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Best Pill Splitters

Updated May 2018
Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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Pros
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 28 Models Considered
  • 8 Hours Researched
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 190 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best pill splitters

    Last Updated May 2018

    At some point in your life, you’ve probably had to cut pills into halves or quarters. If you attempted this task with typical cutting tools, chances are the pills didn’t cut evenly, and small pieces probably ended up going in all directions. That’s why a pill splitter is the best device for cutting pills as precisely as possible.

    Not only are most pill splitters easy to use, but they are affordable tools that are worth the price. But with so many of these handy gadgets on the market, how do you find the design that will work best for the pills you need to cut?

    At BestReviews, we can help you decide. We never accept free samples, so you can be confident that our unbiased advice is based on product research and testing, expert findings, and input from customers. Our goal is simply to make shopping easier for you.

    If you’re ready to purchase a pill splitter, check out the matrix above for our five favorites. Or keep reading to find out everything you need to know about pill splitters, safety issues you should consider, and tips and tricks for the most precise splits.

    Don’t be afraid to ask your doctor if splitting your medications is right for you. With the high cost of prescriptions, it’s not uncommon for patients to look for ways to save on their medications.

    When and when not to split pills

    A pill splitter comes in handy to divide doses of tablets sold over the counter, but it can also be a money-saving device for costly prescription medications. However, there are safety issues to consider when it comes to dividing doses of some medications. According to the FDA, pill splitting can pose risks.

    But that doesn’t mean splitting pills can’t be safe, doctor-approved, and budget-friendly. Consider the pros and cons of cutting medications, and get your doctor’s approval before you begin.

    Pros of Splitting Pills:

    • You can save money. Splitting pills helps patients make the most of their medications and dollars. In some cases, higher doses can be prescribed for similar prices, and the pills can be split for the appropriate doses. This could result in significant savings.

    • Many doctors understand. They know patients need to save money, and they are happy to let patients know which medications can be safely split.

    • Active ingredients stay the same. When a medication can be cut, its properties stay the same. However, the strength will change. That’s why medical supervision is recommended to be sure you get an appropriate dosage.

    • Splitting pills is easy to do. Once you understand which medications can be split, all it takes is a reliable pill splitter.

    When approved by your medical provider, splitting pills can save money on your prescriptions.

    Cons of Splitting Pills:

    • Some medications aren’t safe to divide. No matter how you cut them, some medications aren’t safe to split. For example, pills that are time-released or coated for stomach protection should never be split. Other pills rely on accurate dosages for results that are too important to risk, including cancer medications, blood thinners, and birth control pills.

    • A bitter taste is a deterrent. Some pills are so bitter that it isn’t worth the unpleasant flavor that is exposed after they are cut.

    • Some pills simply aren’t practical to cut. Tablets that crumble easily, are very tiny, don’t cut evenly, or are too hard to precisely cut may not be worth the effort to split them.
    EXPERT TIP

    Pills that are scored by manufacturers are the easiest to cut. Simply line up the score to the blade and close the lever.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Types of pill splitters

    The type of pill splitter you should choose depends on several factors, such as how often you plan to use it, if you want additional features, and how many pills you want to cut at one time.

    Basic pill splitters

    If you want a model that’s straightforward to use, basic pill splitters are a good choice. Their design is simple: a single blade fixed to the handle, which doubles as the lid. Some have a storage compartment, too.

    Pros:

    • Affordable

    • Easy to use

    • Small and portable
       

    Cons:

    • Cheaper models prone to breaking with frequent use

    • Some models not ideal for hard pills

    If you need a pill splitter that is easy to put in your pocket, a basic model with a lever and small pill storage compartment is the best choice.

    Multi-functional pill splitters

    If you also like the option of crushing your pills, multi-functional pill splitters include crushing mechanisms, typically found in the bottom of the unit.

    Pros:

    • Versatile

    • Ideal for those who can’t swallow pills
       

    Cons:

    • Pricier than basic models

    • Crusher requires pressure, which may be difficult for those with arthritis

    • Larger and bulkier than other models

    Multi-functional pill splitters are convenient tools that provide more than just cutting blades. Some have pill storage compartments, crushing mechanisms, and even built-in water cups.

    Multi-pill pill splitters

    Though somewhat tedious to use, muli-pill pill splitters are capable of cutting more than one pill at a time. If you need to cut numerous pills on a regular basis, you may find this tool handy in spite of its limitations.

    Pros:

    • Cuts multiple pills at one time

    • Saves time

    • Known for precise, clean cuts
       

    Cons:

    • Takes a while to master the mechanism

    • More expensive

    • May not work for large or oblong pills

    Pill splitters that cut more than one tablet at a time are a bit more difficult to use, but they are worth the effort if speed and convenience are your top priorities.

    Dual-blade pill splitters

    Dual-blade pill splitters work with a sliding, dual-blade mechanism that cuts even the toughest pills.

    Pros:

    • Durable blades

    • Ideal for tough-to-cut pills

    • Cuts two pills at a time

    • Slim design


    Cons:

    • Pricey

    • Not as easy to use

    • Not ideal for very small pills

    DID YOU KNOW?

    A pill splitter also comes in handy for splitting over-the-counter medications, such as pain relievers, vitamins, and some supplements.

    Features to consider when choosing a pill splitter

    • Blade: The most important part of a pill splitter is the blade. The quality of the blade is the difference between a clean cut and uneven pills. Blades made of aluminum or stainless steel are durable and resist rust and corrosion.

    • Cutting Mechanism: While some models feature a blade on a lever-like mechanism that doubles as a lid, others have multiple blade systems that cut two or more tablets at a time.

    • Guards: Pill splitter guards protect fingers and keep pills in place by blocking the sides of the blade and securing pills while cutting them.

    • Casing: Durable plastic or metal components should surround the blade unit and pill compartments.

    • Extras: Some pill splitters have extra features like pill crushers, storage compartments, and more.

    How much should you pay for a pill splitter?

    Pill splitters are available at several price points. However, even top-of-the-line options aren’t overly expensive.

    • Budget-Friendly: Basic models can be as low as $4 to $8, and the low-end price doesn’t necessarily mean you are sacrificing quality.

    • Mid-Range: If you prefer a few more options, such as a splitter and crusher in one, expect to pay between $10 and $15.

    • Expensive: Pill splitters that offer more precise cuts or split multiple pills at a time are pricier, but they also often come with lifetime guarantees. High-end pill splitters are usually $30 to $40.
    EXPERT TIP

    Some higher-end pill splitters come with lifetime warranties, making them worth the price.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    Tips for using a pill splitter

    • Harder pills are more difficult to cut. Use firm, steady pressure, and cut swiftly for the best results.
    • Because pill residue tends to stick to the blade and pill holder, it’s important to wipe your pill splitter clean after you use it. This is even more important if you plan to use one splitter for different types of pills.

    • A pill splitter that has a separate storage compartment can double as a pill box. This makes a convenient two-in-one tool to take with you on the go.

    • When it comes to splitting very small pills, take a little extra time to line them up perfectly in the splitter to ensure the blade cuts them in exactly the right spot.

    • Some pills are prone to crumbling. When splitting this type of medication, using a lighter touch will keep the cut pieces from falling apart.

    • When it comes to splitting prescription medications or those that you take daily for a diagnosed health condition, don’t assume that it’s safe to cut your pills. Always check with your doctor first to make sure that splitting your medicine won’t be harmful to your health.

    Pill splitters are easy to clean. Simply wash with mild soap, rinse, and dry, and your pill splitter is ready to use again.

    FAQ

    Q. I’m concerned about durability issues because the pills I plan to cut are quite large. What features should I look for when choosing a pill splitter?
    A.
    Stainless steel blades and durable hinges stand up well to cutting large pills. Though the pill guards on most splitters can accommodate tablets of various sizes, you’ll want to avoid pill splitters with tighter slots. Some multi-pill models that only fit smaller tablets won’t work for you.

    Q. It seems like pill splitter blades would have to be very sharp to slice easily through pills. Are they safe to use?
    A.
    Any cutting device that has a blade can potentially be dangerous. However, most pill splitters have guards that surround the blades to prevent injury.

    Q. I want to try splitting pills to save money. How should I get started?
    A.
    The first thing you should do is talk to your doctor. Some pills can be safely cut, while others can be dangerous to take in divided doses. If your doctor gives you the go-ahead to cut your pills, you should ask if your pills are hard or prone to crumbling. This information will help you choose the best pill splitter for your needs.

    Q. Are pricey pill splitters with unique or mult-pill designs difficult to operate?
    A.
    These models are a bit more challenging to master than basic lever-operated pill splitters. But taking the time to read any instructions and understand how the mechanism works will help you learn to use it quickly.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Alice
      Alice
      Web Producer
    • Enid
      Enid
      Editor
    • Jennifer
      Jennifer
      Writer
    • Katherine
      Katherine
      Editor
    • Melinda
      Melinda
      Web Producer