The 7 Types Of Drill Bits For Metal (2024) – Which One To Use?

Types Of Drill Bits For Metal

Are you a DIY enthusiast?

Or a professional worker who needs to do a lot of drilling?

Then you know how important it is to have a proper drill bit to perform basic tasks. You can not deny the need of drilling a bit as this is necessary in all sorts of works.

There are many types of drilling bits and these perform individual tasks. Some are for woods, some for plastic, and some are for metals.

If you are here, I bet you want your drill project to be completed quickly with the perfect drill bit.

This is why we are here with the different types of bits that are suitable for your metal projects.

What type of drill bit do I need for metal?

Choosing the right drill bit for metal is a very important task.

If the bit does not match with the project or application, if the diameter of the drill bit does not match the hole size you require then the volume of the work might not match your desire.

The right choice of bits extends the longevity of your bits as well as does the job for you. 

For doing metal works all you need is high-speed steel (HSS) drill bits.

The bits have a strong coating on them which makes them solid and corrosion resistant. They are stronger than the other bits in the market. They can easily cut through any metals, metal sheets, etc.  

The second option for dealing with metals can be the cobalt ones. They are considered to be a little upgraded than the HSS bits. These bits are capable of drilling through hardened steel, stainless steel, etc. 

The third option can be the carbide ones. They are the most upgraded and rock hard drill bits available.

It is generally used for professional or productional purposes. No, matter how hard the metal is, this type of drill bits can dig through with ease. 

It is suggested not to use the second and third types of bits if you are doing your DIY projects.

It would be better to use them for professional purposes. Still, the types of metal drill bits are described below. Hope they will be of help.

7 Types Of Drill Bits For Metal

1. High-speed drill bits:

These drill bits are also known as twisted drill bits. They are the common types of drill bits which are made of vanadium and tungsten. Their specialty is drilling through steel and other metal objects.

The reason behind calling them twisted bits is because they have a cylindrical shank. Some of them have modified ¼’ hex shanks as well.

The size range is from 0.08 to 12mm. If you want you can drill woods and plastic by using them.

These general-purpose drill bits have some limitations as well. That is they might clog easily while drilling through the surface. The smaller bits are sometimes fragile if the metal is thick.

2. Titanium Nitride drill bits:

These drill bits have all the features of the previous HSS drill bits. The difference is they are made of titanium.

The coating of titanium withstands overheating. This expands the longevity of the bits.

The coating is so strong that it increases the lifespan up to six times. They are so well built that the requirement of maintenance is really low.

While working with them the tips of the bits should be sharpened wisely. The sharpening removes the coating from the bits and reduces the lifespan.

Because of such good manufacturing quality, the bits are found expensive.

3. Multi-purpose bits:

The good thing about these bits is that they can be used for multiple purposes. Not only for metal, but these bits are also capable of drilling through woods, plastic, ceramic tiles, and masonry.

You can call them all-rounder bits if you want. They can be used in both hammer or rotary modes.

If your purpose is to drill through masonry it would be better to use them in the rotary mode because the hammer use of the bits damages their tips.

For widely masonry uses the recommendation is to use the bits made for such purpose.

Without hard masonry use, there is nothing to consider about these bits. The hammer mode should be avoided if you want the tips to last long. Otherwise, it is a great bit to drill through metals.

4. Cobalt HSS bits:

This is another HSS bit which is a great performer on metal. The precision-ground, alloyed high-speed steel and cobalt give them all the required features of a metal drill bit.

They are resistant to heat and abrasion. These manufacturing qualities make them a long-lasting metal drill bit.

They can easily drill through all sorts of steels such as carbon, stainless, cast iron, bronze, etc. There is no doubt that these drill bits are top-notch products.

There is one thing to be mentioned about these bits that is, they are not for wood. Being made for metals they might harm or break the wooden surface you are working on.

5. Reduced shank HSS bits:

These bits are perfect drill bits for digging large holes through metals. The diameter of the bits are wide.

The shank is kept comparatively reduced so that it can fit your drill chuck with ease.

Suppose the capacity of your chuck is 13mm. You will be able to drill a hole with a maximum diameter of 16mm by using these reduced shank bits.

If you are planning to dig using pilot drills, then the drill should not exceed 25% of the diameter as this might lead to trouble.

The important thing to remember about these bits is that they can only drill big holes. If you want to drill small holes then this is not for you.

6. HSS rivet bits:

From the title, you have already understood that they are bits to dig into rivets. The bits are so long-lasting that you will be able to dig a lot of holes by investing a short amount of money.

While drilling the limit should not exceed one and a quarter times the diameter of the hole. For your information, the drills only make small holes. If you want to drill large holes then go for the previous ones.

One thing should be noted that the drilled holes should be larger than the diameter of the rivet. This is because it allows the expansion of the rivet and reduces the fatigue of the metals.

7. Countersink bits:

These bits are the best drills for pilot holes. They come in 13mm, 16mm, and 19mm. The types are different too. They are different for metals and woods.

They are capable of creating holes or opening at the top of the pilot hole.

Countersink screws and rivets are used as conjunctions with the surface material.


We are at the very end of this article.

These are the types of metal bits that we wanted to talk about. The market offers so many types of drill bits and we know how confusing it is to reach to the conclusion.

The more sturdy and long-lasting the bits will be, the better they will perform.

Remember to consider what material you are drilling, how much strength does it require to drill through etc. These factors will be beneficial for you to choose the right type of bit for you. 

Thanks a lot for being with us till the journey. All the best.

Leave a Comment