Milwaukee vs Hilti
Elsewhere on the pages of this blog, I mention that we have standardized the usage of Milwaukee Cordless Power Tools for my maintenance team because we are presently heavily invested in the Milwaukee platform. Recently, I decided it’s time for a change, and we need to try something different, and by different, I mean a different brand, Hilti.
As I also wrote within the pages of this blog, I am not a “Brand” guy, and I buy the best tools for my purposes regardless of whether or not that means owning multiple battery platforms. In my home shop, I primarily own Bosch and Dewalt.
I know what you’re thinking. Nearly every online comparison of Hilti vs. Milwaukee places the latter as the best on almost every point. Why would I switch to Hilti when Milwaukee is obviously the best choice for cordless power tools?
Milwaukee vs. Hilti Reviews
Here’s my take on Milwaukee being the best. Let’s start with online reviews. Most Milwaukee vs Hilti reviews are from Construction, Electrician, and Handyman types, and I see very few tool reviews from Industrial Maintenance professionals. I am not discounting any trades, but there are subtle differences in needs.
Most online reviews capitalize on Milwaukee’s cult following among the trades and homeowners alike, and Milwaukee has name recognition like no other tool brand. Nearly all reviews are written to generate clicks to Amazon. (Clicks support this site as a secondary function, not the goal)
The typical review criteria are helpful to many users but may not tell the whole story. I typically do not care how many 12″ timber screws I can install on a single charge, how many deck screws I can install per minute, or how many 4″ holes I can drill in a floor joist. The needs of my team of maintenance technicians are different. On the one hand, we need cordless tools capable of finesse and precision. On the other, we need the brute force and toughness required by the trades.
To be honest, my biggest problem with Milwaukee lies with the cordless drills and hammer drills. For my team, the various Milwaukee cordless drills do not have the finesse for sustained drilling and tapping required for control cabinets and any other drilling and tapping of light machinery and equipment in an industrial environment. (I’ll take my Bosch cordless drills all day for control cabinet work.) The drill chucks don’t hold up to our mixed-use.
I’m not going to lie; I have some team members who are tough on cordless tools, all tools, for that matter. “Let the drill do the work” is lost on them.
Since I inherited my current team 15 months ago, we have burned through three Milwaukee cordless drill and impact combination sets.
Why am I choosing Hilti over all other brands?
The biggest reason for switching to Hilti is their warranty and after-the-sale service.
“We stand behind our customers and the quality of our tools, with an industry-leading service promise to match. Which is why we offer two years of wear and tear coverage with parts, shipping, and labor on us. And we know a tool repair means unproductive downtime – which is why we promise one-day turnaround in our repair centers to get you back up and running with limited interruption. ”
Wear and Tear Coverage
“Hilti will repair tools at no cost for two years from the date of purchase. Damage due to wear and tear is covered. No charges for parts, labor, or even shipping.”
In and out of the repair center in one day, guaranteed, or the repair is free
If Hilti does not repair a tool the same day it is received in a Tool Service Center then the repair is free – including parts, labor, and shipping.
Aside from the warranty and depot repair, a Hilti representative visits our facility.
Is Hilti better than Milwaukee?
Honestly, with any of the top-tier tool brands, you’ll be hard-pressed to buy a disappointment. Time will tell if Hilti is better for my team, but we will save money by taking advantage of the warranty and service. It will also be a learning opportunity for my team as they personally manage the returns of tools.
Note: This post is not a slam on Milwaukee. I like Milwaukee Power Tools and frequently recommend individual tools to other professionals. If Hilti proves to be no better for us or doesn’t save money, I will try another brand in two years.