How to Use a Hammer Drill

how to use a hammer drill

A few years ago, I was working at a construction site. This was my first job where I had to use a hammer drill.

When I turned it on, I almost amputated my left index finger. I had to spend 3 weeks in a hospital but my finger was saved!

Do you know why I had that accident?

It was because I did not go through the manual on how to use a hammer drill before going to my work.

The first rule of “Drilling 101” is that you should use both your hands when using a hammer drill.

Where Hammer Drill is Used

You will find one in any construction site for drilling holes into strong concrete. They are also used occasionally to put or removes screws. A similar tool called a rotary hammer can be used in masonry drilling. If you are looking for a hammer drill which can run on electricity, buy a corded drill which also comes with a hammer option.

You can also use it in your home if you need to put up lighting, shelves or any type of wall painting. In other words, it is the best tool available to you to make any type of hole. It could be any concrete or wall.

Advice on Which Hammer Drill to Purchase

There are many brands and manufacturers of the hammer drill to choose from. The list can be a bit exhaustive for you. In my experience, very few brands are good. My personal favorite is Makita and Dewalt because their products are very strong and last longer. If you want to use the hammer drill in your own house for a few hours, I would recommend the cheaper drills.

I also pay attention to the variable speed, hammering function, depth setting and always prefer a good grip during my purchase. If you recall my incident earlier, I never forget to consult the manual before starting to use it. You can check our Makita xph012 vs xph102 cordless hammer drill reviewThese are great ones.

How to Use a Hammer Drill Perfectly

how to use a hammer drillIt will not take you long to read my instructions. I can assure you that you will learn all the basics on how to use a Hammer drill in the safest way in no time! Let’s start reading, don’t need to wait anymore.

1. Purchase the Correct Drill

If you are going to do any commercial work, buy an industrial-grade drill. The cheap ones in the market will be a bad choice for you.

2. Get to Know Your Drill’s Bit

If you work is related to carpentry, you should look for a Hammer drill with a pointed tip. For metals, use a solid black one. Use a Masonry Carbide Tipped SDS PLUS Drill Bits if you have work on the hard concrete floor. Carbide tips are the best choice for withstanding the effect of hammer drills. Do not forget to check the sharpness of the tip before purchase, but be very careful. Accidents can occur anytime!

3. Fasten the Bit

Once you have bought your desired bit, fasten it very tightly into the hammer. Check properly that it is tied to its place. Use a locking nut to tighten and lock the bit when necessary.

4. Check the Depth

You do not want your drill bit to go too deep. Loosen the hammer drill’s guide for the depth slightly and put it in your desired position. Do not forget to lock it in its place.
If your drill does not have the depth guide, just use a tape to put a check mark on the depth you are going to drill.

5. Prepare the Drill

Look for a hammer icon on your drill and push the switch towards it. You will find it easier to drill in concrete. Again, look for a forward icon in your drill and push your switch towards it. If you want the drill to spin counterclockwise, push the icon towards the “back” symbol in the drill.
Do not forget to keep your feet shoulders as wide a possible and grip the drill tightly so that it does not go off. One of your fingers should be on the trigger of the drill.

Do not forget to keep your feet shoulders as wide a possible and grip the drill tightly so that it does not go off. One of your fingers should be on the trigger of the drill.

6. Start the Drilling

Press the trigger and make sure that the mark is aligned with the drill. Be slow at first but increase the speed slowly once the bits of concrete settle in. If you have to sue the drill for long periods, set it to continuous motion mode.
Do not use force to break through a hard spot which the drill cannot penetrate. Use a nail to break it and use your drill again.

Important Safety Instructions

I also use a few safety precautions before starting my drilling work. Here are some of them:-

  • Use ear and eye protection at all times
  • A mask is necessary for dusty areas.
  • Clean up your area before work.
  • Handle your drill power tool cord with extreme care.
  • Avoid outing more pressure on the power.
  • Stay away from flammable objects.


I hope that our guide has been helpful to you regarding how to use a hammer drill. If you can follow these instructions then you can avoid many accidents during your work. Happy drilling!

You may also like to read our guide on how to use a drill safely.

10 thoughts on “How to Use a Hammer Drill

  1. This is a very helpful post.

    Great well-written comprehensive guide – better than guides done by other bloggers specializing in tool reviews. Really helped me a lot. Please, share more guides like this often.

    Keep up the good work.

  2. Honestly, I’ve never used a hammer drill because I never had the need, aside from the fact that I don’t know how to use it anyway. Nevertheless, I appreciate you providing some basic tips on how to use the hammer drill the proper way.

    You actually made a good point when you mentioned purchasing the correct drill. I guess you would probably need to do some research first and ask for some recommendations before making a purchase. Cheapest may not always be the best. Just the same, if I ever need to use one, I would definitely take heed of your advice.


    1. Thanks a lot for your compliment.
      You’re definitely right about the fact that cheapest may not always be the best.

      Have a good day.

  3. Lovely article sharing. Last few days I feel this kind of problem. I don’t know about how to use a hammer drill. I really worried this matter. I read your article very attentively. Now I am clear this matter.

    Thanks for sharing!!!

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