In this post, we reviewed five of the best Ridgid Impact Drivers.
But before we dig into these great products, let’s first talk about what an impact driver really is and how it is different from cordless drills. Apparently, many are still confused about these two and how they are properly used.
Impact Driver vs Cordless Drill
An impact driver is a tool that delivers a strong, sudden rotational and downward force, often used by mechanics to loosen or tighten larger screws (bolts) and nuts that are corrosively “frozen” or over-torqued (Source).
Unlike a cordless drill, an impact driver has a collet that accepts hex-shanked driver bits. Because of this, impact drivers can drive long, large fasteners that would stall even the best drill.
A cordless drill/driver, on the other hand, is a versatile tool that’s primarily designed to drill holes and drive screws.
Its keyless chuck accepts a wide variety of round and hex-shank drill bits and screw-driving bits, as well as hole saws, rotary sanders, wire-wheel brushes, and other accessories.
All cordless drill/drivers are also equipped with a slip clutch that allows you to adjust the amount of torque for precise, consistent screwdriving.
Now that we’ve clarified what is an impact driver, let’s know more about the brand – Ridgid.
Ridgid: Built For Those Who Know
Ridgid is one of the popular names in the world of construction and tools. As the company describes itself, Ridgid invents for those who build the world. Since it invented the modern pipe wrench in 1923, the brand has been known for its strength, effectiveness, and legacy.
In plants, construction sites, and other harsh environments, people have been observed using and trusting Ridgid tools.
It offers a variety of tools – from diagnostics, inspection & locating, pressing, and drain cleaning to wrenches & tubing tools, utility & electrician tools, and other general purpose & hand tools. Ridgid made sure to offer quality products that you can trust even in the harshest environments.
Top 5 Best Ridgid Impact Drivers
We’ll start the list of the 5 best Ridgid impact drivers with our top pick: the Ridgid R86008.
1. Ridgid Fuego R86008 18V Lithium Ion 1650 RPM Cordless Compact 2 Speed Drill / Driver
The Ridgid Fuego R86008 is powered with high torque. It can drive small and large fasteners at a rate of 1,650 RPM. You can also easily adjust the 24-position clutch to drive between 0 and 535 inch-pounds of torque so you can work on softwoods, hardwoods, and even some metals.
It also makes your work easier with LED lighting and a micro-textured grip. The LED turns on as you pull the trigger so you can keep your job illuminated.
Or, if you don’t need to run the drill but still want some light on your work, there is a separate trigger so you can activate the light alone. The micro-textured grip, on the other hand, is rubberized so you can maintain control even in slippery conditions.
Another good feature of the Ridgid Fuego R86008 is a detachable side handle. It gives you even greater control even when you’re working on a heavy-duty job.
- Very affordable
- High torque
- LED light with separate trigger
- Rubberized grip
- Does not include a battery and is not covered by a warranty
2. Ridgid R82230N 1/4 Inch 12 Volt Lithium Ion 1,100 In. Lbs. Impact Driver
The Ridgid R82230N is the tool if you need something powerful to drive fasteners in. For its power, you would be surprised that it’s pretty compact in size so you can easily bring it with you almost everywhere.
It also comes with tri-bead LEDs that activate with the driver so your workplace will be illuminated while you work. It also has a rubber overgrip etched with a hex pattern for maximum control.
Additionally, you can also comfortably hang it on either side of your belt once you need a quick rest for your hand because it comes with a reversible belt clip.
It won’t also suddenly leave you on your job because its LED system is also a low battery indicator that will flash to let you know when you need to get a new battery.
Lastly, it comes with quick-connect couplers that let you make speedy bit changes.
- Powerful for a 12V tool
- Has a reversible belt clip
- LED provides light and low power indicator
- Rubberized overgrip for maximum control
- Does not come with a warranty
3. Ridgid R86037 18 Volt 18V GEN5X Brushless Motor 3-speed Impact Driver Drill
Is a brushless impact driver that comes with 3 torque and speed settings: low, medium, and high. As such, you can easily adjust according to the power you need. It can go as fast as 2,750RPM and has a maximum torque of 2,250 inch pounds.
It also has a tri-beam LED for illumination and a hex-grip rubber over mold that’s great in the grip department. These features will allow you to do your job better and with better control of your tool.
When put in a test, this brushless impact driver sure showed how powerful it is. However, its speed is not as remarkable, especially when driving larger bolts without a pilot hole on a surface.
Nevertheless, it is still a great, powerful tool that comes at a price.
Youtube Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZKH4XaMtgyc
- Covered with Ridgid lifetime service warranty
- Features 3 torque and speed settings
- With tri-beam LED and hex-grip rubber over mold
- Expensive among others on the list
- Does not include battery
4. Ridgid R86034 X4 18V Lithium Ion 1750 LBS Torque 1/4 Inch Hex Shank Impact, Driver
The Ridgid R86034 is another affordable option with plenty of torque. With this tool, you shouldn’t have any trouble driving most fasteners.
Although run time is a bit of a downside, the good news is your downtime is minimal since this Ridgid model has a pretty fast charging time of only 25 minutes.
Its body is also pretty compact and has a rubber coating for extra protection. The notched rubber overgrip by the handle also allows improved handling of the tool.
If you’re thinking about lighting, this Ridgid R86034 still won’t disappoint because it has LED lighting that has an independent trigger. You don’t need to activate the driver just to use the lights.
- Pretty affordable
- Compact and powerful
- Fast charging
- Does not include battery
5. Ridgid R82005 Genuine OEM 3/8 Inch 12V Lithium Ion Brushless and Cordless 300 In-Lbs Drill / Driver (Battery Not Included, Power Tool Only)
Ridgid R82005 is a 12V brushless impact driver. It’s pretty lightweight and compact so you can bring it anywhere you need to work. It comes with a two-speed gearbox that works with the trigger to give you up to 1,500 RPM.
It also features a LED lighting system that lightens up once the tool is activated. Additionally, it has an ambidextrous belt clip so you’ll be able to keep the driver by your side, and a rubberized hex grip that improves handling and gives maximum control.
The downside observed by some buyers, however, is the chuck. In various instances, customers observed that the chuck loosened from the vibrations.
Youtube Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ycvi20hzjH4
- Compact and lightweight
- With LED lighting system and belt clip
- Chuck may loosen after several use
- Does not include battery
Choosing the Best Impact Driver
All these choices are from just one brand so maybe you’re still confused. Good thing is, we’ve also provided you with some tips on how to choose the best impact driver and why you need one.
- It’s all about the torque
You can drive long screws with ease because impact drivers generate a lot of torque. It’s also one of the major differences between an impact driver from the standard drill.
It also means that you don’t need to have an enormous, heavy driver. As you have observed from the list, most impact drivers are usually compact in size and they can already drive a big screw (or bore a big hole) thanks to their torque.
- Not just for driving screws
As their name implies, impact drivers are primarily used to drive screws. However, with such power, you can also use this tool to easily bore large holes. Impact drivers, in fact, make great drills.
With small bits, they act like a drill – but at nearly twice the RPM of most cordless drills. With bigger bits, they kick into high-torque impact mode so you can bore a big hole.
- One-handed driving
With a standard driver, you have to get your weight behind the screw and push hard. Otherwise, the bit will come out and chew up the screw head.
With an impact driver, on the other hand, the hammer mechanism produces the torque that also creates some forward pressure. As such, you can just let the tool do the job and you don’t even need to push.
- Loud, really loud
Unlike other tools that don’t cause too much noise, impact drivers can bring even the heavy-metal drummer to tears. So be sure to be equipped with muffs or earplugs. That, or get fitted for a hearing aid, it’s your choice.
- Use hex shafts only
The driver chuck only accepts hex shaft bits. Regular bits just won’t work. With the correct hex shaft bits, the chuck on an impact driver makes for quick changes.
- Small and smaller
There’s a big torque difference between 12- and 18-volt models. Amazingly, the 18-volt models are still pretty compact and are not much bigger than the 12-volts. Big torque in a compact tool, indeed. As such, most prefer the 18-volt versions.
- Easy to handle
Most people think that extreme torque puts extreme strain on the arm. If you have that same concern, don’t worry. Impact drivers actually generate less wrist twist than a standard driver. With this tool, you don’t need to be a macho man to drive a big screw. Even a poised princess can do the job.
- Prepare for impact
Pick up a set of hex-shaft accessories that would go with your driver. You will find them handy for your job.
When it comes to tools for construction and other harsh environments, Ridgid has already established its name. As such, you can’t go wrong that the tools they offer are tough, powerful and reliable for whatever the task at hand.
The impact drivers we presented here are just some of the best that the company has. And practically, whichever you choose, you can be assured that it’s a great tool. All of them are, in fact.
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