Have a new project or some renovation work in mind and don’t know what the best cordless drill for your needs is?
Continue reading this guide and we’ll have you outclassing woodpeckers in no time!
For those of us with a hands-on approach to life, there’s nothing quite like forming an idea and watching it take shape with a little elbow grease and dedication.
It comes as no surprise that one would want to use the best tools for the job.
Sometimes the best doesn’t mean the most powerful or most expensive, but the device that you can get the most out of and that can rise up to the challenge your mind has in store for it.
It’s especially like that when it comes to choosing a cordless drill – you’ll want a tool that has the mobility and light weight to be able to reach the tightest of spaces while simultaneously being able to deliver the force you’ve come to expect from tools you plug into the main.
To help you choose, we’ve put together this guide that features cordless drill reviews of the most sought-after and acclaimed products on the market today.
There are three main parts to this guide.
In the first, we’ll look at tools that have impeccable performance and adaptability. Then we’ll consider some less expensive models which have managed to surprise us greatly with their quality and power. In the end we’ll also shed some light on a couple of factors you should consider before you pull the trigger on your next power tool.
Once you have familiarized yourself with what’s on offer, you’ll have a better understanding of what it is you are looking for, and will be more able to pick out the best power drill both for your current project and the many more we’re sure will follow.
|Name||Weight (Lbs.)||Voltage (V)||Rating (Out of 5)||Warranty (Years)||Price|
|Makita XPH012 18V LXT||4.0||18||4.6||3||$$$|
|Black & Decker LD120VA||4.6||20||4.3||2||$|
Top Rated Cordless Drill Reviews
1. DEWALT DCD760KL 18-Volt(4.7 / 5)
We’ll start our power drill reviews with DeWalt’s premium model, the DCD760KL. When choosing your next power tool, whether you’re a professional contractor or DIY enthusiast, it is always important not to skimp out on quality.
After all, what you build today might last for generations or crumble depending on the quality of the work and the tools you use to do it with. Luckily, there won’t be much worry, at least not about the tool part, if you get yourself the 18-volt DCD760KL cordless drill by DeWalt.
We were first impressed with this product’s exceptional power – an 18 volt source means that you can take on larger and more complex projects with ease.
Usually though, this means that the accompanying battery is clunky and makes the tool more unwieldy. Not so with this model. The battery is both compact enough and has enough juice to enable you to finish up most projects without ever noticing that the charge might be low.
When the time to recharge does come, it takes only 30 minutes to fill up the lithium-ion battery and you’re all set to work again.
With a length of 8.2 inches and a weight of only 4 pounds, the DCD760KL is surprisingly compact for an 18-volt model. It comes with a large ½ chuck that you can use with super-sized bits for drilling of bigger holes and other larger projects. If you need to drill for longer periods of time, or need to work on material that are above your head a lot, this drill’s small size will make it easier on your arm and shoulder, minimizing the strain.
You can adjust the tool’s speed and torque settings for various specific purposes. It has 17 different torque settings as well as 2 variable speed modes. The first has a range of 0-500 rpm and is used for working with denser materials or the drilling of larger holes. The second 0-1,700 rpm setting can be used for rapid drilling of smaller holes.
For all those hard to reach and hard to see places, DeWalt have also thrown in a bright LED light that will eliminate guesswork and illuminate the darkest corners of your project in no time.
In the event that your tool stops working or if for some reason you aren’t satisfied, there’s a 90 day money back guarantee as well as a 3 year limited warranty. Not only that, but there’s also a free 2 year service contract for the battery and a 1 year contract for the drill itself. It’ll be hard to find a better deal with such generous options.
One minor complaint we’ve come across is that this model has a keyless chuck. This means that if you don’t tighten it from time to time, the bit might come loose at some point, so keep that in mind before turning it on.
All of the aforementioned features make for a simple choice – the DCD760KL is the best 18V cordless drill on our list overall. It’s light weight, long battery life and host of other features will ensure that you’ll tackle any job with confidence and ease.
2. DEWALT DCD771C2 20V MAX(4.6 / 5)
Another one of the top rated cordless drills comes from DeWalt. The DCD771C2 might be a bit less powerful than the model we discussed earlier, but it is still versatile enough and comes with plenty features which should satisfy even the most pedantic of home owners.
Don’t let the 20 volts in its name fool you – it does come with a 20 Volt MAX lithium-ion battery, but this puts out 18 volts of power. Still, that will be more than enough juice for your home improvement needs. What’s more, you’ll get two battery packs with the kit so you can easily switch a new one in while the other one charges.You won’t find yourself in that situation often however as the batteries have a long life.
Speaking of power, the DCD771C2 has plenty of it. It puts out 300 Unit Watts Out (or UWO for short). The higher this number is, the more effective the drill can perform its job. Similarly to the DCD760KL, there are two speed settings.
For lower speeds, it varies between 0 and 450 rpm. For quicker drilling the speeds range from 0 to 1500 rpm. The speed can be adjusted by a switch that also controls whether the drill is moving forwards or backwards and acts as a lock-off button. Torque settings are also adjustable and this model features 16 in total.
It has a ½ keyless chuck that accepts larger bits. Not that you’ll be needing such bits for smaller projects around the house, but it’s nice to know it’s there if you need it. It comes with an automated spindle lock mechanism, meaning that you can use only one hand to open and close the chuck. The maximum drilling capacity varies depending on material. It is 33 mm for wood and 13 mm for metal.
The accompanying kit is nothing to scoff at either. With this cordless drill you’ll receive the two battery packs, an 18V XR charger and a carrying bag. The tool itself has a built-in light which you can use to light up darkened corners or hard to access nooks.
There are some criticisms of this tool, but they can mostly be considered minor or chalked up to individual tastes. Some customers are dissatisfied with the fact that the batteries and charger have temperature restrictions and should be between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit when charging. Others think that the bag isn’t of the highest quality and that the light might not be powerful enough for some situations.
Regardless of these small complaints, we think that the DCD771C2 is one of the best drills on the market today. Considering it sports most of the features the DCD760KL has to offer while being markedly less expensive, not getting this drill and making it an integral part of your home tool set would certainly be a wasted opportunity.
3. Makita XPH012 18V LXT(4.6 / 5)
We love versatile tools. What particularly gets us excited is when a company manages to put the functionality of multiple tools into a single cordless drill like Makita have done with the XPH012. It is a hammer drill and a driver at the same time, but is it any good?
For starters, it has many uses. You can use it either as a drill, hammer drill or driver depending on your needs. Best of all, it accomplishes all of this while being lightweight and powerful at the same time. It weighs only 4 pounds including the battery, allowing you to work for longer periods of time before starting to feel fatigued.
The handle is also intriguing since it features a unique ergonomic design that follows the contour of your hand well and enables both people with somewhat smaller hands as well as those that suffer from physical limitations to still be able to grip it tightly.Its 18 v li-ion battery has a long life and can be charged up in 30 minutes.
The lighter weight doesn’t mean Makita have skimped on performance. The drill delivers a maximum 480 pounds of torque at variable speeds (0 – 400 rpm and 0 – 1,500 rpm respectively) thanks to its four pole motor. The all metal transmission will make sure that it will bore through an assortment of materials with ease.
What really makes this one of the top cordless drills is the fact that its built-in hammer driver makes it able to penetrate more surfaces than a regular drill could, like mortar, brick and even concrete.
Naturally since this is a cordless drill after all, the hammer driver action might not be as powerful as you’d come to expect from a tool you’d plug into the main, but since there are no cords to consider and the power source is always with you, it is perfect for remote jobs in situations when an outlet isn’t readily available.
Making your work safer are the built-in Star Protection Computer Controls which Makita claim prevent the tool from overloading, overheating and over discharging. Add to that the 3 year warranty on the drill and a 1 year warranty for its battery and you have a product that’s both safe to use and is sure to last a long time.
The XPH012 is probably the best cordless drill as far as versatility is concerned. The fact that you can use it on so many more materials than other tools is reason enough to grab one, and its quality, ergonomic make and longevity only seal the deal.
4. Hitachi DS18DSAL 18-Volt(4.5 / 5)
Do you want a high-speed, high performance tool that you can use to screw stuff in as well as to drill through wood or metal in a snap? If the answer is yes, then the DS18DSAL might just be the best cordless drill for you.
This drill can whirl up a storm with its maximum speed of 1800 rpm, making it one of the fastest drills in our guide. The fast spin is accompanied with considerable power in the form of 460 pounds of pressure per inch, meaning that the DS18DSAL won’t simply run out of steam when faced with a sturdy wooden beam for example.
As with the other products we’ve reviewed thus far, it comes with 2 speed settings – a higher one for drilling holes, and a lower setting for screwing in, well, screws.
It’s 22 different clutch settings turn the DS18DSAL into a precision screwdriver, allowing you to precisely calibrate the amount of power used and avoid driving in screws too far into the material.
The design is ergonomic and well balanced as the drill has weight to it at the top and at the bottom, negating the awkward balancing issues top-heavy drills sometimes suffer from and ensuring that you’ll have a firm grip in any situation.
It’s light weight of just 3.5 pounds adds to its stress-free use and allows for a good day’s work without the dangers of strain or injury.
Although it can create holes in metal with a diameter of half an inch, the holes it creates in wood have a diameter of only 1.75 inches, which is somewhat smaller than we’ve come to expect.
In the end however, the DS18DSAL is the best cordless drill when it comes to delivering adequate power at top speeds. Any home project is sure to succeed once you’ve combined Hitachi’s technology and your own creativity, and this drill will make sure it is done in no time.
Finding the Best Cordless Drill for the Money
1. DEWALT DC970K-2 18-Volt(4.7 / 5)
We’ve already established that DeWalt is a brand that prides itself in delivering top notch tools at the higher end of the scale. What impresses us equally if not even more is that they also take the same approach when constructing top rated cordless drills for the thrifty DIY enthusiast.
Their flagship model in that grade, the DC970K-2, shows just how much you can cram into an affordable tool and make it stand out of the crowd.
Although it is marketed as an entry-level model, this tool performs only slightly worse than many higher-priced competitors. Its high performance motor is able to deliver 380 watts of power to any home surface you set your mind on drilling, and is powered by an 18 volt Ni-Cad battery that will be charged up and ready to go in an hour’s time.
What’s more, you get two batteries in the kit that will make for an uninterrupted work experience as you only have to pop the 2nd one in while the 1st is charging. Customer reviews tell that some people have managed to use the drill practically the whole day without needing another charge.
Even though Li-Ion batteries are in fashion today and do take less time to recharge, they suffer from a shorter shelf life of only 2-3 years, regardless of you using your tool or not.
The two standard speed changes it comes with, a slower 0 – 450 rpm and a faster 0-1,500 rpm one, are the same as we’ve seen in pricier devices. It has a plastic half inch single-sleeve keyless ratcheting chuck which has a tight and precise grip which keeps your bits securely in place.
With a weight of 5.2 pounds of weight and 9 inches in length it is one of the heavier and larger tools in the guide, but is still both light and portable enough to be effective in tighter spaces.
The DC970K-2 comes with a handy carrying bag. Customers have voiced complaints over the fact that a hard case is not included (although you might be able to find one if you look hard enough), which does make sense seeing as though this is a more affordable model after all. If costs need to be cut, going for the accessories instead of the actual tool is something we totally support.
All things considered, the DC970K-2 is undoubtedly the best cordless drill for the money. You get adequate performance, most of the same features as with models that cost twice as much and two batteries that keep you going for hours. What else could you possibly want in a power tool?
2. BLACK+DECKER LDX120PK 20-Volt MAX(4.4 / 5)
Getting a high quality cordless drill for a very reasonable price is great. Getting all of that plus half a toolbox full of accessories at the same price point is something that really sparked our interest.
The drill itself is a standard cordless tool powered by a 20v Li-ion battery that is always readily available and can hold its charge for up to 18 months. It is compact and light enough so you can use it almost anywhere. Its clutch has 11 different positions allowing fine control when dealing with screws and delicate surfaces. No more stripping and overdriving of screws is a nice feature.
The meat of the deal comes in form of 66 assorted tools and accessories that will help you build or fix up almost anything in your household. All of these can be stored in the practical bag that’s also included, making for a lot of tools that are all neatly stored and accessible at any time.
Most importantly, the assortment of drill bits is very comprehensive and you’ll find almost any type of bit you’d use in a home setting. Unfortunately, the bag does not come with a separate pocket or pouch to store the bits in, so you’ll have to get separate smaller containers to house them in.
This is without a doubt the best drill set in terms of how many accessories you get and how much you have to pay for them.
It is ideal if you’re just starting to build up your tool foundation or would like to have a wide assortment of tools available in a pinch when visiting your weekend home for example. The actual drill is decent as well, so what’s not to like?
3. BLACK+DECKER LDX120C 20-Volt MAX(4.3 / 5)
What if you only have simple jobs that require a solid yet unassuming drill to do them effectively? Something like making a hole for a picture or fixing things around the house. Another Black & Decker model, the LDX120C is here to answer the call.
The more modest focus of the drill coupled with a very low price means that some of its capabilities are lower than those of more advanced models. It has a 20 volt li-ion battery which will keep the charge and keep you going until your work is done. It has a diminished output of 115 inch-pounds which is nothing to write home about, but can definitely help you hang that painting on the wall.
It has only one drill speed, but you can control it by pressing the trigger more firmly to increase it. The speed ranges from o to 650 rpm, certainly enough for driving in screws and performing basic handy work.
It has has a keyless chuck that is a 3/8″ as well as a clutch with 11 different settings. There’s an interesting setting specifically for working with drywall that ensures you don’t embed your screw too deep.
In terms or weight, at 3.1 pounds it is probably the lightest model on our list and this is a weight that will allow you to work for hours without interruption. It is also very comfortable to use and operate thanks to its anti-slip grip. It may not e as ergonomic or as light as more expensive models, but it still manages to feel good and perform adequately.
All in all, we’re satisfied with what the LDX120C brings to the table for a very reasonable price, making it the best cordless drill for people on a budget. If you fall under that category or plan on using it on a couple of occasions for small projects each year, there’s really no need to go for much more.
4. Black & Decker LD120VA 20-Volt MAX(4.3 / 5)
We’ll be wrapping up our cordless drills reviews with the LD120VA, also from Black & Decker. They obviously know how to reel customers in with a cornucopia of good accessories, and this model is no exception.
The drill itself has a 20 volt Li-ion battery and can put out a considerable 300 inch-pounds of torque. It’s clutch has an above average 24 positions, meaning you can fine-tune it for an array of different screws and surfaces. It is also light enough to not cause fatigue and its slip-resistant grip will make sure you can hold on tight while performing any kind of task.
There are 30 accessories in total, a bit less than half of what you’d get with the LDX120PK, but they still comprise a good mix of bits and other knick-knacks you’ll most likely need when working with the drill sooner or later.
The LD120VA falls smack dab in the middle between the other two reviewed models from the same manufacturer. It is affordable, comfortable, gets the job done and comes with an assortment of accessories that will make starting out so much easier. If you want a reasonable compromise, go for this one.
Things to Consider Before Making a Purchase
Now that you’ve familiarized yourself with our cordless drill reviews, it might be a good idea to stop and consider some additional factors.
We’re sure you already have a tool in mind, but do read through these suggestions which are sure to either reinforce your decision or make you wonder for the better.
How much power do you actually need? – Are you a professional contractor, carpenter or construction worker that needs one more handy tool in their already well-equipped arsenal, or are you a hobbyist that likes to create things in his or her spare time?
When it comes to getting the right cordless drill, striking a fine line between getting a product with all the bells and whistles and saving money in the process is very important.
There’s no use in getting a powerhouse package if all you’re going to do is drill a few holes into a beam once in a while. On the other hand, some of the entry-level tools we’ve showcased simply don’t have the power to tackle tougher materials.
Taking all of this into account will make for far less headaches in the long run.
Single use vs. versatility – as we’ve shown in our power drill reviews, all the products do a more or less fine job of putting holes into metal or wood where there were none before. Is that enough for you though?
Do you happen to have some rusty old screws that are lodged in there so tight that nothing but the screwdriver capability of your drill can handle? Do you have work to do in your yard or on your driveway that would otherwise need to be done with a separate hammer driver?
Keep all of your potential needs in mind before you end up with a single use tool you’ll replace soon anyway.
What type of battery to choose? – Two industry standards have established themselves – Li-ion and Ni-Cad. Each comes with its own pros and cons.
Lithium batteries can be charged faster and can hold the charge longer. Nickel batteries on the other hand are longer-lasting and perform better in colder climates.
If you happen to be living in such a climate, or don’t want to bother with having to replace your batteries every couple of years, getting the nickel version might be a good idea, otherwise lithium is a solid choice as well.
Do accessories matter? – If you are young and inexperienced and are using a drill as a way to get into the nitty-gritty, you might not have all the bots and other tools you didn’t even know you needed.
Some products on the list come with a generous supply of additional tidbits to jump start your hobby or career. On the other hand, if you’re a seasoned pro with more tools than space to put them in, those accessories might just end up creating even more clutter.
With the power drill reviews and additional info out of the way the question what is the best cordless drill might still be going through your head.
We understand the sentiment as so many products on our list have something to offer and excel at, be it versatility, high speed, overall quality or a price tag that’s hard to beat.
Ultimately it falls to you to pick out the manufacturer you trust the most and the model which seems to fit your particular needs the best. We hope that this guide has given you all the tools you’ll need to do just that (pun not intended).
Whichever drill you do decide on buying, we’re sure that you’ll have a long-lasting, hassle-free experience while visibly improving the world around you.
Whether you’ll just put up a photo here and there or decide to help out with Habitats for Humanity is up to you, but regardless of the scope of your ambitions, the right tool will be there to make your ideas come to life in the best way possible.