Best Cordless Drills of 2017 – Top Picks & Reviews

cordless drillAs the name suggests, a cordless drill is an electric drill that uses batteries rather than being constantly connected to a powerpoint. Cordless drills are used for many different applications, making it one of the most versatile tools available. The ability to move around without a cable means that the cordless drill is quick and easy to use and much more transportable than the corded electric drill.

MODELPRODUCT DIMENSIONSITEM WEIGHTUSER RATINGPRICE
Dewalt DCD771C2 20V
Dewalt DCD771C2 20V
13.9 x 9.9 x 4.2 inches
3.6 pounds
4.6/5


$$$
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BLACK & DECKER LDX120
10.6 x 3.7 x 8.5 inches3.1 pounds4.5/5$
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DEWALT DC970K-2
DEWALT DC970K-2
14.8 x 13.5 x 4.7 inches
3 pounds

4.6/5





$$
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Makita XPH012
Makita XPH012
5.6 x 16.9 x 13 inches
10.3 pounds

4.7/5




$$$$
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PORTER-CABLE PCC606LA
PORTER-CABLE PCC606LA
8.8 x 3.7 x 9.8 inches
4.4 pounds

4.6/5
$
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The main reason to purchase an electric drill is because it makes your work so much easier, not to mention quicker! But purchasing a cordless drill is a great idea because it gives you more freedom to move around when working. This makes it so much easier to reach places that cables simply cannot. Furthermore, many cordless drills come with a number of attractive features including extended battery life and a built-in work light! Basically, the best cordless drill has an awful lot to offer!


The Best Cordless Drills of 2017

Choosing a cordless drill isn’t easy since there are so many competitive, quality options on the market. With so many brands with different models and varying features, we’ve decided to make your life easier. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of cordless drill reviews. Each detailed review will give you the pros and cons of the particular product, helping you decide if it’s right for you. Be sure to continue reading beyond the reviews for our handy buying guide which will provide further information about cordless drill uses, features and much more!

1. Dewalt DCD771C2 20V – The Best of the Best

Dewalt DCD771C2 20VWhen you’re looking for a cordless drill, why not choose the best cordless drill on the market? With the DeWalt DCD771C2 20V, you’re getting a great all-rounder. We’ll start with the high-performance motor which is capable of delivering 300 unit watts of power for a wide range of applications. There’s also high-speed transmission which means that you can deliver two different speeds (450 and 1,500 RPM), depending on your needs.

Not only is this a powerful cordless drill, it’s also compact and lightweight. At 3.6 lbs, it’s nice and easy to fit in tight areas and this helps reduce hand fatigue during use. The comfort is heightened by the ergonomic handle which also affords you more precise control when you work. The handle is rubberized and provides excellent grip. We think that this is the best 20-volt lithium ion cordless drill. The unit comes with two batteries which charge rapidly and last a long time, even with heavy use. Another feature that is particularly popular is the light which stays on some 15 seconds after releasing the trigger, allowing you to ensure your work is done. While this is a fantastic choice for light to medium use, professionals may well look to more heavy-duty cordless drills for more power.

Pros

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Great batteries
  • Useful light

Cons

  • Perhaps not for heavy-duty use

2. BLACK & DECKER LDX120 – Best for the Money

BLACK & DECKER LDX120_new

The LDX120 is one of Black & Decker’s best selling models. It’s not hard to see why thanks to its light and compact design. This cordless drill weighs just 3.4 lbs, so moving it around is no problem at all. The small size and low weight make it easy to access those difficult-to-reach areas and it’s also less likely to cause hand and arm fatigue during extended use. Despite being one of the smallest drills on the market, the LDX120 has enough power for most tasks. It offers 115 lbs of torque and a maximum of 650 RPM. However, if you’re drilling through harder surfaces such as brick or concrete, you’ll most likely want a more powerful drill, particularly because this cordless drill only has one speed.

This unit is really best for smaller jobs around the home. Some more positives of this cordless drill are the batteries which seem to durable and quick-charging. It’s worth checking whether the item you buy comes with batteries or not as some units are sold with only the bare tool. It’s comfortable to use as well with an ergonomic design and a grip that prevents sweaty hands from slipping! We think that this is the best cordless for the money though it’s best only for light DIY use.

Pros

  • Great value
  • Comfortable to hold
  • Decent batteries

Cons

  • Lacks power
  • Only one speed

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3. DEWALT DC970K-2 – Best 18-Volt Cordless Drill

For a cordless drill that provides enough power without breaking the bank, the DeWalt DC970K-2 may well be for you. It has a high-performance motor that delivers up to 380 unit watts out. But one of the best features of this cordless drill is the dual speed range. The slower speed 0 to 450 RPM offer a level of control while 1,500 RPM provides quick results. The light design of this unit is intended to minimize user fatigue, meaning that you can use it for hours on end without much in the way of discomfort. It weighs just 5.2 lbs and is 9 inches in length so it’s a nice compromise between portability and power.

One thing you may appreciate about this unit is that it comes with two 18V batteries, a 1-hour charger, and a carry bag, meaning you don’t have to make further purchases to get up and running. Despite its many advantages, the DC970K-2 is not without its problems. The batteries aren’t the most reliable and some are known to fail altogether. Also, despite it claiming to be lightweight, with the batteries it’s not as light as many of its competitors. Regardless of these issues, we feel that this is the best 18-volt cordless drill available.

Pros

  • Good power
  • Dual speed

Cons

  • Unreliable batteries
  • Battery makes it a little heavy

4. Makita XPH012

Makita XPH012For its size, the Makita XPH012 is pretty powerful. The unit weighs just 4 lbs with the battery yet has a 4 pole motor that delivers 480 lbs of max torque. What’s more, it offers variable speed with two-speed ranges (0-400 and 0-1,500 RPM) which means that the drilling and driving you do can be much more varied. Not only is this a lightweight cordless drill, it’s also very comfortable to hold thanks to the compact ergonomic design. The XPH012 features a bright LED light which illuminates the work area even after you’ve released the trigger.

We really like the versatility of this cordless drill. The ability to use this unit as a hammer driver drill makes it particularly unique. If you’re in a hurry, you’ll particularly appreciate the 18V Lithium-Ion batteries which are very quick to charge (as little as 20 to 30 minutes), not to mention lightweight. There are few in the way of complaints from consumers but once occasional comment mentions minor chuck wobble. Also, while powerful, it may well struggle when it comes to more heavy-duty projects but this is not uncommon for cordless drills.

Pros

  • Very light
  • Ergonomic design
  • Great batteries

Cons

  • Occasional chuck wobble

5. PORTER-CABLE PCC606LA

PORTER-CABLE PCC606LADIY homeowners seeking a compact and lightweight cordless drill at a competitive price will appreciate the Porter-Cable PCC606LA. The design of this unit is small and sturdy, making it ideal for small projects in and around the home. The 20-volt maximum drill-driver has a two speed gearbox while the motor delivers 330 unit watts out which is enough power for light-duty projects. The respectable level of power doesn’t compromise on the weight of the product which totals just 3.5 lbs. As such, the PCC606LA is good at minimizing user fatigue while still offering an impressive level of performance for the price.

One of the best features of this cordless drill is how quickly it charges while the battery life is also very strong. We also like the overall look of this cordless drill, particularly the ergonomic design and non-slip grip handle. The main problem experienced with this cordless drill is in the chuck which has been known to wobble. Aside from this, there’s really not much in the way of cons apart from the fact that you’ll be limited to more light-duty work due to the power provided. However this is a cordless drill with a solid build and a very compact and light design for a good price.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Quick to charge

Cons

  • Lacks power for heavy-duty use
  • Chuck is known to wobble

Cordless Drill Buying Guide

While the primary purpose of a cordless drill doesn’t change a great deal, there are plenty of other variables such as brand, features, power and size and weight. We’ll now take a look at all of these and break them down. Our aim is to make your cordless drill decision a little bit quicker and easier.

Cordless or corded?

The fact that you’re here reading all about cordless drills suggests that you have an idea as to which type of drill you want! However it would be remiss of us not to quickly explore the various advantages of the two.

Some of the most important factors to consider in a drill are power as well as overall mobility. Mobility comes from not only size and weight but also whether there’s a cable involved. One of the best things about cordless drills is that there’s no cable involved which allows greater mobility. This allows you to reach areas that corded drills struggle to access due to a lack of power or the need for an extension cord.

While a cordless drill can offer more freedom, a corded drill can be lighter. This is because it doesn’t need a battery pack to keep on running. This steady source of power without the need to stop and recharge is another benefit of the corded drill. A lighter drill means less hand and arm fatigue and more power means more drilling! Finally, corded drills tend to be more powerful as well as cheaper.

So whether you need a cordless or corded drill comes down to how important mobility is to you. If it’s essential, a cordless drill is what you want. If not, consider the many benefits of corded drills.

Types of drill

Aside from a drill being corded or cordless, there are various types of drills available. These can help you carry out a wide range of tasks.

  • Drill/driver: Unsurprisingly, the drill/driver is used for both drilling and driving. It can be used on a range of materials including wood, metal and plastic. This is the most popular type of drill and is what we’ve covered in our reviews.
  • Hammer drill: A hammer drill can do much the same as a drill/driver except that it also has a hammer setting. This is used on masonries such as brick, stone and concrete. Such a feature makes hammer drills a little heavier than the typical drill/driver.
  • Rotary hammer: A rotary hammer is a more heavy-duty version of the hammer drill. It’s used largely by professionals in the trade. It’s more powerful than a hammer drill and also tends to be bigger, heavier and more expensive as a result.
  • Impact driver: An impact driver is for driving screws into tough materials and loosening screws and nuts. It can deliver huge torque and tends to have a smaller profile which makes it easier to fit into tight workspaces.

6 Key factors to consider

If you’re still here then it looks like you’ve decided a cordless drill is the best choice for you. Aside from mobility, there are 6 key factors to consider as you make your decision. Let’s take a look at them.

  1. Power
    The power of cordless drills is measured in battery voltage. Naturally the higher the voltage, the more powerful your cordless drill will be. It also means that the cordless drill will be more expensive, heavier and have more features. The voltage of cordless drills on the market tends to be anything from 6 to 18V. If you’re buying a cordless drill for simple household DIY tasks such as putting together furniture, you won’t need a lot of voltage. In fact, a 9V drill would probably do for most task. Larger home improvement projects will require a cordless drill on the higher end of the voltage (and price) spectrum and in these cases, you should go for 18V. Industry professionals who use a drill on a very regular basis may want to go corded for additional voltage.
  2. Speed
    Most budget cordless drills only have one speed. However others will have two fixed speeds of 300 RPM and 800 RPM (rotations per minute). The ability to change between the two is useful for when you’re driving screws (low speed) and drilling holes (high speed). More expensive cordless drills will have not only the two-speed switch but also a variable speed control. Some may even have a speed of 1,000 RPM or more. The higher the speed of your cordless drill, the quicker you can work.
  3. Battery and charger
    The type of battery that your cordless drill runs on is more important than you might think! The better it is, the longer you can keep on working uninterrupted. The very best cordless drills feature Lithium-Ion batteries which are notorious for their long-lasting life, even when not in use for extended periods of time. They’re quicker to charge than most other cordless drill batteries and they’re also lighter which is great for avoiding hand fatigue during use. Cordless drills come with a battery charger (be sure to check whether the product you buy is the whole set or just the drill itself). Charging can be as little as 20-30 minutes up to 3 hours. If the cordless drill you have your eye on has a longer charging time, don’t let that put you off. Buying a spare battery is a great way to combat this. Remember to also take a look at the battery capacity which determines how long your cordless drill will run for.
  4. Handle design
    The handle design might not seem like the most important feature at first but when you’re holding the cordless drill for an extended period of time, it becomes more prominent! At the end of the day, a handle that is comfortable to hold and has good grip is obviously the way to go. Most cordless drills feature a T-handle which is, unsurprisingly, shaped like the letter ‘T’! There’s the drill at the top, the handle and then a slight flare at the bottom to accommodate the battery. This also prevents your hand from slipping during use. A different handle such as a C-handle or a pistol grip can be better for heavy drilling and driving as these allow you to put more weight behind the drill. A good handle should have an ergonomic design and a nice rubberized grip.
  5. Drill bits
    The drill bits you buy can be used on most models interchangeably. Choosing the right bit for the materials you’re working on can make all the difference. When you’re looking to purchase a cordless drill, take a look at whether it comes with drill bits and whether these included everything you need. If not, there’s no need to worry. There are plenty of options on the market. For quick and easy changing of bits without an additional tool you’ll want a keyless chuck. Some cordless drills come with a depth gauge which is a useful accessory when you need to ensure consistent work when drilling multiple holes.
  6. Size and weight
    The size and weight of your cordless drill are really down to how powerful the drill is and the type of battery. If you’re looking for a powerful drill with a long battery life, you may have to compromise on the size and weight. This means that it can be harder to reach certain work areas than if you have a more compact cordless drill. What’s more, you may find that hand fatigue plays a part. You can counter this by finding a drill with a lighter battery such as a Lithium-Ion.

Conclusion

As you have likely gathered, there are a number of factors to consider when choosing a cordless drill for your DIY needs. What’s more, there is a range of fantastic products on the market from different brands and with varying features. Power, speed and battery are just some of the things to think about as you make your decision.

Cordless drills have really come into their own in recent years with so many improvements in aspects such as the size and weight as well as battery life. As such, there’s no reason why you can’t find the perfect product for you in today’s market. After all, there’s a range of products to suit all budgets and working needs.

While there’s plenty to think about, we hope that our reviews of cordless drills help you on your way to finding that perfect product.