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The Best Hammer - 2021

Last updated on July 27, 2021

We looked at the top 7 Hammers and dug through the reviews from 23 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Hammers.

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Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Hammers

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  Our Top Pick

CRAFTSMAN CMHT51398 Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval

CRAFTSMAN

CMHT51398 Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

Overall Take

Balanced and ReliableThis well-made hammer has a comfortable feel.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus Best Reviews Tips. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
  Runner Up

IRWIN Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

IRWIN

Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

Overall Take

Vibration-Reducing HandleYou'll feel less impact with this ergonomic handle.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus BestReviews, Gadget Review, Toolz View, Home Use Tool, Healthy Handyman. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" You’ll appreciate the fiberglass handle that features an ergonomic design with a ProTouch grip that gives you more control while also minimizing fatigue by dampening vibrations. The head is crafted from forged steel for better durability and the 16-ounce weight..."
Cons
"The head is quite soft to be forged steel."
  We Also Like

Estwing Forged Steel Tinner’s Hammer, 18-Ounce

Estwing

Forged Steel Tinner's Hammer, 18-Ounce

Overall Take

Great for MetalworkA sturdy grip makes this a metalwork staple.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus Best Reviews Tips, The Spruce. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Despite the size and weight, this hammer comes with shock reduction grip to minimize the amount of shock and vibration your wrists absorb after a strike."
  Also Great

EFFICERE Magnetic Nail Starter Claw Hammer, 8-Ounce

EFFICERE

Magnetic Nail Starter Claw Hammer, 8-Ounce

Overall Take

Handy Household ToolA magnetic nail holder and efficient design make this a household go-to.

Experts Included
DWYM Tools Experts plus BestReviews, 5 Product Reviews, Best Reviews Tips, Toolz View, This Old House. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Features a forged heated steel alloy material which offers ultimate performance and durability. The convenient handle offers a firm grip and ensures that your hand doesn’t get fatigued."
Cons
"The head is not well polished."
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
14

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the hammers available to purchase.
7

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

23

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: BestReviews, 5 Product Reviews, Best Reviews Tips, Toolz View, This Old House.

27,224

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 7 Hammers and also dug through the reviews from 23 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Hammers.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Don't Waste Your Money Seal of Approval
Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

CRAFTSMAN CMHT51398 Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce


Our Expert Score

9.2
1 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.6
1,403 user reviews

Our Take

With a well-balanced fiberglass handle, this hammer is easy to hold. It's even easier to work with, thanks to the strong steel head. The claw can work out some of the toughest nails without bending or wear.


The Best Bang For Your Buck

EFFICERE Magnetic Nail Starter Claw Hammer, 8-Ounce

Our Expert Score

7.2
5 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.4
4,800 user reviews

Our Take

The modern design and materials on the handle let this hammer fit easily into anyone's hand. It is lightweight but still able to tackle most any job around the house. The magnetic nail holder is a nice added touch.

What other experts liked

Features a forged heated steel alloy material which offers ultimate performance and durability. The convenient handle offers a firm grip and ensures that your hand doesn’t get fatigued.
- 5 Product Reviews
The anti-vibration fiberglass handle holds the promise of a comfortable grip. Also, since the handle is anti-slip, this hammer won’t slip off your hand even when soaked in sweat. The built-in magnetic holder is yet another feature you will appreciate since it improves safety and permits single-hand operation.
- Toolz View
Equipped with a drop-forged steel head and has an ergonomic grip with included grooves for a secure hold. The hammer features a sharpened claw to help grip nails embedded in wood and has a magnetic nail starter for one-handed hammering.
- This Old House

What other experts didn't like

The head is not well polished.
- Toolz View
The included nail starter has a difficult time gripping larger nails - Its lightweight design requires a significant amount of force to drive large nails.
- This Old House

Overall Product Rankings

CRAFTSMAN CMHT51398 Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

1. CRAFTSMAN CMHT51398 Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

Overall Score: 9.4
Reviews Included: 4

IRWIN Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

2. IRWIN Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

Overall Score: 9.2
Reviews Included: 8

Estwing Forged Steel Tinner’s Hammer, 18-Ounce

3. Estwing Forged Steel Tinner’s Hammer, 18-Ounce

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 5

Edward Tools Oak Claw Hammer, 16-Ounce

4. Edward Tools Oak Claw Hammer, 16-Ounce

Overall Score: 8.7
Reviews Included: 4

Stalwart 75-HT3000 Natural Hardwood Claw Hammer, 16-Ounce

5. Stalwart 75-HT3000 Natural Hardwood Claw Hammer, 16-Ounce

Overall Score: 8.6
Reviews Included: 7

EFFICERE Magnetic Nail Starter Claw Hammer, 8-Ounce

6. EFFICERE Magnetic Nail Starter Claw Hammer, 8-Ounce

Overall Score: 8.4
Reviews Included: 6

REAL STEEL 0508 Rubber Grip Sledge Hammer, 3-Pound

7. REAL STEEL 0508 Rubber Grip Sledge Hammer, 3-Pound

Overall Score: 6.5
Reviews Included: 3

Our Hammer Findings


CRAFTSMAN CMHT51398 Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

What We Liked: With a well-balanced fiberglass handle, this hammer is easy to hold. It’s even easier to work with, thanks to the strong steel head. The claw can work out some of the toughest nails without bending or wear.

Simplemost Media


IRWIN Fiberglass Hammer, 16-Ounce

What We Liked: The steel head on this hammer is suitable for any household. The grip, though, makes it a dream to use. The fiberglass handle is built to reduce the vibration from impact, and the curved Pro-Touch covering helps prevent slippage.

Simplemost Media


Estwing Forged Steel Tinner’s Hammer, 18-Ounce

What We Liked: This tinner’s hammer is primarily designed for work with sheet metal. As such, it’s a bit heavier than traditional “garage” hammers, but still feels light in your hand. The shock-absorbing grip helps anyone wield it with accuracy.

Simplemost Media


Edward Tools Oak Claw Hammer, 16-Ounce

What We Liked: The carbon steel head on this hammer can stand up to most any job. It comes sheathed in a traditional oak handle that is somewhat long but easy to grip. The increased curvature on the claw gives extra leverage when removing stubborn nails.

Simplemost Media


EFFICERE Magnetic Nail Starter Claw Hammer, 8-Ounce

What We Liked: The modern design and materials on the handle let this hammer fit easily into anyone’s hand. It is lightweight but still able to tackle most any job around the house. The magnetic nail holder is a nice added touch.

Simplemost Media

Our Hammer Buying Guide

If you’re buying the right hammer, you should only need to do it once. That’s crucial, because not much gets done around the house without one. Pictures don’t get hung, unwanted nails stay stuck in pieces of wood and almost any carpentry project becomes unworkable.

Simplemost Media

We all know what a standard household hammer looks like, and on the surface, there’s not much to the basic design: A sturdy metal striking face, encased in a wood or fiberglass handle. But there are many variations on this design, and picking the right one for the task is essential.

For hanging those paintings or almost anything to do with standard wood nails, you need a claw hammer. These are the most popular types for use around the house, with a smooth striking face that is flat or slightly convex. Some prefer a waffled pattern on the face, and these are known as framing hammers. The pattern does help the hammer land more solid blows on the nail head, and it’s best suited for heavier work. Claw hammers can range in weight from 10 to 20 ounces, with a sweet spot around 16 ounces for most household jobs. Framing hammers tend to be at least 2 ounces heavier.

Simplemost Media

Whether you’re driving nails or pulling them out with the claw, a solid grip is key. Traditional wood handles are fine for light work, and they will help to absorb some of the shock from repeated blows. But for heavier jobs and general longevity, many handymen prefer a steel or fiberglass handle. Rubber grips on this type of handle will help you keep a firm grasp.

Those general rules for handle material apply to most any other kind of hammer as well, such as the ball-peen hammer. This type has the same flat face but is equipped on the other end with a metal ball (called a peen) instead of a claw. This is a metal worker’s tool, used for driving punches or hardening metal, among other jobs. Depending on the use, ball-peen hammers may need to be as light as 4 ounces or as heavy as 32 ounces.

Simplemost Media

Remember, no matter what type of job you’re taking on, buy for durability first. The first time a hammer handle breaks on you will probably be the last time you buy cheap.

DWYM Fun Fact

It’s hard to imagine hammers without nails, but crude stone clubs were being used for thousands of years before nails came along. It’s unclear exactly when nails were invented, but the earliest archeological evidence dates to around 3400 B.C. in Egypt. Unlike the constantly shifting design of the hammer, nails haven’t fundamentally changed since those first iron versions.

The Hammer Tips and Advice

  • Most of the wear and tear on a hammer won’t come from striking nails — it’ll come from pulling them. If you’re using a standard hammer (especially one with a wood handle), reconsider using it to pull nails longer than 2 inches. For that, you may want to invest in a prybar or nail puller.
  • Another common type of hammer is the sledgehammer or club hammer. The wider face and heavier head on these tools reflect their primary use: Driving stakes, breaking up masonry or generally hitting things that need to be hit hard. You’ll need less of a firm grip with this type of hammer, but you will need a longer handle. The key is to swing wide and let the weight do all the work.