Compare the best cordless drills

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Cordless drills are a staple power tool to have on hand that can save you time and elbow grease. They come in several types, styles and price ranges, so you may want to compare some of the most popular models and do a little research before pulling the trigger on your purchase.

Compare some of the best cordless drills

Name Average price Type Voltage Amp hours Chuck size (inches) What’s included Purchase
Ridgid Compact Drill/Driver kit
Ridgid Compact Drill/Driver kit
$139 Power 18 1.5 1/2 Two batteries, charger, toolbag Buy now
DeWalt 20-Volt MAX XR
DeWalt 20-Volt MAX XR
$229 Hammer 20 2 1/2 Two batteries, charger, case Buy now
Milwaukee M18
Milwaukee M18
$229 Right angle 18 1.5 3/8 One battery, charger, case Buy now
Makita XDT12Z
Makita XDT12Z
$179 Impact 18 4 1/4 Drill only Buy now
DeWalt DCF620D2
DeWalt DCF620D2
$219 Screw gun 20 2 1/4 Two batteries, charger, contractor bag Buy now
Data obtained May 2019. Prices are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.

Types of cordless drills

  • Power drills. This is your basic cordless drill, the one that probably comes to mind when most people think of a drill. It’s great for drilling holes and putting in screws for everyday projects.
  • Hammer drills. These drills pound like a hammer and rotate at the same time, making it easier to drill holes into solid surfaces like brick and concrete.
  • Right angle drills. Right angle drills feature a chuck that’s mounted at a 90-degree angle with the body of the drill, perfect for working in small areas.
  • Screw guns. A screw gun is similar to a power drill but is specifically designed for driving in screws. It has a nose rather than a chuck, which can be adjusted to change the depth that you drive the screw — an important feature when working with drywall.
  • Impact drivers. Designed for driving large lag bolts and fasteners, impact drivers typically have more torque and are more compact than a regular power drill.

How to compare cordless drills

Consider these factors when shopping for a new cordless drill:

  • Price. New cordless drills can range from around $40 for a basic model to over $300 for more bells and whistles. Some cordless drills may come with a battery and charger, while others do not.
  • Chuck size. The chuck is the slot where you place the drill bit. Some drills have a wider chuck size range, allowing you to use various bit sizes, while other drills are more limited. The average homeowner should be fine with a 3/8-inch chuck.
  • Voltage. The higher the voltage, the more power the drill will have, but also the heavier it will be.
  • RPM. This stands for “revolutions per minute” and measures the speed of the drill. Look for a drill with a wide RPM range to be able to perform a broad range of tasks.
  • Clutch. Some drills have an adjustable clutch, allowing you to change the amount of torque that the drill puts out.
  • Forward/reverse switch. This changes the direction that the drill rotates. Check to see if these buttons are easy to find and operate.
  • Battery. Cordless drill batteries come in various sizes. Check the voltage and amp hours to choose the best fit. A higher voltage means more power, and more amp hours mean longer run times. But these both also usually correlate to a larger, heavier battery.
  • Hand grip. Does the drill’s hand grip make it easy and comfortable to hold and use?
  • Extra features. If you want all the bells and whistles, look for models that come with extras like a built-in light, auto-shift features, a hard case, extra bits and extra batteries.

Operational and safety tips

  • Wear proper safety equipment, such as eye and ear protection.
  • Use lower drill speeds for driving screws and higher speeds for drilling holes.
  • Use sharp drill bits. Dull bits can overwork the drill’s motor and may be a safety hazard.
  • Avoid leaving your batteries on the charger once they are fully charged, unless your charger prohibits over-charging.
  • Protect your drill by keeping it off the ground and storing it in a dry place.
  • Dispose of dead batteries properly. Many hardware stores like Home Depot and Lowe's will recycle batteries for you.

Bottom line

You’ve got plenty of options when it comes to buying a new cordless drill. Narrow your search based on the type of drill you want, what you’ll be using it for and how much you want to spend. Then compare a few popular models to find the right fit for you.

Ready to buy? Compare top cordless drills

How did we choose these products?

We combined our own personal experiences and online research to create our list of the best cordless drills, comparing the type, size, voltage and overall features.

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