The pickaxe is one of the handiest tools in your belt if you’re a Minecraft player. You need it to mine stone and ores or break items like iron bars and Minecraft anvils. However, the regular pickaxe may not be enough if you want to accomplish specific tasks. That’s why we recommend getting pickaxe enchantments so you can make certain things easier as you play. Which pickaxe enchantments are the best? Here’s our ranking of every Minecraft pickaxe enchantment.
Also read: How to Make Concrete in Minecraft
Inside This Article
Why Do You Need Minecraft Pickaxe Enchantments?
Enchantments aren’t at all new in Minecraft’s world. In fact, almost every tool has them. For example, you can get trident enchantments to make traversing the underwater world much safer. Some can even make defeating foes in the water easier. Meanwhile, sword enchantments can make your sword sharper and even boost the odds of looting enemies.
You may think that pickaxe enchantments aren’t a big deal compared to sword or trident enchantments. After all, those two give you better fighting power. What can pickaxe enchantments possibly help you with?
Well, there are a lot of uses for them. The most common is mining efficiency, with Efficiency and Fortune helping out with your speed and ore output. These help increase your mining speed or boost the amount of ore you get while mining. They’re great if you need to gather many resources at a faster pace. Some pickaxe enchantments also help with durability and keep your tool from breaking. However, others are more niche and obscure and even offer inconvenience.
Nonetheless, pickaxe enchantments are great for enhancing your tool and making it even better. They should be handy for most of the tasks you must accomplish during the game.
Best Pickaxe Enchantments Ranked
What enchantments can be put on a pickaxe? There are six that are currently available in Minecraft including the Curse of Vanishing, Fortune, Efficiency, Unbreaking, Silk Touch, and Mending.
Each of these pickaxe enchantments has different features that are useful for different circumstances. For example, Curse of Vanishing gets rid of cursed items upon dying while Silk Touch mines blocks in their original state. Meanwhile, Fortune boosts the number of mining drops, Efficiency mines faster, Unbreaking enhances durability, and Mending lets XP mend equipment.
However, while all of these may seem useful, some perks are much better than others. What are the best enchantments for a pickaxe in Minecraft? Here is our ranking of the ones you should prioritize, from most to least important.
1. Efficiency Enchantment
Minecraft is a time-consuming game and, by far, the most time-consuming task is mining. That’s because it can take many in-game days to mine enough resources to craft what you require. Moreover, you have to do it while keeping track of the time and being mindful of the enemies around you. In addition, Minecraft’s relatively recent 1.18 update now makes diamonds much harder to mine for. This is because you can now only find them deep below the earth where there’s plenty of resilient deep slate. Fortunately, pickaxe enchantments like the “Efficiency” option make the task much easier.
What benefits do you get with the Efficiency enchantment? Well, if you obtain it, you can mine blocks much faster than with a regular pickaxe. It’s certainly a good investment if you need many resources and must mine a lot. However, remember that while Efficiency is great for speed, it only applies to blocks that are compatible with your pickaxe. Hence, you can’t mine obsidian even if you’ve applied enchantments to your stone pickaxe.
Levels & Requirements
Efficiency has five levels. The max level is Efficiency V, which you can only get by combining two Efficiency IV enchanted books on an anvil. However, you must have 30 levels ready before Efficiency IV can even emerge on the enchanting table’s level 3 area.
Enchanting with Efficiency grants you a base-level efficiency boost of 25%. Afterward, each additional level grants you an added 5% to your efficiency. With that said, the fastest pickaxe you can get is a gold pickaxe with Efficiency V.
2. Fortune Enchantment
Increasing mining efficiency through pickaxe enchantments isn’t exclusive to boosting speed. Some, like Fortune enchantment, help the player maximize each mine by increasing the yield. Through it, each block has an increased drop rate, allowing you to get more ore for less work.
In fact, you can even mine four diamonds using one diamond ore block if you’re lucky. This significantly reduces the amount of time you need to spend mining. Hence, it’s kind of like the Efficiency enchantment, but it speeds up the process in a different way.
However, remember that the yield Fortune provides depends a lot on RNG (random number generator). It doesn’t guarantee four diamonds for each block. Therefore, you still need to rely on chance most of the time.
Levels & Requirements
Unlike Efficiency, Fortune only has three levels with Fortune III being the highest. Each level boosts your gains as you mine. If you’re a beginner, we recommend getting Fortune III as fast as you can. That’s because doing so will help you get rich much faster.
However, remember that you need at least 30 experience levels to get this enchantment in the level 3 slot. Otherwise, you’ll have to settle for getting the lower Fortune levels when generating pickaxe enchantments.
3. Mending Enchantment
Pickaxe enchantments aren’t always about efficiency and speed. That’s because some pickaxe enchantments focus on durability — which is what Mending can do. As the name suggests, Mending increases your tool’s lifespan.
You wouldn’t have to keep recreating your higher-level pickaxes if you use the Mending enchantment. It shouldn’t break as easily, allowing you to mine with it for much longer. This option is especially good to prioritize if you obtain a pickaxe that already has many useful enchantments.
When you apply Mending to your pickaxe, you can easily fill up the durability bar when earning XP. Thus, you can prolong its life and potentially prevent its demise indefinitely as long as you earn XP.
Levels & Requirements
Mending is an awesome enchantment. However, because it’s overpowered, there’s no way you can obtain it through the enchanting table. Instead, you must look for pickaxes that already have the Mending enchantment that may be scattered throughout the world. You can accomplish this by finding an enchanted book in loot chests or trading with villagers.
Additionally, Mending does not have any higher enchantment levels. Its max level is level one, so there’s no need to upgrade your pickaxe when you finally acquire it.
4. Unbreaking Enchantment
Unbreaking is kind of like Mending in that it concerns your pickaxe’s durability. However, it’s a little different in that it decreases the odds of your pickaxe being damaged and losing durability but does not necessarily increase your tool’s lifespan.
Now, this doesn’t mean that the pickaxe is indestructible. It can still get damaged every so often, but you may be able to use it more compared to when you don’t have the enchantment. Unbreaking is a useful alternative if you can’t get the Mending enchantment.
Levels & Requirements
Like Fortune, Unbreaking has three levels with Unbreaking III being the highest. You can obtain each one from enchanted books or by using the Enchanting Table. The higher the level, the less likely your pickaxe will damage and break. Each one reduces the odds by 25%.
Unbreaking is one of the best pickaxe enchantments you can get if you mine a lot. It’s more accessible than Mending, so you can prioritize it if you can’t boost your pickaxe’s durability any other way.
5. Silk Touch Enchantment
We don’t generally recommend prioritizing Silk Touch when you’re trying to get pickaxe enchantments. It’s more of a niche buff that’s only useful for certain tasks like mining blocks or objects without the risk of breaking your pickaxe.
It’s a useful tool if you don’t want the object to disappear after you break it with a pickaxe. For example, you can use it to preserve glass blocks and grass blocks. Moreover, you can even mine coral without them dying. Mining the object will only yield its original form.
With that said, only builders will find much use in a Silk Touch enchantment. If you’re working on a large project and don’t want the risk, it’s certainly a good investment. Otherwise, we suggest getting the other pickaxe enchantments if you want to play normally.
Levels & Requirements
Silk Touch only has one level so you don’t need to upgrade it. However, you do require 30 levels of XP before you can get the enchantment. Moreover, it will only appear by chance on the level three slot on the enchanting table. Therefore, it’s fairly difficult to obtain. Thankfully, it’s a niche enchantment so you likely won’t need it as often.
6. Curse of Vanishing Enchantment
If you die often during player-versus-player (PvP) while playing Minecraft, you know it can be both frustrating and disorienting. It’s also inconvenient as you lose all the stuff you’re carrying after death, serving as loot to others. However, you can dampen this effect by using the Curse of Vanishing enchantment. Through it, your pickaxe vanishes from the Minecraft world so nobody can loot it.
Unfortunately, this is the only advantage the Curse of Vanishing grants. In all other scenarios, it’s more of a nuisance (or a curse) than a blessing. That’s because it annihilates your pickaxe, so you can’t get it back after dying.
This effect is especially troublesome if you get a pickaxe with good enchantments paired with Curse of Vanishing. For example, let’s say you fished out a pickaxe with Mending and Curse of Vanishing. The Mending enchantment is nice to have for durability enhancement. However, it becomes useless if you die as you’ll lose this rare item because of the curse.
Curse of Vanishing is the worst of the pickaxe enchantments. It may prevent others from gaining an advantage during PvP but it’s also of no use to you. In addition, it can even be detrimental to your gameplay because you can’t get your pickaxe back. Unfortunately, you cannot remove Curse of Vanishing from your pickaxe. The curse will remain and you may not undo it with a grindstone. On the other hand, you can keep your cursed pickaxe if you set the rules to “keep inventory – True.”
Levels & Requirements
Curse of Vanishing does not have levels and cannot be crafted on an Enchanting Table. You can only get it by finding it in fishing drops or chests. In the Java edition, you can also get it as a traded item from villagers.
How to Add Pickaxe Enchantments?
There are many ways you can gain pickaxe enchantments. These are through an Enchanting Table, Anvil, or a command.
Adding Pickaxe Enchantment Via Enchanting Table
Firstly, you’ll require an Enchanting Table, the pickaxe in your hot bar, and three Lapis Lazuli to enchant your item. Once you have these ready, follow the guidelines below:
- Open the Enchanting Table to open the Enchant menu
- Note: right-click (computer), tap (phone), press LT (Xbox), press L2 (PlayStation), or hit ZL (Wii U & Switch) to open it
- Place the pickaxe on the first box to the left of the Enchant menu
- On the second box, place three Lapis Lazuli
- Note: if you’re on Creative mode, you do not require Lapis Lazuli on the second box
- The three bars on the right should fill up with enchantment options
- Note: the numbers on the right end indicate how many experience levels you require to unlock the enchantment
- Click on the enchantment you want to apply
- Note: doing so will spend your Lapis Lazuli and experience points
- Move your pickaxe back into the inventory
Adding Pickaxe Enchantment Via Anvil
You can also add pickaxe enchantments by using an anvil. However, you will require both your pickaxe and one enchanted book to complete the process:
- Stand in front of your anvil
- Open it to see the “Repair & Name” menu
- Place your pickaxe in the first box and the enchanted book in the second
- The enchanted pickaxe should appear in the last slot
- Note: you should also see how much experience level you need to obtain it below the box
- Move the item to your inventory
Adding Pickaxe Enchantment Via Command
By far, using a command is the easiest method to enchant your items. However, it’s not exactly a legitimate way if you don’t like “cheating.” Moreover, it’s not something you can do on all platforms. That’s because the /enchant command is only applicable on certain editions, including:
- Java Edition version 1.4.4
- Pocket Edition version 0.16.0*
- Xbox One version 1.2*
- PS4 version 1.14.0*
- Nintendo Switch version 1.5.0*
- Windows 10 Edition version 0.16.0*
- Education Edition
*These editions have been renamed to “Bedrock Edition.”
If you have a compatible version, then you must enable cheats in your game before you can run the command. Afterward, you can simply run the /enchant command by typing “/enchant” followed by your player name, enchantment, and enchantment level. Here’s an example of how to add Efficiency V as an enchantment to the tool “PlayerOne” is holding:
/enchant PlayerOne efficiency 5
Running the command should apply the enchantment to the pickaxe you’re currently holding. It’s an easy way to gain the enchantment if you’re not up to finding or obtaining it manually. However, it’s not compatible with every Minecraft edition or version. Hence, it’s always a good choice to know how to apply enchantments manually in case you need it.
Can You Combine Pickaxe Enchantments?
Yes, you may stack different enchantments on your pickaxe. However, you will require an ample amount of experience levels and an anvil. Moreover, the more you combine enchantments, the higher the experience levels the task requires.
What Is the Best Netherite Pickaxe Enchantment?
The best pickaxe enchantments for a Netherite pickaxe will vary depending on your needs. Netherite pickaxes have the best damage and durability so adding Efficiency or Fortune might make them more versatile. However, you can also use Mending, Unbreaking, or Silk Touch depending on your circumstances.
What Is the Strongest Pickaxe in Minecraft?
The strongest pickaxe in Minecraft is the Netherite pickaxe both in terms of damage output and durability. They become even stronger if you add enchantments like Mending, Efficiency, or Fortune to them. However, a diamond pickaxe should serve you just as well if you aim to simply mine with your pickaxe.
The Bottom Line
Minecraft offers several pickaxe enchantments to buff your item while you’re playing. They can be useful, neutral, or downright detrimental depending on what you get. Moreover, some of them are obtainable through the Anvil or Enchanting Table if you want something more common. Regardless, most of them should be useful to you when you’re playing the game. Just pray that you don’t get Curse of Vanishing unless you want that specifically for competitive multiplayer.
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