How we review
Cordless Drills Review
This is how we test our drills !
Cordless drills reviews on our website are conducted with a series of simple yet practical tests and measurements that try to simulate the every day use of the drills. We all know that the actual performance of the tools is different than what the manufacturer claims in the specification. That is where we step in and give you a simple but practical way to see the drill’s performance.
When we get a drill to test, our number one goal is to find out how well it performs, and who the perfect candidate for the tool is – the college student hanging up pictures in his dorm room, the DIY homeowner or the professional contractor. We run all cordless drills through a series of identical tests (in order to be able to compare them to each other) and see what they do best, and where they don’t perform as well.
How We Review Cordless Drills
We check the handling of the drills: the feel, the balance, ease of use, weight, ability to reach difficult spots, loading and unloading bits, batteries and accessories. We also summarize our readers’ cordless power drills ratings and reviews and check major websites like Amazon, e-pinions, Home Depot and Lowe’s and check for readers’ reviews.
Power And Torque
Our first and most important test in the cordless drills review is the drill’s power and torque (Torque = ability of a force to rotate an object on an axis). All cordless drill manufacturers specify their drills’ power usually in INCH X LBS of torque – for example the DeWalt DC827KLhas a torque rating of 1330 INCH X LBS – but what does that mean in every day terms?
We designed the first test for the impact drivers and called it the “30 Hex Bolt Test”: In this test we take 30 hex bolts size – 1/4 x 2 inches long, and drive them into a double 2×8 plank. We time the test and compare all of the results – the shortest time means the drill was the most powerful as it completed the job fastest!
Simply put – The stronger tool, with more torque and power, will complete the same job faster!
For the 18v power drills we created a test called the “15 Hole Power Test”: 15 holes are drilled into a plank of 2×8 using a new, identical drill bit in all of our tests (1.5 inch Irwin spade bit). The same test is done for the 12v drills – drilling 12 holes using a 1/2″ drill bit.
Hammer drills undergo the “15 Hole Test” as well as their own test – “The Paver Test”: 6 holes are drilled into a paver with no cooling between the holes, using a new identical Bosch 3/16″ masonry drill bit for all tests.
We do our best in our cordless drills review to eliminate any uncontrolled variables in order to give all drills the same conditions – for example: for the “30 Hex Bolt Test” we drive all 30 screws about 0.5 cm into the wood before we start the test in order to eliminate initial instability or “wobbling” of the bolts during the test, also – we avoid any visible “eyes” in the wood and the test is always conducted by the same person. For our drill tests, we use the same new drill bits on all of our tests.
Our in-house tests apply the same principles: the faster the job is completed = the stronger the machine –Simple as that!
Power Consumption And Battery Life
To check the power consumption in our reviews we continue our power tests until the battery “dies”: with the impact drivers we continue to drive hex bolts into the wood planks and with the drills we continue drilling holes until the battery is dead!
Tool Energy Conversion – Since the tools we test come with different battery sizes, we tried to create a common base for comparison – so we can compare “apples to apples”. We measure how many holes / bolts the tool drills for every 1 Ah of energy in the battery. This figure is obtained by taking the total amount of holes / bolts we tested in our battery endurance test and dividing that figure by the battery Ah figure. For example – if a tool drilled 30 holes and a full battery holds 1.5 Ah then we would say – “The tool drills 20 holes for every 1 Ah”. The higher the figure we get the better the tool converts energy (electrical) into work (holes/bolts) – energy can be lost by turning it into heat, friction etc…
Once the battery is drained we let it cool down for 30 minutes and measure the time it takes to re-charge it to full charge.
Results – The more bolts or holes we are able to drill, and the shorter the re-charge time – the better performance of the battery and drill.
To test the noise emission we use a decibel reader to determine how loud a drill is when it is operating. If this is a factor when considering what drill to buy – that is up to you ! We provide you with those facts.
Durability is also assessed by the quality of build and the reviewer’s overall impression, additionally – the major websites are checked and reviewed to evaluate consumers’ cordless power drills durability ratings.
Warranty and customer care
We check the warranty and customer care service in our cordless drills review by calling their support department and seeing how fast they respond to our claim (fictitious).
Additional tests and observations are conducted throughout the reviews and specified for each cordless drill reviewed. It is important to consider that our evaluations are based on short term use of each specific tool. In order to complete our evaluations we always check other consumer ratings on other websites to examine comments regarding long term usage.
“This Cordless Drill Is Best For…”
The final few paragraphs of each review are the most valuable to you. We recommend who the drill would be best suited for. Sometimes a drill is better with power and torque but doesn’t do as well in battery life, handling or ease of use. So whether you’re a college student, DIY homeowner or contractor – there is a drill that is right for you and we will help you find it.
Value For Money
In our review we also consider the price of the drills and will conclude with a value for price ratio. For example, we love the Makita and DeWalt tools but the price of these drills is too high for many consumers. That’s why we review all of the less expensive models too and see how well they perform in each situation. What’s right for one person isn’t necessarily ideal for another.