity on wood is 1 inch using a spade bit and 1 1/8 inch with a hole saw.
Being under a 3-year limited warranty as well as a 90-day money back guarantee and a 1-year free service contract, the bit retention is great due to the all-metal keyless ratcheting chuck and the tool also includes a user’s manual for all of your troubleshooting needs.
Best Concrete Hammer Drill
Black&Decker DR670 6.0-Amp 1/2-Inch Hammer Drill
A hammer drill with a variable speed trigger which is perfect for a wide range of applications, the Black & Decker DR670 6.0-Amp 1/2-Inch Hammer Drill is a great hammer drill to consider and an ergonomic grip design adds to its comfort features. Additionally, it has a depth rod and a side handle. Moreover, it has a drilling capacity of 1/2 inch.
The all-metal keyless chuck makes it easier to change bits and gets a better grip on the bit. It is great for use in the narrowest of spaces due to its compact design which delivers great power. You can drill efficiently into concrete and brick due to its powerful hammer action as its motor runs at 6 amps.
The Black & Decker DR670 Drill weighs only 4.4 lbs so it is easy to carry around and won’t cause as much user fatigue and it is rated for use on 110 volts. Do know that this is also a reversible hammer drill which is conveniently backed by a 2-year warranty.
Best Reversible Hammer Drill
Makita 6302H 1/2-Inch Drill Variable-Speed Reversible
The Makita 6302H 1/2-Inch Drill Variable-Speed Reversible has a 1/2 inch drill chuck that is made of heavy duty material while the motor of this hammer drill runs at 6.5 amps of power so it is fit to serve rigorous tasks. It also comes with a belt clip for added convenience to be attached to any holster or belt and you can easily control the drill. Comfort come all in one due to the large side handle that has 2 positions.
The drill weighs very light at only 4.8 lbs and it has a reversing switch that enables the hammer drill to be reversible. Moreover, it has a recessed lock-on button as well and also has a variable speed of 0 to 550 RPM so you can work on just about any material it can possibly handle. What’s more, the double insulation adds to the tool’s durability and its side handle is also removable. In fact, it accepts a minimum drill bit size of 1/8 inch.
The Makita 6302H Variable-Speed Reversible is rated for use on 120 volts and conveniently comes with a side handle, a drill chuck and a chuck key.
From our list of the best, we left those hammer drills that are unsatisfactory in quality and we picked out those with substantial quality in terms of drilling quality, power, consumption and ergonomics. It is important for a hammer drill to be easy to handle while delivering a great amount of power to get the job done more efficiently.
Other Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What are the differences between a regular drill and a hammer drill?
A: According to The Wood Whisperer , you should know that regular drivers are for general use when drilling holes on wood and some metal for their bits and they may also be used for driving screws, whereas a hammer drill is more efficient and built for drilling into concrete, brick and other masonry surfaces. In a general sense, hammer drills use specialized bits for drilling into these harsh and tough materials. What’s more, some hammer drills are a combination of a regular drill and a hammer drill and a driver as well.
Q: Any tips on using hammer drills on concrete material?
A: According to Family Handyman , first, you should consider the amperage of the hammer drill and go for a higher amperage for greater power. You should also consider the BPM or blows per minute to measure its pounding power. Next to that, you should also know the drilling capacity of the hammer drill.
As for the safety precautions when it comes to using a hammer drill, you should remember to always clear the debris from the hole of whatever you drilled on. Another thing – do not over-drill to avoid your hammer drill from getting worn out easily. Sometimes, you need a right pressure and you should not push too hard when using the hammer drill so you do not break the drill bit. Moreover, a small hole should be drilled first before going all the way for precision.
Wrapping It Up
To wrap it all up, the DeWalt DW511 1/2″ 7.8-Amp VSR Hammerdrill is our best hammer drill and a big game changer when it comes to conveniently drilling through any concrete, brick or masonry work so that you will feel hassle-free when it comes to fatigue-inducing operations like these.
Jen Miller is a former electrical engineer and product specialist with more than 20 years of product design and testing experience. She has designed more than 200 products for Fortune 500 companies, in fields ranging from home appliances to sports gear and outdoor equipment. She founded Jen Reviews to share her knowledge and critical eye for what makes consumers tick, and adopts a strict no-BS approach to help the reader filter through the maze of products and marketing hype out there. She writes regularly and has been featured on Forbes, Fast Company, The Muse, The Huffington Post, Tiny Buddha and MindBodyGreen.