Air hammers have forever changed the way we carve metal and wood. Chances are you’ve probably heard of this power tool and its great capacity to cut through metal like butter but, you’re stuck on which one to buy. Hold on tight cause’ we got you covered. Since the early ’20s, this hammer has been used by both construction workers and homeowners alike for a variety of projects. It is powered by compressed air and true to popular belief, much safer than traditional hammers. So, whether you’re a construction worker or you’re working on a DIY project, here are the top five air hammers we swear by.
The Best Air Hammer
Swing less and get more work done with the Ingersoll Rand Air Hammer 114GQC. This air hammer is from the prestigious industrial manufacturer, Ingersoll Rand. This lightweight air hammer is designed with professionals in mind. It delivers a 2-5/8-inch stroke and 3,500 BPM. The BPM is one of the fastest in this review, while most air hammers have an average of 2,000, a unit that surpasses 3,000 BPM is usually more powerful and expensive.
You get maximum power for cutting metals, chipping and scraping surfaces, and working on exhaust systems. You can change the chisels in less than 30 seconds with the quick-disconnect retainer. The cfm (cubic feet per meter) of the Ingersoll Rand is an average 4 cfm, which should be good enough for most low impact jobs. In comparison, high impact jobs that require heavy drilling of metal or wood usually have as high as 13 cfm.
¼” air inlet
3/8” minimum hose size
3,500 Blows Per Minute (BPM)
- BrandIngersoll Rand
- Weight4.1 pounds
Has an ergonomic design for prolonged use
Lightweight and easy to use
It comes with a three-piece chisel set
It does not come with a hammer bit
Produces vibrations during use
No user guide
If you need a heavy-duty air hammer for a large project, the Sunex SX243 Hd 250-Mm Long Barrel Air Hammer should be your next choice if the Ingersoll Rand is unavailable. You can punch, chip, or cut into stone and metals with the SX243 that delivers up to 2,200 blows per minute (BPM), which is a little less than our top choice but still gets the job done. Large projects get done in record time without any of the usual hassles that are familiar with traditional hammers.
High efficiency and durability are injected into the design of the SX243, with a ¾-inch bore diameter and a 3 ¾-inch piston stroke length. With a stroke length that high, you can expect higher velocity from the piston and more power delivered to the chisel. Much like the Ingersoll Rand, it produces a low impact of 4 cpm, which is only ideal for average jobs that do not require much drilling and carving.
¾ inch bore diameter
3 ¾- inch piston stroke
2,200 blasts per minute (BPM)
- Weight4.6 pounds
The DEWALT DWMT70785 Air Chisel Hammer will get all your large projects done in the least amount of time. Manufactured by the well-known DeWalt company, this air hammer is the perfect addition to your tool set. It features a lightweight aluminum body with a medium barrel design and a shock absorbing handle for 100% comfort and zero fatigue in your hands and arms. This could be a game changer when you have to cut large pieces of metal or wood for long periods. You won’t want a situation where you end up at the hospital after a night out at the woodshed.
The DWMT70785 operates at a speed of up to 2600 BPM with a ¼” air inlet and accepts a standard .401” chisel shanks. At first glance, this might seem incredibly fast, but compared to our top choice, it’s an average option. The DWMT70785 has a 4.5 CFM average air consumption and a 90-psi max air pressure. The cfm of the DeWalt is much higher than its other competitors.
Shock absorbing handle design
Round chisel shank
4.5 CFM of air consumption
2600 blows per minute (BPM)
- Weight4 pounds
It is lightweight
It includes 3 different chisels
Changing the bits can be difficult
The power level can be quite low
It tends to leak air
This air hammer is one of the priciest on this list but for a good reason. Not only is it manufactured by the highly trusted Chicago Pneumatic manufacturing company that produces power tools and pneumatic tools, but it also packs a ton of features that professionals consider a must-have. The CP714 air hammer is one of the most controllable CP air hammers available, it is lightweight and matches up to any heavy-duty jobs you throw at it.
The CP714 works with aluminum and iron rivets of up o 3/8 inches and bolt of up to ¼ inches. It features an extra sensitive throttle, 2 CFM air inlet, superior control over the speed range and uses the standard .401 shanks. The cfm this unit produces is lower than any of the other air hammers in this review. Hence, if you’ll be working on jobs that need high power, you can jump this hammer.
¼ inch air inlet thread size
2000 blows per minute (BPM)
106 dBA sound power
- BrandChicago Pneumatic
- Weight3.33 pounds
The sound power is low
Effective speed regulator
It only works with 3/8-inch rivet for heavy-duty jobs
It vibrates too much
Although this air hammer is from the same manufacturer as the above-mentioned air hammer, the Chicago Pneumatic CP7150 Air Hammer is much heavier than the CP714, weighing 5.2 pounds. However, this model has an integral muffler that helps in minimizing the exhaust sound. However, like most powerful air hammers it is quite loud but not as loud as others with a 109-dBA sound. The 3 ½ inch piston delivers enough power per blow that means you get a powerful tool for all your hard projects and demo work. Like the DeWalt, this air hammer also produces a 4.5 cfm, which is great for most jobs that require that amount of power.
All the parts of the CP7150 are heat treated which also adds to its durability. You can switch, add an accessory or change the bit in seconds thanks to the tools change retainer. The retainer is spring-loaded, which allows you to get an attachment or accessory off or on faster. The 0.401 round shank delivers 2100 BPM, delivering enough power for any task at hand. The design of the air hammer is nothing fancy. It has a rugged design and an ergonomic handle for your comfort. However, at 5.2 pounds this unit can be quite heavy for your arms if you’ll be working for prolonged hours. You can use CP7150 for body shop work, pipe removal and scraping rust off anything. You also spend much less on this air hammer than on most of the other models. And if you are interested in more handy affordable tools like this, check out our guide to the best tenoning jigs.
2100 blows per minute (BPM)
Standard 0.401-inch shanks
109 dBA sound power
- BrandChicago Pneumatic
- Weight5.2 pounds
It has a 3/8” hose size
It has an easy to change retainer
It is quite heavy
It makes a ton of vibrations
It doesn’t have a lot of settings
Air Hammer Buying Guide
How We Chose Our Selection Of Air Hammers
If you don’t own an air hammer, we hope our top five air hammer review has gotten you a bit more exposed to this remarkable tool. When it comes to convenience and safety, air hammers outrun traditional hammers by a far margin. Air hammers are also much safer to use than traditional hammers, because it eliminates the need for you to hold the nail to the wall, while delivering scary hits with a chance that you might hurt your finger.
This power tool is used by different professionals including metalwork shops that use this device to cut and shape metal. Air hammers are used to flatten, shape and cut most metals from thin aircraft-grade aluminum, copper, and other materials like 10-gauge structural steel. In garage shops, air chisels are used for freeing frozen nuts, cut exhaust pipes, break shock absorber fasteners and to split ball joints and rubber bushings. To speed up chiselling and carving jobs, woodworkers use air hammers to get the work done.
They are also more suitable for larger projects. Air hammers can help you complete your work faster without breaking a sweat. General safety and efficiency aside, we created a buyer's guide that examined what current users were saying, the trusted brands and the general cost of owning one of these effective power tools.
Reviews - Before checking out reviews, we did a bit of research on what people generally look for in an air hammer. Most people expected high power in terms of the per square inch (PSI) and the cubic feet per meter (cfm), as well as an air hammers with ergonomic handles. In most of the reviews, we realised that users favored air hammers with a 4 to 4.5 cfm.
The speed of an air hammer is determined by the blows per minute or BPM. Our top choice, the Ingersoll, has a powerful 3,500 BPM while the least BPM in this guide was the Chicago Pneumatic with a 2,000 BPM which is still high enough for most people. The weight and noise of the air hammer were also crucial to air hammer customers.
If the hammer weighed more than 5 pounds, it was considered a non-ergonomic air hammer with most users preferring air hammers that weighed between 3 to 5 pounds. The sound of air hammers, according to some of the reviews, had a persistent 100 dBM and above. Before getting an air hammer, you should be aware of the volume that comes with these babies. In fact, current users believe new owners should get an earplug before using their air hammer.
Lastly, the reviews showed great love for air hammers that could accommodate different types of attachments such as chisels and shaping tools. This not only reduces cost; it makes it easier to organize.The brands we chose in our guide, either sell the attachments separately or include the accessories in a carrying case. This gives you the choice of either the stand or the stand with other tools, with varying prices.
In the end, our top five picks made the cut for including most of the features that the reviewers wanted and not compromising on quality.
Brand -We chose to review air hammers from prestigious brands that are trusted and dependable. These brands consistently put out highly useful tools that are used by professionals and highly recommended by popular consensus. Brands such as DeWalt, Ingersoll Rand, Sunex and Chicago Pneumatic, are hard to miss in any hardware store. We believe these brands have been consistent in creating tools that can be used for both large and small-scale jobs. Here's a quick overview of the companies.
- DeWalt: This manufacturer doesn’t need any introduction; you’ve probably walked past one of their products in a hardware store. It's a trusted American brand and a subsidiary of Black & Decker. They are known for manufacturing quality power tools and hand tools for construction, manufacturing and woodworking industries.
- Ingersoll Rand: Steady producing quality products since 1871, Ingersoll Rand is a top player in the manufacturing industry. The Irish-American company deals in air solutions, tools, material handling and so on.
- Sunex: This manufacturing company has been running for over 40 years, with a specialty in the production of innovative tools for the automotive market as well as commercial and industrial segments.
- Chicago Pneumatic: Although their products made it to the last two spots, this company, started in 1901, produces high-quality power tools, air compressors, and other tools.
Price - Most air hammers either come as a set or as a stand. Depending on your need, we tried to get a mixed price of both the stand and the set. Depending on your budget, project, and need, you could either get an affordable or expensive stand or set, which we've added in the review.