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The 5 Best Cordless Drills (2022 Review)

Cordless drills can help you tackle a large number of home improvement projects. Keep reading to learn about some of the best cordless drills available and how to find the right drill for you. The products included in this article are available at various home improvement stores, local home centers, and online retailers like Amazon.

Cordless Drills

Cordless drills can help you perform a wide variety of tasks, from hanging a picture in your home to putting together a piece of furniture. One of the biggest advantages of cordless drills is that they’re powered by a lithium-ion battery, making them more portable than their corded counterparts.

To help you decide which cordless drill best fits your needs, the This Old House Reviews team researched and tested five of the best cordless drills on the market. Keep reading to learn about our top picks and how they performed during our testing process.

Best All-Inclusive Kit: KIMO Cordless Drill Driver Kit

KIMO Cordless Drill

This KIMO drill comes with a carrying bag to transport the drill, a charger to recharge the battery, drill bits to drill different-sized holes, and screwdriver bits to fasten different-sized screws, allowing you to perform a wide variety of tasks. The drill also includes a keyless chuck, a belt clip, a built-in LED light, and a maximum speed of 1,350 revolutions per minute (RPM).

Key Features

  • Nominal voltage of 18
  • ⅜-inch keyless chuck
  • Three pounds
  • Speed of up to 1,350 RPM
  • Belt clip
  • LED light
  • Carrying bag
  • Lithium-ion battery
  • Battery charger
  • Three brad point drill bits
  • Six twist drill bits
  • 33 screwdriver bits
  • Three nut driver bits

What Customers Are Saying

Over 3,500 customers have reviewed this product on Amazon. It has an average rating of 4.6 stars out of 5, with 92% of customers giving 4- or 5-star reviews.

Satisfied customers were happy with the quality of the product, especially considering that it isn’t from a well-known manufacturer and is relatively affordable. Some customers mentioned that the drill was capable of drilling through more than just wood, with a few saying that the drill went through concrete and cinder blocks with ease. However, a few customers said that they received a defective drill that would only work intermittently.

Our Experience

Product Setup

When the drill first arrived, we pulled the carrying bag with the drills and accessories out of the box. We attached the battery to the bottom of the drill and a drill bit to the chuck, turning the head of the drill to tighten the chuck around the bit. We checked the buttons on either side of the head to make sure the drill was spinning forward instead of backward and then pulled the trigger to start drilling. When it came time to drive screws, we swapped the drill bit for a screwdriver bit.

Ergonomics

We gave this drill full points for weight, comfort, and balance. Its three-pound weight was evenly distributed from the chuck to the base, which kept our arms from getting tired while holding it for extended periods. It also has a small, rubberized handle, which kept our hands from cramping during use.

Power

We had no trouble drilling holes and driving screws in all three types of wood. With a little pressure on the drill bit or screwdriver bit, it was able to easily push through even the hardest type of wood.

Runtime

This drill lasted more than double the amount of time as the other drills, working for two hours non-stop. It also took less time to recharge than most of the other drills at 2.5 hours.

Our Score

The KIMO drill received full points for both ergonomics and power because of its ease of use and ability to drill through tough materials. It lost a quarter of a point for runtime because the DEWALT drill recharged faster.

Scoring Breakdown

Metric Score
Metric Score
Ergonomics 5/5
Power 5/5
Runtime 4.75/5
Overall score 4.9/5

Most Durable: DEWALT DCD771C2 Cordless Drill/Driver

DEWALT Cordless Drill/Driver

This DEWALT drill has enough power to help out with heavy-duty projects around the home. It has a large chuck size of a half-inch and a high maximum voltage of 20 volts, so it can drill through tough materials with no problem. While this drill doesn’t come with chuck accessories like the other products in this review, it does have a carrying bag with straps, two lithium-ion batteries, and a charger.

Key Features

  • Nominal voltage of 18
  • ½-inch keyless chuck
  • 3.6 pounds
  • Speed of up to 1,500 RPM
  • LED light
  • Carrying bag
  • Two lithium-ion batteries
  • Battery charger

What Customers Are Saying

This DEWALT drill has the highest Amazon rating out of the products in this review, at 4.7 stars from over 10,000 customers. Eighty-six percent of customers gave it 5 stars, and 9% of customers gave it 4 stars.

Customers liked how easy it was to use this drill and said the few bells and whistles it had worked well, with the built-in LED light being bright and the extra battery pack allowing for continuous work. The small percentage of customers that weren’t happy with the drill said that the batteries that came with it only lasted a few months before no longer holding a charge.

Our Experience

Product Setup

This is the only product we tested that didn’t come with any drill bits. However, we were able to attach bits from the other products in this review, even though this drill’s chuck size was larger.

Ergonomics

This product weighs under five pounds, has rubber on its handle for an easy grip, and distributes its weight evenly throughout the drill, so we gave it full points for this metric.

Power

Similar to the KIMO drill, this cordless drill had no problem drilling and driving through the hard, medium, and soft woods. It required some pressure during drilling, but after a few seconds, the drill bit or screw would poke out of the other end of the wood.

Runtime

The battery life and recharge time for this drill was on two extremes of the spectrum. The battery only lasted for 20 minutes of heavy-duty use before it died and required a recharge, which is the shortest battery life of any of the batteries in this review.

However, the drill took only two hours to recharge, which is less time than the rest of the drills, and it came with an additional battery, so we didn’t have to wait around for the one battery to recharge.

Our Score

This product received five points for both ergonomics and power. However, it lost a point for runtime because of how frequently we had to recharge the batteries.

Scoring Breakdown

Metric Score
Metric Score
Ergonomics 5/5
Power 5/5
Runtime 4/5
Overall score 4.7/5

Most Lightweight: Avid Power Cordless Drill

Avid Power Cordless Drill

The Avid Power drill weighs around two pounds, making it lightweight enough to carry around your home for DIY projects or use over your head. This drill has a keyless chuck and a built-in LED light like the other products in this review, but it also comes with 22 accessories, including a flexible shaft for hard-to-reach places.

Key Features

  • Nominal voltage of 18
  • ⅜-inch keyless chuck
  • 2.2 pounds
  • Speed of up to 550 RPM
  • LED light
  • Lithium-ion battery
  • Battery charger
  • 10 drill bits
  • 10 driver bits
  • Extension bar
  • Magnetic flexible shaft

What Customers Are Saying

Over 4,200 Amazon customers have reviewed this cordless drill, and 90% of customers gave it 4 or more stars, for an average score of 4.6 stars.

Satisfied customers said you couldn’t beat the price of this product and were happy with all of the accessories that came with it. Customers also liked the drill’s flexible shaft for hard-to-reach places and the USB port on the battery for charging electronics. However, some customers said that the chuck didn’t grip the bits well, causing them to occasionally detach from the drill when drilling through hard materials.

Our Experience

Product Setup

This drill came in a box with all of its accessories. We pulled out the drill, attached the battery to the bottom, and attached the correct bit to the chuck for drilling holes and driving screws.

Ergonomics

This drill weighs 2.2 pounds and has a rubberized grip around the handle, making it both lightweight and comfortable to use. Even with the battery in place, which is the heaviest element of this drill, the drill’s weight was evenly distributed.

Power

Similar to the previous two drills, this drill had no problem drilling and driving into both hard and soft wood. It did take a while for the screw to completely penetrate the wood and for the drill bit to drill a hole through the wood, but it eventually got there with patience.

Runtime

This drill lasted for 40 minutes of continuous use before needing a recharge. This is the second longest runtime after the KIMO drill. However, it took three hours and 15 minutes to recharge, which is the second longest recharge time behind the Black & Decker drill.

Our Score

We gave this product full points for both ergonomics and power because it’s comfortable to use and drills through hard and soft woods. However, it lost a point for runtime, mostly because of its long charge time.

Scoring Breakdown

Metric Score
Metric Score
Ergonomics 5/5
Power 5/5
Runtime 4/5
Overall score 4.7/5

Best Battery Life: Black & Decker LD120VA Cordless Drill

Black & Decker Cordless Drill

The battery in this drill doesn’t last long if it’s being used continuously for heavy-duty projects. However, one charge can last up to 18 months if you occasionally use the drill for lighter projects. When the battery does die, you can quickly recharge it with the charger that comes in the kit. This drill also comes with one-inch screwdriver bits, two-inch screwdriver bits, nut drivers, and brad point drill bits of all shapes and sizes.

Key Features

  • Nominal voltage of 18
  • ⅜-inch keyless chuck
  • 4.2 pounds
  • Speed of up to 750 RPM
  • LED light
  • Lithium-ion battery
  • Battery charger
  • Six brad point drill bits
  • 10 one-inch screwdriver bits
  • Nine two-inch screwdriver bits
  • Four nut driver bits
  • Magnetic bit tip holder

What Customers Are Saying

This cordless drill from Black & Decker has a score of 4.6 stars from over 10,200 customers. Ninety-two percent of these customers gave the drill a score of 4 or 5 stars.

Several customers complimented this drill’s ability to complete household tasks, like putting furniture together and mounting items on the wall, and praised its twisting power. However, some customers said that their drill didn’t work as well when it hit resistance. For example, the drill would get stuck when drilling through hard wood.

Our Experience

Product Setup

Like with the Avid Power drill, this cordless drill came in a box with accessories. After attaching the battery to the base, we switched the drill bits in and out by loosening and tightening the chuck.

Ergonomics

While this drill is heavier than the other three products that have been reviewed so far, it still weighs less than five pounds. It doesn’t have a grip that wraps around the product like the previous three, but it has a grip in the back and the handle is relatively small, helping it fit comfortably in your hand. Its weight is also balanced from tip to base.

Power

We agree with the customers that said the drill struggles with harder materials. When drilling holes or driving screws into the hard and medium woods, the drill occasionally got stuck. When that happened, we were able to use the reverse function to pull the bit or screw out and start over.

Runtime

This drill lasted for 30 minutes of rigorous use, which is longer than some drills and shorter than others. However, it took the longest to recharge at 3.5 hours.

Our Score

We gave this drill full points for ergonomics, but we took off points in both the power and runtime categories because it occasionally struggled with harder wood and took a long time to recharge.

Scoring Breakdown

Metric Score
Metric Score
Ergonomics 5/5
Power 4.3/5
Runtime 3.5/5
Overall score 4.3/5

Best for Home Projects: GOXAWEE Cordless Drill

GOXAWEE Cordless Drill

This drill has a low nominal voltage of 12, but it’s powerful enough to perform the occasional household task. Some of the most distinctive features of this drill are its maximum speed of 1,350 RPM, its extra battery, and its hard, plastic carrying case that can withstand drops. This drill also comes with a 100-piece accessory kit.

Key Features

  • Nominal voltage of 12
  • 10-millimeter keyless chuck
  • 5.2 pounds
  • Speed of up to 1,350 RPM
  • LED light
  • Carrying case
  • Two lithium-ion batteries
  • Battery charger
  • 100 accessories, including screwdriver bits, drill bits, a brush attachment, fasteners, and a flexible shaft

What Customers Are Saying

Like most of the other products in this review, this drill from GOXAWEE has an average rating of 4.6 stars. This came from over 2,000 customers, 90% of whom gave it 4 or 5 stars.

Customers said this drill excelled at smaller projects, like drilling a hole in the wall to hang a picture frame. They also liked how this drill came with every accessory imaginable, including a brush attachment that allowed you to clean without much hand and arm movement. However, some customers complained about receiving a used kit that was missing pieces or had scratches.

Our Experience

Product Setup

We found the setup for this drill to be easier than the other ones we reviewed. The first battery was already inside of the drill when we opened the carrying case, and it was easy to select a bit because the bits were in their slots instead of loose in a plastic bag like with the other drills.

Ergonomics

This drill lost points for weight, comfort, and balance. It weighs 5.2 pounds, which is just above the five-pound cutoff, doesn’t have rubber on the handle, making gripping difficult, and has a heavier head, causing the head to tip over when propped up.

Power

All of the other drills in this review are 18 volts, while this one is 12 volts. Because of this, we expected this drill to be less effective than the others during the power test. We found that the drill was incapable of drilling through the hardest wood and struggled to get through the medium and soft woods, although it eventually got there with a lot of force and time.

Runtime

This drill lasted 25 minutes, which is only five minutes more than the lowest scoring drill from DEWALT. However, keep in mind that the battery likely drained so quickly because we were trying to get it to perform more rigorous tasks than it was designed for. If you use it for lighter tasks, it will likely last longer. This drill also took three hours to recharge.

Our Score

This is the only drill in this review that lost points in every category. It felt uncomfortable to use, struggled to drill through harder wood, didn’t have a very long runtime, and took a while to recharge.

Scoring Breakdown

Metric Score
Metric Score
Ergonomics 3.75/5
Power 3/5
Runtime 3.75/5
Overall score 3.5/5

Buying Guide

In addition to considering a cordless drill’s ergonomics, power, and runtime, you’ll want to look at other factors like speed and extra features before purchasing a cordless drill.

Chuck

Cordless drills either have a keyed chuck or a keyless chuck. Keyed chucks prevent the bit from falling out during use, but they require a tool to remove the bit. Keyless chucks can be loosened and tightened around a bit without a tool. However, they’re more prone to falling out of the chuck because the vibration from using the drill can loosen the chuck’s grip.

Speed

Drills will either have a low speed and a high speed or a variable speed lever that allows you to choose your own drilling speed. Lower speeds have higher torque, or twisting power, which is better for driving screws, while higher speeds are better for drilling holes.

Extra Features

Manufacturers are starting to include extra features on their drills to make them easier to use. Common extras include an LED light that lets you see where you’re drilling in poorly lit areas and a belt clip to store the drill when you need your hands free.

Using a Cordless Drill

Review Standards

To select products for testing, our team scoured Amazon for the best cordless drill options. We looked at general factors like Prime shipping eligibility, the number of customer reviews a drill had, average customer ratings, and Amazon superlatives, in addition to factors specific to cordless drills like the manufacturer, voltage, and accessories.

After narrowing down our choices, we ordered the products to be tested and created a series of testing metrics that we would grade the products against. Below is an overview of our testing metrics, testing process, and scoring breakdown.

Testing Metrics

To compare cordless drills, we tested the products on factors like ergonomics, power, and runtime.

Ergonomics

You’ll want a cordless drill that fits comfortably in your hand, isn’t too heavy, and has a balanced weight from the base to the tip. Comfort is especially important if you’re using the drill for tasks that require you to hold the drill above your head or using the drill for extended periods.

Power

Most drill manufacturers measure nominal voltage, which is the number of volts used while the tool is in use, but some drill manufacturers measure maximum voltage, which is the surge of power that occurs when you first turn on the drill. Cordless drills have a nominal voltage of either 12 volts or 18 volts. If you see a drill with 20 volts, the manufacturer measured maximum voltage, which translates to 18 volts in nominal voltage.

Twelve volts are usually sufficient for household projects, like driving a screw into the wall to hang a picture. However, if you need a drill for more heavy-duty projects, an 18-volt drill may serve you better. Keep in mind that cordless drills don’t offer as much power as corded drills, so if you need a drill that can drill holes or drive screws through every material imaginable, you may want to buy a corded model.

Runtime

Having your drill die in the middle of a project and waiting for its battery to recharge can put your project on hold. Because of this, you may want to invest in a cordless drill with a battery that will last for several uses and has a short recharge period.

Before buying a drill, look at its amp hours, which is the size of the battery’s tank—more amp hours means a longer runtime. You should also consider how long it takes for the battery to recharge or look for a drill that comes with a spare battery so that you can keep using your drill while the other battery is charging.

Testing Process

When testing ergonomics, we measured three factors—weight, comfort, and balance. To measure weight, we weighed each drill with a scale. For comfort, we picked up the cordless drill, drove screws into a 2x4, and analyzed how comfortable the drill felt when performing the task. To measure balance, we held the product to determine if the weight was evenly distributed throughout the drill.

To test power, we drilled holes into three types of wood—a soft whitewood, a medium yellow pine, and a hard red oak. Each drill then drove screws into those same types of wood. While performing this test, we measured how easy it was for the drills to drill holes and drive screws, paying particular attention to the difference between the 12-volt and 18-volt drills.

For runtime, we powered the drill until the battery died and then recharged it. We kept track of how long it took for the battery to die and recharge. We compared these times against each other and the manufacturer specifications.

Scoring

Each testing metric was scored out of five points, and a product’s final score was an average of all metric scores combined.

Ergonomics

For the weight test, we awarded 2 points to a drill if it weighed five pounds or less. We deducted 0.5 points for every half a pound over five pounds a drill weighed. For example, if a drill weighed 6 pounds, we deducted 1 point.

For the comfort test, we awarded 2 points to a cordless drill if it didn’t make our hand hurt while performing the tests. We deducted 1 point if our hand hurt after using the drill or if it felt uncomfortable to use.

For the balance test, we awarded 1 point to a drill if we determined the weight to be evenly distributed throughout the item; we deducted 0.5 points if the weight was unbalanced.

Power

Each drill received six power scores—one for drilling holes in whitewood, one for drilling holes in yellow pine, one for drilling holes in red oak, one for driving screws in whitewood, one for driving screws in yellow pine, and one for driving screws in red oak. The scores were based on a scale of 1–5 and were determined by how well the screws went into the wood, if the holes were the right sizes, and if the drill struggled at all during the process. A drill’s final score was an average of all six power scores.

Runtime

We compared each drill’s battery life and recharge length advertised by the manufacturer to the battery’s actual performance, awarding 2.5 points for battery life and 2.5 points for the recharge length. If a drill’s battery lasted as long as the manufacturer said it would and recharged in the amount of time the manufacturer said it would, the drill received all 5 points. If it didn’t, we docked points from the product’s battery score.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you use a drill for more than just drilling holes and driving screws?

Yes. You can buy a variety of accessories to attach to the chuck that will allow you to:

  • Mix paint
  • Sand and polish furniture
  • Till soil
  • Dig holes
  • Pull weeds
  • Clean surfaces

Do cordless drills come with two batteries?

Sometimes, manufacturers will include two batteries with your drill. Having multiple batteries allows you to keep working when the first one dies and prevents you from having to put your project on pause while you’re waiting for the one battery to recharge. The GOXAWEE and DEWALT drills in this review come with two batteries.

How do I stay safe while using a cordless drill?

You’ll want to keep your hands and face away from the drill to prevent debris from entering your eyes. We recommend wearing work gloves and safety glasses for extra protection.

Why Trust The This Old House Reviews Team

This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.

We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.