18v Cordless Drill Test – Review Pt 3 Final Result

Episode 59 ~ 18v Cordless Combi Drill Test II – Part 3: Final Result

For a handy chart which summarises some of the key performance features of the drills we tested, see http://skill-builder.uk/which-18v-drill-is-best.

The selection of drills was the manufacturers’ choice, not ours. We asked them to lend us the 18-volt drill or their choice. This is what they sent into battle.

Milwaukee M18 FPD
– More power – unmatched torque of 135 Nm.
– All metal reversible belt clip – hang your tool quickly and easily.
– Flexible battery system: works with all Milwaukee® M18™ batteries.
– More speed – delivers up to 2000 rpm.
– Smaller size – length of just 197 mm.
– Milwaukee® designed and built brushless POWERSTATE™ motor for up to 10x longer motor life and up to 60% more power.
– New REDLINK PLUS™ intelligence system delivers the most advanced digital overload protection for tool and battery and uniquely enhances the tool performance under load.
– REDLITHIUM-ION™ battery pack delivers up to 2.5x more run time, up to 20% more power, up to 2x more battery life and operates better down to -20°C than other lithium-ion technologies.
– Individual battery cell monitoring optimises tool run time and ensures long term pack durability.
– Battery fuel gauge displays remaining charge.
– Brightest LED workspace illumination.

Hitachi DV 18D
– Covered by Hitachi’s Lifetime Lithium Ion tool warranty and 2-year Lithium Ion battery warranty.
– Powered by Lithium Ion slide-type battery technology for fade free power, less weight and 3x the total battery life of traditional batteries.
– Industrial grade 2-piece motor with up to 814 in-lbs of torque to handle the toughest jobs.
– Single sleeve ratcheting 1/2″ metal keyless chuck with carbide jaw inserts for maximum bit grip and convenient swap-outs.
– 22-position clutch with drill and hammer drill modes for properly matching the torque to the application.
– Aluminum gear case for maximum durability and strength.
– Metal belt hook keeps the tool close at hand.

Bosch GSB 18 VE
– Newly developed auxiliary handle with wave profile and easy locking mechanism for fast mounting and dismantling and a secure fit.
– Extremely compact: very short head length (only 228 mm) for perfect handling.
– Electronic Motor Protection (EMP) protects the motor against overload and ensures a long lifetime.
– Innovative CoolPack batteries ensure optimum heat dissipation and therefore increase lifetime by up to 100% (cf. Li-Ion batteries without CoolPack).
– Bosch Electronic Cell Protection (ECP): protects the battery against overload, overheating and deep discharge
Integrated LED light for illuminating the work area, even in dark places.
– Extremely powerful: 85 Nm for the toughest screw driving and drilling applications in wood and metal, and impact drilling applications in masonry up to 16 mm.
– Extremely robust: Fully functional, even after falling 2 m onto concrete, due to flexible Durashield housing.
– Highly convenient: Perfect control over the tool thanks to innovative KickBack Control (KBC) – detects sudden jamming and shuts the tool down

DeWalt XRP DCD 995
– Latest generation 18V XR Li-Ion Brushless XRP hammer drill driver compatible with XR 5.0Ah Li-Ion battery technology (batteries sold separately).
– Tough 3 speed all metal transmission for increased runtime and longer tool life.
– Electronic Clutch with 11 position adjustable torque control for optimised precision when screwdriving.
– 13 mm ratcheting keyless chuck with automatic spindle lock for fast bit changes.
– Efficient intelligent trigger allowing total control over all applications.
– Foot LED with delay feature for improved visibility and flashlight functionality.
– Improved grip design providing greater application control and maximum comfort.
– Steel belt hook and magnetic bit holder ensure strong storage solutions.
– Part of the intelligent XR Lithium Ion Series designed for efficiency and making applications faster.

Metabo LTX BL

Festool 18 Quadrive

Panasonic 14.4 /18 volt


Makita DHP 481

In the third and final part of our 18v drill roundup, we look at drilling with auger, forstner and masonry bits and give you the final verdict.

You can support us by buying your drills at: http://skill-builder.uk/shop/18v-drill-prices

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Max Logun says:

I used to love Bosch power tools and had them for many years but have now switched to Festool, love the interchangeable chucks. The bosch tools were very good but I did have problems with them breaking down so had to keep sending them back for repair. I must add that Bosch’s customer service was brilliant, but disappointing to have to keep sending the tools back for repair (combi drill 4 times, jig saw 3 times over the 3 year guarantee) have not had to return the Festool at all yet and now had the combi and jig saw well passed the 3 year guarantee period and to be honest they do get used for jobs that their not supposed to be used for like 4 inch dry core bits though brick and block walls. I’ve not used other makes of tool and as a trades man its always hard to change what you know so it great to see tests like this so when I do need a new tool it does help me make my mind up, but as I’ve been so pleased with how well Festool has worked for me will most likely stick with them.
Thanks for the video hope you can post a new updated one soon as the manufactures are always changing their tools.

Brian Bowling says:

Thank you for the true endorsement, and especially for being an honest reviewer!!!

Forester226 says:

I’d have liked to see Ryobi in this test to see how it does against the rest.

Belzo Graphics says:


Chris Edwards says:

roger what would be u personal choice putting stats aside

Joel LeRue says:

Let’s be honest anyone of these drills will work very nicely
but I’m a Milwaukee fan .
Thanks for another great video

pelleper says:

Did you choose the dewalt DCD955 for a reason or did dewalt pick it themselves?
In my opinion is for HD work. For everything else I would choose the DCD791P2. It’s smaller and lighter.

The DCD955 also got an impact setting.

Jacky Wee says:


Redington Hallmark says:

Once again I want to give you at least ten likes or something!!! Thanks for your time and sharing!!

kim long says:

Hi sir where you are there is no tools that name Ridgid?

adam kataz says:

God spede Roger i like the JCB boots

James Needham says:

The makita actually has a lock if you twist the chuck back a bit it clicks and doesn’t come loose

ElectricBike says:

I work making and repairing lithium batteries and interestingly I am next door from a massive tool shop, obviously I bombarded them with battery questions. Out of all brands Makita was the number 1 with battery problems, great tools with disposable batteries. Most Makita owners I know have a collection of faulty batteries. If you want to buy just a single battery they make in a way that makes sense you get the combo 2 batteries + charger… I kinda see this as a nasty consumable game almost like printers and inks… thumbs down for Makita.

Tool Tester says:

Great video, I personally own dewalt compact hammer drill and cant be happier with its size/weight to performance. Also having the hammer feature is really useful.

Bruce Wayne says:

The Milwaukee scored the highest according to your scoring. What if someone else score it differently. Than what does that really mean. I think reviewers need to hand it to people on the job to do the real scoring just to be fair. How do we know your not a Milwaukee dude or how do we know Milwaukee didn’t put you up to this.

Dave Taschuk says:

You can’t beat the tools that work with the Makita.
Battery to full charge would have been a good test to add as well

Zunar Zulfiqar says:

Dewalt has 18 newtonmeters of toque while Milwaukee has 130. A bit of power difference.

TheGrimreaper says:

Hello, I have a few questions regarding the Makita DHP481. It is nearly 2 years old. Shall I buy it now or wait for a newer model? Do you know when Makita updates their tools? Thanks.


anyone else notice wen he sized the dewalt to the makita the jaws were closed on the makit making it smaller that it actually is … dishonest with the overall length man … nothing for you to argue with coz we all seen it and if not people will notice now!

M Raddy says:

Would be nice to see hilti in these tests

cheveresalvi says:

Hi Roger
Did you ever do a review on the new hitachi you were talking about?
Thanks and keep up the good work !

Parallels and Tangents says:

My Makita hammer drill has out lasted both 18v and 28v Milwaukee drills when boring 3/4″ holes through top and bottom plates, LVL headers and etcetera.(electrician by trade) Both the Milwaukee drills snapped the chuck screw when put under torque and or when inadvertently hitting a rogue nail. The Makita on the other hand has torn through hole after hole, nail or no nail with narely a flinch of resistance. I used to be an advocate of Milwaukee but after having to send drills off for warranty repair time and again and fall back on my trusty Makita with its controversial nylon bushing I’ll opt for the hardy turquoise Makita brand from now on.

Champion N3C says:

Hi all, I’m considering a Milwaukee M18 BPD & wondered if there’s anyone out there who’s done a lot of work with one? The first thing that puts me off is the reversing switch which feels a bit rubbish.
Great video btw.

joseph prosser says:

Great review. The battery is integral to the drills’ performance and it would be useful to compare the recharge times for the respective models. I use a Bosch 18VLi (stubbier version of the 18-2-Li reviewed here), have had it for several years and it has resisted being dropped on many occasions and yes the chuck is a bit wobbly. I have a collection of 3Ah batteries, which are shared with my Bosch impact screw driver, that charge fully in less than half an hour. Makita is well engineered and a consistently good brand. I am surprised at Metabo’s high rating, it would be interesting to see its long term reliability. Milwaukee is top of the tree but carries a price to match.

J S Louis says:

Why didn’t you test the Rigid or Porter Cable drills? No 18 volt versions?

jawojnicki says:

could someone explain to me why you never see Metabo tools sold in the big box stores here in the US?

bad man in aus g says:

matabo is a great drill but no good on job sites mine fell approx a foot off my tool belt and snapped in half just above the battery and warranty wouldn’t cover it. before that I’ve only had makita and dropped it a million times even from 2 stories

Kelpo Gaming says:

Milwaukee is good but very over estimated. I had one and it had nothing but problems. The chucks on them things are junk, other than that, they are pretty good but I prefer Makita and Hitachi any day.

WerHatDieKokosnuss says:

Would also like to see some more quality brands available in Europe, like Kress or Fein. Quite unknown, but they got some really neat stuff! 🙂

Belzo Graphics says:

Is JCB a good brand?

conor finn says:

have you a battery review from these makes ???

Conor McDonagh says:

Makita bet Metabo

Jeff Bourke says:

50 FPS!!! I love it!!!

Kariym Calliste says:

hi can you do a test with the ridgid brushless 18v drill to see where it stands.

Rene Bruce says:

Ive got milwaukee 2604-20 same as video. very powerful. not very smooth compared with makita 18v equivalent. batterys still seem perfect after 2.5 years but the electronic trigger has burnt out! A new trigger is the same cost as the new drill! longevity test is possibly the most important for me. at least 6 years.

ABOlsen69X says:

This is interesting. I showed this video to my brother, who’s the head of Bosch Powertool’s repair shops in Scandinavia. He recalled a bunch of those drills, asked some of the contractors they have service deals with to check their drills, and none had the problem with the chuck. I use a GSB 18v 85 C brushless and a GBH 18V-26, and my chuck is completely true. That lack of tureness in the chuck is not a common for the Bosch pro machines and I’ve honestly never seen it.

Also, interestingly, both of my machines are made in Europe. My GSB is made in Germany and my GBH is from Switzerland, not China or Malaysia, so a bit unsure why your model would be Chinese. The Milwaukee is however all Chinese now-a-days.

Matthew Cowpe says:

after you’ve tightened the Chuck on the Milwaukee you need to turn it back til it clicks. brilliant system

Sjaak De Winter says:

This is a very good test.
You have do a lot of work for that, thanks.

ravn87 says:

I have a few questions, being a confessed drilling beginner that…well, has never actually touched much less used a drill in her life:

1. sure cordless is more convenient, but which are more reliable: corded or cordless?

2. which drill oscillates both ways?

3. Are the Festool and Metabo SB drills the only drills that changes chucks?

4. I probably missed this detail: is there a drill that can operate both cordless AND plugged in to the outlet?
5. can any drill be used as an electric screw driving tool as well?

6. Sure the Milwaukee came out on top, but which is your actual favorite and why? (anything small and light weight would be helpful)

I have a couple home projects I’m looking to start that requires a drill, and I’m trying to get an accurate measure of pros and cons. Thank you for your advice!! 🙂

Stevie G says:

Thanks for the tests. I’d like to see something that I can’t find a video or good info about drills, cordless, or otherwise, and not counting drill presses, only hand held.
My latest drill is a Milwaukee 18v. The problem is the runout, or chuck wobble. There are projects that I can’t fit onto a drill press but need accurate drilling in small spaces. The wobble is a problem. Any info on this subject would be appreciated. Thanks again.

pault1964 says:

Can’t use Henry m only

renderuthis says:

Yak yak yak I just want to know the one that can drive the most screws on a charge? Thats the best one.

ShinShinoke says:

You realise how stupid it is to score one drill higher than another when it has a larger capacity battery right?
E.g. the Bosch with a 4ah vs DeWalt or Makita at 5ah.
The only time it’d be reasonable to score a drill lower with a lower capacity is if the higher capacity isn’t available to consumers.
E.g. when Makita didn’t have anything above 3ah.
Test like for like, seriously.

AbeO DEZ says:

wat about doing 18 vs some of the 20v and vs the 24v impact drills or impact wrenches
and makita new sub compact + others like the 24v kobalts

My Name says:

Hitachi’s latest DV18DBL2 18V Lithium Ion Brushless Hammer Drill is the BIG DAWG on the block.

CrimeVid says:

I don’t know about these tests I feel that if these were your normal working practices your drills wouldn’t last a year. I personally never get even close to manufacturers max drill/holesaw sizes, because you can ruin even a relatively new drill by overheating it (once you can smell it it’ll never be the same again). I will say that all my drills are still running when you can no longer get the batteries for them (bummer !) mostly because I always go for a corded tool if I think the task is too much for battery drills.

Conor McDonagh says:

I don’t care about the weight

user3251 says:

SkillBuilder I’m a property manager and do minor repairs with ocasional larger repairs. I need a whole new Compact system. What system would you recommend? I was thinking of going non-brushless to save money.

Home depot will have a lot of black friday deals so I want to go with a system and stick with it. I’m debating– Rigid, Milwaukee, and Makita. What are they known for and how do they rate– quality, durability, and cost?

Anyone else’ opinion is also welcome

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