Best Cordless Drill for Occasional Use 

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 easier to use.

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

The best cordless drill for occasional use around the house will need to be able to drill through walls, through wood and be able to drive in screws. A cordless combi drill with a hammer function is exactly what you need. 

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.

If you are only going to be using the drill occasionally then you might want to work to a budget, then again some people just like to buy the best! We have previously looked at cordless drills by price, so if you know your budget you can go straight to our "by price" reviews and click on the best cordless drill under £40, £50, £60, £100, £150 and £200.

A good tip too is make sure you use the correct bit. A drill bit for tiles , for instance, is much different than a drill bit for concrete and different again if you want to drill metal.

Understanding the Hammer Feature

Before you spend any money, it is really important to understand exactly what this hammer function really is. A hammer 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. You will be able to do most jobs, even drilling larger holes. Also I have recently bought a right angle drill that's very useful for getting into awkward areas. It's well worth reading a bit more about them.

The Winner - Bosch EasyDrill 1200 Cordless Drill/Driver with Two 12 V Lithium-Ion Battery

  • A best seller from Bosch
  • This one got a buyer satisfaction rating of 96% with 83% of all buyers giving it a 5 star review
  • Comes with battery carrying case and two batteries
  • Small and lightweight Design with powerful drilling applications
  • Variable speed control for easier
  • Small and compact Design allows for easy mobility
  • Superior cordless technology - Power 4 All 12 V family with 1.5 Ah battery

This drill has no ratings below 4 star. This is very rare and I actually have never seen it on any tool I have reviewed. This is a top notch drill at this price range.

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


  • Buyers said this is a top quality tool even at this price
  • Buyers said that this was a joy to use and drilling through concrete was easy
  • Buyers said this drill was versatile and could be used for nearly any job
  • Buyers said this had a great battery that lasted really well
  • Buyers loved that you got 2 batteries so it was always ready to go


  • 3% of all buyers gave this a poor rating and we have listed their complaints below
  • Some buyers did seem to receive a faulty drill
  • Other than that there were no other complaints


We picked this Bosch model because of the value for money aspect, and the fact that it will so an excellent job around the house. There are more expensive options available with more features, but we know this will be able to drill any type of material and is a great screwdriver.

The Runner Up

Dewalt 18V Cordless Combi Drill

  • It is actually unfair to call this the runner up as it is an excellent choice if you are willing to pay just a little bit more
  • It comes with one battery and a 1 hour charger.
  • So although this one is a slightly more powerful drill, the Bosch one offers better value we believe
  • That is not to knock this Dewalt model as it has a 96% buyer satisfaction and packed with features

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


  • Buyers said this drill was not too heavy but very powerful
  • Buyers said that this drill was expensive but well worth the price
  • Buyers said this drill held the charge really well
  • Buyers said this worked as well as a screw driver and even better as a hammer style drill
  • Buyers just knew that the drill was top quality and loved to use it


  • 5% of all buyers gave this a poor rating and we have listed their complaints below
  • Like our first choice a few buyers did receive a faulty drill


Dewalt make some of the best cordless drills on the market. If you have ever used any Dewalt branded tool you will know what we mean. They look great and when you use them you know they are high quality.

This model deals with any type of drilling with the ultimate ease.

The Cheapest Alternative

BLACK+DECKER 18 V Cordless 2-Gear Combi Drill

  • You can normally find this Black & Decker model for around £50-60 and it comes with a battery, charger and case which represents great value
  • A lot of UK online buyers opt for this model as it has 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..


  • Buyers said this drill was very good value for money
  • Buyers said that this was a joy to use as it was light and compact
  • Buyers said the battery was powerful and lasted well
  • It worked well for drilling through brick and walls


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


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.

More Helpful Information

So as you can see there is a cordless drill/driver available at a range of price points. They all have a hammer action which is what you need for getting through masonry of all types.

Drill Bits

You do of course also need to buy a set of bits that work with the drill. These bits are hardened and  are designed to be durable and highly effective when working with harder materials.

All the major brands make drill bits, and they will have a tungsten carbide tip. They have also been especially fluted for fast waste removal.

We like this Bosch drill bit set as it contains a really useful range of sizes. In this set you get a range of wood and masonry drills as well as screwdriver bits. Its everything you are ever likely to need around the house.

We also like these because they are affordable and will suit most home owners for occasional use. If you plan on doing a lot of masonry drilling, then spend a little more and get a Dewalt set of drill bits that are designed for heavier masonry work.

Torque Settings vs Drill Settings

People can easily confuse these so we want to explain the difference between these on drill/drivers. When you purchase a cordless drill/driver that also has a hammer feature, then on the selection you will have various settings.

Torque Settings

The torque settings will be numbered from 1-15 (or whatever number of torque settings your drill/driver has) These are only used for driving in screws. You adjust this setting depending on the size of screw and the type of wood that you are screwing into. For example a higher torque setting is required for a longer screw, or for a harder wood.

Drill Settings

The drill settings are separate to the torque settings. These are usually marked with a drill bit for normal driving, or a small hammer for drilling through masonry. The actual setting marks will differ from brand to brand.

Just below we have included an image of the settings on the Bosch PSB 1800.

hammer settings on a drill driver

Let the Cordless Drill do the work

There is a very natural tendency to force or push really hard on a drill when trying to go through a harder material such as brick or block. There really is no need to do that as if you have a sharp masonry drill bit, and a high powered cordless drill, it will do the work.

Avoid using blunt drill bits as those are useless, and they will make your drill do more work that they should be doing.

Summary of Cordless Drills for Occasional Use

Hopefully we have provided you with enough information on what to look for when buying a cordless drill/driver that can drill through material of all types.

The important things to remember is that your chosen drill/driver should be a combi drill and have the hammer feature. You will also need a set of screwdriver and drill bits.

After that it really does come down to two requirements. The first is how much you can afford, or are willing to pay. The second should inform the first choice. It really does depend on how much masonry drilling you are planning to do.

Most people only need to do a little of this from time to time. If that is the case, then there is no real need to buy an expensive drill. You might not get all the power and speed that you need, but an affordable drill will get the job done.

However, if you just want the right tool for the job, or have a little more money available, then buy a higher quality one that will last you for years, and work when you need it. Some people still prefer the corded drill models but really cordless is totally taking over now and they are fully powerful enough for all jobs. There are plenty of options to choose from here but I always try to stick to a well known brand like MilwaukeeMakitaRyobiBlack and DeckerDewalt or Bosch when I am buying a tool like this.

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