Once I accompanied a friend to the store since he wasn’t well versed in power tools. He ran his hands over all the battery aisles and looked at me with narrowed eyes. “Are Milwaukee and Ridgid batteries interchangeable?” He asked me.
I was dumbfounded since they are both excellent brands. They are in the top category in terms of popularity. Hundreds of users vouch for their types of equipment. Still, the same parent company kind of owns both Ridgid Tools and Milwaukee. They each manufacture similar products. So, he had a point.
But they are different companies. Some of their products may be interchangeable. Nevertheless, it depends on the tools they are using.
Battery: Definition And Details
I am going to try my best to explain if they are interchangeable. I will do this by discussing what a battery is and comparing both companies’ batteries. Then, I will talk about the ways it can be identical.
A battery is a cluster of one or more electrochemical cells that produce a chemical reaction. The result of this reaction is free-flowing electrons. These electrons travel around a closed circuit of electrical devices and generate electricity to use them.
Three types of batteries power all the electrical construction devices. They are:
- Li-ion ( Lithium Ion)
- NiCd ( Nickel-Cadmium)
- NiMH (Nickel-metal hydride)
Out of them, the Lithium-Ion one is the most favored. It is also wide-spread. Cordless power tools need them to work. Most corporations mass-produce them. Milwaukee and Ridgid too manufacture Lithium-Ion batteries. Given that, they are the creation of the most up-to-date applied science.
First, there is the recent Ridgid one. It is rectangular, flat, and lighter than the previous versions. They are 18V (2 Ah) Lithium-Ion batteries.
The company claims to have doubled the lifespan and runtime compared to standard ones. We can slot it in all the 18 V Ridgid devices. Moreover, we need to buy the exact charger for it.
If you buy this battery pack, you will get a fuel gauge with it. A fuel gauge can check charge status faster. Ridgid batteries are durable, reasonably priced, and are of good quality.
Milwaukee products are sleek, light, comfortable, user-friendly, and made for professionals. These goods are of the highest quality. The reason is that this company exclusively focuses on power tools.
They released a new line of high output battery. These are supposed to run 50% cooler while giving more power than usual. M18 line high output only works on M18 tools.
M12 tools need an M12 battery. This is a major drawback to both companies’ goods.
If I have to say it in a few words, I will say, “No, they are not compatible.” Let me expand on why.
1) First of all, every company has a unique way of manufacturing things. Tools might have a design so that only their own company’s batteries can slide into them.
2) Four words: voltage and ampere issues. Even if the tools have the same design, the voltage might not match with the battery. You can certainly try to use a 20V battery on an 18V tool.
It has a possibility of working. But it won’t display its full potential. There is a chance it may short circuit and catch on fire.
3) The battery you are trying to replace the old one with may have internal differences.
If these conditions are maintained, you can replace a Ridgid with a Milwaukee. There is no guarantee it will work. Still, a company named Bosch is trying to negate the first condition by creating a line of Bosch 12v battery.
This new battery will work on any of their equipment. There is no mention of cross-brand compatibility. Although, cross-brand batteries can work with an adapter.
Are Milwaukee and Ridgid batteries interchangeable? Yes, they are. Only when we use a battery adapter.
It is a common problem for people who possess cross-brand machines. Sometimes, a battery might die without any reason. In those cases, it is very frustrating when you have a spare battery, but you can’t use it due to the distinct make of various brands.
Pity there isn’t a long term universal solution for this problem. The only answer is to use a battery adapter. Folks have been using them since the invention of the battery.
So what exactly is a power tool adapter? It is an apparatus that makes it possible for our battery pack to work on a range of many brands’ power tools. However, a 20V battery won’t charge on an 18V charger even if we use this adapter.
Voltage power change is another ability of this. A single battery can work on different equipment with differing voltages with the help of an adapter. Battery substitution is unnecessary.
Many businesses advertised this lucrative merchandise. The best of them is the Milwaukee battery adapter. The steps to use this:
- Attach the adapter to the tool
- Insert the battery
- Turn on the switch
It is better to use Milwaukee batteries and other compatible batteries with this. Ridgid batteries can work too! But you can only charge it with a Ridgid battery charger.
It also has an assortment of the voltage range. Attaching it with high voltage machines will make it more efficient. Another benefit of power tool adapters is that they can convert NiCd and NiMH battery-using tools to Lithium-Ion ones. These are life-savers when it comes to saving money, time, and energy.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. Is ridgid better than Milwaukee?
Ridgid power tools are much better than Milwaukee and other prominent brands in the current market. Milwaukee Power Tools are much lighter and smoother and are very easy and comfortable to use.
See how Ridgid compares with: Porter Cable | Makita
So, the answer to are Milwaukee and Ridgid batteries interchangeable is no. Nonetheless, it turns into yes if we buy an adapter. This is still a hassle.
Interchangeable batteries would make life easier. We wouldn’t have to buy a different type of battery and battery chargers if one of them doesn’t work. It is a necessary but frivolous expense.
Setting a common standard for tools and batteries would solve this issue. It would already have existed. It doesn’t because corporations cannot profit from this. The best choice we can make in this situation is to buy from a specific brand and have an adapter handy.