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Best Drill Bits for Metal

Owning the best drilling tool is only part of the picture when you want to make holes in harder materials, such as metal. Owning the best drill bits for metal, in this case, is equally important.

But with a bountiful range of drill bits available on the market, how can you know you’ve picked the right bit for the job?

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Drill bits in general and drill bits for metal, in particular, come in a variety of styles. Besides this, you have to consider the size of the shaft and its compatibility with the tool you own. That’s why there are a few things you should learn before buying.

Types of Drill Bits for Metal

  • High-Speed Steel (HSS) drill bits: Are designed to withstand higher speeds without overheating and are ideal for drilling through softer materials that support high speeds. These bits are often used for wood and plastic drilling, but soft metals such as aluminum can also benefit from this type of drill bit.
  • Oxide-coated HSS drill bits: Are similar to the HSS bits above but they are coated with a corrosion-resistant material which increases their resistance and lifespan. They last longer than the HSS but are more expensive. The drilling characteristics are similar.
  • Titanium-coated HSS drill bits: Are more robust and more durable than the two types above and stay sharp for longer. These bits are also suitable for drilling through soft metals, but the investment is well worth the money.
  • Cobalt drill bits: Are designed for tougher materials due to their construction which dissipates heat quickly. This particular makes the bits suitable to use at lower speeds while the resistance of the material makes them suitable to use for drilling hard metals such as stainless steel.
  • Carbide drill bits: Are the toughest on the market, often employed for drilling through masonry. Due to their resistance and durability, these drill bits are also suitable to use on most metals, including stainless steel.

How to Choose the Drill Bits for Metal

1. Construction

Not all drill bits for metals were created equal. Besides the material, you must also consider the construction of the drill bit and above all its tip. Metals can be divided into soft and hard metals, and manufacturers construct different types of drill bits for the various kinds of metals.

Flat point drill bits are suitable for hard metals like stainless steel. Those with steeper points are ideal for softer metals such as aluminum.

2. Size

The size of a drill bit refers to the diameter of the body and typically varies from 1/16 to ¼ inches. However, this is not necessarily a rule, and the actual size of the drill bits goes up to ½ inches depending on the requirements of the project.

3. Shank

One of the most important things to consider is the size of the shank which determines the bit’s compatibility with the chuck of the tool. Most cordless drills have adjustable chucks but impact drivers, for example, are only compatible with a standard ¼ inches hex shank.

Most drill bits for metal have a round or hex shanks with a size between 3/8 and 5/8 inches. The round shanks are ideal for beginners, allowing you to center the drill bit accurately. However, the hex shanks allow for a better tool grip which secures them for higher torque applications.

A few tools, such as the hammer drills, accept slotted drive system shanks which don’t require tightening.

Top 5 Best Drill Bits for Metal in 2018

1. Irwin Tools 3018002

Irwin Tools 3018002


  • High heat and abrasion resistance
  • Heavy-duty construction
  • 29-piece set
  • Cobalt drill bits
  • Various sizes

Complete Set

The Irwin Tools 3018002 is an exceptional set of drill bits for metal comprising 29 pieces with varying sizes from 1/16 to ½ inches. The 1/64-inch increment between the bits ensures suitability for a wide range of projects.


All drill bits in this set are manufactured specifically for metal and are made from cobalt. This material boasts a higher heat and abrasion resistance and is ideal for drilling through hard metals at low speeds. Furthermore, the 135° split point minimizes walk and makes the bits ideal for most applications.

Overall Assessment

Perhaps the best drill bits for metal on the market; this set comes at an attractive price point, and all components are housed in a rubberized case which promotes job site safety. This high-value option will hardly disappoint a contractor or passionate DIYer.

Irwin Tools 3018002 Video Review




  • Drill bits assortment
  • Suitable for contractors
  • Variety of sizes
  • Hard-shell carrying case
  • Ideal for all projects

Bits Variety

The BLACK+DECKER BDA91109 is designed to address the needs of most contractors and hobbyists and contains a variety of drill bits for metal, wood, masonry, and plastic. Besides these, the kit also includes a variety of screw driving bits.

Component Size

This kit is ideal for most projects, either in your house or on the job site. The drill bits and accessories included varying in size and the package contains 109 pieces. The screw driving bits range between 1 and 2 inches and are compatible with most screws.

Overall Assessment

Containing a variety of drill bits and screw driving bits, this set is ideal for contractors and amateurs who love experimenting with different materials. The bits are suitable for drilling wood, metal, plastic, and masonry, while the impressive assortment of driving bits boost even more the value of this kit.

Black + Decker BDA91109 Video Review

3. DEWALT DW1177



  • Black oxide-coated drill bits
  • 20-pcs set
  • Parabolic flute design
  • 135° split point
  • Compatible with the primary tool brands


The drill bits in the DEWALT DW1177 kit boast a solid construction designed to make holes through soft and harder metals. The black oxide coat increases the strength of the bits, while the parabolic flute design and 135° split point increase their resistance and durability.

Tough Case

All bits come in a convenient hard-shell carrying case ideal to keep them organized. Besides metals, the drill bits can also be used on wood and plastics.

Overall Assessment

Containing fewer drill bits than other kits but coming at a more attractive price point, the DEWALT DW1177 is an excellent set to consider. The bits included in this kit are high quality and made to withstand intense use.

DEWALT DW1177 Video Review

4. VonHaus Drill and Drive Bit Set

VonHaus Drill and Drive Bit Set


  • 246-piece drill bit set
  • Ideal for DIYers
  • Perfect for metal and wood
  • Universal compatibility
  • HSS bits

Perfect for all Task

Containing 246 drill and drive bits, the VonHaus set suits all tasks and is ideal for woodworkers, contractors, and DIYers. The full set comprises 87 HSS twist bits for metal plus an array of drill bits for other materials, driving bits, nut drivers, and more.

Universal Compatibility

The hex shanks of these drill bits is compatible with most cordless drills and impact drivers on the market. Furthermore, the bits are color-coded for easier identification and come in a convenient carrying case.

Overall Assessment

The unique carrying case in black with orange details, the complexity of the kit and the variety of the drill bits and included accessories boost the value of this product and make it ideal for all contractors, homeowners, and DIYers. No doubt, these are some of the best drill bits for metal on the market.

5. DEWALT DW1354



  • Titanium pilot point
  • No spin shanks
  • Great durability
  • Durable carrying case
  • Metal and wood drilling

Patented Point Tip

The DEWALT DW1354 boast 14 patented point tip drill bits for metal and wood drilling designed to eliminate walking. This prolongs the bits’ lifespan and makes them more durable than the black oxide-coated drill bits.

No Spin Shanks

Safe to use on most drilling tools, these tips boast no spin shanks designed to hold the drill bits in place even at all speeds. This is ideal if you’re planning to drill through harder materials such as stainless steel, but also for high speed applications.

Overall Assessment

Among the best drill bits for metal on the market, the accessories in this kit impress right from the start. The titanium-coated bits have an enhanced resistance and withstand high-volume and heavy-duty tasks. Without a doubt, a set to consider for your arsenal.

Dewalt DW1354 Video Review


The drill bits for metal are essential in many circumstances but choosing the best ones is not always easy. Beyond preference, there are many objective criteria to consider when choosing the right drill bits for you. But no matter what type of metal you want to drill, you now know which are some of your best options.


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