Best Cordless Drills

Cordless drills now are not the same as the cheap cordless drills we all used years ago.

With new battery technology, they are one thing any woodworker or handyman should have in their tool kit.

These cordless drill reviews narrowed the competition to the top 5. To find the best, we put them all through the same tests, and carried out a thorough examination of how they performed.

guide on buying a good drill

By the end of this cordless drill review, we will find the best-rated cordless drill.

Why You Need a Good Cordless Drill

Drills are most often associated with putting holes in wood. While a good cordless drill can do that all day long, they serve many purposes aside from this.

Nowadays, with various attachments, they can be used for all manner of things.

Screw bits can be used, so there is no need for slow screwdriver action. You can complete the job in a fraction of the time.

The best drill set will have all you need to work in any area, no cables or cords hanging down a ladder.

You can reach into almost any area to drill, screw or whatever you find a use for. They are also flexible for screw or bolt size.

No matter if, you are drilling or screwing into wood, metal or plastic, these are one of the most adaptive tools you can use.

These cordless drill reviews look at all the good, the bad and the ugly of these top 5 cordless drills, and how they perform in real world tests.

While there are cheap drills, or budget breaking expensive cordless drills, there must be some price to performance for each one.

Once we find this, this will leave us with the best cordless drill 2019.

Top Rated Cordless Drills Reviews

BLACK+DECKER LDX120C 20V MAX Lithium Ion Drill Driver

1. BLACK+DECKER LDX120C 20V MAX Lithium Ion Drill / Driver

This Black and Decker cordless drill comes from a company, which has a great pedigree in producing power tools.

This drill is smaller than a lot of others, but you shouldn’t let the size convince you it is anything other than capable.

The smaller size means it can fit in the tightest of spaces, and it is comfortable in smaller hands.

The Black and Decker LDX120 is robust and comes with an 11-position clutch to deliver precise control. We found the precise control made this light drill the perfect chainsaw sharpener, which isn’t you can say for many tools.

The RPM is 650 and it delivers 115 in-lb. of torque. The 3/8-inch chuck is ideal for lots of sized drills and bits.

It comes with an LED light, so if you are in dark corners, you can still see the head of your screw, or where you need to drill.

Pros

  • Very affordable
  • Highly ergonomic
  • Well-built and sturdy
  • Lightweight at just over 3lbs.
  • Easy access variable speed switch
  • Built in light

Cons

  • Only one battery
  • Bits are prone to slipping
  • Best for light use

Technical Specifications

  • Torque: 115 in-lb.
  • Voltage: 20 volts
  • Wattage: 1500 w
  • Battery Type: Lithium Ion
  • Speed: Variable
  • Warranty: 2-years

In testing for the Black and Decker 20v cordless drill review, we saw plenty of battery life, although there is only one battery included.

If you will be using this drill for extended periods, it can become warm, and will require charging, which is quick. Although it is advisable to get a second Black and Decker battery for drill.

With a guide price of around $35.00 this lightweight cordless drill powerhouse of a drill delivers a lot for the money.

It is versatile enough for any jobs around the home, and is suitable for women to use as well. It performs great and can be the best drill for the money.

DEWALT DC970K-2 18-Volt Compact Drill Driver Kit

2. DEWALT DC970K-2 18-Volt Compact Drill/Driver Kit

DeWalt drills are renowned as some of the best you can get; however, there is a price to pay for this.

In this DeWalt 18v cordless drill review, we found this drill was far from being the lightest on test. It does come as a complete package, and delivers enough power and torque for the most demanding jobs.

Weighing in at over 5 lbs. This is not a small handheld drill, and can cause fatigue with extended use.

However, it is still ergonomic and comfortable to hold. The kits comes with two 18v batteries, which can be charged in a little under 1-hour. It would be nice to see Lithium Ion batteries rather than NiCad for durability.

There are 22 clutch settings, and the chuck maximum size is 1/2 in which should suffice for most handheld power drills work.

Pros

  • Ergonomic
  • Sturdy and well-built
  • Comes with 2 batteries and charging station

Cons

  • Chuck can wear over time
  • Poor carry case
  • Not so reliable battery life
  • Expensive

Technical Specifications

  • Torque: 115 in-lb.
  • Voltage: 18 volts
  • Battery Type: NiCad
  • Speed: Variable up to 1,500 rpm
  • Warranty: 3-years

With a guide price of a little under $190.00, this puts the 18-volt DeWalt drill out of many persons budget.

Like any other DeWalt compact drill, this is as rugged as they come and is backed up by a 2-year warranty.

You may find through, with extended use, you could be calling on this for a chuck which doesn’t quite grip drill or screw bits as it should.

DEWALT DCD777C2 20V Max Lithium-Ion Brushless Compact Drill Driver

3. DEWALT DCD777C2 20V Max Lithium-Ion Brushless Compact Drill Driver

The DeWalt brushless drill comes with 2 Lithium Ion batteries which is an improvement over NiCad, a charging station is included as is a carry bag. This though is only fabric and may wear with repeated use.

The drill is ergonomic and weighs in at 2.6 lbs., which makes it light. The biggest asset of the 20v DeWalt drill, brushless motor design.

This improves efficiency and overall performance. This in turn should lead to a longer life of your power tool.

Like many other top cordless drills, this comes with a built in light for those tight spaces. It comes with 2 power ratings of 0-500 rpm and 0-1500 rpm.

Pros

  • Ergonomic
  • Sturdy and well-built
  • Comes with 2 batteries and charging station

Cons

  • Chuck can wear over time
  • Poor carry case
  • Not so reliable battery life
  • Expensive

Technical Specifications

  • Torque: 115 in-lb.
  • Voltage: 18 volts
  • Battery Type: Lithium Ion
  • Speed: Variable up to 1,500 rpm
  • Warranty: 3-years

With a guide price of just under $100, it is a steep investment for the casual user. With this, you do get durability and the comfort of a 3-year warranty, but it can be too much for a casual user.

If you have jobs that are more demanding where you will drill, driver, DeWalt may let you down with battery life and may find you are swapping the battery too quickly. DeWalt cordless drills are meant for projects that are more industrial, however, this foray into the home market might be a step too far compared to some of their other offerings.

PORTER CABLE PCC606LA 20-Volt 1-2-Inch Lithium-Ion Drill Driver Kit

4. PORTER-CABLE PCC606LA 20-Volt 1/2-Inch Lithium-Ion Drill/Driver Kit

The Porter Cable 20v Lithium drill comes from a reputable manufacturer. It packs some serious power from the Lithium Ion batteries that can last for ages.

This is a good thing because there is only one. To see when you are low on juice, you have a power gauge.

The Porter Cable drill batteries are long life, and it is good they are because charging is slow. If you have large projects that require lots of drilling or driving action, then a spare battery would be advisable, no matter how long one will last.

The drill is lightweight, but at 4.4 lbs. It is on the heavy side of light for demanding jobs. With 2 variable speed settings, you can tackle any job on any material.

With the 1/2 inch chuck, it should cater for any number of drills or bits that you have in your collection.

Pros

  • Ergonomic
  • Lightweight construction
  • Long life batteries
  • Variable speed
  • Battery gauge

Cons

  • Hard to control trigger
  • Batteries are hard to remove
  • Short warranty

Technical Specifications

  • Voltage: 20 volts
  • Battery Type: Lithium Ion
  • Speed: Variable 2 speed up to 1,600 rpm
  • Warranty: 90 days

The ergonomic build means you can get in tight spots, and with the LED light, you can see what you are doing with the Porter Cable drill.

The chuck is solid and unlike some, it shows no signs of wear over repeated use.

For a guide price of around $75.00 the Porter Cable 20v drill is higher up the budget scale, and the warranty is very short.

While being rugged in construction, in testing it was found to be lacking for larger jobs. This was surprising because ultimate power was achieved using this drill.

Makita XT269M 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 2-Pc. Combo Kit

5. Makita XT269M 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 2-Pc. Combo Kit

This Makita cordless drills review looks at the only combo set out of all the entrants. It comes with a 1/2 inch Hammer driver-drill and a variable speed impact driver.

Both items are a brushless motor design, so there is improved efficiency and a longer life expected.

Weights of each are 4.2 lbs. for the drill and 3.3 lbs. for the impact driver. Variable speeds are found on both with the drill having 0-500 and 0-2,000 rpm.

The impact driver offering 0-3,400 to 0-3,600 rpm. While a corded Makita drill is what many users will be sued to, this lacks nothing compared to its counterpart.

The batteries while only 18v, are Lithium Ion and the kit comes with 2. This means you will never be without enough juice for the most demanding of jobs.

No matter what materials you are drilling into be it would, metal, plastic or concrete, the 18v Makita drill accomplishes this with ease.

Pros

  • 2 batteries
  • Carry case
  • Fast charger
  • Variable speed
  • Ergonomic design

Cons

  • Plastic chuck problems
  • Faulty chargers for some users
  • Very expensive

Technical Specifications

  • Voltage: 18 volts
  • Battery Type: Lithium Ion
  • Speed: Variable speeds 0-2,000 for drill, 0-3,600 for impact driver
  • Warranty: 3-years
  • Torque: 1,500 in-lb.

The most significant downside to this kit is the price. The Makita 18v cordless drill combo comes with a guide price of a little under $270.

This is the extreme end of anyone’s budget, and the impact driver may not see that much use around the home.

Out of all the wireless drill reviews, it is clear that this is the most powerful cordless drill we tested.

Cordless Drill Buying Guide

From woodwork to rugged building, cordless drills can simplify any task. Because they can be adapted to many different jobs using different drills and bits, they are extremely versatile.

It’s a given that these are a must-have for any toolbox, so it means that you may be looking forward to buying one if you have not already done so.

Because these tools come in so many different variations, it’s imperative you know what to think about when reading the reviews.

When scouring reviews, you can find variations in descriptions. You need to find product details close to what the cordless drill; drivers are actually going to be.

One final thing you need to look out for is the number of year warranty you will receive. This can make a difference if any part of the drill fails over the long term rather than in the beginning.

Knowing the difference between Cordless Drill and Corded Drill

Cordless Drill vs. Corded Drill

Both brushed and brushless motors rely on magnets to generate the rotational movement of the motor shaft.

The means of power delivery is what differentiates the two types, and the first uses carbon brushes for the task.

The latter brushless motor uses internal circuitry to generate a rotating magnetic field, thus effectively removing the need for brushes.

Aside from the way it works, the important consideration is the brushless motors are more efficient and powerful than brushed counterparts.

Drills, which rely on these motors usually, produce less friction and heat during operation.

However, drills that use brushed motors are usually cheaper, and this is something to consider if you will be using the drill for minor chores.

Torque and RPM

The RPM figure is the abbreviation for rotations per minute, which indicates the maximum speed attainable by a given drill.

Lower models offer a choice of at least 2 options and a switch to enable users to select low or high speed.

These are the most suitable for light tasks, but you should also consider torque when you compare speeds. Torque is the rotational force of the device.

Essentially, the higher the torque of the drill bit, the more it can drill into hard surfaces. RPM and Torque work hand in hand while also being separate entities.

Types of Drills

There basically two types of drills, these fall into hammer action and regular drills that have no hammer action.

For the majority of home use, regular drills suffice, and a hammer drill is more suited for larger projects that require drilling into concrete.

You also have additional features such as a work light, variable speed and ones, which are designed purely as a cordless screwdriver, and their only use is for driving screws.

There are many types, and you can choose any type that is suitable for everyday jobs all the way to heavy-duty work.

Clutch

This will limit the force to the motor. The more clutch settings the better when it comes to screwing as it can prevent the drill from snapping the screw heads off.

Most cordless drills come with variable clutch settings; however, the number can vary a great deal depending on the use they are designed for. This is a variation of a variable speed transmission, although it works in a different way to the rpm.

Chuck

The chuck is the part that will hold the drills and screw bits. These should not wobble as they can cause holes to become egg-shaped rather than round. They also come in varying sizes, and this can affect the sizes of drill bit you can use.

There are varying sizes, and if you don’t plan to use larger drills, you can make use of a chuck that is 3/8 of an inch compared to the more standard 1/2 inch chuck size.

Most cordless drills also come without a chuck key, these keyless chucks make changing bits easier, but you do lose some force when tightening onto larger bits.

If this happens, you will find your bits snagging and twisting in the chuck. This often happens over time with repeated use.

Batteries

Any cordless drill is only as good as its battery. You often find either NiCad or Lithium Ion. NiCad being the older variety, with the newer Lithium Ion cordless offering better overall durability.

You also need to be sure the battery life will be enough to last as long as you are suing your power tool. Many come with two batteries, so you have a spare, but for occasional use, this may not be a necessity.

Charge time is also a factor. Some batteries can take up to 5-hours before they reach full charge. This can leave you high and dry while you have work to do, a lithium Ion battery offering the fastest recharge times

Along with this, you have the voltage. The higher the voltage, the more power your drill can deliver. If you are planning to drill larger holes, then 20v battery drills are the best choice as your minimum, and a 12-volt model will be under-powered.

BLACK+DECKER LDX120C 20V MAX Lithium Ion Drill Driver as the Best Cordless Drill

Final Verdict

After drilling and driving thousands of screws, we finally found the best cordless drill for use around the home, and what will be one of a user’s woodworking essentials tool kit.

Taking everything into consideration, it was the Black and Decker cordless drills that came out on top with the BLACK+DECKER LDX120C 20V MAX Lithium Ion Drill / Driver. This was light, easy to hold, even in smaller hands.

It was ergonomic in design and accessing corners was easy and made easier with the built in light. We also found it the best chainsaws sharpening tool.

This may not be what is expected, but it is a great addition to your drills skill set.

The motor was as powerful as more expensive options, although it may be down on rpm. In all our tests, we looked for what is the best cordless drill overall and not one that was geared to one specific set of tasks.

Having sufficient power, decent battery life, it is the best drill to buy without going overboard and breaking the budget.

Best Cordless Drills

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