Tool manufacturers in recent years have really ramped up the R&D in the cordless technologies department. This has been due to the hefty amount of investment and mining of lithium which is considered by many macroeconomists as the new gold.
There has been a monumental amount of this hot commodity coming out of the ground for industry use and a substantial amount is utilized by tool manufactures each and every year for cordless tools.
That said, just how good are cordless tools like angle grinders with this relatively new lithium-ion age fueling them, and will further future advancements with battery technologies be the death of corded power tools?
Let's find out just how good cordless angle grinders now are in 2020 and whether or not they can actually compete with the good-old corded models.
Which is the Best Cordless Angle Grinder?
Now that we've established that cordless grinders command a higher price tag than their corded counterparts, you're probably wondering which cordless grinder on the market offers the best bang for your buck?
Let's assume that you're on the prowl for a regular run-of-the-mill 4 1/2-inch small angle grinder.
If you're looking for the outright best angle grinder and your budget can be stretched a bit, look no further than the DeWalt Cordless FLEXVOLT 60V MAX Angle Grinder. This cordless grinder is so darn good that you'll hardly ever endure the emotional torment of ever having to drag out another extension lead again.
The one reason this cordless angle grinder is able to complete with the majority of corded grinders on the market is the battery capacity it possesses. DeWalt's Flexvolt 60V max battery delivers up to 4x the runtime when compared to the best competing lithium-ion batteries available.
Now mix all of the above together with DeWalt's signature brushless motor that generates 9000 RPM, DeWalt's E-Clutch & electric brake system (to prevent kickback), and the added ability to use both 4-1/2-inch to 6-inch wheels, you can do no wrong with this impressive cordless angle grinder.
- The top-dog among all other cordless grinders as this cordless tool produces corded tool performance.
- Powered by DeWalt's Flexvolt® battery technology delivering enhanced fuel capacity for greater runtime.
- Has the unique ability to alternate between a 4 1/2-inch wheel to 6-inch wheel with the push of a button.
- Next-level ergonomics as this cordless grinder is super comfortable and feels brilliantly balanced in hand.
Which is the Best Corded Angle Grinder?
This is probably one of the most popular small angle grinders available among both DIYers and professional contractors. The Makita 9557PBX1 4-1/2 Angle Grinder ticks all the boxes when it comes to both performance and durability. It is equipped with a powerful 7.5 amp motor that delivers 11,000 RPM.
Weighing a mere 4.5 lbs, the 9557PBX1 has been engineered with practicality in mind and will undoubtedly suffice when it comes to all of your cutting and grinding needs.
One of the first things you'll likely notice about the Makita 9557PBX1 is the highly practical carry case this 4 1/2-inch comes with. Considering the fact that the majority of other angle grinders on the market come with damn near nothing and cost the same (or even more) than the 9557PBX1, this small angle grinder really is excellent value for money.
Throw in an additional five grinding wheels and the extra Makita diamond blade with this kit, and you've got yourself the best small angle grinder starter-kit money can buy.
- Super reliable small angle grinder equipped with Makita's 7.5 amp motor that thumps out over 11,000 RPM.
- Durable metal carry case that houses the 4 1/2-inch grinder and the additional cutting and grinding wheels.
- Nicely engineered paddle switch (extended switch setup) that has been ideally positioned for added comfort.
- Fitted with a lock on/off mechanism to assist with continuous operation and also help with false starts.
Are Battery Powered Angle Grinders Any Good?
If you'd asked this same question around ten years ago, most in the know would proclaim that corded angle grinders are the king. Back then, cordless angle grinders were really only considered for less intensive DIY tasks around the house as the runtime was simply, meh.
Now in 2020, the average runtime of a cordless angle grinder has significantly increased where they almost make corded angle grinders optional. These enhancements are due to exceptionally refined components like brushless motors, and of course, the improved battery capacity these tools possess thanks to lithium-ion technology.
While such breakthroughs have taken cordless power tools to a whole 'nother level, they do have a substantial cost attached to them, and I mean so literally. If you were today purchase one top-of-the-range DeWalt 60-volt cordless angle grinder with all the bells and whistles, you'll likely not only be surprised with its performance, but you'll also be left with an ass like a broken cat flap when it comes time to pay up $$$$$.
Now, if you're constantly using such a tool, it can be easily justifiable, and especially so if you're the only one observing your monthly credit card statement. But, if you're only purchasing such an elaborate power tool for conducting the odd job another the house, it might become exceedingly difficult to legitimatize such a purchase when the fun police get wind of your antics.
And I know what you're thinking; "That's not my life, bro. That's yours. I'm the boss in my household and I wear the pants. Matter of fact, where's my beer at?!". Well, to be honest, I once thought that too. In other words, this is one of those risk vs reward scenarios where you should likely proceed with caution. Thankfully, this decision is entirely up to you.
In short, cordless angle grinders are incredibly beneficial due to the added degree of convenience they offer. They also have become just as functional and powerful as their corded counterparts, which makes them a fantastic choice for both the pros and DIYers. They only downside, this the price tag associated with them.
Do you Really Need a Corded Angle Grinder?
Are you planning on conducting a complete remodeling job any time soon? Better yet, are you a professional contractor who exchanges time for legal tender by hacking through thick hunks of angle iron on a daily basis? If you answered no to both of these hypotheticals, I would say most likely not.
Personally, I only ever really use my cordless angle grinder for the majority of jobs. Do I own both types of power tools? Yes. But do I utilize both regularly? Nope. For the bulk of almost everything I do on a daily basis I use my DeWalt DCG414T2 cordless angle grinder.
Why's that? Because in terms of performance, it's on par with my corded Makita 9557PBX1, and, I just absolutely despise running extension leads for just about anything. But hey, that's just me being lazy.
That said, if you are a sprinkler fitter on an install job or a contractor on a building site, you really might need a corded angle grinder.
While you could constantly just rotate batteries to maintain a constant supply, there's really no substitute for any corded power tool when the going gets this tough. That's why myself and almost any co-worker I've operated with owned both a cordless grinder and a corded model.
If I had any advice for you about buying either or power tool, would be to go somewhat cheap on the corded angle grinder, and splurge a little on the cordless, as most certainly use it more frequently.
How Many Amps Does a Corded Angle Grinder Use?
Your typical 4 1/2-inch angle grinder that most DIYers will use for all of your cutting and grinding needs is roughly rated 6-7 amps. Once you start to step-up in size, the amperage goes up too. The average 7-inch angle grinder is rated at approximately 13 amps.
Now while neither a 4 1/2-inch or 7-inch angle grinder will draw this exact amperage while operating, that is what the motor's maximum amperage is rated at.
If you wanted to get super nerdy, you could work out the exact amperage of any of your cordless tools. To do so, you could simply measure the resistance of the motor using a multimeter and then divide the voltage by wattage which will give you your amperage.
The only thing you need to concern yourself with when it comes to amperage and the angle grinder of choice you're using is the circuit breaker associated with the power outlet your corded angle grinder is connected to.
In other words, if you're using a 7-inch grinder and the power outlet in which the circuit breaker is rated at 10 amps, you might want to rethink things as you're not going to get far. While there is no real potential danger as the circuit breaker (RCD) will trip once the maximum amperage rating is reached, you want to be able to utilize your grinder without any such restrictions.
In short, just make sure that the electrical circuit you're utilizing for your corded power tool is more than adequate for the actual max load rating of the appliance.
Are Cordless Angle Grinders Worth the Money?
This is kind of like asking a stripper if those fake tits of hers she purchased were really worth it or not? I mean, if it's money spent on something you use routinely and it's beneficial to your future success, isn't it worth it? I know what Chastity would say.
All jokes, fake jugs, and stilettos aside, cordless angle grinders aren't the most budget-friendly power tool you could likely purchase. That's why I'd say if you're bound to a strict budget and merely conducting a few random DIY tasks around the house in your spare time, it might be best to ignore the cordless alternatives and opt for a solid corded model.
Although, if you've got the financial freedom and are able to stretch the budget for the flexibility that a cordless angle grinder offers, maybe go for it. Soon enough, once other advanced battery technologies are produced and trickle down into the power tool industry, corded power tools will be obsolete.
A group of geniuses/nerds are currently working on some futuristic alternatives to help alleviate all of our blue-collar woes when it comes to whisking cumbersome power cords around. Such developments in the battery tech sector will utilize multiple new mediums to maximize battery storage capacity considerably.
With a significant amount of R&D going into everything from lithium-sulfur and nono-silicon, we could be looking at a vast increase in battery efficiency in the near future. Almost by more than three times of the standard lithium-ion battery technology produces. So rest assured, science is soon coming to the rescue so we all can get rid of cords once and for all.
But for now, cordless angle grinders are about as good as it gets, and that's still pretty damn good!
Are angle grinders beginner friendly?
For the most part, angle grinders are very beginner-friendly and straightforward power tool to use. The main underlying safety concern associated with angle grinders is the dreaded kickback.
A kickback is a sudden reaction to a pinched or snagged rotating wheel, backing pad, or other accessory. This occurs when the grinder grabs the material rapidly stalling causing the angle grinder to uncontrollably forced in the opposite direction the rotating wheel.
Kickbacks can happen when either cutting or grinding and mostly transpire when using the wrong wheel or operating the grinder at inappropriate speeds.
The other two safety concerns that may be a cause for alarm when utilizing an angle grinder are both airborne sparks and burst discs.
While sparks produced from an angle grinder when cutting or grinding metal can be troublesome to flammable materials like insulation, as an operator, if you're wearing the correct PPE and using the angle grinder in a well-ventilated space, sparks generated when grinding or cutting shouldn't be too much of a worry.
As for the latter, that's much different. Having a cut-off wheel shatter or burst while using an angle grinder can be quite problematic. To prevent shattering cut-off wheel, always make sure you're using the right size wheel for the stated power capacity of the angle grinder you're using.
One safety tip I'd stress above all else when using an angle grinder is to leave the guard as is. Honestly, it's not worth it. And yeah sure, while using an angle grinder without the wheel guard is freeing so to speak, it's is seriously dangerous.
No matter how skilled you are, if you're operating an angle grinder without a guard and a kickback occurs, you'll be spending the better part of your afternoon in the emergency room, not the pub.
Overall, using an angle grinder, even if you're a beginner, is very safe. Just remember to maintain a firm grip utilizing the side handle when operating the angle grinder and make use of the correct PPE at all times.
Oh, and never operate the grinder without a guard. Stick to those basic safety rules and you'll be a-ok.
So now that you know the advantages over either or power tool, you can now choose confidently between a cordless angle grinder vs corded angle grinder.
Again, if you're a complete beginner and just attempting a few DIY jobs around the house, go with the cheaper alternative and get yourself a corded angle grinder. Although, if you've got a few jobs on the go and want to maximize your productively, bite the bullet and grab a cordless angle grinder.
So with all that mumbo jumbo said, hopefully, you've come to a viable conclusion in determining what exactly the best course of action for all your grinding and cutting needs going forward.
Lastly, if you are looking at buying a new cordless angle grinder, maybe check out our in-depth review of the best cordless angle grinders of 2020. We did our best to summarize what would be ideal for a variety of different individual's needs, whether it be those regular DIY folks or professional contractors, you'll be able to find the right grinder.