Bosch DDS181-02 18 Volt Lithium-Ion Drill Driver Review

Sometimes, being bombarded with ads crammed with the product’s latest feature can do more harm than good. It makes choosing more difficult, especially if the product is on the technical side of things.

That is why researching on equipment like the drill diver is needed. Reading reviews will especially help beginners look for the right product. Hence if you are on the hunt for a drill driver, you can begin your list of options with this Bosch DDS181-02 drill driver review.

So will this Bosch product get the grade that it deserves? Read on and find out if this one is worthy of your hard-earned bucks.

Bosch DDS181-02 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 1/2-Inch Compact Tough Drill/Driver Kit with 2 High Capacity Batteries, Charger and Case (Discontinued by Manufacturer).



  • Uses 18V lithium-ion batteries
  • Has one of the most compact designs in its category
  • Has efficient LED light with sufficient brightness
  • Comes with 4-pole brushless motor for excellent power
  • Has longer operating time


  • Quite pricey in its class
  • Has slower charging rate compared to similar models

Our Opinion

Drill Basics

Bosch DDS181-02 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 1/2-Inch Compact Tough Drill/Driver Kit with 2 High Capacity Batteries, Charger and Case (Discontinued by Manufacturer).First and foremost, you need to know the origin behind the names given on the drill driver models. The DDS in the name refers to its function, the function being a drill driver. The 181 number means the battery kind while the 02 refers to the number of battery the model comes with.

Now let us discuss the design and components of the unit. This compact, cordless model has a length of 7 inches, and it weighs around 3.43 pounds. It also comes with a half-inch, single-sleeve metal drill chuck. Due to the length and the weight, the model is actually one of the lightest and compact models in its category.

Because this is a Bosch product, expect that the drill driver has excellent build quality and craftsmanship. This was designed for the serious DIY/woodworking buff. Bosch is known for their topnotch range of equipment, products that are quite tough and durable enough to withstand strong, frequent usage.

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Ergonomic and Durable

This unit is not only prepared and manufactured using fine, durable materials, it also comes with an ergonomic design. An ergonomic design is something that users need to look into when it comes to choosing such tools.

Woodworking is not exactly a walk in the park; it requires precision and tools that can withstand extreme pressures, speed, and power. Hence, you need a drill driver that is not only powerful enough to manage and finish a good choice of projects; it must also be a comfort to use.

Efficient Performance

The best advantage of this model is that it comes with two optimized speeds. For projects that require higher torque, the device can deliver up to 0-500 max RPMs. For higher speeds, it can give up to 0-1700 RPMs. As Bosch explains, the 600-inch per pound of torque can push 500 screws max in each battery charge.

Powered by Lithium Ion

This means users can drill continuously for 5 minutes without hassles thanks to the inclusion of lithium ion batteries and the ergonomic design. Lithium-ion batteries are advantageous compared to other kinds since it can contain their power over time. One can charge the battery for a few months, and it will still retain its juice.

Another benefit of lithium-ion batteries is that it comes as a duo just like the batteries provided in this model. You can use one battery and keep the other one handy in case the battery you are currently using gets drained. Furthermore, this type of battery is exceptionally light considering the higher amount of power it delivers.

This makes the lithium-ion battery practical and user-friendly even for inexperienced users who are not used to dealing with power tools for an extended amount of time.

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The batteries for this model can provide up to 50 percent of operating time even in cold weather. Changing the batteries is also a quick, fuss-free process at that.

Because of the power it delivers, the unit is perfect for home use and light commercial work. It can handle a good range of surfaces as well as wood, plastic, metal and more materials. Because of its performance, this device is an excellent all-around drill driver.

Additional Perks

The unit includes 1 LED light which helps immensely if you were obligated to work on areas with low-lighting conditions or confined workspaces. It also includes two high-capacity batteries and 18 plus one clutch settings.

Compared to LED lights on similar models from other brands, this one indeed gives bright illumination and works as expected.

Another excellent advantage of this device is that it comes with what the company refers to as the ProVantage protection plan. This is a plan which includes a 1-year replacement plan for defective tools plus a free battery replacement plan for two years. It also comes with a free repair package for the device in its 2nd and 3rd year respectively.

Comparison with the Bosch DDB181-02

Both Bosch models have similarities. They come with two 18V lithium-ion batteries, and both have Durashield housing. However, they do have differences. For one, this model is more compact compared to the DDB181-02.

So if you want something that is downsized and handy enough for travel, you should get the DDS181-02 instead.

Furthermore, the DDB181-02 has lower torque compared to the DDS181-02. The price difference is also attributed to the overall design and the power the products deliver. The DDS type has more power compared to the DDB, so this translates to a more expensive cost for the former.

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Bosch DDS181-02 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 1/2-Inch Compact Tough Drill/Driver Kit with 2 High Capacity Batteries, Charger and Case (Discontinued by Manufacturer).


The cordless Bosch DDS181-02 driver drill is recommended for home use since it perfectly accommodates majority if not all projects that can be done at home. It is also a good tool for professionals who want a travel-friendly product that has a nice, lighter weight and can fit inside smaller utility kits and pouches.

The battery of the device while it did display topnotch performance as expected from 18V lithium-ion batteries, it did not fare well in terms of quick-battery charge. It was slower to charge compared with other batteries from similar drills from the brand.

But this can be relieved instantly since the device comes with not one but two batteries; better have the other on hand while you are bent on finishing projects on time.