Better House Guide is reader supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may receive an affiliate commission. Learn more.

What is a Hammer Drill Used For?

Hammer drills are a type of drill that's used to drill into harder substances like brick, stone, and concrete. These drills are often used by construction workers and if you've ever walked by a construction site, you've probably seen one. Since they're a professional grade tool, it's hard to justify the expense if you're not using it on a regular basis. You would generally only buy a hammer drill if you're a serious DIY'er or you're taking on a large home project that requires one. However, you can easily and affordably rent one at the local hardware store in most towns so that's something I would look into before purchasing.

What a Hammer Drills Used For

Since there are different types of hammer drills, you can use them for different things. Here are some examples for each:

Rotary Hammer Drills

Being the larger hammer drill, these are used for heavy duty projects.

  • Drilling through stone
  • Drilling through block and block walls
  • Doweling or drilling large holes for rebar
  • Hammer only function can be used fore breaking up hard materials and removing tile floors

Cordless drills with the hammer function

These are the smaller battery operated handheld drills that every homeowner should have. These are best used for...

  • Drilling smaller holes in brick, stone, and concrete
  • Drilling holes in softer materials like wood, cabinets, etc.
  • Screwing in screws after you drill the holes

Types of Hammer Drills

There are several types of hammer drills including dedicated hammer drills and normal drills with the hammer option.

Dedicated Hammer Drill

A dedicated hammer drill, also called a rotary hammer, is the one that's usually only used by contractors. They're heavy duty drills that often have an extra handle on the side for drilling through thick concrete and stone. You may have seen your cable guy use this if he had drill through brick to run cable into your house.

Corded Hammer Drills

corded hammer drill

Corded hammer drills are best when you have a bunch of holes to drill or you just need a drill that can sustain an even level of power without switching batteries. Keep in mind that you'll need a power source nearby and they tend to have a higher RPM.

Cordless Hammer Drills

using cordless hammer drill on wood

Over the last few years cordless drill have come a long way. Many of them have power levels that are close to that of corded drills. If you don't need to drill many holes or don't have a power source nearby, then a cordless hammer drill is a great choice. If you're a DIY'er or need a powerful drill for around the house, this is the way to go.

Other Hammer Drills

  • Percussion hammer drills: Softer hammering and easier to control.
  • Pneumatic hammer drills: Stronger hammering action and a little harder to handle. Better suited for harder projects.
  • Rotary hammer drills: These are the most powerful hammer drills and generally used when you need serious power. Rotary drills are used for deeper holes and harder materials which is why they're generally reserved for construction workers.

Do You Need a Hammer Drill?

Not everyone needs a hammer drill. Since they're used for drilling holes in hard materials and not for drilling in screws, if you're not drilling holes in cement or brick, you don't need it. However, if you have any DIY projects or handy man projects around the house, you should have an 18v cordless drill. These can be used to drill holes in wood and almost any other material that isn't as hard as stone.

Related Posts
Better house guide logo white background
Copyright © Better House Guide is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by linking to As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Privacy Policy | Disclaimer