Expertpickhub Tools For electricians Best Drill for Electricians Reviews

A modern drill is a multifunctional tool with versatile technical features and specifications. It is typically used by plumbers, mechanics, and of course, electricians. The best drill for electricians is a universal top-notch tool that will allow you to drill holes in various surfaces quickly and efficiently.

Since the job of an electrician is quite challenging, a high-quality drill should enhance work efficiency. Needless to say that drilling holes in concrete or running the wire through the walls will take a lot of effort if you choose a low-quality instrument that cannot deal with these tasks. In this review, I want to tell you how to pick the right tool that will help you complete all your electric projects.

Best drill for electrician reviews

Cordless drills

Makita XPH12R – best cordless electrician drill

Makita XPH12R

If you are looking for a powerful cordless drill that will cope with any heavy-duty tasks, rivet your attention on Makita XPH12R. It is a brushless hammer driver/drill with metal gear housing for extra durability. This 18V tool comes with 2-speed settings (0-500 and 0-2,000 RPM) (0-7,500 and 0-30,000 BPM) to provide high precision at the working place while performing drilling, driving, and hammering jobs.

Makita XPH12R is equipped with a powerful ½-inch chuck and an efficient motor for quiet operation without overheating. In addition, you will enjoy the ergonomic design and light weight (3.5 lbs.) of the drill that is meant to reduce hand fatigue. Moreover, the soft rubberized grip and dual LED lights will give you additional security at the working place.

You will be impressed with the kit that comes with this tool. It includes not only the tool bag but also two 18V compact lithium-ion 2.0Ah batteries and a rapid battery charger.

Compared to a corded DEWALT DWD115K drill, Makita XPH12R is a robust tool with a powerful chuck (unlike the ¾-inch chuck of DEWALT that is typically meant for low-power tasks). However, in contrast to the Makita kit, the analog does not include a case or any accessories.

Makita XPH12R photo

My experience with the Makita drill was quite positive; the tool is efficient enough to complete any tasks, and the battery reaches a full charge in less than 25 minutes. Unfortunately, the drill can temporarily stick in a hammer mode causing unpleasant inconveniences.

In a nutshell, Makita XPH12R is the best drill for electrician due to its compact design, robustness, and multifunctionality. It works fine as a power screwdriver or nut driver with simple torque adjustments.

Key specs
  • Type: cordless.
  • Wattage, W: ‎350.
  • Battery voltage, V: 18.
  • No load speed, RPM: ‎0 – 500 / 0 – 2.000.
  • Weight (with battery), lbs/kg: ‎3.5 / 1.6.
Pros
  • 2-speed settings for versatile performance.
  • Ergonomic design to reduce hand fatigue.
  • Comes in a tool bag with accessories.
  • Efficient brushless motor.
Cons
  • May stick in hammer mode.

BLACK+DECKER LD120VA – budget drill

BLACK+DECKER LD120VA

In case you want a good drill for a reasonable price, I am sure you will satisfy your needs with BLACK+DECKER LD120VA. It is a durable 20V cordless instrument with a trigger switch for versatile drill and driver use. The tool comes with a ¾-inch chuck and has a 24-positions clutch to impede the stripping of screws and provide better control. The maximum speed of the instrument is 750 RMP.

The BLACK+DECKER drill can be applied whenever you need to deal with wood, metal, and plastic constructions. Owing to the soft-grip handle, you can hold the tool comfortably in your hand for hours. You will also be impressed with the PowerConnect interchangeable battery that you can use with other instruments within the system.

It is necessary to mention that the drill comes in a kit that includes an LB20 20V MAX lithium-ion battery, an LCS20 charger, six brad point drill bits, ten 1-in. screw-driving bits, 9 2-in. screwdriver bits, four nut drivers, and a magnetic bit tip holder.

Despite the lower price, BLACK+DECKER LD120VA is even more powerful than Makita XPH12R, although it is equipped with a ½-inch chuck and has a 2-speed motor. Thus, the LD120VA can handle relatively large loads, and in this aspect, it is a serious competitor to its Makita analogs.

BLACK+DECKER LD120VA photo

Unfortunately, the drill is not efficient enough for dealing with concrete or drywall. Moreover, the bits are not made of rust-proof materials, so store them away from humidity.

Everything considered BLACK+DECKER LD120VA is a good low-budget drill for electrician that you can apply while working with wood, metal, and plastic constructions.

Key specs
  • Type: cordless.
  • Wattage, W: ‎1800.
  • Battery voltage, V: 20.
  • No load speed, RPM: ‎0 – 750.
  • Weight (with battery), lbs/kg: ‎3.2 / 1.45.
Pros
  • 24-positions clutch for better control.
  • The battery is interchangeable.
  • The kit includes bits for DIY tasks.
Cons
  • Cannot deal with concrete and drywall.
  • The included bits tend to rust.

DEWALT DCD740C1 – right angle option

DEWALT DCD740C1

You might need a right-angle drill if you have to work in tight spaces and need additional flexibility. DEWALT DCD740C1 is exactly the tool that perfectly suits this job. It is a lightweight cordless 20V drill with a brushed motor.

One of the key features of this tool is its dual-speed system (0-650 and 0-2000 RMP) that provides an extensive variety of applications. In addition, you can get to any hardly-accessible areas thanks to a ⅜-inch ratcheting chuck with a deep hex pocket. Another product advantage is the multi-grip trigger that secures extra functionality and effectiveness. The drill comes with 1 lithium-ion battery, a charger, and a bag for safekeeping.

Unlike BLACK+DECKER, this drill can develop higher speed (750 RMP compared to 2000 RMP). Moreover, it weighs less and thus, causes less hand fatigue. Yet, the analog comes with bits for household tasks that are not included in the DEWALT kit.

DEWALT DCD740C1 photo

What I did not like about this drill was the built-in LED light that would blind me whenever I had to look at the tool while using it. Another drawback of the tool is the lack of a battery power indicator.

All in all, DEWALT DCD740C1 is a compact right-angle drill with a dual-speed system that provides extra mobility at the working place. I have used it on several screwing/drilling projects around my home where a standard drill will not fit.

Key specs
  • Type: cordless.
  • Wattage, W: ‎300.
  • Battery voltage, V: 20.
  • No load speed, RPM: ‎0 – 650 / 0 – 2000.
  • Weight (with battery), lbs/kg: ‎3.8 / 1.72.
Pros
  • Equipped with a powerful motor.
  • Allows reaching tight spaces.
  • Includes a bag for safekeeping.
Cons
  • Inconveniently bright LED light.
  • No battery power indicator.

Corded drills

DEWALT DWD115K – best corded electrician drill

DEWALT DWD115K

If you would prefer to have a corded electrician drill, I advise you to have a look at DEWALT DWD115K. This 12V tool is equipped with a ⅜-inch all-metal ratcheting, keyless chuck for an enhanced bit holding and easier bits replacement. In addition, the drill has a powerful 8-amp motor to deal with versatile tasks, including heavy-duty projects.

A VSR trigger allows you to set any speed within 0-2,500 RMP. You can effortlessly operate the tool thanks to its soft mid-handle grip design. The sturdiness of the drill is achieved due to all ball-bearing construction. Last but not least, you will get a carrying case together with the instrument.

Compared to DEWALT DCD740C1, this item does not give you as much flexibility, but it has a more powerful motor and can develop higher speed. Yet, the rival has 2-speed settings, unlike DWD115K.

DEWALT DWD115K photo

The first problem that I faced with this tool was overheating; the drill would not cool off fast enough, so I was forced to take pauses. In addition, the item’s heavy weight (6.5 lbs.) caused hand fatigue during one-hand operation.

In general, it is a sturdy corded drill for electricians that can be used for versatile heavy-duty tasks.

Key specs
  • Type: corded.
  • Wattage, W: ‎300.
  • Cord length, ft/m: 25 / 7.6.
  • No load speed, RPM: ‎0 – 2.500.
  • Weight (with battery), lbs/kg: ‎4.1 / 1.85.
Pros
  • Keyless chuck for comfortable change of bits.
  • Comes with a carrying case.
  • Variable speed for the versatility of application.
Cons
  • The tool gets hot while operating it.
  • The heavy weight of the drill.

CRAFTSMAN CMED731

CRAFTSMAN CMED731

In case you want to purchase a reasonably-priced corded drill for electricians, pay your attention to CRAFTSMAN CMED731. It is a powerful 7.0 Amp drill/driver with a long 7-feet cord for heavy-duty tasks. The tool is equipped with a ⅜-inch keyless chuck to provide an effortless change of bits depending on your project.

One of the main peculiarities of the drill is its lock-on trigger that is activated at high speed. You can regulate the desired speed from 0 to 2, 500 RPM depending on your needs. Unfortunately, the tool does not come with any accessories, but they are sold separately.

Similar to DEWALT DWD115K, this model also has a handy reversing switch but weighs much more than its competitor. This weight is due to the higher power of the motor. So remember that the more powerful the tool is, the heavier it will be.

CRAFTSMAN CMED731 photo

One of the drawbacks of CMED731 is that it gets hot fast and may even smoke in case of overheating, so it is not recommended for continuous use. Keep in mind that this drill is pretty heavy, so you might have to hold it with both hands. Besides, the tool can be loud when operating at its highest speed.

All flaws aside, CRAFTSMAN CMED731 is a sturdy drill that you can apply to complete various projects at home and at work. I liked the long solid cord that allowed me to use the drill away from the socket.

Key specs
  • Type: corded.
  • Wattage, W: ‎‎800.
  • Cord length, ft/m: 25 / 7.6.
  • No load speed, RPM: ‎0 – 2.500.
  • Weight (with battery), lbs/kg: ‎4.1 / 1.85.
Pros
  • Long 7-feet cord for flexibility.
  • Has a keyless chuck for easy replacement of bits.
  • Comes with a forward and reverse switch.
Cons
  • Tends to overheat fast.
  • Heavy weight causes hand fatigue.

Electrician drill buying guide

Cordless or corded drills?

You can pick one of the two options available – corded or cordless drill. While a corded drill offers higher power levels and is used for continuous drilling, you will depend on the power outlet. A cordless drill can be used at any spot as it works on rechargeable batteries. Still, it usually offers lower levels of power, and it is necessary to have a few spare batteries charged in case you plan to complete a big project.

Electrician drill types

There are five types of drills for electricians depending on their features and functions. Drill drivers are big all-purpose tools that are used to drive screws through different materials. Cordless screwdrivers are compact instruments for driving screws, especially while performing light-duty projects. An impact driver is a tool with a high torque that is perfect for installing fasteners and nut bolts. A hammer drill is the most powerful tool used for drilling through hard materials like concrete or metal. Finally, a rotary hammer drill is a heavy portable instrument typically meant for removing materials.

Voltage ratings: 12V, 18V or more?

Whenever you pick a drill, it is necessary to consider the voltage of a tool. You will need an 18V or even more powerful instrument for heavy-duty tasks, but it is generally heavier and more expensive. A compact, lightweight 12V tool is usually ideal for small household tasks.

Brushed or brushless motors?

Initially, a traditional drill was equipped with a brushed motor, and those brushes wore out over time, resulting in friction. Modern brushless motors are considered to be more durable as they function by way of magnets, and thus, they are more efficient and expensive. Moreover, brushless motors produce less noise and heat and require less maintenance.

Chuck size

The drill’s chuck is the portion that retains the drill’s revolving bit. The chuck should hold a bit firmly to provide extra precision. A drill for electrical work can be equipped with a chuck of various sizes, commonly ¼, ⅜, and ½ inches. The latter is the most powerful and is applied for heavy-duty jobs, while ¼ and ⅜ inches are meant for low-power tasks. Keep in mind that keyless chucks are the most comfortable ones as you will not require a key each time you need to replace the bit.

Speed-range switch

A high-quality electrician drill should have a speed control or variable speed setting. You should have an opportunity to adjust the speed according to the peculiarities of your job. Low-speed control is the key to precision when you start drilling or when you want to avoid friction while working with soft materials. High speed is necessary when you work with solid materials using smaller bits.

FAQ

What type of drill do electricians use?

There are many types of drills that electricians use, but the most common type is the rotary drill. This type of drill uses a rotating bit to bore holes into materials. Other types of drills that electricians use include hand drills, impact drills, and cordless drills.

What size hole do you drill for electrical wire?

The size of the hole you drill for electrical wire depends on the type and size of the wire. For example, 14-gauge wire is typically used for household wiring and must be drilled with a 1/8-inch or larger bit. Larger wires, such as 12-gauge or 10-gauge, are used for heavier-duty applications and must be drilled with a 3/16-inch or larger bit.

Can you drill above an outlet?

Yes, you can drill above an outlet as long as the outlet is not in the way of the drill bit. If the outlet is in the way, you will need to move it before drilling.

What is the difference between drill driver and impact drill?

A drill driver is a type of power drill that uses a rotating bit to drill holes into materials. An impact drill is a type of power drill that uses a hammering action to drill holes into materials. Impact drills are typically used for more heavy-duty applications than drill drivers.