Are Amazon’s Denali Tools as Good as the Big Tool Brands? We Tried Them to Find Out
I tested a handful of products from Amazon’s new Denali line of DIY tools and accessories. Find out how they fared.
When the world’s largest online retailer—a.k.a. Amazon—launches its own tools and accessories line, it naturally attracts attention from the home improvement sector. But, going up against tried-and-true tool manufacturers with rock-hard reputations for producing high-quality products, such as DeWalt or Black + Decker, is no easy task.
To determine where Amazon’s new Denali tools might fall on the quality scale, I tested five of the line’s offerings; screwdrivers, a miter saw blade, anti-vibration gloves, a pair of linesman pliers, and a shiny little toolbox. I did not, however, test any Denali power tools. Ahead, learn how each of these items performed in my hands-on tests and find out whether I think they’re worth adding to your tool collection.
1. Denali 20-Piece Screwdriver Set with Cushioned Grip
- Non-slip grips
- Magnetic tips
- Assortment of types and sizes
- End cap rotates on mini screwdrivers
- Only six mini sizes
Featuring an assortment of Phillips, flat, and star tips, the Denali 20-Piece Screwdriver Set provides a range of screwdrivers for inserting and removing today’s popular fasteners. The rubber grips kept my hands from slipping as I removed stubborn fasteners. The best part is the magnetic tip on each screwdriver that holds screws securely during insertion or removal.
The Denali set came with six mini screwdrivers, which are used chiefly for electronics, but with dozens of electronic fasteners in use today, I felt as though including only six was a little chintzy. In our guide to the best screwdriver sets, we feature the comprehensive Klein Tools Screwdriver Set that comes with 39 mini options.
2. Denali Tool Box with Metal Latches
- Lift-out tray for small items
- Large storage section beneath
- Secure latches
- Stylish exterior
- Thin sheet metal
- Quickly shows fingerprints and smudges
Overall, the 15-inch Denali Tool Box is a decent product—but it’s not for heavy-duty use. On the upside, it has a lift-out tray handy for storing small tools or supplies, while a couple of larger items can fit in the base. The latches are sturdy and align nicely. The shiny metal sides and top mimic the popular printed steel found on truck tool boxes, but don’t be fooled—it’s only thin sheet metal. Still, as far as portable tool boxes go, it has its place, and Denali sells larger options that offer more versatility.
3. Denali 12-Inch 80-Tooth Tungsten Carbide Saw Blade
- Cuts hardwood and softwood
- Cuts smoothly without splinters
Not great at cutting composite decking
The Denali 12-Inch 8-Tooth Miter Saw Blade gives old favorites, like the Dewalt 80-Tooth Blade, a run for the money. A miter saw blade with 80 teeth is used for fine cutting, such as precision cutting trim pieces. I didn’t know what to expect when I fitted the Denali blade in my compound miter saw. The Denali blade didn’t heat up, even with repeated use, and it made very smooth cuts on softwood and hardwood.
One slight downside is that the Denali wasn’t great at cutting composite decking, it left a few deep cracks, but its performance cutting wood earns it top honors.
4. Denali 9.5-Inch Linesman Pliers Side Cutters
- Spring-loaded for easy use
- Insulated grips for shock protection
- Ergonomic handle
- Sharp cutter
- Handles open too wide
I found the Denali Linesman Pliers to be right up there in quality with the Klein Tools Linesman Pliers that found a spot alongside other highly rated pliers. Like all linesman pliers, the Denali pliers come with insulated grips to reduce the risk of electrical shock. I liked the spring grip on the Denali and its side cutter was so sharp that I could cut through wires like butter. The downside is that in order to fully open the plier’s jaws, I needed to use both hands because the handles are too far apart to hold with just one hand when the jaws are wide open.
5. Denali Anti Vibration Impact Work Gloves
- Touchscreen tips work
- Padded palm
- Adjustable wrist
- Comfortable fit
- Doesn’t do much to reduce vibration
- Not real leather
If you want to look cool while you work, consider the Denali Anti-Vibration Gloves. I didn’t find that they made a noticeable difference in dampening vibration any more than my trusty pair of Custom Leathercraft Gloves, however. They fit well. They were comfortable, decent work gloves, and I tested them when operating a jackhammer. They protect bare hands, but not enough to be anti-vibration, in my estimation.
The best feature—and I’d buy them just for this—is their touchscreen fingertips that really work for swiping a smartphone screen.