When it comes to choosing a hammer drill, there are a few things to keep in mind. Remember, a hammer drill is a serious power tool for bigger projects, such as drilling into concrete. When choosing a hammer drill, factors such as weight, comfort, power, speed, bits, and price are all important to consider.
Weight and Comfort
Like all tools, a hammer drill needs to be comfortable to hold and use. Because of its nature, a hammer drill can be a rough power tool to use and if it’s uncomfortable or its weight makes it cumbersome, you have a bigger chance of not completing the job or making mistakes. Choose a hammer drill that has comfortable grips and that is appropriate in weight. Weight can be proportionate to voltage, as higher voltage hammer drills require a bigger source of power.
Cord vs. Cordless
Of course, a cordless hammer drill, as with any power tool, is going to offer more convenience, but some factors need to be considered. First is power. A hammer drill with a cord will receive a constant source of power and will therefore remain at a constant level of performance. A cordless will need to be recharged and will gradually lose power through use. You don’t want to be in the middle of an important job only to lose power and have to wait to recharge.
Power and Speed
When it comes to power and speed, keep in mind that more is not always better. Different jobs require different settings. When looking at a hammer drill, find one with multiple speeds. At minimum, two speeds should be available. The harder the material you’re drilling into, the slower the speed needs to be. For lighter materials, you can use a higher speed. Power consumption ties in with the cord vs. cordless question.
More power will eat up battery life/energy quicker and add to the temperature. If the temperature gets too high, the equipment may shut down, or worse, malfunction and become damaged. The DEWALT DC988KA features 3 adjustable speeds and allows you a top speed of 2000 rpm.
Bits and Price
Bits for hammer drills need to be chosen for the material you are drilling, just like standard bits. Diamond core bits can be useful for larger jobs, as well as preserving the life of your drill and the bit itself. You can expect to pay anywhere from $3.00 to $100.00 for a bit. Typically, you can buy sets of bits from about $30.00 to $60.00 that will be adequate. Regarding drill price, always remember, you’re making an investment. Purchasing a cheap hammer drill will lead to problems down the road, as well as money out of your pocket for replacement and repairs.