When it comes to cordless drills heavier is not always the strongest, you have to match the features you need to weight and design that you can manage. Cordless drills are a must-have tool in every home because of their versatility. They have improved over the years becoming lighter but more powerful since the introduction of lithium batteries.
The weight of a cordless drill largely depends on the motor and the batteries on board. Both contractors and DIY enthusiasts have a high preference for cordless drills with the lowest weight to power ratio to reduce fatigue while working. Light cordless drills are also maneuverable giving the operator full control.
It is hard to agree on one perfect light drill without testing it out although store owners may not be willing to allow you to give everything on their shelves a test run. Most high torque drills will automatically be heavier than small 12V drills because of the huge powerful motor. This is why we had our DIY enthusiasts and drill professionals give us their opinion of some of the lightest cordless drills across major brands from 12V to 20V best sellers in the market all powerful enough to cover both your personal and commercial grade projects.
Top 5 best lightweight cordless drills reviews
1. Black+Decker LDX120C 20V cordless drill
This is probably the most famous 20V cordless drill in the market because of its compact design that gives it the weight of a 12V with the power of any 20V drill. It has a great combination of powerful features including a 4 pole motor and a pure metallic ratcheting chuck that deliver enough torque to drill into steel and masonry. It is very light featuring a short slim head that allows you to drill into the narrowest of spaces with ease. It has a 3/8inch chuck which goes easy on the 20V battery giving you more juice for all day drilling.
It is a great drill for a budget purchase coming in under $50 which is the most friendly price you can get on a 20V drill. This cordless drill delivers 650RPM in high torque mode with over 300lbs of torque allowing you to complete more tasks in a shorter time. It also has a very high drill mode speed that combines well with the forward drill design which reduces vibration for high precision cutting.
This drill also has a bright light to brighten up your space and most importantly, a quick response variable speed trigger. It is a hassle-free package with light quick charge batteries as well as a quick charger that allows you to spend less time charging and more time working.
- It has a long battery life with a quick charger
- It comes at a budget-friendly price
- It has a slim ergonomic handle with a comfortable grip
- It has a slim streamlined head for drilling into narrow spaces
This is a heavy-duty drill from Bosh suitable for the toughest tasks because of its high torque, 480lbs and high speeds in both drill and drive modes that can drill through any material. It is a popular choice among DIYers and contractors because of its light and compact design that gives it one of the smallest weight to power ratios in the market. It weighs in at just 2.7lbs with the batteries allowing you to work for many hours without fatigue.
It has an exceptionally slim handle that makes it easy to operate using one arm with easy access on both the forward/reverse button as well as the variable speed trigger. It can drill quickly with regular 1/2inch bits running up to 1700RPMs in high sped mode and 550RPMs in high torque mode. It features a very classy finish with a tough rugged external cover that keeps all internal components from the elements.
Its LED work light is strategically located at the base to giving you the brightest working space with no shadows. It is fitted with the powerful Bosh 4 pole motor and a powerful metallic chuck with strong bit retention. Its most attractive feature is the light Lithium batteries included in the package that gives you all the runtime you need to work all day long.
- It has a tough external case protecting for high impact falls and strikes
- A bright work light located at the base for more convenience
- Powerful grip with efficient bit retention
- 22-point chuck settings for accurate torque selection
- It comes with 2 powerful batteries for all day drilling
- A slim ergonomic handle with a comfortable grip and easy access controls
- The battery lock is difficult to open wasting more tie during changeover
3. Milwaukee 2407-22 M12 Drill/Driver Kit
This small drill is one of the lightest drills ever weighing just 1.4lbs made of the friendliest design of any small drill. It features the Milwaukee all metallic body durable and tough enough to withstand harsh conditions of on-site drilling despite its small size. It has a forward rising chuck tip mounted onto a softened ergonomic handle that allows you to drill with precision on every inch. Its design also reduces the vibration on your arm giving more force into the bit instead which gives it the high torque of 275lbs.
The metallic ratcheting chuck has a sturdy grip on 3/8-inch bits delivering a reliable drill speed of 1500RPM and drive speed of 400RPM. This high-speed combination allows the drill to work quickly with high precision for the best on-site experience. Its bright LED light is also effective in brightening up a wide area while drilling to give you a clear view. It is also slow on the battery giving you enough run time to complete many tasks on a single charge.
It is a famous choice for contractors because of its tough design but it is still a great addition to your DIY collection. These features are accompanied by a quick charge and 2 Redlithium batteries that charge within 30 minutes making them one of the best batteries for a power tool in the market.
- It is made of a premium metallic material, durable and effective
- It comes with a quick charger as well a backup battery
- Strong bit grip and retention
- It is small and lightweight suitable for working on narrow spaces
- It has a good balance with a pistol grip easy to operate
- It is pricier than most of its 12V counterparts
4. Porter-Cable PCC608LB 20V Max Cordless Drill
Porter-Cable is the manufacturer of some of the most powerful cordless drills in the market and this one has a particularly giant torque with a compact lightweight design to accompany it. The drill has a rugged robust build that can withstand the harsh conditions on construction sites and outdoor projects. It is a light compact drill weighing in at 3lbs but powerful enough to deliver a stable 300lb torque for any drill/drive jobs.
This drill also has an excellent balance with a very slim head that can drill into closed spaces with ease. It is also fast enough to complete your projects quickly and smoothly with its 0-1700RPM drilling speed. It is one of the best drills in the market for working on 3-inch screws and drilling into concrete and light steel surfaces.
It comes as a complete package, ready to work with 20V batteries that allow you to interchange while charging and work more time in day-long projects. It’s premium motor with and tough external casing also make it a very durable tool. It is also covered by a 3 years warranty.
- Tough External casing for durability
- A soft mid grip handle with great balance
- It has an onboard bit holder
- It has a quick response variable speed trigger to prevent overdrive and stripped screws
- It comes with a 3 years warranty
- Its batteries are large and heavy
5. DeWalt DCD791D2 20V Cordless Drill/Drive
This is the most common DEWALT 20V drill in the market loved by professionals for its power and small size. You can easily mistake it for a 12 volter because it measures just 6.9 inches with a very slim head and a powerful metallic chuck. The chuck retains even round bits sturdily while allowing you to set an accurate torque with its 16-point chuck adjustment.
It is a high-end drill with a premium build strong enough to work on concrete, steel, and hardwood. It is also easy to operate in one arm weighing 3lbs with batteries included and fitted with a slim ergonomic handle that allows you to access all control buttons with ease. Its powerful performance rated at 480lb torque with o-550RPM in high torque mode and up to 2000RPM in drill mode makes this one of the most powerful drills in the market.
It comes in an attractive package including a 2ah battery and a backup to give you more runtime. It also features a powerful LED light with flashlight mode that shines up your workspace even when you let go of the trigger. Its belt hook also allows you to carry it everywhere on site.
- A powerful LED light with flashlight mode
- It has a very high-speed operation up to 2000RPM which completes tasks quickly
- It has a very compact design, small enough to drill very narrow spaces
- It comes with the new DEWALT quick charger and a backup battery
- It is made of premium material with a pure metallic chuck for bit retention
- The batteries are heavy increasing fatigue in long hours of drilling
Features to consider when buying a lightweight drill
This was the main focus of this guide because most customers complained of heavy drills tiering them out when they drill overhead. More weight on a cordless drill means you have to work a little harder unless it has a high torque that finishes the task faster. It is important to match every extra pound on the drill to power to ensure you work smarter and not harder. We focused on drills with the lowest weight to torque ratios ensuring that any drill above the 2.5lb threshold delivers torque up to 300lbs which allows you to work faster reducing fatigue.
This is the power you get at the bit with every rotation in the drill. Large drills have a higher torque because of the motor but the market now has light drills with very high torque as you can see in our recommendations. It is always advisable to go for the highest torque that can handle your projects. DIY projects at home may not need any more than 300lb of torque which is why our 12V recommendations are the best home drills.
Higher torque drills, however, come in handy as they perform better on tougher surfaces which is why we recommended light drills with the highest torque and an ergonomic design that allows you to drill and drive smoothly.
The chuck is the end of your drill that grips the bits and it is the most important part of any drill determining how accurately and comfortably you can drill. All modern drills come with a metallic ratcheting chuck although some manufacturers don’t use strong material which leads to quick chipping and a loose grip after a few jobs. You have to insist on a strong chuck grip to avoid inconvenience. The chuck also helps select the right torque for each task and switch to drill mode.
Voltage and batteries
The ability of your drill to deliver enough power and runtime depends on the type of battery you have on board. It is important to stick to the battery voltage stated by the manufacturer to avoid burning your drill. Packaged batteries, however, tend to be weaker, mostly 1.5ah and 2ah batteries which may not deliver enough torque for tough projects in all day drilling. We recommend getting a 4ah battery, especially for 20 volters to get the most out of your drill.
How do I increase the lifespan of my batteries?
Lithium batteries can last up to 3 years if you maintain them properly. It is not really hard to lengthen battery life. Just keep the drill clean and blown to reduce resistance from rust and dust in the motor that eats up more battery power weakening it faster. You should also avoid draining the battery totally before storage. Batteries should be stored in a cool dry place to avoid interference from elements which may destroy terminals or cause an internal reaction.
What is a combi drill and what is it used for?
This has become a very common term in the market used to refer to a cordless drill with a hammer function. It is always better to have a drill that can perform this function because it is more versatile in handling tougher jobs and drilling faster. These drills also tend to attract a higher price tag but our guide above has the DEWALT combi drill, most recommended by our professional consultants.
How long do cordless drills last?
The main cause of short life for drills is a blown motor caused by rust and dust, directly caused by poor maintenance. The lifespan of a cordless drill always comes down to how many times you use it, what you use it on and how well you maintain it. The most important thing to look for in a cordless drill is premium material build which we highly insisted on in our recommendations.
The warranty available for the drill will also help you understand their trust in the material, we insisted on 2 years or more. Our consultants agreed on an average of 4 years for a properly maintained daily use drill but yours can last longer if you use it on the recommended tasks and keep it clean and dry always.
It takes a lot of energy and time to land a good drill in the current dynamic market full of low-quality drills and thousands of confusing reviews which is why we insisted on a professional touch in this guide. It has all the details you need past the confusing technical details narrowing down to all features that make a perfect lightweight drill. A read through our guide will bring you miles closer to getting your best DIY partner. The recommended products are also professionally reviewed and selected with the confidence of our consultants allowing you to make your purchase with confidence.
Table of Contents:
- Top 5 best lightweight cordless drills reviews
- Features to consider when buying a lightweight drill