Best Drill Bits for Wood

Use wood drilling bit to drill a hole on wood.

All the drill bits you will see in the market look alike, except for their variations in diameter and length. Besides, you’ll see a wide array of drill bit brands and models when shopping around for drill bits, further complicating the selection process. As such, it will be best to be properly guided when choosing drill bits for wood. 

The ideal drill bits for wood are those meant for drilling wood. Remember that the drill bits used for metal, masonry, glass, and tiles are not specifically designed for wood. Drill bits for wood also come in different types. You can find twist bits, Forstner bits, Countersink bits, auger bits, spade bits, brad point bits, self-feed bits, installer bits, and hole saws. You will soon learn more about these different drill bits as you read this post. 

Facts to Know about Woodworking Drill Bits

As mentioned above, when working with wood, you should select only those drill bits meant for wood. Bits come in a wide array of lengths and diameters. You will find short and long drill bits. Short bits are best for drilling into tight spaces, while long drill bits are perfect for drilling lengthy holes through walls and other thicker materials.

You will also notice that drill bits come with different shanks. The shank, of course, is the drill bit end that the chuck grasps. The standard shank is the straight shank. Nevertheless, you can also find shanks that allow for quick release. You can also find SDS for SDS chucks and hexagonal ones.

Types of Woodworking Drill Bits & Their Best Applications

To facilitate the choosing process for you, you must know the following types of woodworking drill bits in the market today. This way, you can quickly differentiate one from the other and zero in on the ideal drill bit for your needs:

1) Standard Wood Drill bits

The standard wood drill bits come with a centering point—a pointed tip that you press onto the wood before drilling. This centering point enables the drill bit to stay centered without sliding away from the drilling point. 

These standard wood drill bits come in a set of seven with diameters ranging from three to ten millimeters. You can use these standard drill bits for hardwood and softwood, and you can do typical drilling jobs with these drill bits.

2) HSS Metal Drill Bits

Another type of drill bit is the HSS metal drill bit. HSS means High-Speed Steel. These drill bits get used for drilling holes in steel and other non-ferrous metals. You can use these drill bits to drill holes up to 13mm in diameter. However, However, most woodworkers would rather use an HSS metal drill bit for a quick drill on a wood piece.

Since these drill bits are tagged as high speed, they can handle hot temperatures generated when drilling metal. You can also use these drill bits for drilling holes in softer materials like wood and plastic.

Nevertheless, it will be best if you do not use them in drilling through concrete blocks, bricks, plaster, etc. These materials can damage the cutting edge of these HSS bits quickly. Besides, these drill bits have a coating that prevents them from overheating.

3) Auger Drill Bits

Another type of drill bit is the auger bit. Auger bits feature a threaded tip that enables the bit to stay on the right point, and this threaded tip also pulls the bit through the material (timber).

Another part of this drill bit is the cutting ear. This part does the cutting. Besides, you can sharpen this part. The remaining parts of this drill bit get fluted. These flutes enable the drill bit to remove materials or waste timber. 

Sometimes, this drill bit will get stuck inside the hole. You only need to wind out the drill bit and begin drilling again. 

Auger bits might split the timber. Hence, using this drill bit, you must be careful when drilling mortice locks. In this case, you need to clamp the material to prevent the bit from cracking or splitting the timber.

4) Speed Drill Bit

You often use the speed drill bit to drill holes for pipes and cables. With this drill bit, you can drill up to 11mm holes. When using this drill bit, you should ensure that you drill at high speed and the right angle. This way, you can prevent the splintering of wood. 

When drilling through thick materials (wood), you can also use this drill bit. You can bore until the bit’s tip comes out on the material’s other side. Then, drill on the other side to do away with the last piece. This way, you can produce a smooth-sided hole. 

This speed drill bit is absolutely comes in handy when drilling a hole in a thick wood,

5) Countersink Bit

Countersink bits are bits that countersink a hole to let the head of the screw sit flush onto the hole. You can use combined countersink and drill bits with quick-release shanks to quickly work the holes. You can find various countersink bits for different screw sizes. 

6) Hole Saw

A hole saw is a drill, but it has saw-like teeth. You will often use a hole saw when drilling large holes in not-too-thick materials. Hole saws come in various diameters. When using hole saw, ensure you’re working at low speed. 

7) Flip Drivers

A flip driver is a screwdriver bit on one end and a combination of pilot and a countersink bit on another end. You have to flip the end of the bit within the quick-release holder to change the application. This way, you only need to use one drill type for your drilling and screwing. 


There are myriads of drill bit types that can be confusing to a newbie in the use of power drills. Hence, you need to read through this post to quickly narrow your options to the most appropriate drill bit options and zero in on the best drill bits for your needs. 

Moreover, after reading this post, you can now differentiate the hole saw from the standard drill bit sets and other types of drill bits. Besides, you will be more confident in selecting and using drill bits when drilling in wood.  

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