Makita vs DeWalt: Which Brand Makes a Better Set of Power Tools?

Susan Fernandez November 11 2021

When we needed a power tool, most of us just head down towards the local hardware store, have a chat with the clerk, and pick the tools that we wanted. But these days, there are a number of power tool manufacturers out there in the market, and it can rather be quite overwhelming to choose what we are looking for.

The rivalry of Makita vs DeWalt resembles that of Toyota and Chevrolet because, on the one hand, you have got very innovative Japanese engineered products of Makita, while on the other hand, you have got DeWalt which is a classic American brand that produces leading tools year after year.

Makita vs DeWalt history

DeWalt peculiarities

DeWalt power tool company is more than 100 years old and launched its operations in Pennsylvania. Right from the beginning, DeWalt has been able to keep the innovation streak burning.  The company revolutionized the cordless tool family in the 70s by making more than 30 additions that included their cordless drill and saw that they were the most powerful ones.  DeWalt has also been the first brand to introduce its line of cordless tools for home use.

DeWalt is a subsidiary of Black and Decker, which is very popular among DIYers due to its quality products at reasonable prices.

Makita specialty

Makita on the other hand is a Japanese company that was founded in 1915. The company started out as an electrical equipment repair shop but diversified into manufacturing power tools during the 50s. Today, Makita is one of the most trusted brands in many countries around the world because of its innovative products with state-of-the-art technology. One good example would be their lithium-ion batteries that are more efficient than NiCad batteries.

Makita was launched in 1958 after dealing with tool repairs for many years. At that time, the majority of people were a little skeptical about the Japanese products, and therefore, it took a little time for them to accept its products altogether. 

Makita company became successful when it designed the first rechargeable battery-powered tool, and this particular innovation was warmly welcomed all over the world. Since then, the company has become a giant in manufacturing a number of power tools.

The rivalry between Makita vs DeWalt

Makita vs DeWalt is a classic rivalry of the east vs west. The American brand, DeWalt has been in existence since 1876 and is one of the most recognized names when it comes to reputable power tools. On the other hand, Makita was made in Japan in 1915 but came into prominence only after they innovated rechargeable tool batteries for cordless tools. Today both brands are well-known across many countries around the world. While you see these two giant companies fighting head-to-head against each other in almost every aspect possible, there are some significant differences between them that make them different from each other. Here are some of the noticeable traits:

  • Design: DeWalt has always built its products like a truck, and that's because it's targeted at construction workers. The majority of DeWalt tools are covered in yellow color; therefore, they can easily recognize them from far away. On the other hand, Makita has always been known for its sleek design and functionality which makes it popular among many professionals working in different industries. 
  • Quality: Most people would say that DeWalt is known for manufacturing durable and reliable power tools as compared to Makita because over the years users have reported more issues with the last one. There is no denying that Makita produces well-engineered machines but many consider DeWalt as a better quality tool brand than the Japanese company.
  •  Versatility: You might be surprised to know that Makita can outperform its American rival in many aspects as it has a significant edge over the latter. For example, cordless tools from Makita have got more power and faster battery-charging times as compared to DeWalt. So if you plan on working for a longer period of time, then going with Makita might be a better option.
  •  Performance: This is where the battle gets even tougher because different people have different perceptions about how good or bad these brands are when it comes to performance. Even though both manufacturers claim their products are top-notch, there are some differences between them that make one stand out from others. In general, customers who own either of these two brands feel satisfied with their quality but specifically, some people prefer DeWalt because it comes with laser-guided levels.
  • Pricing: There is no denying that Makita has always been considered an expensive brand when compared to its American rival. Even though Dewalt products are also quite costly, they can be sometimes cheaper than the Japanese company depending on where you're buying them from. But if you are an average working class person, then it would be much better for you to go with Makita because they can offer more power in their tools at a lower price.
  • Battery Life: This is another area where DeWalt beats Makita because the former one has got more battery life as well as powerful batteries that charge faster than those from Makita. So if you're looking forward to purchasing cordless tools, then keep this aspect into consideration too.

Comparing Makita and DeWalt tools

Hammer Drill

The DeWalt hammer drill comes with a 533 units motor and has a handle with a carbide insert to offer you a good grip for avoiding any accidents. There are three-speed ranges that you can choose from, and this is undoubtedly a win for convenience.

As compared to DeWalt, the Makita hammer drill comes with 480 units of motor production. This hammer drill is great for any professional user, while the handle is rubberized to offer you a better grip. Makita hammer drill offers you two-speed ranges to choose from.

Impact Driver

DeWalt went a little heavy on the motor for the impact driver, giving a 2800 RPM production rate. This impact driver comes with an ergonomic design, as it just needs one hand. You can have comfortable access to tight places because of its compact design, whereas your hand fatigue gets reduced because of its lightweight.

When comparing Makita vs DeWalt, the speed range of Makita comes between 2900 to 3500 RPM, which makes it relatively high. Therefore, it is pretty efficient in the competition, and in order to give you a smoother working experience, its handle is rubberized.

Circular Saw

As DeWalt is famous for not improving the performance of its motors, its circular saw comes with 460 watts output. Its motor sacrifices comfort, whereas the blade measures around 6.5 inches, guaranteeing you a 45-degree cut so that you can feel professional.

The motor production of Makita’s circular saw is 3700 RPM, which makes its production capacity to be enough, although it may be lower in competition. As compared to DeWalt’s carbide blade, Makita’s blade doesn’t cut as clean or quick, but it indeed is light and much more comfortable.


There is no doubt that Makita and DeWalt are among the most significant power tool companies in the world and have been in operation for quite a long time. When comparing Makita vs DeWalt, we know that DeWalt produces the best durable and productive tools, whereas Makita is known for its comfortable design and battery performance. In general, DeWalt can give much better results when we have to make a tool-to-tool comparison.  

As mentioned earlier that both companies have some exceptional products on offer but when it comes to choosing between the two of them, then there is no doubt that Dewalt has got its own perks such as more power and longer battery life which might be hard to ignore for many people. On the other hand, Makita is also a great brand when it comes to power tools as they can perform better than DeWalt in certain situations.

So, if you are willing to spend a few extra dollars on high-end products then go with either one of these brands because both Dewalt and Makita offer superior quality tools that will last much longer than cheap Chinese-made devices available at rock bottom prices. But still, the final decision lies with you only whether you want good value for money or willing to pay extra bucks for top-notch performance.  Hope this article would serve its purpose by giving you an idea about the two big companies and their products. Please let us know what you think about this article in the comments section below.