The power drill is essential in any DIYer's tool box. It can drill holes, drive screws, remove stuck or rusty bolts and even mix paint and buff cars. The power drill is the Swiss Army Knife of tools, able to assist in many tasks and projects.
In the Lowes' Canada Power Drill Buying Guide, we will discuss the different types of power drills, what they are designed for and what they can do, additional features and characteristics and general best practices and safety tips.
Depending on what type of products or tasks you'll be using your power drill for, your needs will vary as not all drills can complete all tasks.
Before deciding on a model or type, first consider what you'll be using your drill for:
What materials will you be drilling or screwing into?
How often will you be using your drill?
Where will you be using it?
When deciding between corded and cordless drills remember this: Corded will always provide a higher level of more consistent power where cordless provides portability and versatility.
However, battery operated drills have been slowly bridging the gap by offering multiple long lasting batteries and more efficient drill motors. Consider the following:
The electric screw driver has one purpose, to drive screws into light material such as wood, sheet metal or plastic. These models are often designed with a swivelling or rotating head to allow it operate in tight spots. However, these models are designed only for the lightest of tasks and if size and maneuverability aren't at the forefront of your checklist, it is advised to consider a larger, more versatile model.shop all electric screw guns
These are the most commonly used power drills as they can drill and drive into most materials (excluding masonry). Drill Drivers also vary widely in price and as price climbs so to do the available features and performance level. Most offer two speed settings, high for drilling holes and low for driving screws, and multiple clutch and torque settings for driving into different materials. Most drill drivers (unless specified) are not equipped to drill or drive into masonry (concrete, stone, brick etc).Shop all drill/drivers
Impact drivers are designed specifically for driving screws into any material. Unlike the hammer drill, the impact driver adds rapid blows to the rotation of the drill bit allowing it to remove or drive in fasteners with more torque. Although there are attachments that allow the user to drill holes in materials as well, impact drivers are specifically designed for driving fasteners.Shop all impact drivers
The addition of the hammering action combined with the rotational spinning of the chuck allows the hammer drill to drill and drive into almost any material including masonry. The Hammer Drills signature advantage is its added hammer like blows to the drill bit forcing the bit into the material. Because of the added hammering action and the torque of the drill, hammer drills are often equipped with an additional auxiliary handle to allow the user more stability when using it. In most hammer drills, the user is able to switch off the hammer function allowing it to perform as a Drill/Driver as well.Shop all hammer drills
Screw guns are typically corded and are designed for driving multiple screws in succession. Screw guns are typically used for projects such as installing drywall or deck boards. The Screw gun looks like a normal drill however it is equipped with a nose instead of a chuck. The nose is designed to limit over driving fasteners while still countersinking (allowing the screws head to sit flush with the material) the screw to the material. The drills clutch is only activated when pressure is applied to the tip.Shop all screw guns
The amount of power your drill has will directly affect its ability to perform strenuous tasks consistently. When selecting a drill to perform tough tasks like drilling stone or concrete, mixing paint or mortar continuously consider a drill with a higher amperage (if corded) or voltage (if cordless). When considering a cordless power drill generally the higher the voltage of the battery, the heavier the assembly will be.
The ability to vary the sensitivity of the clutch affects just how much torque is applied to the drill chuck, and consequently, the drill or drive bit. The clutch is designed to limit torque to prevent over driving fasteners, limiting bit slippage and thus stripping out the head of the fastener, and generally saving the drill motor. Look for a drill with variable clutch tensions to ensure multiple applications can be tackled
The cordless Power Drills offered at Lowe's come equipped with one of two different styles of battery.
The newest revelation in Power Drill technology is the use of brushless motors Typically, Power Drill motors have been fitted with carbon brushes used to facilitate the electric current that generates motor drive. Brushless motors remove these brushes reducing rotational friction and increasing the run time per battery and longevity of the drill.
The drill chuck is the mechanism that holds the drill bit or driver in place. Drill chucks can range in size and are designed to accommodate drill bits as large as 1 1/2". Drill's often come equipped with keyless chucks for user convenience but some models require a key to loosen and tighten the chuck. Where a keyless chuck offers convenience, a keyed chuck allows you to tighten the chuck much more and secures the drill bit in place. This feature is often necessary with drills designed to drill and drive into tough material such as masonry and thick metal.
Before deciding on a particular drill, consider the following: