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Best electric drill

Which electric drills are best?

When it comes to a power tool that almost everyone should have on hand, the electric drill tops the list. You can use an electric drill for a large number of different projects, and it will work as a power screwdriver as needed.

Electric drills run from a power cord that you’ll plug into a standard household outlet. These are among the easiest-to-use power tools that you’ll find.

There are many options to choose from, and the following guide will help you select the model that’s right for you. Our top choice, the Metabo 6.0 Amp 3/8-Inch Drill, provides an excellent mixture of value, reliability, and performance.

What to know before you buy an electric drill

Think about the kinds of jobs you want your electric drill to perform as you begin shopping. For simple repair jobs and occasional use, a light-duty drill will work fine. For regular use and for building items around the home, you’ll want a heavy-duty electric drill.

Amps determine the power a corded drill provides. The most powerful electric drills made for use at home carry eight to nine amps. These drills can penetrate almost any material, including concrete and extremely hardwood. Light-use drills will have three or four amps. These are best used with softer types of woods or for drilling into drywall.

An electric drill can use one of three sizes of chucks, measuring 1/4, 3/8, or 1/2 of an inch. This number refers to the maximum diameter of the drill bit shank the chuck can hold. Light-duty corded drills will have a 1/4-inch chuck. A 3/8-inch chuck is a common size for electric drills you’ll use at home. The most powerful electric drills will use a 1/2-inch chuck, although this size is typically found in hammer drills, rather than standard electric drills.

What to look for in a quality electric drill

Some of the important features you’ll want to think about as you consider purchasing an electric drill are its chuck type, speed, and overall weight.

Electric drills have either keyed or keyless chucks. The majority of people prefer keyless chucks because they’re convenient to use with no extra pieces required. A keyed chuck works fine, but you may lose the key at some point, causing frustration.

A drill with a maximum speed of around 1,500 revolutions per minute (rpm) will work nicely for light-duty jobs. For jobs where you need more power, look for a drill with a maximum speed of around 3,000 rpm.

A lightweight drill allows you to work for longer periods of time without suffering fatigue. However, it may not deliver the power you want for big jobs as well a bigger, heavier drill. Electric drills typically weigh between three and six pounds and tend to be balanced nicely throughout the unit as opposed to a cordless drill with a battery that can throw off the balance.

How much you can expect to spend on an electric drill

Electric drills have a reasonable price point, especially when compared to other power tools. The least expensive (and least powerful) electric drills cost around $30. Pricier electric drills will cost up to $75.

Electric drill FAQ

Are electric drills the best choice for concrete drilling?

A. Probably not, especially if you’ll be drilling in concrete often. A hammer drill has more power and heft than an electric drill, giving you better results with concrete.

What are some hidden costs with electric drills?

A. You’ll need to purchase drill bits separately, although some drills ship with a few basic bits. You may need an extension cord. As with any power tool, safety goggles are a smart purchase, too, as the drill may expel tiny slivers of material as it works.

What are the best electric drills to buy?

Top electric drill

Metabo 6.0 Amp 3/8-Inch Drill

Our take: Lightweight yet has the power homeowners need to complete many different kinds of jobs.

What we like: Offered at a reasonable price point. Keyless chuck for simplicity. Can accept an optional side handle for additional stability and versatility.

What we dislike: When operating in reverse, the drill doesn’t run as smoothly as we’d like to see.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top electric drill for the money

Black+Decker 5.2 Amp 3/8-Inch Drill

Our take: Extremely inexpensive drill, but it’s ready to help you complete quick repair projects.

What we like: Compared to other low-priced electric drills, it has pleasing ergonomics for comfortable use during long construction sessions.

What we dislike: Has a short power cord, so you will need an extension cord on hand.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

PORTER-CABLE 6.5 Amp 3/8-Inch Drill

Our take: Sturdy build quality, so you can count on it giving you long-lasting performance at a reasonable price.

What we like: Includes a six-foot power cord, so you sometimes can work without needing an extension cord. Nice level of power for its price.

What we dislike: Very noisy. Not really made for heavy-duty jobs.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Kyle Schurman writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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