how to choose the right demolition hammer

Demo Hammers – How to Choose the Best One

When preparing for or working on a project,

You always want to make sure that you are choosing the right demo hammers for the job. This handy guide will help you make that decision.

Jean-Claude Van Damme may have been great at cracking skulls on the big screen, but when it comes to breaking concrete, few things will get the job done as quickly and efficiently as demolition hammers. Whether it is clearing tree roots out of the way, knocking down a pesky wall or removing unwanted driveways, these hammers have the power and force to tackle any obstacle.

Demolition hammers excel at concentrating an immense amount of force on a precise area.

When properly guided, a demolition hammer can be far more precise than a sledgehammer while providing much more destructive power. A perfect tool to tackle big jobs that would otherwise require an unnecessary amount of effort and create a mess.

However, demolition hammers tend to be expensive, and you want to make an informed decision about the hammer you are preparing to invest in.

With this handy guide, you will make sure you are making a fully formed decision.

What Is The Job

This is the first question you should be asking yourself. What specific job will I need this hammer to help me accomplish?

It’s important to note that demolition hammers don’t drill, there is no rotation of its bit. Instead, the bit is thrust in a powerful hammering motion. This means that these types of hammers should be used to break up an especially hard material, like concrete.

If precision is required in your job, you should look for a rotary hammer. The main use of demolition hammers can be found in its name, they’re made to destroy.

The size of your demolition hammer will depend on what you’re trying to accomplish. If you want to chip away at a standing wall, you should invest in a smaller hammer that makes vertical hammering more manageable.

If you’re sticking to chiseling asphalt driveways, concrete floors, or brick pathways, invest in something heavier. The bigger the hammer, the more gravity will be on your side when you’re trying to chisel away at something especially thick.

Choosing The Best Bit

Finding the right size bit is an important part of the process of finding the right demolition hammer.

Once again, the proper bit size and shape is dependant on the scale and type of job you are tackling.

Contrary to popular belief, if you’re tackling a smaller job it would be smart to stick with a larger bit. A small bit will only work to chip away at smaller chunks, which can cause¬†major crumbling and create a bigger overall mess.

For especially small jobs, starting out with a smaller bit to loosen the cement or asphalt would be a wise move. But for the majority of the job, use a bigger bit to avoid causing a mess.

Where smaller bits come into play is when the area that needs to be demolished is complicated to get to. If the area is completely open, a bigger bit is the most efficient way to go.

However, when the area is hard to attack you will need to try out some more uniquely shaped bits. Long and skinny bits are ideal for breaking apart material in hidden places. They have the ability to reach places larger bits will have a tough time getting to.

The reality is, if the job is not in a completely open area, you will likely have to rely on a few different bits to get the job done right. Use smaller bits wisely in order to help open the area up and finish the job with a large bit.

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The Best Demolition Hammers

Once you’ve established the relative size of your hammer and the bits you will need with it depending on the job, it’s time to get into the specifics.


First up is the Makita HM1317CB. The Makita has a unique counterbalance system that helps reduce the number of vibrations that are sent through your arm. It instead focuses all of the force to the surface material being hammered. Another nifty feature is its constant speed control, which applies more power as needed depending on the job at hand. The shape of the Makita, as well as its soft start functionality, makes it one of the more precise demolition hammers on the market. For jobs that require accuracy and the ability to hammer both verticle and ground obstacles, the Makita is the way to go.



Next up there’s the Hitachi H45MEY, which is ideal for someone who champions versatility. The Hitachi is strong enough to tackle big jobs, but still lightweight enough at 26 pounds to keep you from getting tired too quickly. The tool angle adjustment collar, which is found right behind the bit holder, allows for 12 different bit positions. This kind of versatility makes the Hitachi the perfect demolition hammer for complex jobs that require a variety of different functions.


The DeWALT D25980KB is essentially only for the ones who are borderline hardcore and treat demolition hammering as more than just a tool for a side project but as a serious vocation. The DeWALT packs a 61 foot-lbs of impact pressure using its 15-amp motor. This is a demolition hammer built for a big job where you need to rely on your tool to hammer away at any material for hours at a time.

Add To Your Toolbox Wisely

Now you should know exactly what to look for when purchasing a demolition hammer. Pay attention to the job you want to use the hammer for and be sure to come equipped with the proper bits.

For more handy tips on how to fill out your toolbox with smart investment, check back with us regularly for more updates, reviews, and how-tos.

For more a side-by-side comparison of some common brands and sizes of demolition hammer, check out this informative video: