Which power tool brand has the best warranty?

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Powertool WarrantyThe power tool industry is mighty competitive and some brands are backing their products with massive warranties.

However not all manufacturer warranties are created equal so we looked at 11 brands offering corded and lithium-ion cordless power tools for trade use and took the magnifying glass to their warranties and then double checked our findings with the companies. We did not look at DIY brands as generally they will not be warranted for trade or commercial use.

Generally we found warranties to be impressive, and far improved from some years ago when one-year warranties were the norm. Here’s what we found (table below):

  • Many brands require tradies register to gain additional warranties over a standard “out of the box” warranty. While this is an additional hurdle that could easily be forgotten it may help you claim down the track with a paper trail and all your receipts in one spot.
  • Hilti has the longest tool warranty out of the box – a massive “lifetime of the tool”, followed by AEG with six years (extendable from three with registration). Milwaukee comes in third with five years out of the box.
  • Metabo has the most impressive lithium ion battery warranty – 3 years out of the box and unlimited charges.
  • Fair wear and tear such as carbon brushes wearing out is generally not warranted, however Hilti and DeWalt respectively offer two and one year exceptions to this (conditions apply).
  • Festool and Fein have impressive 3 year tool and battery warranties (with registration – 1 year without) and in true German style, specify how many battery charge cycles they warrant: 700 cycles in three years. TTT got zee calculator out and found zat equaled 233 charges per year over a three year warranty period or 4.4871 charges per week. Some brands are less definitive saying they simply don’t warrant “fair wear and tear”.
  • Tool brands may not warrant your tool if it continued to be used after it showed signs of defects. If your tool starts to smell weird, or smoke, that’s probably a good sign you should stop using it.
  • Damage from abuse is not warranted. If you drop your tool off the roof or it goes for a swim, your warranty claim is likely to be denied. Brands will also know if you have been regularly smashing your tool: jamming it, overloading it and using it for applications it was not meant for (although motor overload protection is improving in tools). They want to keep your business, but they could use this as a reason to deny a claim. Maybe buy a bigger tool?
  • Keep your purchase receipts or register the tool with the brand. You might get additional warranty periods and you’ll definitely need the receipts to hold the tax man and the tool companies accountable if you claim the warranty. Charge ON!

Warranties as at 03/10/2014 (In alphabetical order of brand)

Corded and Lithium Powertool Warranty Lithium Battery and Charger Warranty
AEG 3 Years (6 Years with registration within 30 days of purchase) 1 Year (3 Years with registration within 30 days of purchase)
Bosch 1 Year (3 Years with registration within 12 months of purchase) 1 Year (2 Years with registration within 12 months of purchase)
DeWalt 3 Years with first year of no cost repairs when required because of fair wear and tear – conditions apply. 3 Years (subject to “fair wear and tear” test in the 3rd year)
Hilti Lifetime with first 2 years of no cost repairs when required because of general wear and tear – conditions apply. 2 Year warranty including 2 years of no cost repairs when required because of general wear and tear – conditions apply.
Hitachi 3 Years 2 Years
Makita 3 Years 1 Year
Metabo 1 Year (3 Years with registration within 4 weeks of purchase) 3 Years
Milwaukee 5 Years 2 Years
Panasonic 1 Year 1 Year
Festool 1 Year (3 Years with registration) 1 Year (3 Years with registration) or 700 charging cycles – whichever occurs first
Fein 1 Year (3 Years with registration within 6 weeks of purchase) 1 Year (3 Years with registration within 6 weeks of purchase) or 700 charge cycles – whichever occurs first

Disclaimer:

This information is general and individual terms and conditions apply to all warranties and some tools have different warranties. Also, some of these warranty periods are quite new and may not apply to tools you bought even recently, and may change in the future rendering this information out-of-date. For specific information, consult the brand’s warranty statement directly – linked (correct at time of publishing) through their names above for details on individual warranties and the ACCC for your statutory warranty rights. NO warranties are made by TTT!

Image | Bigstock

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About Author

Tom is the founder and publisher of Tools Trades Toys. He has been working as an editor and producing content for the trades for around five years. He loves to tell a good story.

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