Best angle grinder reviews 2018
Makita GA7021 7-Inch Angle GrinderIndustrial-grade power
An adjustable side handle and sizeable 7-inch grinding wheel ensure operation convenience and performance.
Makita GA7021 Review
The Makita GA7021 is no doubt the best angle grinder in its class. It comes with a powerful 15-Amp motor that delivers up to 6,600 RPM spinning power for fast stock removal.
Capable of handling high-volume demands in industrial environments, this angle grinder comes with a three-position adjustable side handle and spiral bevel gear which deliver a smooth rotation and an efficient transmission.
This tool is easy to use thanks to its excellent balance. A large trigger switch can be locked in position for extended operation, reducing user fatigue, while the rotating switch handle promotes comfort and control. Furthermore, an internal labyrinth construction prevents dust and debris from damaging the internal components, prolonging the unit’s lifespan.
Powerful, reliable, and easy to use – all you could ask for from the best angle grinder on the market.
Makita 9557PBX1 Angle Grinder with Aluminum CaseComes with an AC/DC switch
Powerful, industrial-grade angle grinder at a price that won’t break the bank.
Makita 9557PBX1 Review
With a motor of 7.5-Amp and many of the features present on our best-in-class pick, the Makita 9557PBX1 delivers the best value for money.
This angle grinder is still powerful enough to withstand heavy-duty applications and high-volume demands but is much more convenient. Compact and well balanced, the tool is also easy to use and comfortable to hold thanks to its 2.5-inch diameter barrel grip.
Like its more powerful brother above, this tool boasts a labyrinth construction developed to prevent dust and debris from reaching the motor, prolonging its lifespan. A unique feature is the AC/DC switch, convenient if you want to use the tool with an alternative power source.
Powerful and easy to use, the Makita 9557PBX1 will be your best bet if you’re looking for industrial performance at an accessible price.
DEWALT DWE402K Angle Grinder KitSuper-fast stock removal
Dependable angle grinder provides fast material removal but is less friendly with your budget.
DEWALT DWE402K Review
The DEWALT DWE402K is another angle grinder designed for heavy-duty professional use and is slightly stronger than our best-value pick. At the same time, it’s also more expensive. Regarding its capabilities, the unit comes with a powerful 11-Amp motor that spins up to 11,000 RPM for super-fast stock removal.
Like our best-value pick, the tool works on both AC and DC for versatile operation.
Able to handle most tasks, this tool also comes with a low-profile gear case that ensures access into tight spaces, while a safety lock-off on the switch prevents accidental start-up.
Reliable but expensive, the DEWALT DWE402K makes a perfect second best-value pick if you don’t mind paying for extra power.
Hitachi G12SR4 Angle GrinderPerfect for amateur use
Class-leading durability and mid-range power ideal for your home workshop.
Hitachi G12SR4 Review
The Hitachi G12SR4 won’t withstand high-volume industrial demands but is perfect for the hobbyist looking for an affordable tool.
Standing in the mid-range class of the angle grinders, the device is powered by a 6.2-Amp motor and produces an output power up to 980 watts.
Ideal for grinding but compatible with other accessories, the machine also has a spindle lock for fast and easy disc changes and is very easy to use.
Safe for the novice and easy to control for both right and left-handed people, the unit is also equipped with a left-mounted slide switch and trigger lock-off for comfortable operation. Dependable and inexpensive, the Hitachi G12SR4 is perhaps the best angle grinder for DIY use.
2. Types of angle grinders
Typically used for cutting through hard materials but perfect for other workshop tasks like stripping paint and polishing, the angle grinder can replace the more cumbersome bench grinder with succes. This handheld tool is more comfortable to maneuver, portable, and available in multiple styles and sizes.
Based on the power source, we can distinguish between:
- Electric angle grinders: Come in corded and cordless variants. The former is perhaps the most popular and is available in various sizes and powers. Most corded angle grinders respond to high-volume demands and are ideal to use in both industrial settings and home workshops. The cordless grinders are more convenient if you plan to work in areas where access to a wall outlet may be restricted. In this regard, some of the best corded angle grinders are AC/DC adaptable.
- Pneumatic angle grinders: Are powered by compressed air typically produced by a portable air compressor. They are smaller in size, but their discs spin faster, making them suitable for cutting metals and other hard materials. However, the smaller discs also wear out more quickly.
- Gas angle grinders: Rarely used by hobbyists but preferred by some industries, the gas angle grinders are heavier and larger than all other models. Professionals often use them instead of the cordless model due to their higher power, but the rather small reservoir may require frequent refills, which means you’ll have to have gas available to ensure the continuity of the work.
3. Angle grinder power
The two most important features to check before buying an angle grinder are the tool’s power and speed.
How to assess power?
The power of an electric angle grinder is expressed in watts, and assessing the right wattage is simple – the higher it is, the more powerful your grinder will be, which means it will cut or grind faster. When assessing the right wattage though, always consider the size of the disc too. In fact, bigger discs require more wattage than their smaller counterparts.
Most angle grinder manufacturers disclose the wattage of their machines, but this number typically refers to the input power, which is the amount of power the unit needs to operate.
The input power never translates into grinding or cutting power, as about half of these watts are lost during the transit from the plug to the motor. For instance, a 1,000 watts angle grinder will only produce an output power of around 500 watts. With this in mind, you can choose the right wattage for your requirements even if the manufacturer doesn’t disclose the product’s output power in the manual.
4. Angle grinder speed
The speed of an angle grinder is expressed in revolutions per minute (RPM) and the higher the number, the more effective the tool. Most angle grinders have speeds between 5,000 and 10,000 RPM, although some higher end units exceed this threshold and can reach 12,000 RPM or more.
However, even if a higher speed means the tool can cut faster, you should also consider what types of discs you need for the project and choose accordingly.
All discs come marked with the maximum speed supported, and this number must be equal to or higher than your tool’s rating. For instance, if the wheel you’re using has a maximum supported speed of 7,500 RPM, never use it on an angle grinder that spins faster at no load. The higher rate may break the disc and pose your safety at risk.
5. Best angle grinder discs
Like most cutting tools, angle grinders can be used with a wide variety of discs and accessories.
Among the most popular, there are:
- Grinding discs: The classic version used to cut or grind through soft masonry materials and metals. They are the cheapest option available and are relatively thin. Typically, these discs cut at relatively quick speeds and are fairly lightweight.
- Diamond discs: Are the upgraded version of the traditional grinding discs and are used for mainly the same purpose. However, due to the diamonds embedded in the surface of the disc, they are stronger and more powerful, being able to grind harder materials like concrete or hard metals. Like it is easy to imagine, they come at a higher price point.
- Wood discs: Are used in woodworking projects and can only handle wood. They are rarely used on angle grinders though, both because cutting wood with this tool is dangerous and because you can achieve more accurate results with a dedicated circular or table saw.
- Specialty discs: These are accessories used for sanding, polishing, and stripping paint off the surfaces. This category includes the sanding discs and wire wheels, used for leveling the surface, to polish, or to remove rust from metals, and the paint stripping discs designed to remove old paint from wood and metal surfaces effectively.
When choosing the best disc for your project, remember that most manufacturers color code their discs to make them easier to recognize. Although the colors may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, most mark their discs according to the following pattern:
- Red: For metal grinding
- Blue: For metal cutting
- Green: For grinding or cutting masonry materials
6. Best angle grinder disc size
The size of the disc determines the size of the angle grinder, and also how suitable the machine is for a determined application.
Larger wheels can cut deeper, and they are suitable for projects involving thicker workpieces. However, a smaller disc spins faster and is more suitable to cut through hard materials like metal or masonry.
For most DIY and small renovation projects, an angle grinder disc between 5 and 7.5 inches may suffice.
7. Other important features
Besides all the above, some other important features can enhance your user experience:
- The best angle grinders come with side adjustable handles which allow both the right-handed and left-handed user to operate it. Multiple position adjustments increase versatility and boost the comfort during use.
- Check the overall weight of the angle grinder and make sure it is easy to maneuver. A cumbersome model will limit operation and cause fatigue.
- Another important feature is the comfort during use. Invest in an ergonomic angle grinder that is well balanced and easy to handle.
- A lockable trigger may also add up to comfort, allowing you to block it in position for an easier handling of the tool for continuous operation.
- Among the most important safety features is an adjustable guard that protects you from sparks; a shutoff mechanism that stops the machine if operating in unsafe conditions is also desired.
- If you want to use the angle grinder for more than one purpose, choose a machine that comes with a spindle lock. This feature allows a quick and easy replacement of the discs and accessories.
- A soft start feature is essential on the more powerful machines, allowing a better handling of the unit while starting up.