How to Choose a Drill?

As we already know, when we talk about drills, we are talking about one of the portable power tools with the most presence in all kinds of professional work and renovation environments, but also in the dependencies of individuals who dare to carry out their own work at home and want to enjoy the best technical capabilities when doing it.

Therefore, today we will talk about the favourite drills, indicating the different types that exist, which are the most common and used. We will also give a series of essential keys to take into account when buying a drill.

What is a Drill?

Originally, drills were designed solely as tools attached to a bit (cutting element) to make holes in all types of materials.

However, thanks to technological advances, different accessories have been designed for use in other functions, so that currently, the appropriate definition of a drill would be a rotating power tool that, thanks to its motor, rotates an element that is attached to it to be able to perform the desired work, such as drilling, screwing/unscrewing, sanding, sharpening …

Drills are widespread tools in all types of construction and industrial jobs and a myriad of DIY tasks.

What types of drills are there, and what are they for?

As you may have seen, there are many types of drills depending on the use they are designed, all of them rotating tools with a similar base but with different characteristics depending on the needs of their service.

The most common types of drills that we can find are:

Corded Electric Drills

The electrical cable holes are holes that are fed through a wire connected to the mains.

These drills offer us the inconvenience that we must always have an electrical outlet and work with the cable in between. However, they show us high power with consistent performance.

Cordless Drills

The drill battery, also called cordless drills, is increasingly common drills thanks to the strong growth in cordless tools. These offer us the great advantage of working without the need for a power outlet and providing us excellent comfort and mobility thanks to the fact of working completely wirelessly without cables in between.

Among the battery drills, we can highlight the renowned 18V drill, battery drills that stand out for their high power, and the 12V drill, drill models that stand out for their size and manageability.

Pneumatic drills

The pneumatic drills, also called air holes, are a type of drill driven by air from a compressor.

These pneumatic drills’ advantage lies in a very efficient tool, lighter, with lower maintenance cost and higher productivity. However, pneumatic drills are only shared when working in workshops or in the industry since they always need an air compressor or an air installation. 

According to the type of work to be carried out:

Screwdrivers

A screwdriver drill called a non-impact exercise is a drill designed for screwing and unscrewing work; or drilling in materials where hammering is not required, such as wood or metal.

Thanks to these screwdriver drills and the adaptation of a screwdriver bit, we will be able to mechanize and speed up all kinds of screwing and unscrewing jobs.

Hammer drills

A hammer drill is a drill designed with a percussion function, which consists of that, apart from turning, the drill will offer us a slight hammering to facilitate the work.

This percussion function is vital if we are going to drill on hard surfaces such as a concrete, wall, etc. On the contrary, if we only carry out screwing or drilling work in materials of not excessive hardness, this will not be necessary.

It should be noted that hammer drills always have a button that allows us to deactivate the percussion whenever convenient.

Angle drill

An angle drill is the type of drill that, thanks to its 90-degree angle shape, allows us to drill in situations where we have space problems.

For this reason, an angle drill is a tool used for its incredible versatility, offering us the possibility of drilling in awkward spaces and under challenging conditions.

Column drill

A column drill is a type of drill mounted on fixed support indicated for the workshop. These column drills offer us the possibility of drilling in a chain and with high precision.

Magnetic drill

A magnetic drill is another type of drill for professional use that allows us to drill with great precision in metal structures thanks to its magnetic base.

How to Choose a Drill?

Next, once the different types of most common drills are mentioned, we will talk about the keys to take into account when buying a drill. We will focus mainly on screwdrivers and hammer drills, both battery-powered and electric since they are the most common types of drills, the other types being drills for much more specific uses.

3 key questions to ask yourself in selecting the right drill

When a customer of our store shows up at the door to buy a drill, the first thing we do is ask three questions that we consider the most critical keys to making the purchase decision correct:

  • Cordless drill or corded drill?
  • What kinds of tasks are we going to carry out, and what materials will we work on?
  • How often will we use the drill?

Cordless drill or corded drill?

Previously in the types of drills, we have discussed the differences between cordless drills and corded drills, so we will buy the drill with the power according to the use that we are going to give it:

  • We will decide on a corded drill if we want to work for an unlimited time without charging the battery and with greater power since, as we have mentioned, corded drills offer us a continuous maximum performance as long as we have a power outlet.
  • On the contrary, we will opt for a battery-powered drill if we prefer a drill that offers us greater mobility and handling since we will not have the cable through or need any electrical outlet. However, we must be aware that the time of use will be limited to the battery’s autonomy and that the performance of the drill will decline depending on its state, although the solution is to have more than one battery per drill.

The type of tasks and materials will determine the type of drill and the necessary characteristics.

Subsequently, once filtered between a cordless drill or a corded drill, we are going to choose the type of drill according to the necessary characteristics that the drill must have depending on the kind of tasks to be performed and the materials with which we are going to work:

Type of drill to buy:

  • For screwing or drilling in non-hard surfaces such as brick or concrete → Screwdriver drill
  • For drilling in hard surfaces such as concrete, wall, cement … →  Hammer drill
  • For drilling in hard-to-reach areas → , Angle drill
  • For precision fixed drilling in the workshop → , Column drill or magnetic drill

Drill power

The power of the drill will indicate the force that the drill has. The greater the drill’s control, the greater the strength and the greater work capacity it will offer us.

In the case of corded drills, their power is measured in watts (W), and in the case of cordless drills, it is measured in volts (V).

It is important to note that the power of the drill motor must be accompanied by quality accessories and gears since otherwise, it will only be a drill that will use many currents but will not offer the necessary force, which is why we recommend opting for a professional drill.

Speed ​​control on the drill

Speed ​​control is also an essential feature in the different models of drills since we can find different types of control depending on the quality and characteristics of the drill:

  • Single-speed drills → These are the simplest drills with a single speed.
  • Drills with various speeds → These drills are other models that have multiple rates to change manually. Slower speeds execute more force, such as screw or drill metal, while faster speeds to drill at higher speeds.
  • Electronic drills → These type of drills are the most advanced since they are drills with electronic speed control. In these drills, the speed of rotation is controlled by the switch. The higher the pressure of the button, the higher the rate, of course.

Chuck type

The type of drill chuck is also a differential factor between the different models, as it will indicate the type of attachment for the bits.

Drill chucks differ mainly in:

  • Manual chuck → These are the types of chuck where the change of the bit is done manually. It is usual in more specific drills.
  • Automatic chuck → These are the types of drill chuck where the bit change is more intuitive, a quick anchor. The most common temporary anchors are the standardized SDS-Plus and SDS-Max.

If we already have bits or accessories for a drill of some kind, it is essential to buy an exercise in which the same bits or accessories are adapted to take advantage of them.

Reversibility

Reversible drills are drills that offer the possibility of turning in both directions. Reversibility is a ubiquitous and essential feature in drills, especially screwdriver drills, to perform both screwing and unscrewing.

Drill design and weight

The weight, dimensions and design of the drill is also an essential factor in its choice since it will indicate how manageable and comfortable the drilling will be.

Although it will depend on the type of drill and the use for which it is intended, it is essential to choose an exercise that offers us good ergonomics and easy handling, especially if we will use it regularly during our workday.

Features to consider for cordless drills

Apart from the characteristics above, which are suitable for both battery-powered drills and electric drills; In the case of cordless drills, there are a series of battery-related traits that must be taken into account:

Battery Nature

Currently, drill batteries are usually Lithium since they are the most efficient type of batteries. They offer us a more extended, helpful life because they do not have a memory effect; that is, they can be charged without having to download it in full.

However, we can still find drills with nickel batteries, which are more affordable but tend to be used less and less.

Battery amperage

The amperage of the battery is one of the most critical variables since it marks its duration.

The higher the amperage of the battery, the longer it will last.

Loading time

The battery charging time is also a factor that we must consider, since the less time it takes for a storm to blame, the better, since the sooner we can resume work.

Lithium batteries are the ones that take the least time to charge.

Number of batteries included in the drill

Another essential variable to consider in specific jobs is the number of batteries included in the drill since in long-term employment, it is necessary to have two batteries to work with one while charging the other to work non-stop.

The frequency of use will determine the necessary quality of our drill.

The frequency of use of our drill is also an essential factor to consider, as it will determine the necessary quality of the drill.

If we are going to use our drill occasionally, we can opt for a cheaper DIY drill, while if we are going to work regularly with our drill, it is essential to buy a professional drill model designed to work without problems throughout the working day.

Also, note that as in all types of machines, it is essential to buy a drill from a brand with a quality guarantee, which ensures a good guarantee, excellent after-sales service and spare parts in case of any breakdown. 

In our experience, the best brands on the market are Bosch drills and Makita drills, quality tools with complete guarantee that allow us to satisfy our customers’ needs without problems.

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