Can I Use an Impact Driver as a Hammer Drill? Find Out Here!

Impact drivers are versatile workhorses that every DIY enthusiast should have in their tool collection. While these tools are primarily designed for driving screws and tightening bolts, they can be used for a range of tasks. One of the most impressive things about an impact driver is its ability to be used as a hammer drill.

Wait, what? You read that right. There’s no need to invest in an expensive hammer drill when you can do the same work with an impact driver. In this blog post, we’ll discuss how to use an impact driver as a hammer drill and why it’s a game-changer for your home DIY projects.


Are you looking to do some drilling but only have an impact driver on hand? It’s common to wonder if you can use an impact driver as a hammer drill. The answer is no, an impact driver is not suitable for drilling into hard surfaces like concrete, brick, or stone. While impact drivers are great for driving screws and nuts, hammer drills have the capability of pounding into hard surfaces with a force that an impact driver can’t match.

Attempting to use an impact driver in place of a hammer drill can potentially damage your equipment and is likely to result in poor drilling results. So, it’s best to invest in a hammer drill for drilling into those tough surfaces. Remember that impact drivers and hammer drills serve different purposes and should not be used interchangeably.

What Is an Impact Driver?

An impact driver is a tool that is designed to provide powerful rotational force to screws, nuts, and bolts. Unlike a traditional drill, an impact driver delivers bursts of high torque in a rapid succession, making it ideal for tackling tough jobs that would take much longer with a regular driver. The mechanism behind the impact driver involves a combination of a motor, crushing rotors, and a spring-loaded impact mechanism that delivers the bursts of torque.

Thanks to this mechanism, an impact driver can drive screws deeper into the material with minimum effort, making it an ideal tool for both professionals and DIY enthusiasts. Whether you are looking to build a deck, install a shelf, or any other project that requires driving screws, an impact driver is an essential tool that can save you time and effort.

can i use an impact driver as a hammer drill

What Is a Hammer Drill?

A hammer drill is a powerful tool that’s designed to make drilling into tough materials like concrete, brick, and stone much easier. It works by using a combination of rotary motion and percussive force to pulverize the material being drilled, allowing the drill bit to cut through it with much less resistance than it would otherwise encounter. The percussive force is generated by a small piston inside the drill that rapidly pounds the drill bit as it rotates, creating a jackhammer-like effect.

This makes hammer drills perfect for construction workers, electricians, and anyone else who needs to drill through hard materials on a regular basis. So, if you’re looking for a reliable tool that can make tough drilling jobs a breeze, a hammer drill might just be what you need!

Can You Use an Impact Driver as a Hammer Drill?

“Can I use an impact driver as a hammer drill?” is a common question among tool users. While both tools have similar functions, they are designed for different purposes. An impact driver is designed to drive screws and bolts into wood, metal, or concrete while a hammer drill is specifically built to drill into masonry such as brick, concrete, and stone.

Impact drivers deliver high torque, making it easier to drive in screws with less force. On the other hand, hammer drills use a pulsing action that creates a pounding motion to break through hard surfaces. So, while an impact driver may be able to drill small holes into softer materials like wood or drywall, it is not recommended as a substitute for a hammer drill when drilling into concrete or masonry.

Using an impact driver on harder materials can cause irreversible damage to the tool and can even be hazardous. It’s always better to use the appropriate tool for the job to ensure safety and get the best possible result.

Differences Between Impact Drivers and Hammer Drills

When it comes to power tools, there are a lot of options available. Hammer drills and impact drivers are two popular options, but it can be confusing to know which one to use for different tasks. While both tools are capable of drilling holes into hard materials, they each have specific functions.

Impact drivers are designed for driving screws, nuts, and bolts quickly and easily. They are usually more compact and lightweight than hammer drills, which makes them ideal for working in tight spaces. On the other hand, hammer drills are designed for drilling into hard surfaces like concrete, brick, and stone.

They have a hammering function that can help break through tough surfaces. Despite their differences, some people wonder if they can use an impact driver as a hammer drill. While an impact driver may be able to drill some holes, it is not recommended to use it as a hammer drill.

Hammer drills have special features that prevent damage to the tool and improve the efficiency of drilling through hard materials. So, it’s best to use the right tool for the right job to ensure safety and efficiency.

Using an Impact Driver as a Hammer Drill

Impact Driver as a Hammer Drill It’s tempting to use an impact driver as a hammer drill, but the two tools are distinctively different. While an impact driver is designed for driving screws, a hammer drill is engineered to drill holes in concrete, bricks, and other hard materials. Using an impact driver as a hammer drill is not recommended, and may even damage the tool or the material you’re working with.

The impact driver’s rotational mechanism and the hammer drill’s percussion capability are fundamentally different, which means they perform differently and can’t be used interchangeably. Moreover, a hammer drill requires a specific drill bit to work effectively, while an impact driver uses a screwdriver bit. The drill bit’s diameter should be compatible with the tool and adapted to the material you’re drilling.

Attempting to drill a hole with a screwdriver bit or without a compatible bit can lead to injury or tool damage. In conclusion, a solid rule of thumb to follow is that you should only use a tool for its intended purpose. Although an impact driver may look similar to a hammer drill, it’s essential to understand the differences between them and use them appropriately.

So, if you need to drill into concrete or hard surfaces, avoid using your impact driver and seek a professional hammer drill. It will save you time, money, and a trip to the repair shop.

Safety Precautions When Using Impact Drivers as Hammer Drills

If you’re wondering whether you can use an impact driver as a hammer drill, the short answer is yes, you can. However, it’s important to keep in mind that impact drivers are not designed for drilling into hard materials like concrete or brick. The high torque and rapid bursts of impacts generated by impact drivers can cause the bits to overheat, which can lead to them snapping or shattering.

To avoid this, it’s important to take some safety precautions when using an impact driver as a hammer drill, such as wearing eye protection, using the right bit size and type for the material, and keeping the tool at a slow speed to prevent overheating. Always make sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions and use the tool in accordance with their recommendations to ensure both your safety and the efficiency of your work.

Eye and Ear Protection

When using an impact driver as a hammer drill, it is crucial to take safety precautions to avoid potential hazards. Eye and ear protection should be worn at all times to protect against dust, debris, and noise. Impact drivers generate high levels of noise that can cause serious hearing damage over time, so consider investing in noise-canceling headphones or earplugs to mitigate the risks.

Additionally, the force of the driver can cause bits to break or shatter, sending shrapnel flying in unpredictable directions. Wearing sturdy gloves and a face shield provides an extra layer of protection against flying debris. Always ensure that the impact driver is firmly secured in place, and use the appropriate bits and attachments for each job.

By taking the necessary safety precautions when using an impact driver as a hammer drill, you can minimize the risks and stay safe while getting the job done effectively.

Firmer Grip and Steady Pressure

Impact drivers can be incredibly useful tools for a range of DIY projects, but when using them as hammer drills, it’s important to take certain safety precautions to prevent accidents. One of the most important things to keep in mind is grip and pressure: you need to make sure you’re holding the driver securely and applying steady pressure as you work. This will not only help you maintain control over the tool, but also ensure that you’re using it as effectively as possible.

Additionally, it’s a good idea to wear eye protection and earplugs, as the impact driver can be quite loud and produce a lot of debris. By taking these simple precautions, you can use your impact driver safely and confidently for all your drilling needs.

Avoid Concrete and Metal

When you’re using an impact driver as a hammer drill, it’s important to take some safety precautions to avoid accidents. One thing to keep in mind is to avoid using it on concrete or metal surfaces. The force and speed of the impact driver can easily break or damage these materials, and it can be dangerous if the driver loses control and flies off the material.

Instead, opt for softer surfaces like wood or drywall. It’s also essential to wear protective gear like safety glasses and gloves to prevent any potential harm. Always read the manufacturer’s instructions before using the tool, and never use it for any other purpose other than what it’s intended for.

By taking these precautions, you can safely and effectively use your impact driver as a hammer drill without any mishaps.


In the end, using an impact driver as a hammer drill is like trying to brush your teeth with a fork. Sure, you might be able to make it work in a pinch, but it’s not going to give you the results you want and could even damage your tools. So, if you want to avoid causing a DIY disaster, stick to using the right tool for the job and leave the impact driver for its intended purpose.


What is the difference between an impact driver and a hammer drill?
An impact driver delivers rotational force while a hammer drill provides both rotational force and percussive force.

Is it safe to use an impact driver as a hammer drill?
No, it is not safe to use an impact driver as a hammer drill as it can damage both the tool and the workpiece.

Can an impact driver be used for drilling holes?
Yes, an impact driver can be used for drilling small to medium-sized holes in soft materials like wood and drywall.

What types of materials can a hammer drill be used on?
A hammer drill can be used on a variety of materials including concrete, brick, and stone.

Is a hammer drill more powerful than an impact driver?
Yes, a hammer drill is more powerful than an impact driver as it can deliver both rotational force and percussive force.

Can I use a hammer drill for driving screws?
Yes, you can use a hammer drill for driving screws with the help of a screwdriver bit.

Can I use an impact driver for heavy-duty drilling applications?
No, an impact driver is not suitable for heavy-duty drilling applications as it lacks the necessary power and percussive force.

Show More

Related Articles