Is Makita the best grinder?

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Written By Dominic Howard

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Power tools are an essential part of any home or professional workshop. Having the right tools for the job can make tasks much easier and more efficient. One type of power tool that is incredibly useful is an angle grinder. Angle grinders are versatile rotary tools that can be used for cutting, grinding, polishing, sharpening, and cleaning. When it comes to angle grinders, Makita is one of the most popular and well-respected brands. But is Makita really the best angle grinder brand? In this in-depth blog post, we’ll examine Makita grinders and how they compare to models from other top brands. We’ll look at factors like power, performance, features, ergonomics, durability, price, and warranty. By the end, you should have a good understanding of whether Makita grinders deserve to be called the best on the market.

Makita Grinder Overview

Makita is a leading Japanese power tool company founded in 1915. They manufacture a wide range of professional-grade power tools including drills, saws, sanders, pneumatic tools, and of course, grinders. Makita grinders come in many sizes – from compact 4-1/2″ models up to large 9″ grinders. They offer both corded electric grinders as well as cordless battery-powered grinders. Some of Makita’s most popular angle grinder models include:

Makita 9557PBX1 – A very popular 4-1/2″ model with 7.5 amp motor
Makita 9565CV – A 5″ grinder with extra protection for cutting and grinding
Makita XAG06Z – An 18V LXT cordless grinder with a brushless motor
Makita GA7021 – A large 7″ angle grinder with a powerful 12 amp motor

Makita grinders have a reputation for being comfortable to handle, powerful, fast-cutting, and durable. They utilize advanced technology like direct-drive motors, and labyrinth construction seals to prevent dust ingress and overload protection circuits. The grinders typically have ergonomic rubberized grips, paddle or slide switches, and built-in guards with dust ejection systems.

Now let’s take a more detailed look at why Makita grinders stand out from the competition.

Power and Performance

Power and performance are critical factors to consider with any angle grinder. You want a model that has enough power to cut, grind, and polish effectively without bogging down. Makita grinders are very highly regarded for their power and performance capabilities. Here are some key reasons why:

Potent Motors – Makita grinders have robust all-ball bearing motors, often delivering 15+ amps of power. This gives them strength for the most demanding metal grinding tasks.

High Output – The combination of power, RPMs, and gearing gives Makita models a very high output compared to similar-sized grinders. More power means faster, more aggressive material removal.

Variable Speed – Many Makita grinders have variable speed triggers, so you can match the speed to the application. Lower speeds help prevent burnout for polishing work.

Efficient Cooling – Direct drive motors and innovative fan designs keep Makita grinders running cool, preventing overheating or burnout issues.

Low Noise – Despite their high power, Makita grinders generate low noise levels thanks to technologies like SJS (Super Joint System). This reduces fatigue for the operator.

Overall, Makita grinders consistently rank among the most powerful grinders in their class size. The robust motors can make quick work of tasks like removing rust or paint from metal.


In addition to power, Makita grinders come equipped with many convenient and practical features. Here are some standout features you’ll find in Makita’s grinder lineup:

Compact and Ergonomic Design – Even the large grinders are engineered to be more compact and ergonomic than competitors. This improves comfort and control.

Labyrinth Construction – This specialized sealing protects the motor and bearings from dust and debris. Extends the lifespan of the tool.

Overload Protection – Built-in circuits cut power if the grinder overheats. Prevents motor failure.

Paddle Switch – A conveniently located paddle makes it easy to turn the grinder on/off, even when wearing gloves.

Lock-On Button – The lock button allows for continuous operation without holding down the trigger, reducing fatigue.

Dust Ejection System – Directs debris away from the operator through rear exhaust vents. Helps keep the work area clean.

Spindle Lock – Allows for quick and easy wheel changes without additional tools. Saves time and hassle.

3-Year Warranty – Backed by one of the best warranties in the power tool industry. Gives peace of mind.

As you can see, Makita packs its grinders full of features to improve functionality, convenience, and safety. These extras really increase their value compared to basic, stripped-down models from other brands.


In the power tool world, Makita has become synonymous with durability. Their grinders live up to this reputation thanks to the following:

Metal Gears – Unlike cheaper plastic gears, Makita grinders use hardened steel gears to transfer maximum torque.

Metal Housing – No flimsy plastic casings here. Makita grinders use metal and composite materials to withstand job site abuse.

Extreme Testing – Makita tools must survive extensive stress testing to be certified for sale. Gives confidence in real-world reliability.

High Component Quality – From windings to bearings, the internal components are built to outlast expectations.

Labyrinth Construction – This specialized dust sealing has been tested to over 100 miles of abrasion resistance. Keeps components clean.

Baked Enamel Finish – The tough finish won’t chip, fade, or peel like cheaper paints. Withstands solvents and oils.

Overall, Makita is willing to invest in premium components and rugged construction where other brands cut corners. As a result, their grinders will run strong for years of heavy use while competitors fail. The durability more than justifies the higher initial cost.

Comfort and Ergonomics

Given the repetitive motions involved in grinding, comfort, and ergonomics are very important. Nobody wants to end up with tired hands or even carpal tunnel syndrome. Makita goes the extra mile to make their grinders more comfortable through features like:

Compact Weight Distribution – Optimizes the weight distribution to make the grinders feel lighter. Reduces fatigue.

Rubberized Grips – The soft grip coating provides excellent grip and helps isolate vibrations.

Low Vibration Design – Special damping tech minimizes vibrations for smoother operation.

Large Paddle Switch – The oversized switch can be easily operated even with thick gloves on.

Well-Balanced Model – Makita carefully balances the grinders for controlled handling.

Small Diameter Neck – This allows you to get your hand closer to the body for improved control.

Overall, Makita grinders are some of the most comfortable models thanks to smart ergonomic designs. While grinding is always tiring work, Makita’s features help reduce hand, arm, and body fatigue. This helps you get more work done with less discomfort.

Cut-Off Wheels

To get the best results from your grinder, you need quality grinding and cut-off wheels. Makita includes high-performance wheels with most models rather than cheap wheels that shatter easily. Their wheels feature:

Computer Balanced – Precision balancing eliminates vibration for cleaner cuts.

Recessed Diamond – The recessed diamond pattern gives fast, cool cuts.

Reinforced Core – Adds strength to resist warping and breaks.

Sturdy Bonding – The strong bonding prevents the wheel from separating.

Exact Wheel Size – Precisely matched to the guard for proper protection.

The superior cut-off wheels help Makita grinders achieve noticeably better performance than with lower-quality wheels. You can of course replace them with your preferred brand, but the included wheels work fantastically.

Grinder Protective Features

Safety should always be the top priority when operating high-speed power tools. Makita includes numerous protective features to make their grinders as safe as possible:

Sliding Brush Ring – The spring-loaded ring helps protect the armature if a wheel breaks.

Debris Shield Guard – The guards include a debris shield to protect the operator from flying sparks.

Thermal Overload Protection – Automatic power cut-off if the motor overheats.

Type 27 Wheel Guard – Extra coverage for use with cutting and grinding wheels.

Lock-On Button – Allows grinding without holding the paddle switch continuously.

Anti-Restart Function – The Grinder won’t automatically restart if power is disrupted.

Dust-Resistant Construction – Special seals prevent hazardous dust ingestion into the motor.

Makita clearly goes the extra mile on safety. You get full guarding, thermal monitoring, and redundancies to minimize any risk.

Brand Reputation & Support

In addition to the actual grinder, it’s worth considering the reputation and support behind the brand. Makita has significant advantages over lesser-known brands:

100+ Years of Experience – Very few brands can match Makita’s expertise honed over a century. Their R&D consistently delivers innovative tools.

Industry Leader – Makita spends heavily on R&D and has numerous patents. They are a recognized industry leader in power tools.

Top Professional Brand – The Makita name carries prestige and communicates quality. Their tools are routinely rated as “Best for Professionals” in reviews.

Worldwide Availability – Makita grinders and parts/accessories are readily available worldwide through authorized dealers. Unknown brands may have limited availability.

Strong Warranty – Makita offers outstanding 3-year warranties on grinders, showing confidence in their quality.

Excellent Parts & Service – Makita’s extensive authorized service center network can properly maintain and repair the tools.

When you choose Makita, you get the backing of an industry giant with a long legacy of engineering expertise and leadership. While new brands come and go, Makita continues innovating and serving professionals worldwide.

Price Considerations

Makita grinders definitely come at a higher initial purchase price than lesser-known brands. However, this pricing accurately reflects the high-grade materials, construction, performance, and features built into the tools. The old saying “You get what you pay for” is very applicable here. The higher cost brings:

More Power – Extra amps mean faster material removal. Makes projects go quicker.

Better Protection – Superior seals and guards protect you and the tool.

Less Repairs – Commercial-grade engineering means much lower failure rates.

Extended Life – Built to handle years of regular professional use. Gets the job done longer.

Increased Comfort – Innovations reduce fatigue so you can grind comfortably for hours.

Faster Cuts – Computer balancing and precision wheels equal faster cuts.

Decreased Downtime – The time wasted on tool repairs or replacement adds up quickly.

When looked at through a long-term ownership lens, Makita grinders offer outstanding value for professional power tool users. Paying more upfront saves money over years of ownership through increased productivity, fewer repairs, and longer lifespan.

Makita vs Other Top Grinder Brands

Now that we’ve examined Makita grinders in-depth, how do they stack up against models from other leading power tool brands like DeWalt, Milwaukee, Bosch, and Metabo? Here is a brief overview of how Makita compares:

DeWalt – Known for toughness & durability. DeWalt grinders offer similar power and performance to Makita models. Brand has a loyal following among construction crews. DeWalt grinders are a bit cheaper but some feel Makita still has a slight edge for professional use.

Milwaukee is very similar to Makita in terms of power, durability, and features. Milwaukee grinders are also compact and comfortable to use. The main difference is Milwaukee grinders tend to use plastic gear cases rather than metal. Otherwise, excellent grinders on par with Makita’s lineup.

Bosch – Notable for precision and smooth operation. Bosch grinders are very popular for applications requiring finesse like auto body work. Grinders run a little quieter but can’t match Makita for pure power and durability. More expensive than Makita.

Metabo – Metabo specializes in grinders and offers an enormous range. Known for safety features and ergonomics. Metabo grinders match Makita for comfort and control but tend to lack power by comparison. Metabo grinders also command premium pricing.

In summary, other leading brands give Makita stiff competition, but Makita still stands out as the overall leader in performance, durability, features, and capabilities. The flagship Makita models are consistently rated as best-in-class for power and professional use.

Makita Grinder Range

Makita offers a diverse lineup of grinders spanning numerous sizes, power sources, and capabilities:

Compact 4-1/2 inch grinders – Lean and maneuverable for tight areas

5-inch grinders – The most popular size for general grinding

Large 9-inch grinders – Maximum power for heavy stock removal

Cordless grinders – Convenient grinding anywhere with 18V/36V battery packs

Corded grinders – Ranging from 7 amps up to 15 amps for intensive jobs

Bench grinders – Stationary models for shops and garages

Specialty grinders – Polisher/sander, die grinders, angle grinders and more

No matter the type of grinding, cutting, sharpening, or deburring needed, Makita likely offers a model suited for the task. They have fine-tuned grinders for every trade including metal fabrication, body shops, construction, masonry, plumbing, mechanical, and more.

Makita Grinder Recommendations

Based on the above overview, here are 5 top Makita grinders to consider across varying needs and budgets:

1. Makita 9557PBX1 – The gold standard 4-1/2″ grinder with 7.5 AMP motor. Compact but packs serious power.

2. Makita GA4530 – Feature-packed 5″ grinder with automatic speed control for $100. Tremendous value.

3. Makita XAG06Z – Cordless grinder with brushless motor. Convenient for remote sites with no power.

4. Makita 9565CV – The 5″ protective grinding and cutting solution thanks to dust extraction.

5. Makita GA7021 – Massive 7″ grinder that can’t be bogged down. Ideal for major grinding, and cutting jobs.

You really can’t go wrong with any Makita grinder model. It comes down to selecting the right size and features for your specific needs. Makita grinders deliver best-in-class performance and durability for the money.

Is Makita the Best Angle Grinder Brand?

In conclusion, while no single brand can be crowned universally “the best”, Makita certainly makes a strong case and is considered by many to be the leader in angle grinder engineering and technology. Their grinders consistently earn top ratings and recommendations from professionals across industries like construction, fabrication, mechanical repair, and more.

Makita grinders stand out for their:

  • Sheer power and performance even under heavy loads
  • Rugged metal housing and components that withstand abuse
  • Innovative features that improve functionality, safety, and convenience
  • Ergonomic comfort-focused designs to reduce fatigue
  • Strong 3-year warranty demonstrating confidence in quality
  • Premium grinding wheels included for optimal performance

While other big names like DeWalt, Milwaukee, and Bosch give Makita fierce competition, Makita still seems to have a slight overall edge in public perception and reviews. Their grinders are simply built to withstand the demands of professional use day after day. So while every user will have personal brand preferences, for most applications Makita produces what can reasonably be considered the top angle grinder models on the market. Their grinders consistently rank among the best investments for those who rely on these tools to make a living.

Frequently Asked Question

1. Is Makita a reliable brand for grinders?

Makita is well-known for its high-quality power tools, including grinders. Many users trust Makita for their durability and performance.

2. What types of grinders does Makita offer?

Makita offers a variety of grinders, including angle grinders, die grinders, and bench grinders, designed for different applications.

3. Are Makita grinders suitable for professional use?

Yes, Makita grinders are often used by professionals in various industries due to their robust construction and consistent performance.

4. How does Makita compare to other grinder brands in terms of quality?

Makita is considered one of the top brands for grinders, known for their quality, precision, and longevity. However, the “best” grinder depends on your specific needs.

5. Can Makita grinders handle heavy-duty tasks?

Yes, many Makita grinders are designed to handle heavy-duty tasks, making them suitable for demanding applications such as metal fabrication and construction.

6. What safety features do Makita grinders have?

Makita grinders often come with safety features like paddle switches with lock-off functions, anti-restart protection, and ergonomic designs to enhance user safety.

7. Are Makita grinders easy to maintain?

Makita grinders are generally easy to maintain, with user-friendly designs for changing accessories, brushes, and general upkeep.

8. Are there any downsides to Makita grinders?

While Makita grinders are highly regarded, some users may find them slightly more expensive than some other brands. Additionally, specific models may have limitations for certain tasks.

9. Can Makita grinders be used for woodworking?

Yes, Makita grinders can be used for woodworking tasks such as shaping, sanding, and carving when equipped with appropriate accessories.

10. Where can I purchase Makita grinders?

Makita grinders are widely available at home improvement stores, online retailers, and authorized Makita dealers. Make sure to buy from reputable sources to ensure authenticity.


In conclusion, whether Makita is the best grinder for you depends on your individual needs and preferences. Makita is undeniably a reputable and trusted brand known for producing high-quality grinders suitable for both professional and DIY applications. Their grinders are recognized for their durability, safety features, and overall performance.

However, what makes the “best” grinder varies from person to person, as it hinges on factors like the type of tasks you intend to perform, your budget, and your specific requirements. It’s essential to assess your needs carefully and consider factors like power, size, corded or cordless options, and accessories.

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