If you found yourself here, chances are that you are looking to buy some power tools. And, chances are that you are still trying to decide which brand to go with. After all, there are more than a dozen contenders and they all can seem to offer more or less the same products.
The two brands that you may be looking at, especially if you are a homeowner or a DIYer, are Ryobi and Black & Decker. Continue reading to find which – if either – of the two brands is better suited for your needs.
A Brief History of Ryobi and Black & Decker
To start off, Ryobi is a Japanese company headquartered in Hiroshima. It’s been around since the middle of WWII, since 1943 to be exact. The full and official name of the company at this time is Ryobi Seisakusho Co., Ltd.
This company started out by manufacturing die-cast products, and in 1961 began manufacturing printing presses. During the same year, it was also listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange. By 1968, Ryobi had begun the manufacturing power tools.
This is a very large company with nearly 10,000 employees and 12 manufacturing plants across the world. What is interesting to note is that Ryobi was the suppler of Craftsman-Sears handheld power tools, up until Sears went belly up. At this time, particularly in North America, Ryobi power tools are sold exclusively online and through Home Depot. In 2018, the Kyocera Corp, also Japanese, acquired the majority of Ryobi shares.
When it comes to Black and Decker, formally Stanley Black & Decker, this is an American manufacturer of power tools, hardware, home improvement products, and more. This company started out in 1910 just as Black & Decker, but in 2010, it merged with Stanley Works to become Stanley Black & Decker.
The company headquarters is located just north of Baltimore, Maryland, USA. At this time, Stanley Black & Decker also owns other popular power tool brand names including Craftsman, Porter-Cable, DeWalt, and many others. In terms of the size of the company, Black & Decker has nearly 30,000 employees with a variety of manufacturing plants across the world. In terms of company size, it’s much larger than Ryobi.
Ryobi vs Black & Decker: Which Offers Better Quality?
Something you would probably like to know is which of these two brand names has better quality products. Starting off with Black & Decker, let’s take a look at where they make their tools. Now, what is interesting to note is that at this time, Black & Decker does make most of its tools in China.
That said, they do have a bit of a manufacturing footprint in Europe and the USA. This company does have 30 manufacturing facilities in the USA, although comparatively speaking when compared to Chinese located facilities, this is quite small. Black & Decker makes power tools in North Carolina, tool chests and cabinets in Missouri, tape measures in Connecticut, and utility knives in South Carolina.
What is also interesting is that Black & Decker’s parent company owns Craftsman tools, and according to a recent announcement, the plan is to bring the majority of the manufacturing of Craftsman tools back to the USA. Whether or not this applies to Black & Decker brand tools is unclear.
All in all, Black & Decker tools have some pretty good reviews. The general consensus is that these tools are decent in quality and come in at good prices. In terms of price, these tools tend to be on the lower end of the spectrum, making them perfect for home and basic use.
When it comes to Ryobi, most of their products, the vast majority of them, particularly the power tools, are made in China. Ryobi does have a single manufacturing location in the USA, although it is dedicated solely to the manufacturing of products for the automobile industry.
The general consensus of Ryobi power tools is that they are fairly high in quality, and they are usually considered to be better in quality than Black & Decker tools, although they are still not considered ideal for daily professional use.
As it seems, both of these brands produce tools for lighter and occasional use, such as for basic home use and smaller DIY projects. When it comes down to it, it does appear as though Ryobi makes better tools with higher levels of quality, although both brands are not exactly ideal for heavy professional use.
Which Offers a Better Warranty?
In terms of power tools, Ryobi generally offers a three-year warranty on all power tools. Ryobi outdoor tools are covered by a five-year warranty and many of its hand tools come with a limited lifetime warranty.
Although details of Black & Decker warranties is a bit hard to come by, from what we can tell, many hand tools are covered by a limited lifetime warranty while many power tools are covered by a two-year limited warranty.
Overall, it does look like Ryobi has the better warranties.
Ryobi vs. Black & Decker: Which Has a Better Product Portfolio?
When it comes to the overall selection of products available for purchase, for the most part, Black & Decker has way more tools in mostly all categories.
For example, when it comes to drills, Black & Decker has 24 to choose from, compared to Ryobi which has 14. Another example would be the sanders where Black & Decker has a slight edge. If we look at angle grinders, B&D also has one model more to choose from than Ryobi.
Although Black & Decker’s selection is not much larger than Ryobi’s, it is a bit bigger across the board nonetheless.
Which Brand Offers a Better Selection of Jigsaws?
The exact same thing can be said for the jigsaws as for all of the other tools listed above.
At this time, Ryobi has just four jigsaws to choose from, whereas Black & Decker has roughly 10.
Which of the Two Brands Should You Choose?
When it comes down to it, if you are looking for higher quality tools with good warranties, you might want to go with Ryobi.
However, if you want a much larger product selection and you don’t want to pay quite as much, going with Black & Decker is probably your best bet.
At the end of the day, we can say that both brands are ideal for basic home use and DIY type of work, although not really for daily professional use.
However, if we had to choose one for professional purposes out of the two, it would be Ryobi without a doubt.