Angle grinders are extremely handy tools. They’re a must-have for any professional or anyone who wants to improve their craftsmanship. The reason these tools are great is that their viability is only limited by two things:
- Your proficiency with them
- Your imagination.
That makes getting the best angle grinder quite the worthwhile investment.
Now, before you get too excited and go out to buy the first angle grinder that comes in your path, consider reading this article as we’ll go over the best angle grinders that you can get today. We’ll also be providing a buyer’s guide to help you even further in choosing the best angle grinder for your situation.
Without further ado, here are our picks for the title of the best angle grinder on the market.
The Best Angle Grinders – Our Picks
#1 – Makita 9564CV Angle Grinder
If you’re wondering what the best angle grinder is like, look no further than Makita’s 9564CV angle grinder. It perfectly combines safety, reliability as well as performance. It’s hard to find an angle grinder with such good overall traits, but this is one of those unicorns. Thanks to its 13-amp current, you can rest assured that this angle grinder will perform admirably in any setting.
Speaking of settings, this angle grinder features five variable speed settings that allow you to balance the speed and torque to match your needs. If you need to set up a surface for welding, then you can choose a setting that has low speed but high torque. Later on, you can switch to a setting with high speed but low torque to apply the finishing touches.
Since this has been manufactured by Makita, it features their trademark SJS technology which is designed to keep the motor and gear protected. There’s also the zig-zag armature varnish and labyrinth construction which do a great job of keeping the gears and winding insulated and protected from dust and debris.
Safety Is a Priority…
When it comes to safety, Makita’s 9564CV angle grinder is unrivaled with some of the most robust safety features on the market. For one, it has a slide switch on the top, which you can lock it into position for extended use. There’s also the tool-less wheel guard system which allows you quickly and easily change the guard’s position. This way, you can safely remove it without putting yourself at any risk. Moreover, the side handle can either be attached to the left or the right depending on your preference.
Overall, this is the best 4.5-inch angle grinder on the market. You won’t be able to find an angle grinder that combines all these features in such a proficient way. With that said, quality generally comes at a price. This is not a cheap angle grinder. However, if you have the money to spare, this angle grinder is an investment worth considering.
What we like about it
The Makita 9564CV is the best angle grinder because of how many good features it has. It’s a very powerful tool and boasts five different variable speed settings. Our main problem with the Makita 9564CV is its one-year warranty. Since this is a pretty hefty investment, we expected it to have a better warranty. That shouldn’t be a deal-breaker for most users, though, as the tool was made to last, so you don’t have to worry about it failing you any time soon.
#2 – DEWALT DWE402 Angle Grinder
While Dewalt’s DWE402 Angle Grinder doesn’t have variable speed settings like the top pick on this list, it is still an amazing angle grinder for applying finishing touches to your weld. You can expect the same level of performance as Makita’s angle grinder when it comes to finishing touches. The added torque that the Makita has over this angle grinder isn’t an issue if you’re going to work on metals with a low profile, so if you see yourself doing this for the most part, then this might be a better investment since it’s much more affordable.
Speaking of affordable, this is the best angle grinder in terms of value. It’s perfect for those who don’t need a lot of power and are just going to use it on light or medium jobs. It rotates at 11,000 rpm and has an 11-amp motor which is enough for those tasks.
When it comes to dust and debris, DeWalt has implemented its trademark Dust Ejection System to circumvent any damage to the motor that might be caused by dirt or debris by redirecting it. This angle grinder, similarly to our top pick, uses a bevel gear system to transfer the power from the motor to the grinding table. This means that this is a very durable angle grinder.
As for safety features, Dewalt’s DWE402 ditches slide switches to paddle switches, which is a bummer since paddle switches are not as good as slide switches. They also have a lock-off system to prevent accidental starts. Similarly to the 9564CV, this also has a lock-on system for extended use.
While our top pick’s warranty was lackluster, Dewalt’s angle grinder crushes its completion in this regard by offering a three-year limited warranty. Not only that, but you also get one year of free service as well as 90-day money back guarantee.
Overall, if you don’t need variable speed, then this is the best angle grinder you can buy for the price. It offers top-notch performance with exquisite warranty
What we like about it
For such an affordable angle grinder, this is a very powerful tool which is also quite reliable. This is further compounded by one of the best warranties you can get for an angle grinder. The biggest weakness that this angle grinder has is that it’s doesn’t have variable speed. Ditching the slide switch in favor of a paddle switch also works against it, but it’s a minor issue.
#3 – Makita XAG03Z 18V LXT Cordless Angle Grinder
While both of the entries we talked about before are corded angle grinders, this is the first cordless one on this list. In fact, this is the best cordless angle grinder you can find on the market. Even though cordless angle grinders tend to sacrifice high performance for longer battery life and vice versa, the Makita XAG03Z is an exception to this rule.
Thanks to the 18V lithium-ion battery with 4Ah rating, you’ll be able to take advantage of this grinder’s full potential for 15 minutes which is considered to be good for a cordless angle grinder. With that said, your choice between a cordless angle grinder and a corded one should be based on how much you’re willing to sacrifice for the extra portability. If you don’t need a very long uptime, then this is a good angle grinder to choose, one of the best actually.
Compared to other cordless angle grinders, this one delivers exceptional performance at little to no cost of charging time or uptime. Makita is known for quality cordless angle grinders, and this is among their best products in this category, which says a lot about how good it is.
This angle grinder is also full of useful features such as the Computer Controls which let you monitor the status of your battery in real time. There’s also the XPT Extreme Protection Technology which makes this one of the most reliable cordless angle grinders out there. Moreover, the speed change is done automatically by the machine based on the load.
All in all, if you’re looking for a cordless angle grinder to add finishing touches with, then this is one of the best angle grinders on the market. That said, while the Makita XAG03Z is indeed a high-quality cordless angle grinder, it’s rather expensive. Moreover, since this is a cordless angle grinder, its power fades in comparison to corded angle grinders.
What we like about it
The biggest upside to this angle grinder is the fact that it’s cordless. What even more impressive is how it manages to combine decent performance with long battery life. It also has one of the fastest charging times out there. The automatic speed change is also a very welcome quality-of-life feature.
#4 – Makita 9557PBX1 Angle Grinder
While the Makita 9557PBX1 is good for grinding, where it really shines is in cutting operations. Even though cutting with angle grinders can be dangerous, the Makita 9557PBX1 is the best angle grinder for the job.
As we said before, this angle grinder is good for grinding, but it’s not its biggest strength. In fact, it isn’t as powerful as the other corded angle grinders on this list. For reference, the DWE402 has an 11-amp motor while this one runs on a 7.5-amp motor. This puts it somewhere in between a cordless angle grinder and a corded one in terms of power.
With that said, the torque that this angle grinder provides is more than enough to cut through most materials. However, it’s not meant to be used for heavy-duty grinding. When it comes to durability, the 9557PBX1 has similar features to the 9564CV. That includes the zig-zag varnish, labyrinth construction, and thick coils. This means that this is one of the more reliable angle grinders out there.
Moreover, this grinder has dual mode operation so you can use it on either DC or AC power. It also comes with a case that you can use to store your accessories and tools in. The 9564CV also has a diamond blade which is ideal for cutting concrete
All in all, this is among the best angle grinders when it comes to working with concrete, but it lags behind its competition when it comes to other applications. It also doesn’t have variable speed.
What we like about it
Since this grinder doesn’t have a 7.5-amp motor, it doesn’t consume as much power as other corded angle grinders. This makes a more economical choice. It also has the same durability features such as our top pick which is great. Its specs also make it one of the best angle grinders for working with concrete.
#5 – PORTER-CABLE PC60TPAG Angle Grinder
If you’re running a tight budget, this might be a good angle grinder to get. It delivers decent performance at a relatively low cost. It’s single speed and has a no-load speed of 11,000 rpm. However, this draws the least amount of current when compared to the other grinder on this list. It only draws seven amps of current which means that it isn’t capable of delivering as much torque as the other grinders on this list.
With that said, it still performs admirably for basic cutting, sanding, rushing, and grinding operations. And just like the other angle grinders we mentioned before it, it has a tool-less guard adjustment. What unique about this grinder is that you can place the side handle on either the top, right or left.
There are several missing features in this grinder. For instance, it does not have a lock-on switch, which can be a good or bad thing since it makes extended use uncomfortable for the user but make the grinder safer by immediately stopping the grinder if it drops. It also doesn’t have any special features that boost durability, performance or anything like that, but that is to be expected since this is the cheapest angle grinder on the list.
Overall, if you don’t have a lot of money to spare, it has some great features and can deliver great performance, especially for basic tasks. There’s also a three-year warrant along with one year of free service and a 90-day money back guarantee, which is as good as it gets with warranties. The biggest issue we have with this model is that it lags behind other angle grinders in terms of power, which makes it only useful for basic operations.
What we like about it
This is the cheapest angle grinder on the list. But it’s still very durable and safe to use. It also offers a three-year warranty, which can be extremely helpful.
Choosing the Best Angle Grinder – Buying Guide
When you’re looking for an angle grinder, there are certain parameters and specs that you need to take into account. As you know, not all angle grinders are created equal. Some have more features than others. Some come with extra accessories. In this guide, we’ll be going over what you need to look for and which specs you can use to compare different angle grinders.
Torque is one of the most important things to take into account when you’re looking for an angle grinder. Simply put, torque is the rotational force that the grinder is capable of applying on the piece. More torque means more force. While this might lead you to think of measuring torque by looking at rotations per minute, or rpm, this is actually a common misconception.
In fact, you can take the Porter Cable PC60TPAG and the DeWalt DWE402 as an example. Both grinders have a no-load speed of 11,000 rpm. However, the former runs on a 7-amp motor, while the latter uses an 11-amp engine. This means that DeWalt’s angle grinder is actually capable of producing more torque.
If you’re comparing two angle grinders that have the same speed rating, then the one that has a higher current rating will be able to produce more torque.
If you’re comparing two angle grinders that have the same current rating, then the one that has a lower speed rating will be able to produce more torque.
To put it simply, you always need to look at both the current rating and the speed rating in order to figure out which angle grinder is capable of producing more torque.
Angle grinders can be very dangerous to work with if you’re not careful. This is why you need to take safety precautions when you’re working with them. However, the manufacturers of this tool have also implemented a couple of safety features to circumvent some of the nefarious side effects of working with such a device, like flying dust and debris, for example. This comes in the form of a wheel guard which is designed to protect the wheel from dust and debris as well as eventual wear and tear.
Two of the most common types you’ll find are type 1 and type 27. Type 1 wheel guards are for grinding wheels whereas Type 27 wheel guards are for cut-off wheels. Make sure you get the appropriate type of your angle grinder.
While on the subject of wheel guards, you need to get an angle grinder that has an adjustable one. This is crucial if you want to be able to adjust the wheel guard without having to remove it. The wheel guard should stay on at all times, removing it will only make the tool much less safe. Just go with an angle grinder that allows for tool-less guard adjustment, and you should be good to go.
Lock-on & Lock-off
A common misconception is that people think that lock-off is just the opposite of lock-on, which is not the case. Just because one feature is present in an angle grinder, doesn’t mean the other one is also there. Each one has its own use.
A lock-off switch is meant to stop any accidental starts. You can think of it as the safety mechanism of a gun, but for an angle grinder instead. On the other hand, a lock-on switch is meant to keep the machine running without you having to hold the switch at all times. This comes in handy when you’re going to use the device for extended periods of time.
Another thing to keep in mind is that there are two types of switches you can find. There are slide switches and paddle switches. A paddle switch is easier to press while the slide switch is hard since you need to rely mostly on your thumb to do all the work which can be rather uncomfortable if you’re going to hold the switch continuously. However, paddle switches are much easier to trigger accidental starts, so make sure you find an angle grinder that has a lock-off switch if you want a paddle switch.
Picking the Best Angle Grinder – Frequently Asked Questions
There are a couple of things you can look for that can tell you right out of the bat whether or not the motor is something special. If the power tool brand doesn’t mention anything about the motor specs, don’t expect it to be anything to write home about. On the other hand, if an angle grinder comes with accessories that protect the motor from debris such as rubber labyrinth rings, like in the 9557PBX1 or the 9564CV, then the engine is probably good. There are other things you can find that imply a good motor is if the angle has overload protection. Any features that are designed to protect the motor is a good indication that it’s good.
First of all, you need to ask yourself some questions. Then, you can go out and pick the features that you need to help you accomplish your task more efficiently. If you need something powerful, and mobility is not something that you care about much, then you’d be better off with a corded machine. Our top pick would be the best choice. However, if you don’t have the money for it, you can always go with the angle grinder with the best value, which we also included.
If you need to stay mobile when you’re working, and don’t need that much power, then buying a cordless machine would be a sound choice. All in all, make sure you understand your needs and make your choice accordingly.
Now that you know what separates the good angle grinders from the bad ones, you should be able to make a sound decision as to which model you should get. You can also consult our list of the top products in this category, which will help you narrow your search even more by offering the best angle grinders for each situation.