Titanium Vs Cobalt Drill Bits: What’s the difference?

Every household needs a handful of tools in their closet, a drill being one of them. Drills are essential for drilling holes for countless uses around the household and outside. There are mainly two types of drill bits that are popular: titanium and cobalt drill bits. A drill bit is the metal front part that rotates and drills holes.

The main difference between a titanium and cobalt drill bit is that the titanium bit comes with a titanium nitride coating, whereas the cobalt bit contains 5 to 8 percent cobalt. Titanium drill bits come with a golden or bluish tint; cobalt bits do not. 

Titanium drill bits


Although the drill bits are named titanium, they do not contain titanium. Titanium is an expensive metal, so making a drill bit with it might soar up the cost.

Moreover, titanium is known to be brittle, so there’s a chance that the drill bit will break when in heavy use. Hence, the drill bit is made of carbon steel alloy with a titanium nitride coating on top.

The titanium nitride coating helps to drill smoother and resists the bit from corrosion. The coating also helps resist heat when drilling through tough materials such as metal. These bits do not contain cobalt.


Drill bits tend to get blunt which can adversely affect the drilling capabilities. Hence, they need a bit of sharpening from time to time in order to maintain their drilling efficiency.

As the titanium drill bits come with titanium coating, sharpening them can wear off that coating and expose the softer metal core. That reduces the drill’s heat resistance and may warp or deform the tip.

This is why, sharpening titanium bits is not very good, as that reduces the bit’s lifespan. They generally have a shorter lifespan than cobalt drill bits. If you sharpen titanium bits that often, they become unusable quicker than not sharpening the bit.

Heat resistance

Titanium is a great metal when it comes to heat resistance. When you are drilling metal against metal, it will generate a lot of temperatures, so the drill bits come with some heat dispensing features.

The titanium nitride coating does an excellent job dispensing the heat and thus protects the metal core from deforming. However, when the coating wears off with time, it starts losing efficiency.


Titanium bits are not made of titanium, but they come with a titanium coating. That brings down the cost of the drill bits, much lower than cobalt bits. However, as they are much more prone to corrosion and the coating goes away with time, they will lose their drilling ability faster than cobalt bits. So, if you need to use the tool for drilling into tougher stuff, it may cost you more money in the long run. However, if you only use it to drill into a softer substance and need it occasionally, then using a titanium drill bit is totally worth it.


A titanium drill bit is capable of drilling through concrete or almost every material. Still, it really becomes useful when you are trying to drill into softer materials such as wood, stone, concrete, etc.

You can use it to drill through tougher materials, such as hard metals, but doing so will decrease the usability of the drill over time as it will chip off the coating.

Overall, they perform great.  

Cobalt drill bit


Unlike titanium bits that come with titanium coating, cobalt drill bits actually contain cobalt. The core of the drill bit is made of steel alloy with 5 to 8 percent of cobalt. This makes the drill bit extremely strong and durable and has the ability to drill through tougher materials such as cast iron and other hard metals.

As the metal cobalt is fused together with steel and other alloys, the bits are stronger than titanium-coated bits and can handle heavy-duty usage under extreme conditions.


Drill bits become blunt when you use them for a long time. So, some of them need sharpening in order to improve their efficiency.

The problem with titanium bits is that as you sharpen them, the titanium coating wears off and exposes the steel core inside. That hampers the usability of that bit as it can deform the core and make the bit unusable. You will not face such problems with cobalt bits as the metal cobalt is fused into the alloy with steel.

So, whenever you sharpen your cobalt bit, the composition of the material remains the same, and hence they always work like new ones. Sharpening them doesn’t reduce their efficiency.

Heat resistance

When you’re using a metal drill to make holes in other metals, it is going to generate a lot of heat. Cobalt in particular is a great metal to dispense the heat and spread it out evenly on the surface without affecting the drill bit.

In fact, the heat dispensing ratio is better than titanium when you’re using them against other metals. Cobalt bits provide excellent results even at the highest settings and for a long period of usage.


As cobalt is expensive and the drill bits are made fusing cobalt, they are more expensive than usual titanium bits.

Although they are more durable and work efficiently over a long period of time, the long-term cost is equal, if not lower, than using a titanium bit. However, that depends on the material you’re using it against and how you store the bits. It all depends on the user whether you want to spend more money; cobalt bits are a better value for money in that matter.


Although it depends, if you’re going to use the drill for heavy-duty drilling that involves working on harder substances, then using cobalt bits will be a better choice. That being said, you can also use them for drilling in softer material. Cobalt drill bits are more versatile than titanium, for that matter.


Titanium and cobalt bits do the same jobs pretty easily, but cobalt bits tend to be more versatile, making them costlier. Finally, it all boils down to the user and budget.

best cordless drill under 100
Best Cordless Right Angle Drills