DeWalt and Kobalt are big names in the power tool industry. They produce excellent power tools for professional construction workers, handypersons, and woodworkers. While Kobalt is fairly new, the company has successfully solidified its place in the markets in a short amount of time.
DeWalt is a well-known, well-established power tool brand among professionals that has acquired a large dedicated following among professionals and nonprofessionals alike.
Today, we will compare DeWalt vs. Kobalt power tools to give you a better understanding of which brand is better suited for you.
DeWalt vs Kobalt Power Tools
Let’s compare DeWalt and Kobalt in important power tool categories like quality, performance, reliability, warranty, and more.
Round 1 – Build Quality
While some might argue that DeWalt offers better build quality due to their long-standing in the power tool industry, we believe that both manufacturers offer high-quality products. You can feel this quality immediately when you hold any power tools from DeWalt.
They source their parts from around the world and maintain strict quality standards. This makes sense because they both market their power tools as professional-grade products. The moving parts are made and fitted with extreme precision, resulting in solid, high-quality power tools.
It is difficult to find any flaws in the build quality of either brand’s power tools, which means neither is better than the other in this department.
Round 2 – Design
Ergonomically, both brands produce some very good power tool designs that provide comfort and ease to the user. Of course, everyone has their own preferences and design is mostly subjective. However, Kobalt power tools are integrated with newer technologies, bringing innovation.
You’ll often find technologies like laser etching, brushless motors, and more, which are sometimes missing in DeWalt’s range of power tools. On the other hand, DeWalt offers dual-battery power tools, which is a great plus for avid users.
Still, Kobalt’s overall integration with newer technologies brings innovation to power tool design, which gives them a slight edge in this category.
Round 3 – Availability
DeWalt power tools are available in nearly all tool and hardware stores in any village, town, or city in the US. International woodworkers and other professionals can buy DeWalt power tools online from Amazon.
Over the decades, DeWalt has established a vast distribution network in the US and worldwide, which means it is easy to find their power tools no matter where you live. The availability of Kobalt power tools, on the other hand, is different.
Their power tools are exclusively sold at Lowe’s stores because Lowe’s owns Kobalt, and it is their exclusive tool brand. However, they have expanded to Amazon and will hopefully expand to other chains and online platforms to address availability issues.
Round 4 – Range of Power Tools
DeWalt is the clear winner in the range category, as they offer a far wider range of power tools than Kobalt, along with more tool variations and types. However, it does not mean that Kobalt does not offer a good, comprehensive range of power tools, but they are nowhere near DeWalt’s wide range.
Round 5 – Reliability (Durability)
Good quality results in reliability, which brings long-lasting power tools durable enough to stand the test of time. DeWalt is globally known for high-quality, reliable power tools, and they have an advantage due to their longevity in the industry.
This market perception of DeWalt is not unfounded, as their power tools actually are some of the most durable and reliable ones you can buy, which is what makes them best-sellers. Therefore it isn’t surprising that Lifestory Research puts DeWalt at the top of their list of America’s Most Trusted Power Tool Brands.
Despite Kobalt ranking ninth in this list, we did not find it to be lacking in reliability. They make quality power tools that are equally durable and reliable. It’s just that they haven’t been around for nearly as long to tilt the market in their favor, especially in terms of reliability over an established giant like DeWalt.
Round 6 – Performance
Both brands offer great performing power tools. However, when we dived deeper into each brand’s individual power tools and compared performances, we found a few Kobalt power tools to perform better.
Of course, this was our experience, and many other professionals may have experienced the opposite. Based on our experience, we would give this round to Kobalt. Still, DeWalt’s overall history of constructing high-quality, durable, reliable, and lasting power tools puts us in a difficult spot.
Round 7 – Pricing
Power tools are priced differently depending on where you buy them from. However, Kobalt is easily the better option in terms of pricing because their power tools are almost always less expensive than their DeWalt counterparts.
However, the price difference is not too high as you generally pay around 10-15 percent more for a similar DeWalt power tool. This is likely due to the long-standing following, demand, and reliability associated with the DeWalt brand.
Of course, you can always find special deals or discounts that often make DeWalt power tools less expensive than the regular retail prices of Kobalt counterparts.
Round 8 – Warranty
Typically, DeWalt offers a 3-year manufacturer’s warranty with their power tools, whereas Kobalt offers different warranties ranging between 3 to 5 years. However, Kobalt also offers limited lifetime warranties on some of its power tools, which is always great.
Our Final Thoughts
As you can probably tell, the final score of our comparison is 3-2 in Kobalt’s favor. This win is surprising, even for us, because the market perception has always been in favor of DeWalt over Kobalt. However, our comprehensive comparison of DeWalt vs. Kobalt power tools proved differently.
At the end of the day, it is a narrow win, and we wouldn’t argue with anyone who feels that DeWalt is superior. These are both great power tool brands that bring excellent build quality, reliability, durability, and performance to the table, which means you can’t go wrong with either.
However, if you want slightly better design, pricing, and warranty, go with Kobalt. If you prefer the availability and a wider range of power tools, we recommend DeWalt.