Is Ryobi a good brand?
More homeowners have asked this question before because of their innovative designs that hit the market several years ago.
One of the most desirable elements of these tools is that they can all be used with the same single battery.
This is a great feature compared to other tools that require you to invest money into multiple cells for different projects.
With that said, it has led many to wonder whether Ryobi is one of the best tool brands for residential and commercial projects alike.
Could it possibly replace the likes of Hitachi, Dewalt, and Milwaukee?
Is Ryobi a Good Brand?
Are you wondering about the same thing?
In this guide, we’ll dissect the pros and cons of Ryobi as well as whether there are alternative brands that could be a better option for either professionals or DIY handymen.
The General Opinion
When it comes to Ryobi tools, it’s not a direct hit or miss depending on who you ask.
There are plenty of DIYers who find it to be their favorite tool brand, as well as professionals who use their equipment regularly.
You’ll also find specific camps that find their tools to be more residential-friendly in comparison to more massive duty brands, like Dewalt.
Then again, does this mean they are less useful for heavy-duty projects?
If there’s one thing everyone can agree on, it’s that Ryobi is an incredibly cost-effective brand with impeccable branding thanks to its iconic neon green design.
The company, as a whole, has a solid lineup of tools, with their 18V One+ line being the most popular, especially if you’re in the market for cordless power tools.
Also, there’s no doubt that their interchangeable battery design is what makes them one of the more popular tool brands for home DIYers searching for a great deal.
Overall, the build quality of their tools could be lacking, depending on how often you use them and the type of project you’re getting into.
Hobbyists are bound to see the most benefits from their tools.
You can expect that for more substantial duty projects, the power and build quality of the tools isn’t going to meet your demanding needs.
Advantages of Using Ryobi Tools
Before you make a final decision on the tool brand you’ll settle with for your project, let’s go over the most notable benefits that Ryobi brings to the table.
Hobbyist: Battery Convenience
Most homeowners would agree that the most convenient part of any Ryobi tool is that you can use a single battery for an onslaught of devices.
Instead of having to invest hundreds of dollars in replacement batteries for corded or other branded cordless tools, you can save a lot of money by having a single battery for everything.
Another exciting feature that hobbyists will appreciate is that the interchangeable battery can be used for both indoor and outdoor tools.
This adds to the convenience of the brand’s most significant selling feature.
Professional: Lightweight and Convenient
Although it is frequently accepted that professional contractors and construction workers will use corded tools because of their immense power, cordless can be preferred in certain instances.
For example, if you are making home renovations and don’t want dirty tools affecting the client’s surroundings, such as carpets, cordless tools can be preferable.
Considering all Ryobi tools are cordless, you can guarantee that their overall design is one of the most convenient to have in your hands.
Each of the power tools seems to be effortlessly balanced and lightweight enough to be used for up to an hour without any signs of fatigue.
You’ll also appreciate how plenty of their power tools are small enough to fit into hard-to-reach areas.
This makes them a great go-to for professionals who don’t want to deal with the hassle of corded power tools.
If you spend a lot of time browsing through hardware stores and their flyers, you will find that Ryobi frequently has sales available.
With these, you can easily get quality tools for less than retail.
Many find that this is preferable, especially when compared to more prominent brands such as Dewalt and Milwaukee, who rarely have giant sales on their tools.
Often, you might be able to save more than 60% on a single tool or be able to get a discount on a set of tools and accessories to help you build your construction kit.
Both professionals and hobbyists will love having the ability to save on their tools, especially if you are only doing a small project around your house.
You won’t have to invest a lot of money into a tool that you are likely to grab once yearly.
As a professional, you’ll be glad that you won’t have to spend several hundred dollars on a set of tools to add to your existing array of equipment because of the low prices of Ryobi products.
Both: Product Availability
The sheer number of products that Ryobi has available is what makes them one of the most impressive tool brands on the market.
They not only carry traditional power tools but an onslaught of general devices, as well.
Homeowners and professional contractors will be able to find drills, saws, impact drivers, multi-tools, grinders, and more, which are ideal for everyday tasks.
You’ll also be able to get your hands on quite a few specialty items, including:
- Workshop blowers
- Hand vacuums
- Bolt cutters
- External power sources
- Camping lanterns
- Pressure washers
- Car chargers
Considering all of their regular and specialty tools are designed within the same environment, it only helps to add to the versatility of your existing Ryobi gear.
You can continue to add more devices to your collection over the years, with the added convenience of using the same interchangeable battery for all of your essentials.
Overall, both professionals and hobbyists can agree that they are one of the most versatile tool brands on the market, which can make their products even more appealing.
Hobbyists: Impressive Battery Life
One of the most frustrating aspects of using power tools is their likelihood of running out of charge before you’ve finished your job.
Because Ryobi is a cordless brand, they are continually improving the battery life of their tools to ensure that professionals and hobbyists have plenty of power to tackle small and large projects.
With that said, their devices certainly don’t perform as well as corded tools, which is to be expected with an external power source.
Still, most hobbyists won’t need to invest in corded tools, especially if all you’re doing is hanging picture frames, making adjustments to door frames, or other types of light woodworking.
The smaller batteries the company has available can offer up to 30 minutes of continuous use on a single charge.
At the same time, the more abundant options can last longer than an hour without needing to be charged.
The length of time that it takes for Ryobi tools to charge is much shorter than you would expect, too, which is convenient for both professionals and DIYers alike.
Both: Consistent Battery Design
Instead of forcing consumers to invest in new batteries for their new tools, Ryobi has chosen to use the same battery design over the years.
This allows you to continue using your old cells with modern equipment.
Not only is this a fantastic way to help their customers save money, but it’s also far more convenient than having to remember which batteries are for your old and new tools.
This feature is by far one of the most beneficial aspects of choosing Ryobi over other tool brands, especially if you’re looking for substantial savings.
With that said, you are bound to see a significant change in performance between older generation batteries and newer generations.
For example, the new lithium-ion batteries hold far more charge, charge faster, and are more energy efficient for large-scale projects.
As long as you intend to use the tools for lightweight tasks, you’ll find the batteries are likely to last over years of moderate use.
This is a great advantage to protecting your investment.
Disadvantages of Using Ryobi Tools
When you consider the complaints that most people have about Ryobi tools, they mostly come from professionals, which suggests this brand is better suited for hobbyists.
A few of the most notable concerns people have had with the brand include:
Professional: Toy-Like Design
If you’re in the market for a heavy-duty set of tools that look like they’re built to last over years of use, Ryobi is not the best brand to choose.
The majority of their products are lightweight and constructed seemingly with an assortment of plastic parts that are likely to wear down over years of consistent use.
Also, many professionals have noted the overtly bright neon green exterior makes their tools look like toys more than professional pieces of equipment.
Holding a cordless Ryobi tool in your hand, you’ll immediately be able to tell their lightweight design won’t be as sturdy or reliable as some of the more massive tools on the market.
In short, they’re an excellent option for light to moderate use over the years.
However, if you intend to use them daily for hours on end, you’d be better of choosing a professional-friendly brand.
When working in a professional trade, your time is money.
This means you’re going to want to have an assortment of tools that are going to offer superior reliability for extended periods.
The last thing you would want is to have to stop at the beginning of your workday to ensure your tools are adequately charged to finish a specific task.
Unfortunately, as Ryobi tools are designed for one to two hours of use before needing a charge, you should consider investing in corded tools instead.
With the help of corded power tools, you’ll never run out of battery life.
Also, you’ll have access to exceptional power to handle large and small tasks within a matter of seconds.
Many have noted that Ryobi tools may also lose their charge faster than advertised.
This is also true if you’re working with thick and resilient materials that will put a lot of strain on the devices.
Still, it’s important to note this is a common complaint among most cordless tool users.
Another concern to have with the reliability of Ryobi tools is their quality control.
There is an assortment of complaints about their power tools locking up after their first or second use.
This issue could likely be a result of the brand being accessible and affordable to the general public.
Unfortunately, this causes the manufacturer to push out more product in less time than some of the higher-end brands on the market.
Typically, the more money you invest in your tools, the higher quality they will be, and they’re manufactured with higher attention to detail.
Both: Limited Service Agreements
Having a warranty and service agreement for your tools is essential, especially if you’re spending a lot of money on a new set of cordless power tools.
Although Ryobi is more affordable than other brands, you’ll still want to protect your investment, especially from manufacturing defects and issues that might arise.
A significant complaint from professional and hobbyist contractors is that the warranty and service agreement for Ryobi products is significantly lacking.
This fact remains true even if you were to put their warranty against a similar brand, such as Rigid.
Before spending a lot of money on tools from a single brand, be sure to do a substantial amount of research into how they make sure you are covered for at least two years after your date of purchase.
Although warranties from any brand aren’t going to cover every defect, especially if you damage the tools yourself, you should also have access to a service agreement.
With service assistance, you might be able to get repairs completed for free or for a fraction of the regular cost.
Is Ryobi a good brand?
In general, Ryobi can be a great brand if you are a hobbyist or need to tackle a few projects around the house.
Compared to the heavy-duty tool brands on the market, you’ll have lesser performance and incomparable reliability, which is unfortunate for professional users.
With a diverse ecosystem of tools, Ryobi’s available products are undoubtedly impressive but aren’t the best option for contractors.
- Attachment capable: accepts RYOBI expand-it attachments and other universal gas attachments to save time, money and space
- 40-Volt lithium-ion high capacity battery and 90-minutes charger included
- 13 in. to 15 in. adjustable cutting width for longer run time or wider cutting path