The 10 Best Brushless Drills

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This wiki has been updated 15 times since it was first published in December of 2018. Compared to their brushed counterparts, brushless drills are typically more compact, efficient, lightweight and powerful, and they tend to last a longer too, making them the choice of all sorts of professionals. Our selections for this category include tools from some of the best brands in the business, and while some are sold as bare units, many come with batteries, chargers and carrying cases. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Bosch GSR18V-755CN

2. Metabo HPT DS18DDX

3. Milwaukee 2801-22CT

Editor's Notes

February 24, 2021:

To begin with, we eliminated the Worx WX174L, questioning whether it deserved its spot on the list and noticing that it was suffering from some availability issues. Then, we replaced the Milwaukee 2703-22 with the Milwaukee 2801-22CT, feeling that our users would be better served by this subcompact option that offers similar power to its bulkier counterpart.

We also decided to remove the DeWalt DCD777C2, believing that the combination of the DCD996 hammer drill and DCF887 impact driver offered with the DeWalt DCK299D1T1 was ultimately a better choice.

The Bosch GSR18V-755CN earned a top spot on our list, impressing us with its 2,100-RPM no-load speed and torque delivery rate of 755 inch-pounds. We also thought the way the tool can achieve Bluetooth connectivity with the addition of the company’s GCY42 module was a pretty slick option, and something that I dare say will become somewhat standard in years to come. Despite adding this powerful selection from the company to our rankings, we still judged that it made sense to retain a 12-volt option on our list, so we replaced the Bosch PS32-02 with its next-generation offering the Bosch GSR12V-300B22. An 18- or 20-volt tool is almost definitely the way you want to go if it’s the only drill you’re going to own, but 12-volt equipment still has its place in industry and many professionals' tool bags, and if you’re thinking of picking one up, the GSR12V-300B22 is certainly worth your consideration.

Our last addition this time around was the Metabo HPT DS18DDX, which – with a no-load speed of 1,700 RPM and a 485-inch-pound torque rating – isn’t the most powerful option on our list. However, it’s still fairly capable, and when taking into consideration this unit’s build quality, it’s impressive lightweight construction (the bare tool weighs less than two pounds) and the company’s lifetime warranty, we still thought this model deserved a respectable spot on these rankings. For heavy-duty applications, you can plug in one of the company’s 36-volt cells and significantly improve its battery life.

While it’s certainly true that all drills are not created equal, it’s also hard to argue that many of them, especially top models in the category, aren’t quite close in quality. With this in mind, for convenience’s sake, if you already have an established tool collection going, sometimes the most sensible thing to do is just keep buying from the same line (but if you already have an established tool collection, you probably already know that). If you don’t already have an established tool collection, but are looking to start one, take a look and see what each company has to offer, in terms of available tools, pricing, warranties and – of course – cool extras like job site radios. Many companies also offer decent starter sets that might save you some money. We’ve got some of the best ranked on our list of power tool kits.

December 18, 2018:

Added the DeWalt Flexvolt due to its fan-cooled charging station and intelligent battery design. The Makita Sub-Compact supports real-time data communication between itself and battery so as to prevent overheating and overloads, which I thought was pretty useful for industrial applications. Also included the Bosch 12-Volt Max for its flexible composite housing and superior impact resistance. The Makita XPH07Z delivers high torque and is one of the few options that supports masonry projects. Also added the Skil Combo as a good option for residential use, thanks to its portability and because its charging base has a built-in USB port for charging mobile devices.

Special Honors

Metabo HPT DV36DA If you constantly find yourself struggling between the convenience of a cordless tool and the utility of a corded model, the DV36DA might be for you. You choose how to power it: either using its AC adapter or one of the company's 36-volt batteries. The tool's backed by the company's lifetime warranty.

DeWalt DCH481X2 If none of the models on this list are going to be able to keep up to your workload, you might want to think about the DCH481X2, which uses a 1-9/16-inch SDS Max chuck to accommodate big bits for heavy-duty applications. Best of all, despite its notable size, it's a cordless model designed to be supplied by the company's line of 60-volt batteries.

4. Makita XPH07Z

5. DeWalt DCK299D1T1

6. Makita CX200RB

7. Bosch GSR12V-300B22

8. Porter-Cable PCC608LB

9. Skil Combo

10. Memphis MX20D144

Will Rhoda
Last updated by Will Rhoda

After deciding that the pen was mightier than the pliers, Canadian electrical contractor William Rhoda abandoned his career and headed back to college, where he majored in marketing and advertising and won a scholarship along the way to earning a diploma in creative communications. His past career landed him a depth of knowledge in tools and hardware, while his current career schooled him in audio, video and camera equipment. During his leisure time, he’s learned lots about outdoor gear, and years of tiresome backyard maintenance have taught him all about pools and hot tubs. His recreational pursuits include rest, relaxation and revolutionary action, and his roommate’s a hairless cat.

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