Hammer Drill vs Impact Drill: Who Is Better For You?

What is the difference between a hammer drill vs impact drill? Do I need an impact driver if I own a hammer drill? This article will explore these questions, and also show you how to use both tools.

Use a Hammer Drill for

Hammer Drill

Holes in concrete, brick, and stone. The hammer action is great for breaking up hard surfaces. As you drill into these materials, the high speed of the impact driver will help break them apart as it rotates at high speeds. You should not use an impact driver to try drilling through wood or metal because the bits will be broken off very quickly by this tool’s powerful torque! If your main purpose is to drill holes in those common household materials, opt for a basic cordless drill instead as they are much easier on your wallet too! In addition to driving screws, both drills can also perform various other tasks such as sanding and polishing. It all depends on what bit head you attach to the drill.

Drilling into thick materials like metal and concrete, where you want to create a large hole quickly. As mentioned above, hammer drills are great for breaking up hard surfaces so if your purpose is to drill through these types of material with no intention of ever using an impact driver on them again, then set aside some extra cash for a hammer drill is the way to go!

Drilling large holes in wood where you are looking for high speed. As cordless drills have progressed, they have become more powerful over time which has led to greater speeds and larger bits that can now cut through thicker materials with ease. This means that if your job calls for drilling large holes in wood, either a hammer drill or cordless drill will do the job.

Use an Impact Driver for

Impact Driver

Driving large screws and bolts into hard surfaces like concrete and metal. If your home is filled with materials such as these (concrete siding, etc) then you may want to opt for this tool over a standard drill. The impact driver is much more powerful than cordless drills and hammer drills, easily punching screws into the hardest of surfaces while at the same time removing stuck bolts with ease.

Driving large lag bolts used to secure deck posts or structural supports onto your home. This particular type of bolt can be quite difficult to drive by hand so if you need to secure them into hard surfaces, an impact driver will make quick work of this task.

Driving screws in places where you are not able to get a screwdriver or drill bit close enough to the surface. For example, if there is no room on either side of your deck’s post for a cordless drill but there is room for an impact driver, this tool is your best option.

Driving screws where a cordless drill’s battery does not have enough power to drive the screw into the material in question. If you need to secure a large number of lag bolts or long deck screws and want them driven in quickly, then opt for an impact driver over a cordless drill.

Driving screws into masonry material. If your home is made of brick or concrete siding and you need to secure a fence post using one of these bolts, then an impact driver would be the best tool for this job.

Differences between Hammer Drill and Impact Drill

The hammer drill and impact driver differ in three key aspects; purpose, design, and working principle.


A hammer drill is used for drilling holes in solid materials such as masonry or steel. An impact driver is designed to drive screws into hard surfaces and has a higher torque output per weight, making them the ideal tool when installing decking or roof tiles.


The design of a hammer drill is different from that of an impact driver. A hammer drill features a pistol-grip design with the motor mounted close to the head of the drill, allowing it to provide powerful rotation for drilling holes into tough surfaces at higher speeds. An impact driver has an adjustable torque setting which allows you to adjust the power output according to how much pressure is being applied by the user’s hand on the trigger switch. This feature is particularly useful when driving screws into different materials at variable speeds.

The design of an impact driver also allows the user to apply torque through either a forward or reverse motion, however, it does not rotate as fast as a hammer drill under high-speed mode. The higher-torque setting of this tool makes for a better screwdriver without worrying about stripping screws or damaging surfaces.

How they work

A hammer drill is designed to work in a rotational motion, much like a traditional electric drill. It uses a motor that provides torque and high-speed rotation which helps the user in drilling holes into surfaces such as masonry or steel by using an impact mechanism through its rotating head.

Hammer Drill

An impact driver works with two motors; one providing power to the rotating head, and one to an internal hammering mechanism. When power is applied by pressing on the trigger switch of this tool, it sends rotational motion through gears that are connected to both motors which then initiate a high-torque impact action against its work surface. This helps drive screws into different surfaces without damaging them or stripping the screw.

The motor of an impact driver is mounted close to the head and provides high-torque output for better screwdriving. An adjustable torque setting allows you to adjust the power output according to how much pressure is being applied by the user’s hand on the trigger switch, making it ideal for use in different applications such as decking installation or roof tile.

Impact Drill or Hammer Drill: Which drill is right for you?

 You might be wondering which drill is best for your home project. Both of these tools are very similar, but there are some key differences that set them apart.

Hammer Drill: DEWALT 20V MAX XR Hammer Drill

Impact Driver: Ryobi 18V One+ Impact Driver

Both drills can do the same job but in different ways. The hammer drill uses a rotating motion to generate impact. It can be activated at high speeds and has an adjustable clutch, which you would use for smaller bits. The impact driver uses a rapid up and down motion to generate torque. It can also be activated at high speeds but has an adjustable clutch for different materials.

Both drills are great tools that have their own unique functions. A hammer drill is good for drilling into masonry or brickwork where you want the power of rotating action combined with the ability

Hammer Drill vs Impact Drill: DIY Home Improvement

If you are a DIYer or need to work around your home, chances are that you have considered buying one of the two main types of drills: hammer drill and impact drill. Both offer amazing versatility when it comes to driving screws into various materials but they also both do completely different things! In this post, we will go over the differences between a hammer drill and an impact drill, what they can be used for, and which one is right for you.

When it comes to the drills there are many different types of designs but two main categories: Hammer Drill vs Impact Drill. Let’s look at them in a little more detail below!

Hammer drills are usually lighter and easier to handle, more powerful than impact drivers. They make less noise when in use which is preferred for regular drilling duties like creating holes in drywall or wood. Hammer drills have a hammer motion that helps them drill into masonry surfaces with ease while most impact drivers can’t be used on masonry without a hammer drill bit.

Hammer drills also have a high RPM and low torque that makes them perfect for drilling holes in wood or drywall, especially when using bigger bits. On the other hand impact, drivers are heavier than regular drills but lighter than hammer drills so they can be used with one arm if needed while hammer drills require two hands to operate.

Impact drills are typically used for driving screws into wood or metal while hammer drill bits have a chiseling action, making them perfect for drilling holes in masonry surfaces. Impact drivers offer high torque to drive fasteners with less effort and because of that, they can be quite noisy compared to regular drills or hammer drills. While impact drivers come with a high RPM, they are not very suitable for drilling holes into wood or drywall.

The main difference between the two is that impact drivers have an impacting mechanism that drives screws with high torque while hammer drills offer higher RPMs and can be used on masonry surfaces to create smooth holes. So if you need to drive lots of screws regularly.


Hammer Drill vs Impact Drill So as you can see, there is a lot to consider when purchasing your next power drill. While the difference in price may seem slight between models of similar capabilities it’s important to know what type of work each will be doing before making any decisions. 

Final words So as you can see, there is a lot to consider when purchasing your next power drill. While the difference in price may seem slight between models of them.

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