Top 8 Most Powerful Cordless Drills (Reviews) – 2019 Update

Are you confused about variable cordless drills options out there? There are too many considerations: Brand, Voltage, Drill Type, and Budget. However, by answering this one and only question, you will immediately pick out the most suitable one.

That question will be revealed later, first off, let’s take a look at these 8 most powerful cordless drills:

20V cordless drills

DEWALT DCD991B – Most powerful 20v drill driver

DEWALT DCD991B
Pros
  • Faster application speed
  • Hold bit strongly
  • Finish your variable jobs at a really short amount of time.

Cons
  • Easily twist out of hands at low-torque settings
  • Missing a circular level on the back and a level on the top

Out of a bunch, DEWALT DCD991B is the battery tool that I have been using the most. It’s really powerful and versatile.

By equipped with a 3-speed setting, the cordless drill can reach up to 2000 RPM within seconds to finish almost jobs of mine quickly. From woodworking, installing things to other heavier-duty jobs, like drilling rocks.

One compliment for the durable ½” metal chuck, it’s built with carbide inserts that hold bit strongly to help me a lot on the jobsites.

Love the handle grips as well. They are carefully coated and sealed to resist dust contamination and moisture efficiently. On those heavy-duty tasks, this small feature turns out to be important since it prevents slippery quite well to use your physical force more optimally.

With a 5AH battery, DEWALT DCD991B works like a beast.

You will also have 3-mode LED lighting which is considered 20x lighter than other models to finish your tasks in dark conditions conveniently.

Product Specifications

Peak torque885 in-lbs
Speed3 speed settings: 0-450, 0-1300, and 0-2000
Chuckheavy-duty 1/2″ ratcheting nitro-carburized metal chuck
Weight4 pounds
Dimensions4 x 9 x 8 inches
Warranty3 year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight Features3-speed, all-metal high-performance transmission, 3-Mode LED, heavy-duty 1/2″ ratcheting nitro-carburized metal chuck

Overall, if your jobs are usually relating to holding making or fastener driving for nuts, screws, and bolts, DEWALT DCD991B is undoubtedly the best bet.

DEWALT DCF887B – Most powerful 20v impact driver

DEWALT DCF887B
Pros
  • Fit into narrow areas
  • Can work at dark conditions
  • Give more precision and control applications

Cons
  • Don’t include battery or bag, you need to buy it separately
  • Wobbly chuck

DEWALT DCF887B is also a brushless battery tool but in this case, it’s more powerful with 3-speed settings to deliver higher torque and get through those jobs like tightening nuts or driving screws faster.

I love the additional Precision Drive in speed 1 that not only adds more control when working on my jobs but also give more precision applications.

This impact driver is designed specifically for tight and dark spaces because of its compact silhouette (8 x 3 x 5.88 inches), lightness (2 pounds of total weight), and 3 LED lights.

Despite not as versatile as the DEWALT DCD991B, it is quite powerful to perform many of the same functions.

Product Specifications

Peak torque1825 in. lbs
Speed3 speed settings: 0 to 1000, 2800, 3250
Chuck1/4″ chuck
Weight2 pounds
Dimensions8 x 3 x 5.88 inches
Warranty3 year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesFits into a tight area, 3-speed settings, onboard lights, one-handed loading

If you’re looking for an impact driver that highlights power and flexibility with brushless motor and a good warranty, this is really worth considering.

DEWALT DCD996B – Most powerful 20v hammer drill

DEWALT DCD996B
Pros
  • Finish your jobs faster with less effort
  • Keep prolonged drill lifetime
  • Work more optimally on specific jobs -> Save time and money

Cons
  • The forward/reverse button is weak
  • Heavy on the front side

Next is a hammer drill from DEWALT.

In my opinion, it’s as powerful as the Milwaukee M18 2nd gen but giving torque a bit more instantaneously. If getting both models into a deep hole in the concrete, the DEWALT will power through it faster.

Not only finish your jobs in a shorter time with less effort, but the hammer drill is also improved on its runtime. By equipped with a brushless motor, the DCD996B can give 57% more run time over the brushed models.

Particularly, you can manageably change the max torque setting of this tool based on three available speed setting: 0 to 1,000 RPM, 0 to 2,800 RPM, and 3,250 Revolutions per Minute.

While being a bare tool, it’s a well-worth investment that can run on both 18 and 20 voltages.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque820 UWO
Speed3 speed settings: 0-38, 250 BPM and 2,250 RPM
Chuckheavy-duty 1/2″ ratcheting nitro-carburized metal chuck
Weight4 pounds
Dimensions4 x 10 x 8 inches
Warranty3 year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight Features  transmission for fast application speeds and improved run-time, high-efficiency brushless motor

If you have got into seriously heavy-duty drilling, experience it with the DEWALT DCD996B. Whether, it’s steel, wood, or concrete, I can assure that this hammer drill will turn them into a smooth reed.

DEWALT DCH273B – Most powerful 20v rotary hammer drill

DEWALT DCH273B
Pros
  • Avoid nerve damage over time
  • Keep debris out of your way when working
  • More durable, powerful, and effective-using performance
  • Decrease high-torque reactions

Cons
  • Lack of power in the jackhammer setting

DEWALT DCH273B highlights “4-no”: No waiting, no respirators/mask, no cords, and no mess.

It’s one of the most powerful rotary hammer drills that I’ve used that help to solve the clumsiness of power cords or self-burning out after hours of working like a dream. On the other hand, giving corded power without the cord (thanks to the 2.1 Joules impact energy).

A typical proof for what my saying, this beast takes just 3-4 seconds to drill a 2” deep hole with a 3/16 bit into bricks for a tapcon. Try the 6AH Flexvolt battery and it will run forever.

What I truly like about this wonderful cordless drill is the Active Vibration Control. As a rotary hammer drill, it will be utilized for many heavy-duty jobs requiring lots of force. By limiting vibration during the work, your arms will be less tingling and fatigued.

Ah, did I tell you about its additional retractable hook?

Product Specifications

Impact Energy2.1 Joules
Speed0 – 1,100 RPM
Chuck1/2″ SDS+ chucks
Weight6.35 pounds
Dimensions13 x 4.2 x 8.6 inches
Warranty3 year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium Ion
Highlight FeaturesBrushless motor for extended runtime and durability, Active Vibration Control, 2.1 Joules impact energy, retractable utility hook

For a long-term keeper to many of your regular heavy-duty projects around the house, like driving 12” spikes or drilling deep holes in concrete, DEWALT DCH273B is a good investment.

18V cordless drills

Makita XFD061 – Most powerful 18v drill driver

Makita XFD061
Pros
  • Deliver 530 pounds of torque to finish many tasks faster
  • Balanced, lightweight and comfortable to hold
  • Longer runtime and more optimal energy use

Cons
  • Take longer time for charging
  • Plastic chuck feels a bit flimsy

Makita XFD061 is a drill driver weighing a mere 2.5 pounds with 3 Ah lithium-ion battery. It’s obviously not the lightest model out there but strikes back with the right compromise of runtime and weight.

Unlike DEWALT, this tool gives you 2-speed settings of 0-400 RPM and 0-1, 550 RPM, however, I find it is enough torque for multiple fastening and drilling applications.

The best thing is Makita makes their own tools to give the best match with their BL brushless motor, resulting in a more powerful performance. In fact, it can handle those jobs like drilling through a 6 x 6” pressure treated fence post as easily as a piece of cake.

Makita XFD061 also optimizes energy use for up to 50% longer runtime while eliminating heat generating and carbon brushes effectively. The chuck, while plastic, is rather firm and strong when ratcheting down on a bit to give no chances of slipping.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque530 in-lb
Speed2 speed settings: 0-400 & 0-1, 550 RPM
ChuckMetal chucks
Weight3.8 pounds
Dimensions6.4 x 14.9 x 10.8 inches
Warranty3 year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium-Ion
Highlight FeaturesMechanical 2-speed transmission, efficient BL Brushless motor, lightweight, adjustable torque settings

For heavy DIYers, this drill driver won’t ever make you disappointed!

Makita XDT131 – Most powerful 18v impact driver

Makita XDT131
Pros
  • Run 50% more effectively than brushed motors to give longer runtime and cooler motor after constant work
  • Compact battery pack but the high capacity to provide the max speed of 600 IPM
  • No tangling after a long-time repeated work

Cons
  • Not equipped with XPT feature for water and dust resistance

When it comes to Makita impact driver, you’ll find out two lines: The XDT111 and the XDT131. The reason that I picked the second for you is its BL brushless motor.

In comparison, the XDT131 can adjust torque and RPM to fit the jobs you’re doing, hence, optimizing battery energy use up to 50% longer runtime than the brushed motor XDT111. Turns out it will save you lots of time and bucks.

What I like the most about this type of motor is the limited heat output after constant use. By eliminating carbon brushes, the motor is kept cooler and more efficient, resulting in prolonged battery’s and tool’s life.

Makita XDT131 is designed with three-speed settings: 0-3, 400 RPM & 0-3, and 600 IPM that can fit almost fastening tasks.

Combining with a convenient one-touch 1/4″ hex chuck and ergonomic design, it’s really helpful for me to move between different types of wood and projects.

Product Specifications

Peak Torque1500 in-lb
Speed3 speed settings: 0-3, 400 RPM & 0-3, 600 IPM
Chuckone-touch 1/4″ hex chuck
Weight3.3 pounds
Dimensions6.4 x 14.9 x 10.8 inches
Warranty3 year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium-Ion
Highlight FeaturesBL Brushless motor, variable speed, compact and ergonomic design, convenient one-touch 1/4″ hex chuck

Lightweight, compact, fast and powerful with an added advantage of the Brushless motor, Makita XDT131 is the best impact driver out there.

Makita XPH07Z – Most powerful 18v hammer drill

Makita XPH07Z
Pros
  • Really durable and powerful compared to other hammer drills at this affordable price range
  • Good hand-feel and ergonomic design for comfort
  • Avoid overheating
  • High-quality chuck to work robustly and durable

Cons
  • Large silhouette to cause a bit bulky to operate

Those who usually work with the concrete, brick, or other hard materials should keep this Makita XPH07Z in mind. While many battery tools come with a so-called “hammer setting” that drives a little bit deeper into masonry, this isn’t the one.

The XPH07Z is truly helpful with not only BL brushless motor and ergonomic cordless design but also the variable 2-speed quick transmission. By a switch, the tool can immediately generate 1,090 in-lbs. of torque with a max speed of 2,100 RPM.

Another highlight is its optimal battery consumption that allows for longer runtime per one charge than other brushed models.

Not to mention the manufacturer’s XPT technology with emphasis on superior durability. Or, the computer controls and 3-stage LED gauge to prevent the tool from overheating.

Product Specifications

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

In general, Makita XPH07Z is the best hammer drill for particularly harsh jobs while keeping a very ergonomic design to make your work a real joy.

Makita XRH01Z – Most powerful 18v rotary hammer drill

Makita XRH01Z
Pros
  • Hold and use with less fatigue
  • Boost in power and speed effectively for both professional and industrial use
  • Can adjust to using on each job’s demands due to the 3-mode operation

Cons
  • Not made to spin huge bits
  • A bit weak clutch

Don’t let its incredible lightness fool you, Makita XRH01Z can finish any of your heavy-duty tasks easily and perfectly. Owning a great ergonomic design doesn’t sacrifice its power one bit.

Out of many outstanding features, BL brushless motor is worth mentioning the most. It ensures 50% longer run time to boost efficiently both speed and power. Working on variable hard and dense materials isn’t a thing to it.

Whether that’s concrete, wood, or metal, the rotary hammer drill can adjust itself due to its 3-mode operation to fit each specific job demands.

Another great bonus is its ease of use and comfort on the design. There are two anti-shock handles and two-finger trigger made with stability and comfort in mind.

On those heavy-duty jobs, it takes not only less effort from you but also fewer arm tingling feel, resulting in less fatigue after constant work.

Product Specifications

Impact Energy2 Joules
Speed2 speed settings: 0-950 RPM, 4,700 BPM
ChuckMetal chucks
Weight7.2 pounds
Dimensions4 x 10 x 5 inches
Warranty3 year limited warranty
Battery Cell TypeLithium-Ion
Highlight FeaturesEfficient BL Brushless Motor, compact and ergonomic design, lightweight, 3-mode operation

For those homeowners and professionals who are looking for a power-oriented rotary hammer drill with ease of use, Makita XRH01Z is a great choice.

How to choose the most powerful cordless drill (buying guide)

Most Powerful Cordless Drills (Reviews)

Know your needs & Chuck

By figuring out the most frequent jobs that you’re going to use with a cordless drill, the searching list will be narrowed down significantly. There are commonly three categories:

  • Heavy-duty jobs
  • General-use jobs
  • Light-duty jobs

Take note that the cordless drill manufacturers won’t classify their products that way, but more on the chuck sizes.

There’s one basic rule of thumb: The higher the capacity of the drill’s chuck, the more powerful it is. In other words, chuck size ranges are a perfect proxy for purposes of use.

To simplify your choice, look at this table:

 Heavy-duty constructionGeneral-use jobsLight-duty maintenance or repair
Jobs-Drill into a concrete block or brick

-Drill holes for spikes or bolts in steel, masonry walls, or pressure-treated wood

-Drill pilot holes and drive screws in plywood or hardwood

-Build storage racks

-Replace fence picket or deck railing

-Drill into drywall

-Assemble flat-packed furniture or BBQ grill

-Replace or remove door hinges

Must-have featuresHigh-voltage battery tools (18-24 volts)

At least two batteries

½” chucks

Cordless drills feature 9.6-12-volt batteries

Should be two batteries

3/8” chucks

One battery (12-20 volts) is okay

Less powerful motor

Fixed ¼-inch socket

Battery

There are two types of battery for cordless drills: Lithium-ion and Standard nickel-cadmium. But the first one is more popularly used for these outstanding benefits:

  • Smaller dimensions and lighter
  • Last Longer
  • Charge Faster
  • When it comes to disposal, lithium-ion batteries pose less of a hazard since they contain no toxic cadmium.

The only feature that Standard nickel-cadmium batteries beat off their competitor is affordability – might be 3 or 4 times cheaper. Still, I highly recommend the lithium-ion batteries for the long term.

After choosing the most suitable battery type, there are now two more specs to consider:

  • Voltage: The higher the voltage, the more powerful the cordless drill (considered from the same brand)
  • Amp Hour: Indicate the amount of fuel that drill’s batteries contain to translate into Runtime. The higher the amp hour, the longer the tool last while the heavier it will be.

All cordless drills come with a battery charger and based on each specific type; the recharge time will be within 15 minutes to 3 hours.

Motor

Between brush and brushless motors, I advise selecting the second ones.

Why?

It’s because brushless motors generate less sense resistance and friction from the work material, adjusting continually the power amount they draw from the batteries.

As a result, your cordless tool retains longer life while delivering more power and runtime.

Speed Settings

The less speed setting in a cordless drill, the cheaper it will be. That’s why those models with single speed are the least expensive out of a bunch.

But that type of speed is really rare on the market nowadays. Instead, it’s the 2-speed cordless drills with two fixed settings: 800 RPM and 300 RPM.

(For those who don’t know what RPM is, this explanation might be helpful for you.)

These two-speed products are suitable for light-duty jobs: The high speed to drill holes while the low one for driving screws. If your jobs are variable, a cordless drill built with 3-speed settings will be the most suitable choice.

Who makes the most powerful cordless drills?

Most Powerful Cordless Drills (Reviews)

DEWALT

A trustworthy brand that produces only high-quality products that both professionals and beginners can count on. Their cordless drills have received lots of positive reviews relating to power efficiency and speed. With their 3-year warranty, you can rest assured if there are any issues happen to your tool.

Makita

With nearly 100 years of experience in manufacturing cordless drills, Makita is a reliable choice for homeowners and professionals due to its superior innovation, quality design, and perfect workmanship.

FAQs

Most Powerful Cordless Drills (Reviews)

Are brushless drills better than brushed?

Yes, brushless drills do be superior to brushed models in some aspects:

 Brushed DrillBrushless Drill
MotorContact with rotating commuter -> generate lots of heat, wears, and tearsContact nothing -> no friction, no heat or wears, and tears
Energy efficiencyWorseBetter
LifetimeShorterLonger
PowerfulLessMore
Electronic sensor capabilitiesFixedAdjustable

Do cordless drills last longer?

A cordless drill will last longer if it’s built with a brushless motor because this component features a voltage drop to adjust current power based on the jobs you’re doing. Hence, the energy is used more efficiently to keep the batteries last longer before a recharge.

Can I use the 18v battery in the 20v drill?

Literally, you can use the 18v battery in a 20v drill as long as you modify the adapter. But take note that this will void any warranty so consider carefully before trying it.

Do brushless motors have more torque?

Probably! As mentioned, brushless motors don’t contact anything to waste in friction and power, which creates more torque than the standard brushed.

But you should understand that this doesn’t mean using a brushless motor is the one and the only thing for energy efficiency improvement. A poor-quality drill will provide a useless brushless motor, ending up no improvement at all.

Can I use an impact driver as a hammer drill?

No, you can’t.

Impact drivers and hammer drills take different roles from each other. While an impact driver is specialized in drilling holes for driving bolts, screws, and other types of fasteners, a hammer drill is for drilling into masonry, like concrete, brick, and similar materials.

In fact, they are complementary.

Conclusion

Those 8 most powerful cordless drills that I’ve just shared you will be suitable for specific needs and jobs, which is the reason I also included an ultimate guide to help you pick the most suitable.

Rest assured that they are reviewed and listed here based on my experience, plus, each model is backed by the manufacturer through their warranty. I also believe that 5 additional FAQs will be helpful for you at the end. Thanks for reading!

Top 8 Most Powerful Cordless Drills (Reviews) – 2019 Update
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