Best Cordless Drill for Beginners

Thanks for taking your time to read our information on the best cordless drill for beginners. Beginners can mean one of two things. You could be new to DIY tasks and want advice on buying a cordless drill. On the other hand you could have been using a corded drill for years and are now considering purchasing a cordless drill instead.

Either way, the information that we provide you with here, should help you out, and point you in the right direction, when it comes to getting your first cordless drill.

Cordless drills are now the most popular choice when it comes to any type of drilling. The fact that they have no electrical lead makes them very portable, and also much easier to use.

You don't need to worry about having an electric socket, and if you get a drill with a good battery life, then that will be able to drill through all materials.

Most home owners will want their choice of cordless drill to be able to drill through wood, plastic, metal and the various types of masonry such as brick or block.

Anyone new to DIY tasks will want to be able to do any of these types of drilling task as well. If you have a drill like this, then you can do almost any task around the home and garden.

The good news is that all cordless drills actually come as drill/drivers so they can both drill and also be used as a screwdriver to drive in and remove screws. The drill function will have its own setting, and if it is a hammer drill, it will have an additional setting for that hammer function.

The hammer feature is required if you plan on doing any type of drilling through walls. (Along with a masonry bit)

cordless drill for a beginner

The Basic Parts of a Cordless Drill

main parts of a cordless drill driver

Cordless drills may seem a little confusing to any beginner, so above we have included an image of a typical cordless drill. Just below we have explained briefly what each of those parts actually does.

Inside the casing there is a motor and gears. When you squeeze the trigger, the motor is powered by the battery, and the motor engages a gear, which in turn spins the drill around in a clockwise direction.

That is pretty much all there is to it. With a cordless drill, the power comes from the battery whereas with a corded drill, you have to plug it into an electrical socket.

Basic features of a cordless drill explained

We have provided some basic information on the features on most cordless drills. If you want to read more detailed information, then check our full cordless drill buying guide by clicking here. However, the information below should be enough to understand the basics.

Battery

The whole point of cordless is that there are no electrical cords to worry about. Instead they use a battery, and these days they all pretty much use Lithium-Ion batteries. These are so much better than the older NiCad batteries that used to discharge quickly.

The batteries vary quite a bit in size from as low as 10.8 Volts up to 20 Volts. The most popular voltage choice for most cordless drills is 18 Volts. Smaller compact drills will use 10.8, 12 or 14.4 Volts.

The larger cordless drills will be either 18 or 20 Volts.

Trigger

The trigger is pretty simple as that is what you squeeze to make the drill/driver work. Some of the better cordless drills have a soft start and this is activated by gently squeezing the trigger.

That is used when driving in screws as it allows the screw to turn slowly at the beginning, until it finds its grip.

Chuck

Almost every cordless drill/driver uses a keyless chuck. That means you open and tighten the chuck by your hand. Chucks are usually 10 mm and the larger ones are 13 mm. This size determines which diamet of bits you can insert into it.

Gear Selector

Many of the basic to mid-price models only have one gear so nothing to think about there. The better models will have 2 gears and some even have 3 gears.

Gears simply improve the speed range that you can drill at. Ger 1 is usually something like 0-600 rpm and the second gear will be somethign like 0-1200 rpm.

Speed

On drills with driving, drilling and hammer drilling thre will also be a speed selector. You simply turn the dial to the appropriate symbol on the collar of the chuck

Torque

Torque is simply the amount of force or pressure that you want your drill/driver to apply to screws when driving them in. Beginners tend to set the torque at the highest number and then use that setting for every task. That is a mistake and should be avoided

If for example you were driving short screws into soft wood, then a high torque would over drive that screw and bury it into the wood (known as over driving)

Any beginner to using one of these should set it to the lowest torque, and test it. Then increase it until you find the right torque for the length of screw and they type of wood.

For example driving a 50 mm (2") screw into a piece of mahogany is going to need a higher torque setting that driving a 25mm (1") screw into a piece of soft wood.

Forward and Reverse

This is a fairly straightforward feature, and it means you can drive screws into something and when in reverse it will take those out.

Handle

Most handles have been ergonomically designed to give you the best grip suitable for your hand. Typically these will be rubberised, which prevents vibration and also offers a more comfortable grip.

LED Work Light

Most cordless drill/drivers will also come with a small work light, which is useful when working in poorly lit or confined areas. This comes on automatically when the trigger is engaged.

Hammer Feature

Some cordless dril/drivers come with a hammer function. This allows you to be able to drill through masonry such as brick, block, mortar etc. A drill does two things:

  1. Rotates - the drill spins around and is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm)
  2. Hammers - the drill also hammers very quickly in and out and is measured in bumps per minute (bpm) and some refer to this as blows per minute.

The ordinary rotational function is suitable for drilling wood, plastic and metal and the hammer function should never be used for drilling through those materials. You only ever use the hammer function for drilling through tougher materials such as brick, cement, mortar, granite, stone etc.

Our Recommendation for the Best Cordless Drill for a Beginner

Bosch Cordless Hammer Drill UniversalImpact

  • We would recommend this model from the Bosch brand as it has 2 batteries and a charger, so as a beginner you have everything you need to get started
  • This is a durable drill ideal for all jobs around the home including drilling masonry
  • Online buyers rate this very highly with a big 92% online satisfaction
  • We also think this model is great value for money for anyone starting out

Just below we have included the pros and cons of what real life buyers had to say..

Pros

  • Buyers liked the fact that you got the drill and charger along with 2 batteries
  • Buyers said the battery lasted for a long time so as they could get on with doing different tasks
  • Buyers liked that the drill was easy to use
  • Buyers said they quickly got used to the features
  • Buyers were impressed with the power of the drill/driver

Cons

  • 3% of all buyers gave this a poor rating and we have listed their complaints below
  • Some buyers received a faulty product and had to get it replaced

Conclusion:

We picked this Bosch model because despite there being more expensive options, we thought this was excellent value for money. For anyone know to drill/drivers, this is a tough compact model that any beginner will enjoy using.

The Runner Up

Dewalt 18V Cordless Combi Drill

  • If you are a beginner and have some extra cash to spend then buy a high quality drill/driver like this Dewalt model
  • It comes with one battery and a 1 hour charger.
  • This is a more powerful model than the Bosch we have mentioned above
  • Buyers have given this 18 Volt model a very high 96% buyer satisfaction rating because it is a top of the range drill/driver

Just below we have included the pros and cons of what real life buyers had to say..

Pros

  • Buyers said this drill was light, compact and extremely powerful
  • Buyers said that this drill was expensive but well worth the price
  • Buyers loved the extensive battery life on this model
  • Users also said that despite there being a stack of features, this was still very easy to use
  • Buyers who had used a cheaper drill before instantly noticed the difference in quality

Cons

  • 5% of all buyers gave this a poor rating
  • Those buyers received the product which had been damaged in the post and left a bad review because of that

Conclusion:

Dewalt make some of the best cordless drills on the market. if you have the money then don't hesitate to get this model if you want to own of the best cordless drills on the market for beginners.

The Cheapest Alternative

BLACK+DECKER 18 V Cordless 2-Gear Combi Drill

  • We understand that not everyone hass a huge amount of money to spend
  • That is why we have included this Black & Decker model and it is usually available for around £50-60 and it comes with a battery, charger and case which represents great value
  • Online buyers have given this one a high 92% buyer satisfaction and a great and affordable price point
  • The hammer action on this cordless drill/driver is very good according to buyers

Just below we have included the pros and cons of what real life buyers had to say..

Pros

  • Buyers said this drill was very good value for money
  • Buyers said that this is one of the easiest drill'drivers to use
  • Buyers said the battery was powerful and lasted well
  • Buyers understood that you don't get all the features, but you do get enough to do about 90% of all household and garden tasks

Cons

  • 4% of all buyers gave this a poor rating
  • A few buyers said the battery life was not that long

Conclusion:

The Black & Decker brand sit at the lower price point in the British market. Many buyers trust the brand and really like their tools. They are reliable and they have a very solid customer service.

Summary of Cordless Drills for Beginners

Hopefully we have provided you with enough information on what to look for when buying a cordless drill/driver if you are buying one of these for the first time.

Your final choice really comes down to much you can afford, or are willing to pay. It will also depend on what brand you want to own and that the model you pick has all the right features.

The 3 models we have included on our list have all the right features so you will not be missing out there. They all come with batteries and chargers so that means you can get started right away.

If you have taken the time to read our guide on the best cordless drill for beginners, then you will understand what each feature allows you to do. Happy shopping and we hope you find what you need.

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