Top 8 Best 18v Cordless Drills For DIYers (Reviews) – 2019

I know you’re overwhelmed of the endless “best 18v cordless drill” reviews, keep reading. What you can’t find in this article is reviews on inferior-performance models, they are all from reliable brands with warranty.

Hence, stay tuned and enjoy my upshot after hours of searching, analyzing and picking.

  • Bosch GSR18V-190B22 – Most compact drill driver
  • Milwaukee 2606-20 M18 – Best overall
  • Ryobi One+ P236 – Budget-friendly option
  • DEWALT DC825B – Best overall
  • Makita XPH07Z – Best overall
  • Milwaukee 2704-20 M18 – High max torque
  • Makita XRH01Z – Most powerful
  • Bosch GBH18V-20K21 – Compact & lightweight

Best 18V drill drivers

Bosch GSR18V-190B22 – Most compact drill driver

Bosch GSR18V-190B22
Pros
  • Easy to work within tight space for a long time with less fatigue
  • Handy for overhead applications
  • Reduced fastener damage
  • Give more accurate driving performance

Cons
  • Not include a belt clip or battery
  • Flimsy case

Bosch GSR18V-190B22 is the most powerful in this list? Nope! It finishes in the middle of the group overall with a 2-speed transmission to be more suitable for light-duty or moderate home improvement tasks.

Instead of focusing too much about its power, what truly draws my attention into this cordless drill is its lightness and ergonomic design that can follow you anywhere.

Extra LED lights are too much for this affordable price to light up any dark spaces whenever you need something to be fixed or improved there.

And the keyless ratcheting 1/2 in. chuck, it helps with easier bit changes while the 20+1 clutch settings are handy in minimizing fastener damage.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque480 in. lbs
Speed2 speed settings: 0-1, 700 RPM & 0-450 RPM
Chuck1/2″ 3 jaw metal chuck
Weight2.75 lbs.
Dimensions7.8 x 2.95 x 8.8 inches
Warranty2-year warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesLightweight, accurate, 2-speed transmission, built-in LED light, an ergonomically designed soft grip handle

Designed with portability in mind, Bosch GSR18V-190B22 is the most compact drill driver that I’ve tried that will be more than enough for light to medium duty DIY jobs around your house.

Milwaukee 2606-20 M18 – Best overall

Milwaukee 2606-20 M18
Pros
  • Well-protected even in extreme working condition
  • Easy to handle and use
  • Less hassle, less time, and less strain

Cons
  • No bit holder and belt clip

Milwaukee 2606-20 M18 overcomes the previous model’s weakness, it’s crafted from all-metal gear case for decent shock durability and maximum impact.

Plus, this drill driver is relatively powerful. While delivering 500 in-lbs. of peak torque, there are no load 2-speed settings: 0 to 400 RPM and 0 to 1,800 RPM that can handle intense jobs in complex areas, even the tight spaces.

Another one of its assets is the REDLITHIUM™ Battery Technology for longer runtime and battery life while also leveraging the drill’s power.

The REDLINK PLUS™ Intelligence, on the other hand, optimizes overall performance with a perfect compromise of a charger, battery, and tool. Also, it protects the drill driver from overloading or overheating.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque500 in-lbs
Speed2 speed settings: 0-400 & 0-1,800 RPM
Chuck1/2-inch metal chuck
Weight2.9 pounds
Dimensions2.2 x 7.7 x 7.2 inches
Warranty30-day warranty by Amazon
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesDurable and powerful, easy to use and easy to handle

If you’re looking for a low-maintenance 18v drill driver with powerful construction, Milwaukee 2606-20 M18 is the best choice ever.

Best 18V impact drivers

Ryobi One+ P236 – Budget-friendly option

Ryobi One+ P236
Pros
  • Keep a firmer hold on the drill to improve the job’s accuracy
  • Lighting your dark workspace with ease
  • Can have both hands-frees for extra stability thanks to the magnetic tray
  • Easy to use

Cons
  • No screw holes to mount a side clip
  • A little heavy

Despite its incredible affordability, Ryobi One+ P236 isn’t a delicate tool.

It, in fact, can drive bolts through hard and dense materials, such as brick or concrete like a hair comb running through hair. With 3-speed settings and 1,600-inch pounds of torque, it can work as handily as a hammer drill.

To help you easily picture it, this can drive ¼ hex bolts with ease with no needs of an adapter – something that most of the impact drivers can’t do.

Built with lithium-ion batteries, Ryobi One+ P236 can get any 4” long deck screw driving jobs done much faster while optimizing the energy usage for really long runtime. There’s more!

With continuous work, like with deck or hard materials, you will get less fatigue and tangling at the arms and fingers than when with ordinary impact drivers.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque1600 in-lbs
Speed0-3200 rpm
Chuck1/4 in. Coupler
Weight2.7 pounds
Dimensions12 x 3 x 9 inches
Warranty1-year warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesRubber overmold, tri-beam led lighting, tool-free bit changing, magnetic tray

For those who are in need of a beast at your side, that’s not only affordable but also powerful to handle the toughest projects at hand, you’ll want the Ryobi One+ P236.

DEWALT DC825B – Best overall

DEWALT DC825B
Pros
  • Prolonged drill lifetime
  • Fit into narrow areas
  • Provide good grip even in the most slippery conditions
  • Made in USA -> quality ensured

Cons
  • Not lightweight
  • Not include a battery pack and charger

Measured by 5.8” x 6.7” x 4.1” and weighing just 2.2 pounds, DEWALT DC825B is compact enough to fit into the trickiest areas while keeping your work with less tiredness until it’s done.

Though cordless, its 18-volt motor can deliver up to 1,330 inch-pounds of torque with 2-speed settings up to 2,700 RPM to finish even the toughest jobs with smoothness.

My most favorite feature about this drill is the frameless motor design since it helps with prolonged operating lifetime. DEWALT DC825B is really a low-priced battery tool and with that highlight, it’s, even more, an economical choice in the long terms.

Built with a perfect combo of the magnesium gear case and all-metal transmission, it’s well-protected against drops and impacts.

To give you more accurate results every time with less kickback, its heavy-duty impact mechanism comes into play. And finally, the replaceable brushes ensure a lifetime worth of value.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque1,330 in. lbs
Speed2 speed settings: 0 to 2,400 RPM and 0 to 2,700 RPM
Chuck1/4 inch metal chuck
Weight2.2 pounds
Dimensions5.8 x 6.7 x 4.1 inches
Warrantythree-year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesHigh-power frameless motor, variable-speed trigger, designed to fit into tight spaces, anti-slip comfort grip, made in the USA

To repair or construct a wide range of projects, like drilling holes for fasteners or framing, the DEWALT DC825B is my high recommendation for you.

Best 18V hammer drills

Makita XPH07Z – Best overall

Makita XPH07Z
Pros
  • Extra-long side handles for greater control
  • Suit for a wide range of palm sizes
  • Superior comfort, convenience, and grip holding
  • Decent smooth performance

Cons
  • Heavy
  • A bit fewer speed settings in terms of a hammer drill

I’m impressed with the smartly ergonomic design of Makita XPH07Z, especially the side handle’s length. I see that this component is designed to be the longest with the intention to keep the battery drill under superior control.

By installing a 5.0-amp hour battery, it delivers quite good balance that can suit a wide range of palm sizes while rubber overmolding helps with the better comfort level.

Makita XPH07Z is constructed with an all-metal variable 2-speed transmission, a BL brushless motor, and 3-stage LED gauge. They are well-combined to handle the 1″ threaded spade bits or 1-1/2″ spade bits, especially with decent smooth performance.

I also tested it for 3″ hole saws, the same smooth getting through the cut. Somehow, it also limits the vibration transfer like a dream, even without the side handle.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque1,090 in.lbs.
Speed2 speed settings: 0-550 & 0-2,100 RPM
Chuck1/2″ chuck
Weight5.9 lbs.
Dimensions15 x 6 x 11 inches
Warranty3-year warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesBL Brushless Motor, ergonomic design, 3-stage L.E.D. gauge, all-metal variable 2-speed transmission

Providing smallest overall footprint but the second-highest torque, Makita XPH07Z really rates well in value to be the best choice for anyone who is looking for an 18v hammer drill.

Milwaukee 2704-20 M18 – High max torque

Milwaukee 2704-20 M18
Pros
  • Prevents overheating or overloading effectively
  • Include belt clip and auxiliary handle
  • Give extra work per charge and over the life of the battery

Cons
  • Chuck is sometimes hard to undo

While boasting 1,200 in-lbs. of torque with variable clutch settings, Milwaukee 2704-20 M18 also features a POWERSTATE Brushless Motor. It doesn’t hold back on power to deliver superior performance.

The biggest selling point lies in the REDLINK Intelligence system that prevents efficiently damage to the battery and even the cordless drill itself to overheating or overloading.

What I appreciate the most in this hammer drill are the additional belt clip and auxiliary handle to be more conveniently than ever for those jobs up on a ladder. Something that even other cordless drills in this list don’t have.

Not to say that the whole tool is powered by M18 REDLITHIUM, which is arguably the world’s best power tool battery packs to give extra more work per charge.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque1,200 in-lbs
Speed2-speed settings: 0 – 550 and 0 – 2000 RPM
Chuck1/2″ Single Sleeve Chuck
Weight4.73 pounds
Dimensions13 x 3 x 12 inches
Warranty5-year warranty
Battery Cell TypeRed-lithium
Highlight FeaturesPOWERSTATE Brushless Motor, variable clutch settings, REDLINK PLUS Intelligence, extended run time

If you’re finding a powerful hammer drill with high max torque, check out the Milwaukee 2704-20 M18.

Best 18V rotary hammer drills

Makita XRH01Z – Most powerful

Makita XRH01Z
Pros
  • Give superior drilling performance
  • Deliver an extended lifetime by boosting in power and speed
  • Versatile -> fit for Industrial and professional use
  • Less fatigue after a constant work

Cons
  • Weak clutch

Highlight the Makita BL Brushless Motor Technology, Makita XRH01Z delivers a 50% longer runtime than most rotary hammer drills out there.

Compared to the current Makita 18V LXT, it’s superior with a perfect combination of variable speed settings up to 4,700 BPM and 2.0 Joules.

Besides, are a large 2-finger trigger for greater comfort and convenience, a depth adjustment guide for elevated drilling performance, and a three-mode operation (hammer only, hammering with rotation, and rotation only).

While handling heavy-duty tasks as easily as a piece of cake, Makita XRH01Z is kept amazing lightness with compact and ergonomic design for less fatigue after a constant work. What else to ask?

Product Specifications

Impact Energy1.4 ft. lbs
Speed0-950 RPM, 4,700 BPM
Chuck1” 3 jaw chuck
Weight7.2 lbs.
Dimensions4 x 10 x 5 inches
Warranty3-year warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium-ion
Highlight FeaturesEfficient BL Brushless Motor, compact and ergonomic design, lightweight, 3-mode operation

With two speed transmissions, while the second set is up to 4,700 BPM, Makita XRH01Z is the most powerful rotary hammer drill on the market for those who are in need.

Bosch GBH18V-20K21 – Compact & lightweight

Bosch GBH18V-20K21
Pros
  • Better performance-to-weight ratio
  • Protects battery from overloading and drill from overheating
  • Superior efficiency and productivity in masonry and concrete applications
  • Can compatible with variable bits

Cons
  • Have a high-pitched whine
  • Require a special chuck while it’s not included in this set

Designed for heavy-duty projects in concrete and masonry, Bosch GBH18V-20K21 emphasizes 3-speed setting of 0-5, 850 no-load BPM & 0-1, and 800 no-load RPM. Combining with three modes of operation, it enables to handle multiple tasks.

While general rotary hammer drills are usually overheated because of overloading number of tasks, this isn’t the one.

It’s built with an Electronic Motor Protection and Electronic Cell Protection to save the drill itself from such common issues. Meanwhile, the whole design is kept ergonomic, like a soft-grip handle or compact dimensions, to give superior comfort and convenience.

What truly makes Bosch GBH18V-20K21 stands out from the crowd should be the Bosch PRO+GUARD dust, which is a signature component. It takes part in collecting dust during your works to help you move toward the OSHA Silica Table 1 dust compliance.

Product Specifications

Impact Energy1.3 ft. lbs
Speed0-5, 850 no-load BPM and 0-1, 800 no-load RPM
Chuck¾” SDS-plus three jaw chuck
Weight5.7 lbs.
Dimensions12.8 x 3.5 x 8.7 inches
Warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesRobust power system, three mode selector switching

Lightweight design, at 5.7 lbs., while the total dimensions are 12.8 x 3.5 x 8.7 inches, Bosch GBH18V-20K21 turns out to be the most compact and lightweight rotary hammer drill out there.

How to choose the best 18v cordless drill (buying guide)

Best 18v Cordless Drills For DIYers (Reviews)

Type

There are four common types of cordless drill:

  • Drill driver
  • Impact driver
  • Hammer drill
  • Rotary hammer drill

While many beginners still misunderstand about their purposes of use, this table will cut a long story short:

 Purpose of UseProsConsBest for
Drill driverDrive fasteners through materials

 

-The most versatile cordless drill out of four

-Tool-free chucks can change bits quickly

-Can drive any fasteners through any materials

-Large dimensions -> Not good for tight spaceHomeowners or professionals who need to drive a wide range of fasteners on different materials
Impact driver-Specialized in Installing and removing fasteners and nuts or bolts

-Require accessories and hex shaft bits

-More compact than a drill driver

-Can be used in tight space for

-Not good for drill holesAutomotive work and rough carpentry
Hammer drillProduce rotation and forward thrust

Drive fasteners

Drill through masonry materials

-Stronger than drill driver and impact driver to work at hard and dense materials-Heavyweight

-Require more battery power

Professionals who usually work with wood, metal, and concrete.
Rotary hammer drillChisel through masonry materials with minimal problems-Stronger and more versatile than hammer drills

-Portable

-Heavyweight -> Difficult to use continuously for a long timeProfessional who frequently drills and chisels through masonry

Motor

When comparing different cordless drill types, you will notice that brushless motors are now really common for high-end impact drivers and drill drivers.

Why?

At the moment you look at the prices of both brushed and brushless motor, it’s easy to point out the brushed is much cheaper.

But in the long-term comparison when brushed motors require more frequent replacement because of its quick wearing down, the more economical choice is then the brushless motor. Not only give longer lifetime, this new motor type also has many other advantages:

  • Quieter operation
  • Generate less heat after constant work (the key feature to prolong the drill’s lifetime)
  • More powerful
  • Don’t require frequent replacements

Torque & RPM

RPM, standing for rotations per minute, is an indicator of the maximum speed achievable by a drill. There are:

  • Single speed
  • 2-speed setting (Usually have an additional slide switch to conveniently select the speed mode you need)
  • 3-speed setting

The single and 2-speed setting are designed mostly for light to medium tasks while the 3-speed is more about heavier-duty projects.

Torque is another must-consider indicator when you want to compare speeds between cordless drills. It refers to their rotary turning force and as a basic rule of thumb, the more torque of the tool, the better drilling capability of it on hard surfaces.

Chuck

This component plays a role of holding the rotating bit in place. A good chuck should hold the bits securely and firmly without wobbling. Two major specifications that you should consider when it comes to chuck are: Size and Type.

A 13mm chuck is fine to hold large bits – a perfect choice for heavy duty jobs. For lighter-duty projects, size down your drill’s chuck.

Take note of its two common types:

Hex chuck: Only compatible with hexagonal bits to work decently on drilling hard materials with less slipping

Keyless chuck: Highlight metal prongs to be easily tightened and loosened without needs of keys. Plus, it can hold most bits and be an ideal option for general-purpose drilling tasks.

Battery

No matter how expensive of a cordless drill, if it’s built with an inferior battery.

Two things that a good cordless drill’s battery should meet are: High-level power efficiency and Long runtime. The charging time is another consideration.

Imagine that your cordless drill is out of juice, while a modern model just takes you 15-30 minutes per charge, the traditional is up to 5 or 7 hours.

For heavy-duty tasks, this is important. If you choose a traditional drill, either your project would take longer or you spend extra bucks on an additional battery to continue your jobs. As a result, you will lose something: Money or Time.

Higher-performance options will lead to higher price and yes, the modern drill batteries are always a lot costlier than the traditional. So, consider your budget and projects to pick the most suitable.

What are the best cordless drill brands?

Best 18v Cordless Drills For DIYers (Reviews)

Bosch

No matter who you are, a professional or a newcomer in the DIY world, at least once I bet you have heard of Bosch group. It’s truly an OG in this industry with over 130 years in business and more than 100 new upgraded models released each year.

Milwaukee

Another Mr. Giant, Milwaukee deserves the second rank in this list for the best 18v cordless drills. Their products are in general well-loved for the excellent weight (not too heavy nor too lightweight) and superior solid construction.

Ryobi

Ryobi is a low-priced brand. Their products, aside from affordability, also highlights the compact design with moderate power battery that’s perfect for average homeowners who are in need of building occasional cabinet door fix or a few projects per year.

DEWALT

Contrast to Ryobi, DEWALT is a favorite brand of professional builders and carpenters. While giving a powerful motor and variable speed settings, their products nail up with ease of storage and carrying by a signature side handle.

Makita

Makita’s product lines might be the most versatile in this list. No matter it’s a home DIY job or professional projects, there’s surely one suitable Makita cordless drill fitting it.

FAQs

Best 18v Cordless Drills For DIYers (Reviews)

How long do cordless drill batteries last?

The amount of usage time of a cordless drill battery will be based on the brand, the way you manage your tool and the usage.

A well-managed battery, from my experience, can last 3-6 years. For example, in comparison of 18-volt cordless drills, Dewalt battery will be 2 years while the Milwaukee, Makita, and Bosch are up to three years.

Is 18v better than 12v?

An 18v cordless drill is obviously more powerful than a 12v model. But to determine which is better, it depends on the type of your regular projects.

For at most building onto a deck or framing a wall, the 12v cordless drills are better. For example, new Dewalt or Bosch’s 12v combo.

In more intense driving and drilling applications, an 18v cordless drill is better. Some highly recommended brands are Milwaukee, Dewalt, or Makita.

Do I need a hammer drill to drill into brick?

It will be better to use a hammer drill for brick drilling projects but if you don’t have one available in your arsenal, a normal power drill is still fine, it just goes a bit slower.

The must-have component for this type of jobs is masonry bits.

Can you overcharge a cordless drill battery?

No, you can’t. Overcharging a cordless drill battery will cause some certain damage and shorten its lifetime. Hence, never leave batteries on a charger unless your drill’s instructions specifically guide to store it that way.

Can I use 20v battery on an 18v drill?

Unless your cordless drill’s instruction has this in their guideline, don’t arbitrarily try charging or using a 20v battery on an 18v drill.

Conclusion

Whether you’re a new DIYer or professional craftsman, keep peace in mind that there’s surely the best 18v cordless drill made just right for you.

As you shop, make sure to consider what materials you frequently work with, the regular types of jobs, and potential challenges that might happen during your work process. Hopefully, this article was helpful to you. Thanks for reading!

Top 8 Best 18v Cordless Drills For DIYers (Reviews) – 2019
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