Checked and updated on March 9, 2021 by Aaron Barnett
If you’re considering purchasing some new tools, there’s a good chance you’re overwhelmed by the options and struggling to find the right brand for you. There are various positives and negatives to consider before you make a purchase when it comes to Makita and Milwaukee tools.
However, both brands are some of the market’s top competitors, so regardless of your needs, you can be sure you’re about to invest in something reliable, renowned, and long-lasting when you purchase from these manufacturers.
Value for money: It’s easy to be put off by brands that offer cheap tools; however, when it comes to Makita, you don’t have to compromise on quality.
They’re renowned for both their affordability and durability, making them a great option to consider.
Easier to use than other brands: Whether you’re a novice or a power tool connoisseur, we all find ourselves wanting to opt for hassle-free, easy-to-use tools from time to time.
You’ll be pleased to know that Makita offers just this, so you don’t have to worry about wading through masses of technical jargon or useless specs for no good reason.
Their tools cut out the hassles and allow you to get on with your work as simply (and as quickly) as possible.
Where are Makita tools made?
Each manufacturing plant uses the same design and materials regardless of its location.
Higher quality: Although Makita offers excellent value for money, you may want to opt for a Milwaukee tool if you are going after quality.
Although their quality can vary from tool to tool, Milwaukee is recognized as a more reputable and durable manufacturer amongst consumers, particularly professionals.
Better for electricians: If you’re an electrician, then Milwaukee may be the best brand for you.
They offer a vast range of tools, many of which are specifically suited to the needs of electricians, making them a clear winner for commercial use.
Where are Milwaukee tools made?
Like Makita, Milwaukee uses the same materials and designs in all its manufacturing facilities.
Who makes the best cordless drill?
Many Makita brushless drills come in kits that supply impact drivers as well, offering you higher value for money than individual purchases. Their drills are also notoriously light, with some weighing as little as 3lbs, so if portability is essential to you, you should be considering a Makita drill.
Milwaukee also offers individual drills and kits that include impact drivers, many of which are renowned for their battery life, which can last for long durations.
Although Milwaukee drills tend to offer better quality, Makita may be the best option for you if you’re on a budget.
Circular saws: Makita vs. Milwaukee
When it comes to circular saws, both of our brands have several options on the market.
Milwaukee circular saws are lightweight with an average motor of 15amps; many also offer additional features such as tilt lock handles for better maneuverability and spindle locks for easy blade changes.
Makita saws also have an average motor of 15amps, and gears sealed in oil for simpler, low-maintenance use.
What about wood planers?
If you’re after the best wood planer Makita has some of the top quality planers on the market.
Although most Makita planers are lightweight, they are notoriously durable, with many capable of planing intense depths in just one pass. Many models also have long battery life and spring-loaded stand lifts for better blade protection.
Milwaukee planers have some great features too, including compatibility with most Bosch and Makita blades and versatile adjustment control; however, the batteries in most Milwaukee models tend to run down quicker than Makita models.
Wood routers: Milwaukee or Makita?
When it comes to a wood router tool our big brands manufacture several different models to choose from. Makita offers some great routers for woodworking that feature flat-top designs, precision cutting, and 1 ⅜” plunge depth capacity.
Milwaukee also manufactures various corded and cordless models that feature specifications such as brushless motors, variable speed dial changes, and tool-free spindle locks.
Jobsite radios: Who does it better, Makita or Milwaukee?
Before you make a purchase, there are several different qualities you need to consider in a Makita or Milwaukee jobsite radio.
Are you after subwoofers that can pack a punch? Perhaps you want Bluetooth connectivity to sync up your phone? Milwaukee Jobsite radios offer Bluetooth connectivity and can fit even the largest of batteries, and provide compatibility with Milwaukee’s rolling toolbox.
Although Makita radios can be tricky to sync with a phone, and their speakers cannot charge the battery through the radio as Milwaukee can.
They do offer extremely long battery life, protective bumpers, and compatibility with all of Makita’s lithium-ion batteries.
Jigsaws: Milwaukee vs Makita
Whether you’re after a cordless or corded makita jigsaw, both of our brands manufacture several high-quality options.
Milwaukee jigsaws offer features such as LED lights, counterbalanced mechanisms to reduce vibrations, and adjustable shoes, which can be moved 45 degrees in any direction.
Makita jigsaws have variable speed controls with speeds of up to 2,800 SPM and fewer vibrations than other models.
I recommend getting a cordless jigsaw for better maneuverability and the convenience of portability, read the full review here.
Nibbler tools: Makita or Milwaukee?
Makita nibbler tools offer motors of up to 5amps, replaceable cutter heads, and rotating dies for 360-degree rotation, giving you greater portability and maneuverability than other models.
Milwaukee nibblers come with a 10 and 12 gauge capacity as well as 4.0amp motors and AC-DC toggle switches.
Although Milwaukee nibblers have some great features, I would recommend a Makita nibbler, mainly as they offer greater value for money than Milwaukee models.
There are 3 different Makita nibblers, click here to find out the differences.
Or find out about other brands that make nibbler tools.
Thickness planers: who does it better?
Whether you’re a builder, a woodworker, or anything in-between, Makita and Milwaukee both offer several thickness planers to help you get the job done.
Makita manufacturer corded and cordless models with portable designs and quiet operation (some models only emit a maximum of 83dB) and head clamp systems.
If you’re after portability, then a Milwaukee model may be better for you as they manufacture cordless models only. They also include features such as 10.7mm of rebate depth, kickstands, and four-pole motors.
For my full thickness planer review including Dewalt and Milwaukee click here.
What about cordless miter saws?
There are plenty of options on the market if you need a cordless miter saw. Milwaukee cordless saws can deliver up to 400 cuts per charge and include adjustable steel plates and locking miter systems.
Makita saws have features such as 18v lithium-ion batteries, brushless motors for 50% longer run time, and automatic speed change technology.
A cordless miter saw is the best miter saw for a trim carpenter.
Prefer a corded model? Here’s what you should know
If you prefer a good old-fashioned corded miter saw instead, then fear not, our two big competitors manufacture several different models for you to choose from.
Milwaukee corded saws have fine-adjusted control and digital readout, allowing you to set angles of 0.1-degree increments.
A Makita sliding miter saw is easy to set angles with and has a vertical cutting capacity of 6 ¾ however if you’re using a Makita saw regularly, you should note that their springs can become soft with frequent use and may require changing.
String trimmers: which brand is better?
When it comes to a weed eater you’re likely to be on the lookout for something portable, easy to maneuver, and comfortable to handle.
Milwaukee trimmers come with several different attachments making them versatile and able to tackle even the toughest of gardening challenges.
They also include brushless motors, 9amp batteries with a one-hour run time, and wide cutting swaths. Makita models are smooth operators, emitting minimal sound (and zero emissions too).
Like Milwaukee models, Makita trimmers also come with brushless motors; however, they tend to reach higher speeds than Milwaukee models. You should note that most Makita models lack the additional attachments offered by Milwaukee, so consider your needs carefully before purchasing.
But both models have a string timer option with a swappable pole saw attachment, I highly recommend this combination as it can be cheaper than buying the two tools separately, and they are both super useful for total landscape care.
Makita vs Milwaukee: cordless chainsaws
Are you in need of a cordless chainsaw? Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced user, you can rely on Makita and Milwaukee’s range to provide the right model.
Milwaukee chainsaws are well known for their long battery life, durability, and additional features such as wrench storage compartments.
If you’re on a budget, Makita chainsaws are some of the cheapest on the market and offer the same performance as most 32cc gas-powered chainsaws.
However, if you’re opting for a Milwaukee model, consider that the oil tends to run out a bit quicker than most Makita cordless chainsaw.
When it comes to finishing nailers
Whether you’re looking for a brad nailer or finishing nailer, Makita and Milwaukee manufacture several different models.
Milwaukee nailers are widely recognized for their durability and craftsmanship; however, they can be slightly more expensive than some Makita models.
If you’re looking to keep your expenditure to a minimum, you might want to consider a Makita finish nailer, which also offers greater portability, versatility, and longer battery life.
Table saws: Who should I consider?
Are you on the lookout for a new table saw? When it comes to cordless table saws Milwaukee table saws are perfect for professionals offering features such as quick-change guards, vacuum adaptors, and 12.0 Ah battery packs.
Makita also manufactures several electric table saws, many of which come with trolley stands, motors that can deliver up to 4,500rpm, and net weights of 38kg.
Who makes the best palm sanders?
Palm sanders are a good tool for many, allowing you to smooth over those rough edges with ease and leave them looking polished and precise.
Makita palm sanders include 3.0-amp motors, variable speed controls, and adjustable front handles. However, if you’re after something quiet, Makita models may not be best for you as their vacuum mechanisms can become loud during use.
Milwaukee models are lightweight and compact, great if you’re considering something portable, plus they come with variable speeds, making them capable of handling a wide range of materials.
What about belt sanders?
If you need to tackle some extremely tough materials, you may be better off purchasing a belt sander.
Milwaukee belt sanders are often compact and come with belt widths of up to 100mm, weights of 5.3kg, and belt speeds of 230-400rpm.
Makita belt sanders come in a range of sizes and include dust bags, low centers of gravity for easier handling, and double insulation, making them an excellent choice for commercial use.
Metal chops saws: Makita or Milwaukee?
When it comes to making even cuts, Milwaukee metal chop saws are reliable and consistent.
Not only are they a highly affordable option, but their powerful motors make them capable of cutting through the toughest of materials with immense precision.
Makita chop saws are just as powerful as Milwaukee models; however, most can cut up to four times faster than leading abrasive saws and have a maximum cutting depth of 4.5”.You can find out more here.
Cordless angle grinders: Who is better?
Are you looking for a new cordless angle grinder? It’s tough to be disappointed by the range that our two big brands have to offer.
Makita grinders can reach speeds of up to 8,500RPM, have brushless motors, and can cut through most materials, including concrete and metal.
Milwaukee models perform about the same as most of their leading competitors; however, they do include some cool specifications.
Before you buy a new cordless angle grinder, read my review.
What about Corded hand-held Grinders?
If you’re considering a corded angle grinder instead, there are still several models available to purchase.
Makita models tend to be more ergonomic and comfortable to operate and include adjustable blade guards, motors of up to 12amps, and minimal vibration during use.
Although they’re not as ergonomic as Makita models, Milwaukee angle grinders are incredibly compact and durable with an attractive price tag to go with.
What about portable air compressors?
Makita and Milwaukee both manufacture several models of portable air compressors meaning you’re more than likely to find the right model for you.
Makita compressors run at cooler temperatures than similar models, are low-noise, and can quickly build up pressure.
Like Makita compressors, Milwaukee models are low noise, have a capacity of up to 2 gallons, and are lightweight for more comfortable transportation.
Who makes the best biscuit joiners?
Have you got your eyes peeled for a new biscuit joiner? Makita models come with built-in dust bags for less mess, high RMP blades for quick cutting speeds, and easy to handle.
Milwaukee biscuit joiners are specifically designed for professionals and come with anti-slip rubber pads, 710-watt motors, and spindle locks for more natural blade changes.
If you don’t mind spending a bit more you might want to compare the Makita biscuit joiner with the Lamello Classic X, you can compare the tools here.
Bench grinders: Milwaukee vs. Makita
Whether you’re tackling a professional task or a personal DIY project, if you’re considering Makita or Milwaukee, you’re likely to find the right bench grinder for the job.
If you’re looking for something quiet, Makita grinders emit minimal noise and vibration thanks to their split capacitor motors. They also include features such as adjustable wheel balance, wheel covers, and eye shields for close contact work.
Milwaukee also manufactures several different grinders. Many do not include batteries, chargers, or discs, so if you’re looking for something cost-effective, a Makita model may be best for you.
Makita has the best slow speed bench grinder for sharpening tools and fine metalwork jobs.
Have a read my 8 inch bench grinder reviews.
Laser measures: who to consider
Like any tool, there are various factors to consider before you purchase the best laser measurer. Luckily, our two big brands manufacture several different models giving you a wider variety to choose from.
Milwaukee measurers feature water and dust protection, a large LCD, and a measuring distance of between 0.15- 30m. Makita measurers are cost-effective and include some great specs such as memory stores of up to five displays, a measuring distance of up to 50m, and volume calculation.
If you’re looking to measure long distances, then the Makita model may be better for you. But don’t forget about a Lecia tool.
What about laser levels?
Makita laser levels are accurate, have sturdy bases, and a tremendous mounting ability; however, most of their models lack any additional features and have poor battery life for all-day use.
Milwaukee levels offer similar performances to Makita models. They include specs that most Makita levels require, such as high-powered magnets, low battery indicators, and self-leveling mechanisms.
But to be honest, have a look into Dewalt or Leica, click here for more information.
What other brands should you consider?
If you’re not convinced that Milwaukee or Makita is right for you, there are still many other brands you should be considering.
Some of the other top competitors include Bosch, DeWalt, Leica, and Hitachi to name a few.
Does Milwaukee make combo kits?
Yes. Milwaukee combo kits are a cost-effective alternative to individual purchases, and there are several versions on the market.
Whether you’re looking for corded or cordless tools, Milwaukee offers a diverse range that is great for commercial and personal use.
Does Makita make combo kits?
Like Milwaukee, Makita also manufactures a diverse range of combo kits, both corded and cordless, which include tools for all your needs.
These range from drills to battery packs, and just like Milwaukee, they also work out cheaper than purchasing your tools individually.
Although there are various brands and tools on the market, purchasing something new doesn’t always have to be overwhelming.
Different factors make each manufacturer stand out from the other, so which one you decide on will depend on your circumstances and the task.
Just remember to weigh up all the options and don’t sell yourself short when hunting around for other brands. Regardless of your budget or circumstance, if you stick with the best-known manufacturers, you’re likely to find exactly what’s needed.
If you haven’t looked into Dewalt yet have a read of my Dewalt vs Makita review.
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My name is Aaron, and welcome to Bangingtoolbox.
As a qualified builder and DIY’er, my goal with Banging Toolbox is to provide the #1 building and DIY resource on the internet for my readers.
I’m here to show people how to start DIY, and to help qualified professionals take building to the next level.
Feel free to have a look around, and don’t hesitate to ask me any questions, you can find out more about me here.