In 1925, Raymond Dewalt received the first radial arm saw patent. The innovation led to the company’s rapid growth, making it worthy of acquisition in less than 15 years. Eleven years later, it was finally resold to the American-based company Black & Decker.
To date, Dewalt exclusively manufactures premium power tools, targeting professional trade craftsmen, metalworkers, and woodworkers.
Where are DeWalt tools made and who owns it?
Dewalt produces many of its parts overseas (mainly in China and Brazil) but assembles them in its manufacturing facilities based in the United States (including in the following states: CT, IN, MD, KY, SC and TN). This allows them to test the tools before they get shipped to consumers. This quality control system is essential as its tools are used for the most challenging tasks. The company offers some of the toughest power tools geared for professionals at relatively high prices. They also have some manufacturing in Italy, the UK and Eastern Europe for these local markets.
They often work with local distributors so this makes it easy to get the machine maintained. This includes recalibrating the machine or getting replacement parts. This is a big advantage over other brands. You can also get more information about their products in these support centers.
The product reliability, good warranties, and continuous innovation make the Dewalt products a decent investment. So, Dewalt is indeed a good brand.
At the turn of this millennium, most Dewalt products were produced overseas in China, Korea, Japan, Thailand, and Mexico. In 2013, Dewalt announced its initiative branded as “DeWalt Built in the USA with Global Materials,” which was recently rebranded as “DeWalt Made in the USA with Global Materials.”
Dewalt partially shifted the manufacturing process to the United States following the announcement. For most of the product lines, the parts are still produced overseas. Yet, they are assembled in seven local manufacturing facilities.
Dewalt’s motive behind this initiative is to give back to the US economy by creating jobs for American workers. Most importantly, the company is catering to the American pride of its consumers, who wouldn’t mind paying a little more for a local product.
DeWalt Product Lines
Dewalt offers a variety of product ranges categorized and labeled based on their maximum initial battery voltage. Many products come in convenient kits, including a practical bag, a charger, and an additional battery.
The company primarily focuses on the middle-range and high-end product lines, thus reducing its amateur product range. If you’re a professional, full-time contractor, Dewalt’s products will stand your persistent, tough undertakings.
Still, the 18V and the 12V Max series offer a limited range of affordable, innovative tools for lighter use. In this section, we’ll briefly highlight and review Dewalt’s main product series.
12V Max Xtreme Sub-Compact Series
This series features an impact wrench, impact driver, drill driver, screwdriver, and hammer drill. Their small size and reduced weight make them easy to handle and carry around. The products are supported by a brushless motor and good battery life.
Still, compared to Dewalts’s upper ranges, the 12V series falls short in terms of power.
Nevertheless, this series offers a valuable package for starters.
It’s noteworthy, though, that the series doesn’t entirely satisfy the demand for affordable everyday power tools. It constitutes more low-voltage professional accessories than beginner tools. Other power tool brands might make a more reasonable choice if you’re searching for a broader range of light-duty tools.
18V Cordless Tools
The 18V series is more affordable than the standard 20V Max series because the amount of power is reduced. Most 18V products can give extra power by using 20V Max batteries with an additional 20V MAX* Battery adapter.
The 18V series doesn’t compromise on quality. It has the added benefit of using lightweight lithium batteries, making it lighter than other models. However, most customers have complained that the batteries don’t last long enough to complete regular tasks, requiring recharge in less than an hour.
20V Max Series
The 20V Max is the standard and most extensive Dewalt product range, including more than 200 products. The products mostly use lithium-ion batteries, featuring a standard tool size and a brushed motor.
Users appreciate this range because it’s lightweight and has extra power over the 12V range. The 20V Max products are slightly more expensive than similar rival products. Still, they have more handy features like LED lights for dark workspaces.
This is Dewalt’s most expensive, overpowered range, featuring the Flexvolt Technology. The heavy-duty power tools of this range are typically corded. However, Dewalt provides some cordless versions of most models, making use of their high-capacity batteries.
Cordless tools are convenient for outdoor projects where the power supply isn’t stable, like construction sites. You can go for the more affordable corded counterparts if you’re mainly working indoors.
The 60V Flexvolt series is appreciated for its power and sturdiness. However, the main drawback of this range is the heavy weight of their batteries, which can’t be switched with lighter ones.
Dewalt Product Warranty
The comprehensive warranties offered by Dewalt are an additional justification for their higher prices. Most Dewalt cordless power tools have a 3-year warranty, a guaranteed 90-day money-back policy, and a free service contract for one year.
The DeWalt Mechanics Tools have a full lifetime warranty, while some hand tools have a limited lifetime warranty. A limited selection of Dewalt pneumatic tools are offered with a 7-year warranty, a guaranteed 3-day money-back policy, and a one-year service agreement.
Dewalt’s innovation started from the day of its inception almost a century ago. Today, the company continues to embrace the latest technology in the market, like lithium-ion batteries. It also continuously raises the bar with its dedicated research and development.
The Flexvolt technology, introduced in 2016, will allow you to use the same 60V batteries for your 20V, 60V, and 120V tools. The 120V tools require two 60V batteries. You can also use your 20V Max charger for the 60V batteries.
However, the 60V batteries are significantly heavier than their 20V counterparts, making their tools challenging to maneuver. Moreover, although you can use the 60V batteries for 20V tools, you can’t use them the other way around.
Dewalt collaborated with the rugged phone specialist, Global Mobile Communications, to offer a handset that endures rigorous circumstances. In 2014, Dewalt entered the flourishing “tough phone” market with its Android-powered handset, the MD501.
The handset features a bigger battery, offering up to eight hours of talk time. It can also operate in extreme temperature ranges (−4 to 140 °F) and can endure drops from a height of 6 ft 7 in.
Finally, Is Dewalt a good brand?
Like many other brands, today’s Dewalt tools are generally quite good. They still perform competitively compared to other brands. Indeed, Dewalt has built a loyal customer base that would gladly return to the brand after the products wear with time.
Whether its products are manufactured locally or overseas, Dewalt ensures its high-end standards across all its lines. Still, in a socially responsible initiative, the company has chosen to incur higher costs by moving the final phases of the manufacturing process to the United States.
We have discussed Black and Decker here if you want to learn more about alternatives to DeWalt.