Cordless drills have managed to become the most popular power tool of all time, as they come with the required level of versatility and features for getting done various types of jobs, ranging from just taking care of the basic maintenance needs to working on a second addition in the home. This is probably the reason these tools are so very popular, and seems like they will be for quite a long time to come. They do have a few different tools competing with them, but none of them seem to be coming close to what they can achieve.
As mentioned above, cordless drills can basically be used to work on a wide range of tasks. Coming to the specific things these power tools do, drilling holes and driving screws is exactly what most of them are designed to do. However, it’s also probably worth noting that a drill will be able to do both these tasks only if it’s a cordless one. This is the reason cordless drills are considered to be a modern version of what used to be rather basic corded drills.
Well, it’s easy to decide that you want to get a cordless drill. After all, the wide range of features and convenience of using it comes with doesn’t leave any room for confusion. However, things start to get challenging when one actually starts looking for a quality cordless drill which will meet their unique subjective requirements. There are hundreds of different cordless drills out there, and it can surely get quite confusing about which one to go for unless you’re an expert at it.
So we will simply take a look at some of the important features to take into consideration while looking for a cordless drill that will manage to get various tasks done for you on a regular basis.
Needless to say, power is the most important features one would want to focus on while buying a cordless drill. Over the past decade, the range of power (measured in voltage) has been around 6V-9.6V. What this means is that the most-powered cordless drill would offer a power voltage of around 9.6V.
However, as mentioned earlier, the cordless drills segment has witnessed some hardcore innovation. This has led to various improvements in the products available, and they have been quite impressive on the power front. Nowadays, one can find a cordless drill coming with a power voltage of as high as 18V. This is almost the double of what one could get a few years back.
Such high-powered cordless drills are capable of boring big holes even in flooring and lumber, which used to be quite a challenging task in the past. However, more power also comes with a downside. The high-powered drills weigh considerably more than the low-powered ones, making them not-so-comfortable for some people.
For example, a standard 9.6V drill would weigh around 3 and a half lbs, while that coming with 18V can weigh as much as around 10 lbs. You can see that the difference is rather enormous, so you better not go for a very high-powered one unless you’re absolutely sure that you will need it.
This is quite an important thing to take care of as well. Though the people highly experienced with using drills may manage to work well with almost all the type of handles, the experience would be far from being similar for most of the other people
Typically, cordless drills used to come with pistol like handle. However, nowadays, most of them come with a rather T-shaped handle. These handles offer better overall balance, as they are intended to prevent slipping of hand while working with the drill.
However, for tasks requiring heavy-duty drilling, the pistol grip drills seem to be the way to go, as they allow one to put more pressure.
Well, there seems to be a bit of confusion about what exactly a clutch does in a drill. Simply put, it provides the much needed control, as well as protects the motor in cases when it meets more resistance than it can handle. This obviously ensures a higher level of durability and low maintenance costs for your drill.
Coming to the technical details, the number of clutch setting seem to be varying greatly in different drills. However, a standard belief is that anything over 24 settings is a good sign, and any drill coming with this number of separate clutch setting can be believed to be good enough.
They also help fine-tune the power a drill produces, and help it run at its full power capacity smoothly.
This may not seem to be a major thing to take into account to most of the people, but over a period of time of use, they will realize its importance. A drill capable of running at two fixed speeds, which most actually are nowadays, can help do things much more comfortable and save a lot of time as well.
However, some of the low priced cordless drills would run only at a single speed, and aren’t recommended unless you don’t plan to use them very frequently or use only for really basic tasks.
The ones that can run on two fixed speeds, which is 300 rpm and 800 rpm, allow both drilling holes and driving screws pretty comfortably and smoothly.
Types of drills
Let’s take a quick look at some of the most popular types of drills out there.
These are one of the best options for the do-it-yourselfers. However, they are specifically designed to do only the small tasks, such as drilling holes to hanging pictures. They are capable of drilling smaller holes into almost all types of materials, but can drill larger holes too in softer materials such as plastic or wood.
They boast of coming with fast rotation, which is usually around 3,000 rpm.
They are designed for slightly more serious DIY tasks, such as drilling holes into materials such as softer light concrete or limestone. They may be able to work on some harder materials as well, but will produce a lot of noise and vibration while doing so.
They usually run at around 3,000 rpm as well.
They are probably one’s best bet for heavy-duty drilling and other such hardcore tasks. They boast of offering around 5,000 blows a minute, providing almost all the force required to get some heavy-duty tasks done in a surprisingly short period of time.
Brushless vs Brushed drills
There has been a lot of hype about the brushless models over the past of couple of years. Hence, we think it’s important to mention the major difference between these two different types of drills.
Coming to the brushless drills, they are a modern invention and have been in the market from just around a couple of years. The most significant feature they boast of coming with, which is absent in their traditional counterpart is that they are capable of adjusting to the requirements of different tasks. In other words, if they sense more resistance, they will start running at a higher power, and vice versa.
The usual brushed drills, on the other hand, max out at the preset speed.
What is the best Cordless Drill on the market? There are tons of Cordless Drills out there, we did a lot of research on Cordless Drills to save your precious time. Here is our best Cordless Drills list of 2017:
1. Dewalt DCD771C2 20V MAX Cordless Lithium-Ion 1/2 inch Compact Drill Driver Kit
The DEWALT DCD771C2 20-Volt Max Lithium Ion compact drill driver has a lightweight design with a high performance motor that delivers 300 unit watts of power. The high speed transmission delivers 2 speeds 0-450 RPMs and 0-1500 RPMs. The ergonomic handle allows comfort and control. The tools weighs 3.6 pounds and contains 2 20-volt Max compact Lithium ion battery packs, a compact charger and durable contractor bag.
2. Makita LXFD01CW 18-Volt Compact Lithium-Ion Cordless 1/2-Inch Driver-Drill Kit
The Makita LXFD01CW 18-Volt Compact Lithium-Ion Cordless 1/2-Inch Driver-Drill delivers power, performance, and improved ergonomics in a compact size. The LXFD01CW weighs only 3.3 pounds, and the 18-Volt Compact Lithium-Ion battery reaches a full charge in only 15 minutes on Makita’s ENERGY STAR qualified Rapid Optimum Battery Charger for more work and less downtime. Makita-built 4-pole motor delivers 480 inch-pounds of Max Torque. Only 3.3 pounds with comfortable ergonomic grip and built-in LED light. 2-speed all-metal transmission. 18-Volt Compact Lithium-Ion batteries charge in 15 minutes, run longer, and deliver 2.5X more cycles.
3. PORTER-CABLE PCCK600LB 20-volt 1/2-Inch Lithium Ion Drill/Driver Kit
The PCCK600LB Drill/Driver’s design is based on a new lithium-ion battery platform that delivers high-end performance, is loaded with innovative features, and offers an amazing ergonomic design. This power-packed Drill/Driver features a 23-position 1/2″ metal ratcheting chuck that provides superior bit retention. The convenient battery gauge enables the user to determine the level of remaining charge, which eliminates guesswork and reduces the downtime associated with needless charging. Some other standard features include an LED work light, rubber bumpers on the sides of the tool, and a belt clip that can be fastened to fit either right- or left-handed users.
4. Bosch CLPK232A-181 18V Lithium-Ion Cordless Two Tool Combo Kit
The Bosch CLPK232A-181 18-Volt cordless Combo kit provides the maximum amount of maneuverability Plus power on a jobsite. This collection has two powerhouses that deliver muscle-to-weight proportion: the Bosch DDS181A compact tough 1/2-inch drill/driver and the Bosch 25618 1/4-inch Hex impact driver. The drill/driver features Bosch heavy-duty chuck, which prevents drill bits from slipping during high-torque applications, thanks to high clamping force. It also has an innovative canned motor, which is more compact but provides the same power as conventional 18-Volt motors. The drill produces powerful performance, with 600-Inch lbs. Of torque and two drilling speeds (0-1,700 RPM for high speed and 0-500 RPM for torque). it is very compact, with a 7.0-Inch head-length and a weight of only 3.5 lbs. The impact driver is designed for professional driving jobs, supplying 1,500-Inch lbs. Of torque, 2,800 RPM and 3,200 BPM – with a short 5.7-Inch head-length.
5. Hitachi DS18DSAL 18-Volt Lithium Ion Compact Pro Driver Drill with Flashlight
Powered by a long-lasting 1.5Ah lithium ion slide battery, the Hitachi DS18DSAL 18-Volt Compact Pro Lithium Ion Drill/Driver packs a powerful punch. Efficient and easy to handle, this variable-speed tool provides professional power in the most compact, lightweight, and ergonomically designed body currently available. For added convenience, it comes with Hitachi’s UB18DAL Lithium Ion Flashlight. The first in Hitachi’s compact Pro Series of cordless tools, the DS18DSALmeasures only 7.7 inches in length and weighs 3.5 pounds, making it easy to hold and use all day without stress or strain. The compact design also provides the power and performance of a pro-grade 18-volt tool, making operation as efficient and dependable as it is comfortable. This impressive driver drill features a variable speed trigger to set speed from zero to 350 RPM or zero to 1,500 RPM so you always match the right speed to the job. Additionally, the clutch has 22 driving stages and a special mode for drilling, allowing for both high torque applications and precision driving.
6. Rockwell RK2852K2 Li-ion Brushless Drill/Driver, 20V
The Rockwell RK2852K2 20v Li-ion Brushless Drill/Driver adds power and battery life through the addition of brushless motors. The Brushless motors reduce friction and heat that steal vital power from the tool, allowing that energy to go into your work. The 20-Volt drill gives you all the power you need for drilling and driving. The Drill features a 1/2-Inch metal keyless chuck allowing you tu use round and hex shank bits. The chuck ratchets in giving you superb gripping power, reducing slippage while drilling. The 20V Brushless Drill has a built in LED light to make working in low lit areas easier. The drill is extremely lightweight and compact to reduce fatigue and allow access to tight spaces. The Drill has 18 + 1 torque settings, no-load speed of up to 2,000 RPM, 531 in lbs of torque and two drilling speeds.
7. Black & Decker GCO18SB-2 18-Volt NiCad 3/8-Inch Cordless Drill/Driver with 2 Batteries and Storage Bag
BLACK & DECKER GCO18SB-2 18v Cordless Drill/Driver with 2 Batteries and Storage Bag. Due to the variable speeds offered by this drill, it is perfect for drilling & driving in a variety of materials. Ideal for drilling holes through wood, metal and plastic, or for screwdriving into wood, metal and plastic. The keyless chuck makes bit changing a breeze, and a 24 postion clutch prevents stripping and overdriving of screws. It also features a soft grip handle which provides added comfort during use.
8. WORX Switchdriver 2-in-1 Cordless Drill and Driver – WX176L
The Switchdriver features two 1/4 in. chucks that rotate 180-degree at the push of a button. This unique dual-chuck design lets you move effortlessly between drilling and driving without stopping to change out the bit. Just load both chucks with standard ¼-inch, hex bits, drill a hole, then press the button to rotate the second chuck and drive the screw. Because you aren’t fumbling for bits, you can work twice as fast, even while standing on a ladder. You can even work in the dark thanks to an automatic LED light that engages in drive mode. At 3.1 lbs, the Switchdriver is compact, lightweight and easy to control. A variable-speed, reversible motor delivers enough power to handle most drilling, driving or fastening jobs around the house. Use high speeds (up to 1,500 RPM) for fast drilling, and low speeds for jobs that require more torque. A precise electronic torque control dial lets you choose from 11 positions and 265-in-lbs of torque to set screws to the right depth without stripping or work surface damage.