Buyer's Guides

The Best Cordless Drills for Weekend Warriors & Tradies

Finally getting around to that project you've been planning to do during the weekend for the past two years? Why not pick up the best cordless drills in Australia to help you get the work done? 👷‍♂️
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The best cordless drills make light work of tough jobs. They’ve become increasingly powerful, increasingly compact, and increasingly affordable. No longer just the domain of tradespeople, cordless drills are now well within the remit of DIYers.

Whether you want to put up some new shelves in the bathroom, build a garden shed, or undertake more extensive renovations, the cordless drills on this list have you covered!

TL;DR: The #1 Cordless Power Drill for Most People 👇
Bosch 18 V Cordless Drill
181 Reviews
Bosch 18 V Cordless Drill

The Bosch 18 V cordless drill can do it all, and at a very reasonable price. It’s a high-performance tool that can be used for drilling and fastening screws. Plus, it is easy to handle, thanks to its ergonomic design.

In typical Bosch-fashion it’s very reliable, has an excellent build-quality and long-lasting battery.  🙌

The Best Cordless Drills to Buy Today in Australia

1. Best Overall Cordless Drill: DEWALT DCD996B Bare Tool 20V MAX* Cordless Power Drill

6,359 Reviews

Why we like it:
  • Typical Dewalt very high-quality build
  • Very efficient brushless motor
  • Long-lasting battery
  •  Great built-in LED light
What customers say:

“Bought about 20 of the dcd996 drills now. They are used is a manufacturing environment. These are the highest performing and most durable model we have used. No motor or failures at all. The only thing that ever seems to wear out in them is the trigger switch assemblies. This is during daily use in a somewhat abusive environment, though. Overall, no complaints. Dewalt’s best drill to date, in my opinion.” –  Cheyne Nichols

The DEWALT DCD996B Bare Tool 20V MAX* Cordless Drill takes the top spot on our list of the best cordless  drills, thanks to its versatility, power, innovative design, and high build quality. It delivered great results during testing, so you can count on it when handling your next DIY project.

Whether you need a tool for drilling, screw driving, or percussion drilling, the DEWALT DCD996B is more than up to the job. The unit has a very respectable 820 UWO (units watts out), making it a clear standout from the more budget options which top out at around 450 UWO.

Its 3-speed variable reverse motor facilitates a versatile range of tasks and working with different materials. With torque spread across the three speeds at the following intervals; 0-450 on low, 0-1,300 on mid, and 0-2,000 on high.

As with most Dewalt products, this cordless power drill is extremely durable, has excellent build quality, and has smart material choices. The ratcheting clank is manufactured from nitro-carburized metal which significantly increases corrosive resistance and increases fatigue strength.

Overall, this is a top-notch product that you can’t go wrong with and won’t regret purchasing. You’re in great hands with a trust power tool brand like Dewalt, and this is proven with a 4.7/5 rating across nearly 4,000 reviews!

Pros
  • Excellent build quality
  • 3-speed motor
  • High power
  • 3-year limited warranty
Cons
  • Charger not included

2. Best Cordless Drill for the Money: Ingco Cordless Impact Drill

2 Reviews

Why we like it:
  • Keyless chuck for easy swapping of drill bits
  • LED light for maximum illumination
  • Customisable clutch for precision drilling
  • Large capacity battery for extended runtime
What customers say:

“Too early to say value for money, but ok”-Kubair

The Ingco Cordless Impact Drill offers multiple torque settings that you use when tackling a wide range of tasks and is definitely worth every cent that you will pay. What we liked most about this cordless drill is that it comes with a powerful battery that you can fully rely on.

Nestled inside this drill is a high performance motor that will provide you with up to 45 N.m of torque. This is enough power to handle most DIY projects. The keyless chuck allowed us to switch from one bit to another with ease—we didn’t use any tool which is not only time-saving but also convenient.

We also used the drill in a dark room to see how bright the LED light works. It illuminated the spot that we were working on perfectly well, so you can comfortably use this cordless drill in low-light conditions without experiencing any problems.

To add to its list of features, you can adjust the torque according to your needs. Also, the speed lever is strategically placed to give you direct access. You won’t have to worry about stripping screw heads, thanks to the advanced clutch system.

Pros
  • Ergonomic handle
  • Quick charge function
  • Durably built
Cons
  • Not the lightest

3. Best for Most People: Bosch 18 V Cordless Drill

181 Reviews

Why we like it:
  • High performance motor for fast drilling
  • Lightweight for user convenience
  • It has a two-speed gear system
  • Ergonomic handle for user comfort
What customers say:

“Puchased for simple household use, works well, good quality as expected from bosch.

No complaints.”–Mark

The Bosch 18 V Cordless Drill is favourite among most people because of its convenient gear system. It features a 2-gear system and can help you tackle all light load drilling tasks. The first gear can help you fasten screws without stripping the heads, while the second gear is ideal for drilling wood, plastic, metal, and other materials.

Additionally, this cordless drill has multiple torque settings that you can choose from based on the task requirements. To customise the torque, simply turn the adjustment ring clockwise or counterclockwise to the most ideal level. And like all handheld tools from Bosch, this drill is ergonomically designed for maximum comfort.

The handle is not only contoured but also textured to prevent slippage when you are working. This unit is part of Bosch’s 18-volt system, so you can share the battery with all 18v Bosch power tools. To make it even better, this cordless drill is exceptionally lightweight, making it very easy to handle. This makes it ideal for DIY enthusiasts and weekend warriors.

Also, it is reasonably priced and made from high quality materials that will provide you with long-lasting service. And although it only comes with one battery, it’s a great budget option.

Pros
  • All-round performance
  • Easy to work with
  • Quality construction
Cons
  • You only get one battery

4. Best Cordless Hammer Drill: Makita XPH12Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 1/2″ Hammer Driver-Drill

Why we like it:
  • 530 lbs of max torque
  • 2-speed variable motor
  • Incredibly efficient motor for 50% longer run-time
What customers say:

“Let me start by saying I’m reviewing only the product (meaning this drill), with my rating. Makita seems to hold true to their history of quality with this drill. It is VERY compact, about an inch shorter than my XPH06. The shift between modes feels very solid and it is well balanced in the hand. ” – Pops

The Makita XPH12Z 18V LXT Drill is a high-end cordless drill that’s just as good in the hands of a weekend warrior as it is a highly-skilled tradesmen. It ticks every single box one of the best cordless drills should tick and it does it with ease.

This unit impressed us with its powerful hammer function-we were able to drive a 4 inch screw into a 38 by 286mm lubber in just a few seconds. The 2-speed gearbox is easily adjusted using the slide switch located on the top of the drill and can output speeds up to 2,000 rpm.

In addition to high output, there is a 19 point clutch for precision torque control to help manage sensitive tasks with ease. The Makita XPH12Z 18V LXT Drill comes with a nice list of additional features including a nice handle base with a built-in charge indicator, which is a very useful addition.

There’s a very robust keyless chuck, making it very convenient for swapping tool bits in and out. And a strong metal clip at the bottom of the drill if you want to attach it to your belt. This drill is a little larger than the majority of other drills on this list, but that is the cost of the extra power.

Overall, this is a quality power drill suited to intermediates who know what they’re doing and need a quality drill for the job. Beginners will be just fine, but just keep the power in mind when using it.

Pros
  • Superb build quality
  • Very powerful
  • 2000 rpm
  • Metal gear box
  • Top ergonomics
Cons
  • Brushed motor
  • Heavier than most

5. Best Cordless Drill for Home Use: Milwaukee M18BPD-0 Cordless Hammer Drill

440 Reviews

Why we like it:
  • Metal gear for enhanced performance
  • 18-stage torque system for customised drilling
  • Textured handle to prevent slippage
  • Overload protection for maximum durability
What customers say:

“A seemingly more costly option at first glance I thought, but then upon closer scrutiny ,having taken the plunge, I now feel this was in retrospect a really good buy. This drill is very well made, it is really comfortable in the hand and just has a feel of real quality about it…”–IAN W.

The Milwaukee M18BPD-0 Cordless Hammer Drill has all the features that you may look for in a cordless drill. It boasts a full metal gearbox that is designed for performance. It is also durable and can take on most DIY drilling tasks without giving you any problem.

If you are looking for a cordless drill that you can use for installing cabinet doors, picture frames, and other fittings around your home, this may just be the right tool for you. Like most cordless drills with a similar design, the Milwaukee M18BPD-0 has a hammer function that can come handy in different scenarios.

The drill is equally lightweight, so you can work with it for an extended duration without experiencing any discomfort. Plus, the handle is ergonomically designed to give you a comfortable grip.

But that is not all, this cordless drill features a bright LED light that is strategically placed at the front for maximum illumination. As such, you can use it in low light conditions without damaging the workpiece. To add to this, there are 18 torque stages that you can use when drilling different materials.

The 13mm chuck on this drill allows for quick and easy bit changes. This will dramatically reduce your downtime when tackling tasks that require different sizes of bits. However, you should keep in mind that the M18BPD-0 doesn’t come with a battery, but that shouldn’t worry you if you have other Milwaukee tools that use the M18 battery.

Pros
  • Heavy duty
  • Lightweight design
  • Hammer action
Cons
  • The battery is sold separately

6. Best Value Cordless Drill: Bosch Cordless Brushless Hammer Impact Drill

Why we like it:
  • Easily switch between screwing and drilling
  • Quick snap attachments
  • Brushless motor
  • Good build quality
What customers say:

“Great build quality and design (typical Bosch). Lightweight and ergonomic. Magnetic screw holder is awesome when used with screwdriver attachment. Quiet, precise control and reverses with touch switch. Recommended over anything you’ll find in a DIY shop!” – Richard J. Philpot

The Bosch Cordless Brushless Hammer Impact Drill is not only powerful but also offers good value for money. Also, it’s compact, lightweight, and super easy to work with. Bear in that the drill does not come with a battery. We had to borrow an 18-volt battery pack from our Bosch whipper snipper.

There are certainly more powerful cordless drills on the market, but this unit is arguably the best power drill for DIYers. It has an excellent array of features including a brushless motor, precision clutch, all-metal keyless chuck, built-in LED light, 10+1 settings, and extended belt hook.

Although the feature set is might impressive, they weren’t the separating factor when it came to taking the top spot. In fact, it was its compatibility with the Nosch Connected system. This may be a bit more of an advanced feature, but if you’re taking up a serious DIY job or more, then it’s an excellent value add.

As for performance the Bosch Cordless Brushless Hammer Impact Drill does well. It has a 1450 RPM, a max torque of 36Nm, and a max impact rate of 22,500 bpm. This makes it the perfect tool for serious DIYers and even for some tradespeople.

So, if you’re in the market for a cordless power drill that can do it all at a reasonable price, then look no further than the Bosch Cordless Brushless Hammer Impact Drill.

Pros
  • Excellent feature list
  • Lightweight
  • Good battery
  • Great performance
  • Versatile
Cons
  • Not the most powerful

7. Best Mid-range Cordless Drill: WORX 20V Cordless Brushless 13mm Hammer Drill

3 Reviews

Why we like it:
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Comes with a safety lock
  • Heavy-duty and with variable 2-speed design
  • With comfortable soft-grip handle
  • LED light allows for use in dark spots
What customers say:

“Drilled through a brick wall with ease. This drill is quality and feels like it will last a long time…”-Ian S

For those drilling jobs that a corded drill can’t do, the WORX 20V Cordless Brushless 13mm Hammer Drill is the tool to use. This cordless drill is a powerful tool that lets you do the job without having to worry about power cables and outlets.

Because this drill is brushless, it’s more efficient at getting the job done. It’s also less noisy, doesn’t require that much maintenance, and doesn’t produce as much heat as their brushed counterparts. This type of tool also adjusts its torque as well as its speed according to the task you’re performing.

When you purchase this cordless and brushless drill, you can use it for a variety of drilling jobs. And since it adjusts automatically to what you’re doing, it helps to know the drilling capacity of this particular tool. For wood, the drilling capacity of the WORX 20V is 40 mm, while for steel, it’s 13 mm. When it comes to brickwork, the drilling capacity of this drill is 16 mm.

Other notable features that you can expect with this device is its 13 mm keyless metal chuck, which is anti-slip and can provide you with maximum power whenever you need it. The brushless motor is also worth mentioning since it helps make the drill more compact, gives you 50 percent more running time on a single charge, and provides you with up to 25 percent more power. It also ensures that your drill lasts 10 times longer than its brushed counterparts.

This battery-operated drill also comes with a 22 + 1 + 1 clutch position, has a maximum torque of 60Nm, and comes with an impact rate of 0-9600/0-32000 BPM. All of these come together to help you make easy work of any DIY project you might have inside your home, out in the garden, or anywhere else.

One feature that you’re sure to appreciate is the LED light that lets you illuminate dark areas that you need to drill, and the LED indicator that tells you when you need to recharge the battery. It’s also pretty lightweight, weighing a mere 2 kg, allowing you to drill comfortably for extended periods of time.

Pros
  • Can be used for a variety of drilling jobs
  • Lightweight and easy to use
  • Brushless design is quieter and can be used longer
Cons
  • Battery and charger are sold separately

8. Best Budget Cordless Drill: BLACK+DECKER 18V Lithium-Ion Drill Driver Kit

97 Reviews

Why we like it:
  • 11 position clutch
  • Very comfortable to use
  • Built-in LED light
  • Up to 650 RPM
What customers say:

“I love this drill! My ancient, corded drill died and I ordered this one to do my kitchen renovations amongst other things, I really love it! Love the keyless chuck, love the on board screwdriver tool, plenty of power for drilling holes in laminate cabinets …” -Jen-Maree 

The BLACK+DECKER 18V Lithium-Ion Drill Driver Kit is the best budget cordless drill in Australia, thanks to its incredible value for money and ability to handle some tough tasks. We have to be clear, this isn’t suitable for hardcore jobs, but if you need some DIY done, then this could be the cordless drill for you!

This compact 18v unit is perfect for beginners who need a tool to help with flat-pack furniture, putting up some shelves, and other basic tasks. Despite its very low price point, it’s still able to drill up to 25mm in wood, and even up to 10mm in metal. There are 10 torque settings allowing for a reasonable level of precision.

It’s ergonomically designed, and relatively lightweight, making it a good option for extended periods of time. There are even some features rarely found on power drills at this cost like the built-in LED lights and a variable speed trigger.

So, if you’re planning on undertaking some basic DIY tasks and want a cordless power drill to help you out, this could be the one for you.

Pros
  • Incredible value for money
  • Surprisingly capable
  • 11 position clutch
Cons
  • Limited to basic tasks

How We Picked the Best Cordless Drills

We researched and tested the best cordless drills Australia has to offer over a three-week period. For this guide, we only picked 18-volt and 20-volt drills to ensure that you get a tool that you can count on when tackling tasks.

Our team tested the cordless drills for drilling power, ease of handling, and speed. To achieve this, we bought two 38 by 286mm lumber to see how the drills perform when pushed to the limit.

We used the test models to drill holes in one of the 38 x 286mm lumber and took note of how each unit performed. To prevent the drills from overheating, we left them to rest after drilling ten holes.

Additionally, we tested all the available speed settings to evaluate performance when the motor is running at different RPMs. But we didn’t stop there; we tested the cordless drills further by driving 4 inch screws in the second piece of lumber.

Again, we compared the drills to see how fast they can drive the fastener into the wood without overheating, struggling, or stalling out. And ofcourse we had to rest the drills after installing the first ten screws.

Since these are cordless units, we also monitored battery performance when drilling and driving screws. We started each test with a fully charged battery and used the drill until the battery ran dry.

There was a significant variation in battery performance from one battery brand to another. Also, we noticed that most of the 18-volt cordless drills could hold charge longer than some 20-volt models.

All the drills were then plugged in for a charge to find out how long it takes to juice up the battery on each unit. We also evaluated the drills for ergonomics to see how easy they are to handle during usage.

Cordless drills: Buying Guide

There’s a lot that goes into buying the best cordless drill for your needs. You need to be aware of many different factors to make a confident purchase; ranging from different voltages and their appropriate usage to the different types of cordless drills (Drills/drives & Hammer drills).

This cordless drill buyers guide will help educate you so that you can make a more informed purchase.

Different Types of Cordless Drills

Drills

As you can imagine, drills are used for drilling holes. They are suited to drilling into wood, some metals, and plastics. Depending on the drill you purchase they will be capable of drilling to different depths and widths with varying performance.

Hammer Drills

Hammer drills add another level of functionality to a drill by adding a hammer motion that rocks the drill bit backward and forwards making it suited to drilling stone, concrete, and brick

Soe cordless drills are combinations of the two drill types of many on this list fitting this description. There isn’t much trade-off from 2-in-1 cordless drills other than an increased price. It’s a lot more convenient using a 2-in-1 rather than switching from tool to tool.

Important Cordless Drill Features

Here are some of the most important features you should pay attention to when buying a cordless drill:

Chuck Size

No not Chuck Norris! The chuck is the mechanism used to attach the drill bit to the drill. It’s a very important aspect of a power drill since it determines the types of bits that can fit as well as playing a large role in the durability department.

Depending on your needs you may be able to get away with a smaller 10mm chuck, be we would recommend a 13mm chuck to allow for a wider range of drill bits, and drilling tasks.

We would also recommend opting for a drill with a keyless-chuck since it speeds up things greatly. Instead of having to use a key to loosen the chuck, you can use your hand. This is very common these days, so you’d be hard-pressed to find a key one, but do still exist.

Speed Control

It’s important to be able to control the drill speed in order to precisely drill a hole without damaging the material or the drill itself. Many cordless drills employ a trigger mechanism that increases/decreases speed depending on the amount of pressure applied to the trigger.

Most drills also have at least a 2-speed motor that utilises different-sized gears to deliver varying amounts of power.

Clutch

No this isn’t a car guide, but cordless drills have clutches too. Just like a car engine, the clutch plays an important role in how the motor catches and maintains traction. It’s used in drills as a safety feature to protect the drill and the screw from breaking under too much pressure when the screw or drill bit can no longer rotate.

Weight

An often overlooked consideration. If you’re planning on doing a lot of work then weight should be a priority. The drill can feel a lot heavier than they actually depending on the job and the position you need to be in the get the job done. Make sure you are comfortable with the drill’s weight before purchase.


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Last update on 2023-12-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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