I think you’ll agree that there are a wide variety of cordless woodworking drills on the market, each with different features. With all those features, there should be a cordless drill buying guide.
5 Top-Rated 18-20V Cordless Drills - Buying Guide 2017
|18 Volt||20 Volt||18 Volt||20 Volt||18 Volt|
|500 in-lbs peak torque||360 UWO||600 in-lbs torque||330 UWO||480 in-lbs max torque|
0-400/ 0-1,800 RPM
|Two Speed |
0-600/ 0-2,000 RPM
|Two Speed |
0-500 / 0-1,700 RPM
|Two Speed |
0-400/ 0-1,600 RPM
0-400/ 0-1,500 RPM
|Lithium Ion Battery||Lithium Ion Battery||Lithium Ion Battery||Lithium Ion Battery||Lithium Ion Battery|
|5-Year Warranty||3-Year Warranty||1-Year Warranty||3-Year Warranty||3-Year Warranty|
|4.7 Star Amazon Rating||4.7 Star Amazon Rating||4.7 Star Amazon Rating||4.6 Star Amazon Rating||4.6 Star Amazon Rating|
|Check Price||Check Price||Check Price||Check Price||Check Price|
Choosing A Cordless Drill
Cordless drills are more portable than corded drills. You can use them to both drill holes and drive screws.
Want to know the best part?
You don’t need to look for an electrical outlet or pull out an extension cord.
But with so many out there, it’s difficult to know which woodworking cordless drill to buy. Here’s a cordless drill buying guide with tips for buying a cordless drill that should help you narrow down your choices for your cordless woodworking drills. If you’re interesting in learning about essential woodworking hand tools, check out this other article on our site.
If you’re in a hurry and you just want know which is the best cordless woodworking drill, here it is: Milwaukee 2691-22 18-Volt Compact Drill and Impact Driver Combo Kit.
Otherwise, keep reading to find out why we chose this cordless drill and for 5 tips to help you choose the right woodworking drill for you.
The M18™ Cordless LITHIUM-ION System’s patented technologies and electronics, innovative motor design, and superior ergonomics provide the most efficient blend of power, weight and performance in the industry. Powered by RED LITHIUM™, the M18 cordless LITHIUM-ION system delivers more torque, more power, and longer run-time than the competition.
Why We Like the Milwaukee 2691-22 Drill/Driver Combo Kit
Benefits of the Milwaukee 2691-22 drill/driver
- Powerful yet Compact– The Drill Driver and Impact Driver are lightweight but pack a punch. Superior power and torque compared to other 18V cordless drill drivers.
- Accurate– Maneuverable design has a variable speed trigger and LED lights.
- Comfort– Ergonomic design feels good in the hand.
- Smart– Battery indicator lets you know when you need to recharge before the battery dies. Battery charging is super fast: 30 minutes to charge.
- Warranty– The Drill Driver, Impact Driver, and Battery Charger all come with a five-year warranty.
Disadvantages of the Milwaukee 2691-22 drill/driver
- Battery Housing– The battery is hard to remove from the housing.
- Carrying Case– The kit comes in a soft case and lacks the protection and durability of a hard carrying case.
- Stops Immediately– Pay attention to the battery indicator. The drill will stop instantly when the battery is depleted.
5 Tips For Buying Cordless Drills – Buying Guide
TIP 1: Check the Hand Grip
Regardless of the model you choose, make sure it’s comfortable in your hand. Try several in the store to find one that fits you best. A few different hand grips are available and only by trying them will you know which you prefer.
Most cordless drills have a T-handle with the battery at the end of the handle. In these models, the battery serves as a counterweight for the drill and makes it more comfortable to handle. Look at the position of the controls to find one that will be easy to operate.
Continue reading this cordless drill buying guide for more tips for purchasing a cordless drill.
TIP 2 CORDLESS DRILL BUYING GUIDE: Look for Variable Speeds
Softer materials require lower speeds. Harder materials require higher speeds. Some cordless drills have one fixed speed, but many have two settings: 300 and 800 rpm. Use the low speed for screws and the high speed for boring holes. Some cordless drills even have top speeds of 1,000 rpm.
TIP 3: Consider the Power Level of the Drill
Cordless drills are rated by battery voltage. Voltage ranges are 6, 7.2, 9.6, 12, 14.4, and 18V. Higher voltage drills will weigh more than lower voltage.
Consider your needs when buying a cordless drill. How much power do you need?
Higher volts are needed for drilling heavier materials. Always choose a woodworking drill with slightly higher voltage than you think you’ll need to be sure you will have enough power.
TIP 4: Check the Clutch Settings
The clutch on cordless drills is what makes the drill bit stop turning when a certain level of resistance is reached. It keeps you from over-tightening screws and also protects the motor.
The best cordless drills have 24 clutch settings.
Lower numbers are for driving smaller screws and higher settings are for large screws. They also usually have a drill setting so your bit doesn’t stop when you’re trying to bore a hole.
TIP 5 OF THE CORDLESS DRILL BUYING GUIDE:
Consider the Battery
The battery is another important consideration. The battery life varies widely among drills. Look for a model with two batteries when buying a cordless drill. With this feature, you can be using one battery while the other is charging. You won’t need to stop working to charge the battery, as you would with only one. Change the battery as soon as you notice the power level drop.
Other Woodworking Cordless Drills to Consider
A great drill for smaller jobs is the Ryobi HP61 6V. This is a great tool for “around the house” jobs like drilling for drywall anchors and driving screws. The BLACK+DECKER LDX172C 7.2-Volt Lithium-Ion Drill/Driver is a similar tool.
A step up from these are the Hitachi FDS10DVA 9.6V and the Makita Driver Drill 3/8 9.6 V 6012HD Two Speed Cordless.
A Makita cordless drill is popular in woodworking shops. This company was one of the first to offer cordless models and continues to advance its technology. These drills are durable and have a long life. A variety of different models are available. Features like variable speeds and multiple torque settings make them versatile. The batteries have the latest technology. Many models come with two batteries and some come with a fifteen minute fast charger.
The Makita 1/2 inch cordless drill is a compact drill with good power. The ergonomic design makes these comfortable to operate, with efficient power. Features like variable speed and a shift lock drive system make drilling easier and more efficient. This drill comes with two long life batteries. Makita XFD01RW 18V Compact 1/2-Inch Driver-Drill Kit
The Ridgid 1/2 inch drill has 18 volts for sufficient power. This model comes with high capacity batteries and a dual charger that allows both to be charged at the same time. Features such as a two speed transmission and 24 position clutch make this drill an excellent, heavy duty tool. RIDGID 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 1/2 in. Cordless Compact Drill/Driver Kit
Ridgid tools also make a great 3/8 inch cordless drill with 14.4 volts. This drill is powerful, but tends to be heavy. It weighs five pounds. Features such as variable speeds, reversible speed and a 24 position clutch make this a versatile tool. Two battery packs are included with this model.
Cordless drill buying guide: other cordless drills you might want to consider:
Bosch PS32-02 12-volt Max Brushless 3/8-Inch Drill/Driver
SKIL 2520-02 14.4-Volt Lithium-Ion 2-Speed Drill/Driver
PORTER-CABLE 9824 14.4-Volt Cordless Drill/Driver
Makita 6281DWPE 14.4-Volt 3/8-Inch Cordless Driver and Drill
DEWALT DC759KA 18-Volt 1/2-Inch Cordless Drill/Driver Kit