There are few tools as versatile and important, both to the professional contractor and the home DIY-er, as a corded power drill. They can install or remove fasteners in seconds, which saves you both time and strain on your arms and shoulders. Not only that, they can help you drill pilot holes and other openings without requiring a ton of elbow grease.
First, you have to decide whether you want to use that corded power drill for woodworking purpose, for home use, for just for driving screws. By deciding that you will be able to select the best according to your use of the product like heavy duty drill or lightweight, drill with a clutch or high torque, you want budget options like under $100 or $50 drill. Hence these corded drill reviews will help you spend your hard-earned money only on the best.
Given their convenience, it should come as no surprise that there are dozens of options to choose from. Unfortunately, they’re not all created equal, and owning a poor-quality model is almost as bad as not owning one at all.
We examined several of the best corded electric drill options currently available on the market, eliminating any inferior selections before ultimately settling on 7 models that we feel offer the best performance, durability, and value for the buck.
Comparison of our Favorite Picks
7 Best Corded Drills of 2019 – Reviews
#1. Makita 6302H Corded Drill – Best Overall
The variable-speed Makita 6302H is a heavy-duty model which requires two hands to control. Luckily, the two-position side handle lets you do just that — and you can remove it if you need to navigate tight spaces.
The tool’s design is well-thought-out, as all of the switches are conveniently located so you can easily reach them while working. This is the best 1/2 corded drill.
Speaking of convenience, it comes with a belt clip, saving you from having to stoop down to pick it up every time you take a break. It’s the small things that add up (and save your back). This is 120 Volts drill so make sure not to use at 220V power.
- Relatively lightweight
- Plenty of power
- Variable-speed motor
- Chuck key is awkward to use
#2. DeWalt DWD210G Corded Drill – Best Value for Money
DeWalt has a reputation for making fine tools, and the DWD210G is certainly no exception.
The DWD210G sports a soft pistol grip that makes it easy on your hands, even if you’re needing to use it all day long. That also helps you to put more downward pressure on a screw if need be, without also putting similar pressure on your wrist, shoulder, and elbow.
Don’t let its comfort fool you, however — this machine can deliver some serious torque. The 10-amp motor is more than capable of drilling through steel, while still being controlled enough to handle woodworking applications without chewing up your lumber in the process.
It is a little more expensive than some of its competition, but it should provide years of valuable service, which is more than enough to compensate for the price difference.
- Powerful motor
- Adjustable speed setting
- Durable metal gearbox
- Doesn’t have a trigger lock
#3. Meterk Professional Corded drill – Best for professionals
While not as well-known as DeWalt, Meterk is another excellent tool brand. This drill is both powerful and versatile, so pros will get as much use out of it as hobbyists.
It’s a combination electric and impact drill, and switching between the two modes is as simple as flipping the dual mode selector. Regardless of whether you need to break through a thick wall or delicately insert a fastener into a small piece of furniture, it’s up to the job.
It also has a lock button, which helps cut down on operator fatigue since you won’t need to constantly be applying pressure to the trigger. That’s not something that every user will need, but it’s a feature that professionals will certainly appreciate.
The integrated depth ruler allows you to know exactly where you are in your drilling efforts, saving you from having to repeatedly bore through a surface — or finding that you went too far.
If you often find yourself needing to drill through brick, however, this might not be the best option for you.
- Variable-speed setting
- Overload protection
- all-metal chuck
- Struggles with brick
- A little on the heavy side
#4. Tacklife Classic – Best Corded Drill Under $50
While it may look complicated on the surface, that’s only because the Tacklife Classic offers a variety of helpful features that you’ll quickly grow to love.
The 360° rotating handle lets you find the proper grip, regardless of how tight of a space you’re working in. The dual side handles let you really put your weight behind the machine when necessary.
The metal depth gauge on the side makes measuring holes a snap, and the variable-speed dial has a whopping 12 settings to choose from.
However, while it claims to be a hammer drill in addition to an electric one, those claims are somewhat unfounded. You’re better off using this for screwing and drilling rather than as an impact drill.
- Very stable while in use
- Plenty of speed settings
- Heat-dissipating Aluminium alloy cover
- A little bulky
If you want excellent performance at a budget-friendly price, the Black+Decker DR260C represents one of the best values on the market.
It’s a very compact model, so don’t expect it to handle the most heavy-duty jobs around, but it’s certainly capable of handling the demands of everyday use.
The on-board bit storage helps keep things nice and tidy, as well as reducing the likelihood you might lose an important piece, like the double-ended screwdriver it comes with.
- Good performance for an inexpensive model
- Perfect for use in tight spaces
- Stays cool while in use
- Limited power
- Chuck is extremely tight and hard to manipulate
#6. Ryobi D43K
The Ryobi D43K is suitable for use in just about any conditions, as the rubber over-molding on the handle allows you to keep a tight grip on it even if your hands get slippery.
It’s good for jobs that require a deft touch, as it puts out a somewhat limited 1,600 RMP and sucks down only 5.5 amps of power.
And, while this may not seem like a huge deal, having a lime-green drill makes it easier to find (and harder to lose).
- Fantastic grip
- Keyless chuck makes swapping out bits easy
- Relatively weak motor
- Not suitable for larger jobs
#7. SKIL 6445-04 – Best for Metal
You don’t want to use it for delicate applications, but the SKIL 6445-04 warrants heavy consideration for tougher jobs.
The 1/2-inch keyed chuck is capable of holding larger bits than most of its competition, making it ideal for penetrating brick, cinder block, and other dense materials.
The motor is capable of 3,000 RPM, so it’s unlikely to get bogged down while tearing through walls. If it does, however, you can quickly work it out with the reverse setting and sturdy side handle.
- Perfect for harder materials
- Ideal for masonry
- Limited manufacturer warranty
- Noisy while in operation
When shopping around for a cordless drill, the biggest thing to keep in mind is what, exactly, you’ll be needing it for. This dictates the size and power of the model that’s best for you.
When we say “size,” we don’t just mean how big the actual drill is (although that’s important too if you plan on using it in cramped quarters). What we’re referring to is the chuck size; most drills come in either 1/4″, 3/8″, or 1/2″ chuck sizes. The larger the chuck, the more the drill will be capable of handling heavy-duty operations like drilling through concrete. On the other hand, a smaller chuck will be better suited for smaller, more delicate work.
Choosing the right power requires similar calculations. The more amps the drill has, the more powerful it is. While that might sound like an unequivocally good thing, you don’t always want a supercharged tool.
If you’re primarily using the drill for woodworking, think about the types of lumber you work with most frequently. If it’s mainly softwoods, opt for a drill with a lower amp count; on the other hand, hardwoods (and metals) will need all the juice they can get.
Beyond that, there are other, smaller things to consider.
You can get either a keyed or keyless chuck; the former is more secure, while the latter allows you to swap out bits quickly and easily.
The layout of the machine itself is also important.
Do you want handles? If so, where would you like them located? Is a cushioned grip important to you?
None of these things are likely to make a huge difference, but if you’re plunking down your hard-earned cash, you might as well get something you really love.
Product Using Tips
Corded drills are some of the simplest power tools you’ll come across, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t potential pitfalls to be aware of.
The first thing you should do when you get your new drill is figured out where the forward and reverse control is, and which way it goes. Nothing can screw up a job faster than unintentional drilling, and nothing will make you feel as dumb as trying to bore through a wall with a bit that’s spinning the wrong direction.
Practice swapping out bits for a few minutes after you first take it out of the box. If you can be proficient with this, it will help cut down the time wasted at the job site, while also making it easier for you to use the proper bit for the task at hand.
Also, take some time to figure out the speed and torque settings. These are likely on the rotating collar close to the chuck. Using the right settings for the occasion is extremely important, as you can burn out your motor if you’re not careful.
If you’re trying to drive screws, you’ll want a low-speed setting. The torque setting will depend on how hard the surface you’re screwing into is. On the other hand, if you’re drilling holes, you’ll want higher speeds.
When in doubt, it’s best to start at a lower setting and move up if the motor stops in the middle of the job.
If you’re just getting started with drilling in general, it’s probably a good idea to grab a piece of scrap wood and use it to practice. After all, putting an unnecessary hole in a trash bit of lumber is vastly preferable to putting one in your living room wall.
What’s the difference between a corded and cordless drill?
Besides the obvious (one has a cord, the other doesn’t), a corded drill is likely to be much more powerful than its cordless counterpart.
The biggest benefit that a cordless model offers is the ability to move freely. You’re not bound to one location, and you don’t have to constantly maneuver around a cable. You can also work in outdoor settings where outlets might not be readily available.
On the other hand, you won’t have to constantly swap out batteries while using a corded drill.
Most serious craftsmen should probably have both, but if you’re just starting out, a corded model is your best bet.
Are there any safety issues to be aware of when using a corded drill?
Like any other power tool, you can injure yourself with a drill if you’re not careful. However, they’re among the safest items you’ll find on a construction site.
One of the biggest ways you can be directly hurt by the drill is if you don’t fasten the chuck all the way. This can send the bit flying out — possibly in the direction of some of your soft tissue. Beyond that, the biggest worry is getting dust, sand, or other debris in your eyes, but you are wearing safety glasses, right? Right?
How do I know what specs to look for?
As mentioned in the buying guide above, this will largely depend on what you need the machine to do.
It’s unlikely that you’ll find one that’s equally adept at small, delicate jobs and heavy-duty applications; if you’re doing a mix of both, you might need to buy two drills.
Most people don’t fall into that category, however. If you’re just fixing things around the house, lower-speed and lower-RPM models should be fine. If you’re doing a lot of masonries, however, you’ll need much more power than that.
What other equipment do I need?
A long extension cord is always handy, as that will allow you to move around your garage or other work sites freely. If the drill you buy doesn’t come with bits, you’ll need those as well. A set of drill bits in different sizes should suffice, as well as a reversible screwdriver.
That’s really about it, unless you want a case to lug everything around in.
What does the hammer setting do?
There are many options out there — including on our list — that have the ability to switch between a conventional drill and a hammer drill.
A hammer drill uses the impact to force the bit deeper into hard surfaces. It feels like your drill just became part jackhammer. While this can be unsettling at first, it’s fantastic for busting through the toughest mediums.