Written by Thierry

Advice on cordless drills

A cordless drill is used for drilling wood, plaster, metal, and plastic, as well as tightening or loosening screws. Which cordless drill is best for you depends on a number of things. Follow the steps below and easily find the cordless drill that suits you.

1. How demanding are the jobs?

The battery in a cordless drill delivers a certain voltage. How many volts it can deliver is usually seen as a sign of how powerful it is. However, it's better to express a cordless drill's power in terms of the drill diameter of the holes it can make. Lighter cordless drills are used to tighten (small) screws and drill holes in wood with a diameter of up to 22 millimeters. An average drilling job requires drill holes between 22.1 and 30 millimeters. Heavy-duty models have a drilling capacity of 30 millimeters or higher in wooden workpieces. Will you be using the cordless drill on a daily basis? In that case, it's best to remember the following: maximum drill diameter - 6 millimeters = the ideal drilling range for daily use.

2. How often (and how long) will you be using the machine?

The energy the battery holds (capacity) is expressed in Ampere hour (Ah). The general rule is the higher a battery's amperage, the longer you'll be able to work on a single charge. It's easy to compare this to the size of a car's gas tank. The more gasoline your tank can hold, the longer you can drive without refueling. If you use the cordless drill (almost) every day and for extended periods of time, we recommend a cordless drill with an Ah of 3 or higher. That way, you can prevent getting stuck with a drained battery. If you only use the cordless drill incidentally and briefly, a cordless drill with an Ah between 1 and 2 will suffice.

3. One or more speed settings?

Cordless drill speed settings

Generally, cordless drills have two speed settings. One setting with a low RPM and more torque that's most suitable for screwing and one setting with a higher RPM and less torque that's most suitable for drilling. These settings can usually be selected using the sliding button on the top of the cordless drill. There are also machines that have only one setting. In reality, they are only suitable for tightening and loosening screws and drilling wood. In addition, there are machines with more than 2 speed settings. These give you more control over your drilling and screwing.

4. Also plan to drill hard stone varieties and/or concrete?

Using a cordless drill on hard stone

Because batteries are becoming increasingly powerful, more and more cordless drills are available that also have a impact function or hammer function. Cordless drills with impact function are also suitable for drilling harder types of stone. Cordless drills with hammer function are even suitable for drilling in concrete.

5. What else can you keep in mind?

In addition to the choices mentioned earlier, there are a number of other things that can help you make your choice. For instance, the number of included batteries. If you plan to work with the machine for longer periods of time, it's best to get one with two batteries. While one is in the charger, you can use the other to continue working. The battery technology is also an important factor. Nowadays, most of these machines use a Li-ion battery. This battery technology has many advantages compared to NiCd batteries and NiMH batteries. Those last two types are more affordable however. The maximum torque (expressed in Nm) is another factor to consider. The higher the maximum torque, the more powerful the machine. More power makes it easier to get a big screw in or out of a certain type of material.

6. Don't forget the bits and drill bits

In order to get the right screws into or out of a surface, it's very important that you use the right bits when tightening and loosening a screw. If you use the wrong bit, the cordless drill will slip sooner, leading to an unusable screw and a quickly-wearing bit. In addition to the type of bit, the size is also very important. Drill bits also come in different shapes and sizes. There are all kinds of drill bits for different surfaces. For instance, you have special drill bits for wood, metal, stone, or concrete. For the lifespan of the drill bits and the quality of the hole, it's important to use the right drill bits for the right material. Want to get everything in one go? Choose a complete set of bits and drill bits. These sets contain pretty much all the bits and drill bits you'll need for DIY jobs in and around the house.

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